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Choctaw Traditions – The Council Fire, The Nahullo

The faces of the Choctaw and Chickasaw men of sixty years ago were as smooth as a woman’s, in fact they had no beard. Sometimes there might be seen a few tine hairs (if hairs they might be called) here and there upon the face, but they were few and far between, and extracted with a pair of small tweezers whenever discovered. Oft have I seen a Choctaw warrior standing before a mirror seeking with untiring perseverance and unwearied eyes, as he turned his face at different angles to the glass, if by chance a hair could be found lurking there, which, if discovered, was instantly removed as an unwelcome intruder. Even today, a full blood Choctaw or Chickasaw with a heavy beard is never seen. I have seen a few, here and there, with a little patch of beard upon their chins, but it was thin and short, and with good reasons to suspect that white blood flowed in their veins. It is a truth but little known among the whites, that the North American Indians of untarnished blood have no hair upon any part of the body except the head. My knowledge of this peculiarity was confined, however, to the Choctaws and Chickasaws alone. But in conversation with an aged Choctaw friend upon this subject, and inquiring” if this peculiarity extended to all Indians, he replied; “To all, I believe. I have been among the Comanche’s, Kiowa’s and other western Indians, and have often seen them bathing, men and women, promiscuously together, in the rivers of their country, and found it was the same with them, their heads...

The Discovery Of This Continent, it’s Results To The Natives

In the year 1470, there lived in Lisbon, a town in Portugal, a man by the name of Christopher Columbus, who there married Dona Felipa, the daughter of Bartolome Monis De Palestrello, an Italian (then deceased), who had arisen to great celebrity as a navigator. Dona Felipa was the idol of her doting father, and often accompanied him in his many voyages, in which she soon equally shared with him his love of adventure, and thus became to him a treasure indeed not only as a companion but as a helper; for she drew his maps and geographical charts, and also wrote, at his dictation, his journals concerning his voyages. Shortly after the marriage of Columbus and Felipa at Lisbon, they moved to the island of Porto Santo which her father had colonized and was governor at the time of his death, and settled on a large landed estate which belonged to Palestrello, and which he had bequeathed to Felipa together with all his journals and papers. In that home of retirement and peace the young husband and wife lived in connubial bliss for many years. How could it be otherwise, since each had found in the other a congenial spirit, full of adventurous explorations, but which all others regarded as visionary follies? They read together and talked over the journals and papers of Bartolomeo, during which Felipa also entertained Columbus with accounts of her own voyages with her father, together with his opinions and those of other navigators of that age his friends and companions of a possible country that might be discovered in the distant West, and the...

Biography of Andrew Ekblaw

Andrew Ekblaw. For forty-one years Andrew Ekblaw has been a resident of Champaign County. The management and cultivation of the land and its resources have furnished him an occupation and business, and as a practical agriculturist he has few peers in this part of the state. Mr. Ekblaw was born in Sweden in 1854, a son of Johannes and Charlotte Ekblaw. He was reared and educated in his native land and was eighteen years of age when with other members of the family he came to America in 1872. The Ekblaws first located near Springfield, at New Berlin. There were seven children, Andrew being the third in age. All these children were educated in the schools of Sweden. In 1880 Mr. Andrew Ekblaw married Miss Ingry Johnson, also a native of Sweden, and a daughter of John ‘and Lena Johnson. When she was ten years of age her father died, and two years later, in 1872, she and a brother and her widowed mother came to America. Four of the Johnson children had preceded them to this country and had found employment in Chicago. Mrs. Ekblaw lived in Chicago until her marriage. Mr. and Mrs. Ekblaw after their marriage located near Rantoul on the farm of John Collison. They were young, energetic, had the thrifty virtues of the people of Sweden, and by honesty of purpose have distinguished themselves as successful farmers and have reared a family of which any parents might well be proud. It is a growing practice among many farmers of modern times to handle land as managers rather than as owners. This has been Mr....

Eskimos

There is little, besides some analogies in language, to connect the uncouth race which forms the subject of this chapter with the inhabitants of the more genial climates of North America. The Esquimaux (Eskimos) are spread over a vast region at the north, dwelling principally upon the seacoast, and upon the numberless inlets and sounds with which the country is intersected. There is a striking similarity in the language, habits and appearance of all the tribes of the extreme north, from Greenland to Bhering’s Straits. The Manners and Personal Appearance of Eskimos Charlevoix gives a very uninviting description of their personal aspect. He tells us that there are none of the American races who approach so nearly to the idea usually entertained in Europe of “savages” as do the Esquimaux. In striking contrast to the thin beard (for the most part artificially eradicated) of other American aborigines, these people have that excrescence “si cpaisse jusq’aux yeux, qu’on a peine à decouvrir quelques traits de leur visage.” It covers their faces nearly to the eyes; so that one can scarcely distinguish some features of their countenance. They have, moreover, he says, something hideous in their general aspect and demeanor small, wild-looking eyes, large and very foul teeth, the hair generally black, but sometimes fair, and always in extreme disorder, and their whole exterior rough and brutish. Their manners and character do not falsify this unprepossessing physiognomy. They are savage, rude, suspicious, unquiet, and always evil-disposed towards strangers. Pie considers their fair hair and skin, with the slight general resemblance they bear towards, and the limited intercourse they carry on with,...

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