In this A.M. Mrs. Montgomery took me to the store, I saw the
trader. Capt. Montgomery had the carriage mended gratis and
gave an order to the commissary. We laid in supplies.
Mrs. Montgomery very droll. She said, as we met the chaplain
first and after our visit to the commissary "He gives our
canned meat of religion, yes, opens his cans once a week. His
one religious commissary". He would feed the children,
We went only laughing. Meet a young Lieutenant first from West
Point, his cavalry cloak very yellow lining, making me think
of brilliant Indian boys dress. At 2 P.M. a few
of the officers came to call on Bright Eyes at Mrs. T.s
suggestion. It was all quite funny and odd. The new one was
a Boston young man and he was very homesick. At 3 P.M. we started,
Capt. Montgomery and wife speeding us, I promising if I ever
had a home to claim the privilege of returning her hospitality.
We were to have a Sioux scout, "The Eagle", for these
are marauding Indians, who are dangerous. Capt. Montgomery told
me if I saw a barefooted Indian alone with his hair out, and
scant clothing, to speed away as fast as possible for he would
be dangerous. "If his heart was bad toward a white person
he would kill, and if toward an Indian he would kill my companions".
We forded the Niobrara and on over prairies for six miles rain
and thunder and lightning. At 5.30 we reached the Minnecadosa
and camped just in time to escape a violent storm. Everything
was brought in and we prepared for a night of it. The interpreter
was sent after us to tell us to take wood, for there was none
after we left the creek.
The night was fearful - the lightning incessant, the thunder
pounded and roared. Mr. T. rose to be ready to keep the tent
down. I made ready to help. The Indians slept soundly.
Wajapa got angry with me when I essayed a little jest and will
not speak. I asked a question and he failed to answer. Am much
disappointed that he is such baby.
The day turned to rain and we must stay the day here. The Sioux
and his wife arrived at 10.30. She with red painted part of
hair and over twenty-five brass bracelets on each arm. The Sioux
women wear a dress with flowing sleeves like the buckskin dresses
but now in calico.
Buffalo-chip tells a story about a Gegahooge, a little animal
two feet high which eats grapes, has a long tail: A little grey
fox lived with some cranes. The Gegahooge said to the cranes,
"Let us eat". They were in a little house or lodge
together. The Gegahooge invited the crane to come to dinner.
He put the food in a flat place - the little animal ate well
out of the plate, but the crane with its long bill could get
almost nothing. The Gegahooge would say to the crane, "Are
you satisfied, are you getting enough?" and although the
crane got little, he would say, "Oh, yes, I am doing
Then the crane invited the Gegahooge to dinner for the next
day. The crane had his food in a long pouch, and he said, "Come
friend, let us eat together".
It was rice at the bottom of the pouch, and as the crane put
in his long bill, he ate but the little animal could not get
his nose in. The crane would say, "Friend, are you getting
enough, are you satisfied?" "Oh, yes friend, I am
Buffalo-chip said the story was told by his fathers father
and it has come down from the old time. Queer!
One day the crane went out walking with the crow. They were
great friends. One day as they walked a blizzard came out. The
crow was used to the cold, the crane not. The crow said, as
he shivered and chattered his teeth "Oh, friend, I am so
cold", (this making believe). The crow made believe that
he was going to die. The crane consoled him and said, "Brother,
dont despair, youre alive yet". It grew colder
and colder. The crow would say to the crane, "Are you alive
yet, friend?" "Yes, what is there to kill me?"
Then it grew colder and colder and the crow said, "Are
you alive yet, friend?" "Yes, what is there that will
kill me?" It grew colder and still more cold, and again
the crow asked of the crane how he fared, but the crane made
no answer. The crow looked at the crane and lo! he was dead.
"Ah!" said the crow, "I can eat him" and
he ate him up and then flew off, unmindful of his friend or
Buffalo-chip says there are many such stories. A Frenchman
told stories to the Indians and they were like stories the Indians
Once there was a little monkey going along and he came to a
creek and found a beaver and thinking he was dead he tied his
feet together and packed him on his back. Bye and bye he came
to a stream where there was a dam full of sticks. The monkey
began to pull out the sticks to make a fire and as he worked
he saw a beaver slipping in and out of the logs and he said,
"Oh, if I could but add this beaver to the one I have".
He looked at the place where he had laid the beaver, but he
was gone, and it was his own beaver he had seen among the logs.
The beaver carried off the strings with which he was tied into
deep water and the monkey couldnt get it. Then the monkey
went on and he met a bear. The monkey put mud on his face and
chin and made himself as pitiful as possible and the monkey
said to the bear, "Friend, how are you now, are you getting
along? I am so very glad to see you". The bear answered,
"Yea, old man, I am doing very well, I am going on a message
to a far country, I am very well". The monkey said, "Grandson
I am so glad to see you, I am very weary and hungry, give me
something to eat, see how cracked and parched my mouth is."
