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Iroquois Ceremonies

Among the Iroquois, and, indeed, all the stationary tribes, there was an incredible number of mystic ceremonies, extravagant, puerile, and often disgusting, designed for the cure of the sick or for the general weal of the community. Most of their observances seem originally to have been dictated by dreams, and transmitted as a sacred heritage from generation to generation. They consisted in an endless variety of dances, masquerading, and nondescript orgies; and a scrupulous adherence to all the traditional forms was held to be of the last moment, as the slightest failure in this respect might entail serious calamities. Dreams were the great Indian oracles, and were implicitly obeyed. They believed them to be direct emanations from the Great Spirit, and as such were immutable laws to them. From this source arose many of their evils and miseries. In them were revealed their destiny and duty; war and peace, health and sickness, rain and drouth, were all revealed by a a class of professional dreamers and dream interpreters. Wizards and witches were the great bane of the Iroquois, and objects of utter detestation. Murder might be condoned, but witchcraft was punishable with death in all cases. Any one might kill a witch on sight with impunity. They believed that witches could transform themselves at will into any one of the wild animals or birds, or even assume the shape of logs, trees, rocks, &c., and, in forms invisible, visit public assemblies or private houses, and inflict all manner of evils. The delusion was at one time so prevalent and their destruction so great as to seriously lessen the population.1...

History of the Choctaw, Chickasaw and Natchez Indians

To bring one’s material to a strictly historical and classified order is almost an impossibility when dealing with a subject so diversified as that of the Red Race of the North American Continent. But I have sought, found and brought together an amount of information concerning that peculiar people that has never before been published; having been born of parents who were missionaries to the Choctaws in 1820, and having been reared among them and intimately acquainted with them during the vicissitudes of a life extending to nearly four score of years. I well know that the Indian race has oft been the subject of the pen, and still continues to be, but only in short details, thus leaving the reader in bewilderment, though historical truths were to be found in abundance among them wherever one turned truths one can never forget; scenes and events which have an imperishable memory. Introduction General Characteristics of the North American Indians The Discovery of this Continent, It’s Results to the Natives Treaty of December 17, 1801 Agreement of October 17, 1802 Agreement of August 31, 1803 Treaty of November 16, 1805 Treaty of October 24, 1816 Treaty of October 18, 1820 Greer County Dispute The Choctaw Claim Articles of Convention O-ka-it-tib-ih-ha county, Mississippi Tradition of the Papagoe Indians The Meeting in 1811,of Tecumseh, The Mighty Shawnee, with Apushamatahah, the Intrepid Choctaw The Meeting of Folsom and Nittakachih, the two Choctaw Chiefs Name and Migration from the West, The Prophet Warrior and the Enchanted Pole The Two Friends The Red and the White The Chickasaws. Biographical Sketch of Cyrus Harris, Ex-Governor of the...

Natchez Indian Bands, Gens and Clans

Many tribes have sub-tribes, bands, gens, clans and phratry.  Often very little information is known or they no longer exist.  We have included them here to provide more information about the tribes. Grigras. A French nickname and the only known name of a small tribe already incorporated with the Natchez confederacy in 1720; it was applied because of the frequent occurrence of grigra in their language. There is uncertainty in regard to the language and ethnic relations, but unless affiliated with the Tonica, the tribe was evidently distinct from every other, since, as indicated by the sound grigra, their language possessed an r. Hoaiels. Mentioned by Baudry des Lozières (Voy. Louisiane, 242, 1802) in a list of tribes with no indication of habitat. Possibly intended for Theloel, a name given sometimes to part, at others to all the...

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