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INDIAN REMINISCENCES

BY A. D. P. VAN BUREN

Noonday was an old man long before he came to Gull. He occasionally visited the settlement on the prairie, but was always the same taciturn, dignified, commanding person. Though the settlers now and then talked with him, through an interpreter, few of them knew that he had ever done an act that had caught the ear of fame. Yet the redman's Clio, the penless scribe tradition, whose function was to keep alive the memory of famous deeds, had often told the braves around the council fire, and they had told their children that Noonday had fought bravely on the British side in one of the memorable • battles of our second war with England. It is well known that both the Chippewa and Ottawa, tribes fought with the English in the war of 1812. Noonday had a wife and family. After his conversion he lived a true Christian life, never failing to hold family worship, gathering all the inmates of his household about the family altar morning and evening. I do not know whether he had children of his own, but he had several adopted children. He took great interest in the mission work, and especially in the school in which, through his influence, all the children of his tribe were gathered. He was looked upon by all his people not only as their counsellor, but as the wise patriarch who was to look after their temporal and spiritual wants. Miss Susan Parker, Amasa Parker's sister, was the first teacher in this school which was organized in 1838. She afterwards married Rev. Mr. Davis, and died at Ann Arbor, a number of years ago. The next teacher was Rev. Leonard Slater's daughter, Frances, who became the wife of Cornelius Mason. She, too, is dead. Noonday, when visiting the school, would never let a wrong or improper act go unrebuked or unpunished, often chastising a refractory pupil for the teacher.

Michigan


Page 17


 


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