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family. He usually gleaned, in a season, by his traps and carbine, four packs of mixed furs, the avails of which were ample to provide clothing for all the members of his lodge circle, as well as to renew his svpply of ammunition and other essential articles.
On one occasion, he had a singular contest with a moose. He had gone out, one morning early, to set martin traps. He had set about forty, and was returning to his lodge, when he unexpectedly encountered a large moose, in his path, which manifested a disposition to attack him. Being unarmed, and having nothing but a knife and small hatchet, which he had carried to make his traps, he tried to avoid it. But the aniroal came towards him in a furious manner. He took shelter behind a tree, shifting his position from tree to tree, retreating. At length, as he fled, he picked up a pole, and quickly untying his moccasin strings, he bound his knife to the end of the pole. He then placed himself in a favourable position, behind a tree, and when the moose came up, stabbed him several times in the throat and breast. At last, the animal, exhausted with the loss of blood, fell. He then dispatched him, and cut out his tongue to carry home to his lodge as a trophy of victory. When they went back to the spot, for the carcass, they found the snow trampled down in a wide circle, and copiously sprinkled with blood, which gave it the appearance of a battle-field. It proved to be a male of uncommon size.
The domestic history of a native chief, can seldom be obtained. In the present instance, the facts that follow, may be regarded with interest, as having been obtained from residents of Chagoimegon, or from his descendants. He did not take a wife till about the age of thirty, and he then married a widow, by whom he had one son. He had obtained early notoriely as a warrior, which perhaps absorbed his attention. What causes there were to render this union unsatisfactory, or whether there were any, is not known; but after the lapse of two years, he married a girl of fourteen, of the totem of the bear, by whom he had a family of six children. He is represented as of a temper and manners affectionate and forbearing He evinced thoughtfulness and diligence in the management of his affairs, and the order and disposition of his lodge. When the hunting season was over, he employed his leisure moments in adding to the comforts of his lodge. His lodge was of an oblong shape, ten fathoms long, and made by setting two rows of posts firmly in the ground, and sheathing the sides and roof with the smooth bark of the birch. From the centre rose a post crowned with the carved figure of an owl, which he had probably selected as a bird of good omen, for it was neither his own nor his wife's totem. This figure was so placed, that it turned with the wind, and answered the purpose of a weathercock.
In person Wabojeeg was tall, being six feet six inches, erect in carriage,
and of slender make. He possessed a commanding countenance, united to ease and dignity of manners. He was a ready and fluent speaker, and conducted personally the negotiations with the Fox and Sioux nations. It was perhaps twenty years after the battle on the St. Croix, which established the Chippewa boundary in that quarter, and while his children were still young, that there came to his village, in the capacity of a trader, a young gentleman of a respectable family in the north of Ireland, who formed an exalted notion of his character, bearing, and warlike exploits. This visit, and his consequent residence on the lake, during the winter, became an important era to the chief, and has linked his name and memory with numerous persons in civilized life. Mr. Johnston asked the northern chief for his youngest daughter. Englishman, he replied, my daughter is yet young, and you cannot take her as white men have too often taken our daughters. It will be time enough to think of complying with your request, when you return again to this lake in the summer. My daughter is my favourite child, and I cannot part with her, unless you will promise to acknowledge her by such ceremonies as white men use. You must ever keep her, and never forsake her. On this basis a union was formed, a union it may be said, between the Erse and Algonquin races—and it was faithfully adhered to, till his death, a period of thirty. seven years.
Wabojeeg had impaired his health in the numerous war parties which he conducted across the wide summit which separated his hunting grounds from the Mississippi valley. A slender frame, under a life of incessant exertion, brought on a premature decay. Consumption revealed itself at a comparatively early age, and he fell before this insidious disease, in a few years, at the early age of about forty-five. He died in 1793 at his native village of Chagoimegon.
The incident which has been named, did not fail to make the forest chieftain acquainted with the leading truth of Christianity, in the revelation it makes of a saviour for all races. On the contrary, it is a truth which was brought to his knowledge and explained. It is, of course, not known with what particular effects. As he saw his end approaching, he requested that his body might not be buried out of sight, but placed, according to a custom prevalent in the remoter bands of this tribe, on a form supported by posts, or a scaffold. This trait is, perhaps, natural to the hunter state.
My friends when my spirit is fled-is fled
My friends when my spirit is filed,
Where light shall no longer be shed-be shed,
But lay me up scaffolded high-all high,
Chiefs lay me up scaffolded high,
He ne'er from the foe sought to fly-to fly,
And children, who play on the shore-the shore,
And children who play on the shore,
And the fate of their chieftan deplore-deplore,
MODE OF WRITING AN INDIAN LANGUAGE..
The rules of utterance of these tribes, after all that has been said ana written on the subject, are very simple, and determine the orthography, so far, at least, as relates to distinctions for the long and short vowels. If, in writing Indian, the syllables be separated by hyphens, there need be no uncertainty respecting their sounds, and we shall be saved a world of somewhat over nice disquisition. A vowel preceded by a consonant, is always long, a vowel followed by a consonant is always short. A vowel between two consonants, is short. A vowel standing by itself is always full or long. A few examples of well known words will denote this.
Write the words by whatever system of orthography you will, French, English, or German, and the vowel sounds will vindicate this distinction. If diphthongs have been used, for simple vowels, through early mistake or redundancy, the rule is the same. If they appear as proper diphthongs, they follow the rule of diphthongs. This principal of utterance appears to be a general and fixed law in the Indian languages as respects the sounds of e, i, o, u, and the two chief sounds of a, 1 and 3 of Walker's Key. As the letter a las four distinct sounds, as in English, the chief discrepancies, seen above, will appear in the use of this letter.