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INDIAN REMINISCENCES

BY A. D. P. VAN BUREN

Cush-ee-wus and Pee-quoit-ah-lciss-ee were legitimate chiefs, but were supplanted by Morreau and his son, Sau-au-quette, who virtually governed the band; the former till he died a poor drunken wretch, the latter till he was assassinated at Colon, St. Joseph county. At Sau-au-quette's death "old " John Ma-gua-go became chief, he was succeeded by his son John Ma-gua-go, and he by Phineas Bamp-ta-na-by, the present chief doctoress, but for many virtues of a good Indian woman. And I remember Pont-sig-na, Mar-chee's daughter, by her Indian husband. Pont-sig-na was a beautiful young girl—the dusky belle of the forest. As I saw her one Sabbath morning walking in the open wood near the rude village gathering wild flowers, she recalled these lines of Scott:
"And ne'er did Grecian chisel trace
A nymph, a naiad, or a grace
Of finer form and lovelier face.
A foot more light, a step more true,
Ne'er from the heath flower dashed the dew. "
Pont-sig-na was educated at Albion and died before she was twenty years old.
Rev. Manassah Hickey, as we have said, was the pastor of this little flock, had his home with them, as did Miss Hickey and Mr. Crane. Mary, the wife of Man-do-ka, was the interpretess. She had been educated at Albion. She was an intelligent, comely Indian woman of some thirty years of age. One Sabbath morning, in the spring of 1847, I had gone with a party of young men and ladies from the school district north of the mission, where I was teaching to attend church with the Indians. We had got there early, and going into the log chapel seated ourselves and waited the gathering of the dusky congregation. Soon a young Indian came in, and taking down a long tin horn that hung behind the door, he stepped out in front of "the chapel and wound it so loudly and musically that we could hear the twanging notes peal out, whisk off and die away in the distant arcades of the forest.

Michigan


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