"Yes, old man, I see, but Im in a great hurry going
on my message to a far country". "Oh, Grandson, it
is early spring and I am so hungry, let me have some tenderloin,
youre so fat you wont miss it, I am so lean and weary
- let me have a little of the fat on your side, do grandson,
I am so very, very, hungry and worn". "Well",
said the bear, "You may have a little". So, the monkey
took his knife and out into the bear and the bear groaned. "I've
only scratched a little", said the monkey, then he out
again and the bear groaned and the monkey said, "Ive
only a little bit of a piece". The bear groaned again,
and yet again as the monkey cut. Then as he got deep into the
bear he stabbed and killed him.
The monkey said, "Ah! now Ill have a feast,"
so he skinned the bear and cut him up and made a great
fire and prepared for riches and plenty. The monkey was very
arrogant and as he sat there he heard a noise. A tree
grew near the place where he sat and it waved and bent
in the wind and screeched and creaked, and the monkey said,
"What do you mean by all this talk? I'll punish you for
troubling me". But the tree bent and bent and almost touched
the pots of meat. Then the monkey in great wrath rose up and
jumped upon the tree and tore at its bark and rent its leaves
but the branches held him fast and when he found he was caught,
he cried - "Oh, friend, release me and Ill give you
some meat" but the tree held him fast - then he looked
over the plain and there he saw a pack of wolves coming, and
he cried out, "Oh, wolves, go another way, dont come
here, Ive all my provisions and you might eat them".
The leader of the wolves said, "What is that voice I hear,
it sounds like the Old Man". Then all the wolves stopped
to listen and the monkey cried out in his agony the same thing.
The wolves heard him and they said, "He is the old man
and all his provisions," and all ran and tumbled and ate
and crunched all the meat and sat on it and devoured both cooked
and raw, and the monkey watched them, wailing. Bye and
bye all was gone but a little piece caught in the bushes and
after a time an old, old, gray wolf came along. He saw the piece
of meat in the water and jumped and jumped for it but failed.
The tree released the monkey who by this time was very angry
and he took the bit of meat from the bush and threw it in the
face of the wolf and said, "There take it".
There was a town. A party from it went out on the war path.
They were ten in number, with six leaders. The leaders were:
The man, the rabbit, the buffalo, the turtle, the elk. The others
were: The bladder pouch, beaver, owl and sandstone-sharpener.
They started out early in the morning, the path was full of
bushes and undergrowth. The bladder got torn to pieces and it
They came to a creek with beautiful willows and hollow oaks.
It was a beautiful place. The owl gave out and didnt want
to go further, because the place was so lovely, so many charming
places to go to sleep in that the owl felt that he could go
no further and he gave out. Eight only were left. They went
on and in the night they came to a camping place. The scenery
was lovely, the creek beautiful and so well adapted to dams
that the beaver fell so in love with the place that he felt
he could go no further, as the leaders went out to look over
the country, the beaver did not go on - so three were lost.
They went on. At the next camping place there was fine grass
and feeding grounds and the Elk felt ill. He fell so in love
with the land that he felt sure he could never go on and must
stay behind, and he stayed. The rest went on. The next level
place was on a level plain full of the short buffalo grass and
the grey weed with seeds where the buffalo wallow and the buffalo
felt that here he must remain. The land was too delightful to
leave - so he stayed.
Then the rest went on. At their next camping place there were
plum trees full of red shining fruit and as the Rabbit looked
up at them he felt that here he could be happy and he lost all
heart at the idea of going on - so he stayed.
The remaining four went on and the party went till they came
to a tent and there was a beautiful woman, and the man looked
at her and he could go no further and he left the party.
All that were left were the owl, the turtle and the sandstone
and they came to a village. When they came to this tribe the
sandstone went to the door of a tent and lay there and the owl
to the door of another tent and lay there, while the turtle
found its way to a bank and lay there for people to pass.
At the door where the owl lay a woman crept out of the door
and as she crept the owl stuck in her hand and she exclaimed,
"Ah! Ive found an owl, see where it is stuck in my
hand". So the owl found an owner.
The sandstone tripped up the woman who came out the tent where
it lay and she cried out, "Ah! Ive a sandstone for
my own". So the sandstone had an owner.
A man passing by the water saw the turtle and captured him
and the old men all cried out: "A turtle that has come
on the war path was captured", and all the people gathered
about and some said, "Kill him", and others said,
"No, No, put him in a kettle of water and then put him
on the fire".
The turtle made answer, "If you put me in the fire all
the children will die, if you put me in the water all the children
Then the people were afraid to put him into the pot or in the
water and they said, "We will put him in a deep lake".
Then the turtle showed great fear and plead and plead that they
would not put him in the deep water, so the people thinking
he dreaded it, they threw him in. He pretended agony - they
threw him in again, he pretended death - Bye and bye he laughed
out and sank to the bottom.
One day the children were in swimming and there was the turtle
and they came home and told the people that the turtle was not
dead but living in the water.