David Cusick’s Sketches of Ancient History of the Six Nations Comprising First—A Tale of the Foundation of the Great Island, (Now North America), The Two Infants Born, and the Creation of the Universe. Second—A Real Account of the Early Settlers of north
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Title: David Cusick’s Sketches of Ancient History of the Six Nations
Comprising First—A Tale of the Foundation of the Great Island, (Now North America), The Two Infants Born, and the Creation of the Universe. Second—A Real Account of the Early Settlers of north America, and Their Dissensions. Third—Origin of the Kingdom of the Five Nations, Which Was Called a Long House: the Wars, Fierce Animals, &c.
Author: David Cusick
Release Date: May 30, 2018 [eBook #57237]
Character set encoding: UTF-8
***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK DAVID CUSICK’S SKETCHES OF ANCIENT HISTORY OF THE SIX NATIONS***
E-text prepared by Mary Glenn Krause
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The author’s style is that of a non-native speaker of English, and inplaces is grammatically unusual, mixing tenses and using odd sentencestructure. Only printer’s errors have been changed; a full list is givenat the end.
FIRST—A TALE OF THE FOUNDATION OF THE
(NOW NORTH AMERICA.)
THE TWO INFANTS BORN,
CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE.
SECOND—A REAL ACCOUNT OF THE EARLY SETTLERS OF NORTH
AMERICA, AND THEIR DISSENSIONS.
THIRD—ORIGIN OF THE KINGDOM OF THE FIVE NATIONS, WHICH
A LONG HOUSE:
THE WARS, FIERCE ANIMALS, &c.
LOCKPORT, N. Y.:
TURNER & McCOLLUM, PRINTERS, DEMOCRAT OFFICE.
I have been long waiting in hopes that some of my people, who have received an Englisheducation, would have undertaken the work as to give a sketch of the Ancient Historyof the Six Nations; but found no one seemed to concur in the matter, after some hesitationI determined to commence the work; but found the history involved with fables; and besides,examining myself, finding so small educated that it was impossible for me to composethe work without much difficulty. After various reasons I abandoned the idea: I however,took up a resolution to continue the work, which I have taken much pains procuring thematerials, and translating it into English language. I have endeavored to throw some lighton the history of the original population of the country, which I believe never have beenrecorded. I hope this little work will be acceptable to the public.
Tuscarora Village, June 10th, 1825.
A TALE OF THE FOUNDATION OF THE GREAT ISLAND, NOW NORTHAMERICA;—THE TWO INFANTS BORN, AND THE CREATION OF THEUNIVERSE.
Among the ancients there were two worlds in existence. The lower worldwas in a great darkness;—the possession of the great monster; but the upperworld was inhabited by mankind; and there was a woman conceived andwould have the twin born. When her travail drew near, and her situationseemed to produce a great distress on her mind, and she was induced bysome of her relations to lay herself on a mattress which was prepared, so asto gain refreshments to her wearied body; but while she was asleep the veryplace sunk down towards the dark world. The monsters of the great waterwere alarmed at her appearance of descending to the lower world; in consequenceall the species of the creatures were immediately collected intowhere it was expected she would fall. When the monsters were assembled,and they made consultation, one of them was appointed in haste to searchthe great deep, in order to procure some earth, if it could be obtained; accordinglythe monster descends, which succeeds, and returns to the place.Another requisition was presented, who would be capable to secure thewoman from the terrors of the great water, but none was able to complyexcept a large turtle came forward and made proposal to them to endure herlasting weight, which was accepted. The woman was yet descending froma great distance. The turtle executes upon the spot, and a small quantityof earth was varnished on the back part of the turtle. The woman alightson the seat prepared, and she receives a satisfaction. While holding her, theturtle increased every moment and became a considerable island of earth,and apparently covered with small bushes. The woman remained in a stateof unlimited darkness, and she was overtaken by her travail to which shewas subject. While she was in the limits of distress one of the infants inher womb was moved by an evil opinion and he was determined to pass outunder the side of the parent’s arm, and the other infant in vain endeavouredto prevent his design. The woman was in a painful condition during thetime of their disputes, and the infants entered the dark world by compulsion,and their parent expired in a few moments. They had the power ofsustenance without a muse, and remained in the dark regions. After atime the turtle increased to a great Island and the infants were grown up,and one of them possessed with a gentle disposition, and named ENIGORIO,i. e. the good mind. The other youth possessed an insolence of character,and was named ENIGONHAHETGEA, i. e. the bad mind. Thegood mind was not contented to remain in a dark situation, and he was anxiousto create a great light in the dark world; but the bad mind was desirousthat the world should remain in a natural state. The good mind determinesto prosecute his designs, and therefore commences the work of creation.At first he took the parent’s head, (the deceased) of which he createdan orb, and established it in the centre of the firmament, and it becameof a very superior nature to bestow light to the new world, (now the sun)and again he took the remnant of the body and formed another orb, whichwas inferior to the light (now moon.) In the orb a cloud of legs appearedto prove it was the body of the good mind, (parent.) The former was togive light to the day and the latter to the night; and he also created numerousspots of light, (now stars:) these were to regulate the days, nights,seasons, years, &c. Whenever the light extended to the dark world themonsters were displeased and immediately concealed themselves in the deepplaces, lest they should be discovered by some human beings. The goodmind continued the works of creation, and he formed numerous creeks andrivers on the Great Island, and then created numerous species of animals ofthe smallest and greatest, to inhabit the forests, and fishes of all kinds to inhabitthe waters. When he had made the universe he was in doubt respectingsome being to possess the Great Island; and he formed two images ofthe dust of the ground in his own likeness, male and female, and by hisbreathing into their nostrils he gave them the living souls, and named themEA-GWE-HOWE, i. e. a real people; and he gave the Great Island allthe animals of game for their maintenance; and he appointed thunder towater the earth by frequent rains, agreeable to the nature of the system;after this the Island became fruitful and vegetation afforded the animalssubsistence. The bad mind, while his brother was making the universe,went throughout the Island and made numerous high mountains and fallsof water, and great steeps, and also creates various reptiles which would beinjurious to mankind; but the good mind restored the Island to its formercondition. The bad mind proceeded further in his motives and he madetwo images of clay in the form of mankind; but while he was giving themexistence they became apes; and when he had not the power to createmankind he was envious against his brother; and again he made two ofclay. The good mind discovered his brother’s contrivances, and aided ingiving them living souls, (it is said these had the most knowledge of goodand evil.) The good mind now accomplishes the works of creation, notwithstandingthe imaginations of the bad mind were continually evil; andhe attempted to enclose all the animals of game in the earth, so as to deprivethem from mankind; but the good mind released them from confinement,(the animals were dispersed, and traces of them were made on therocks near the cave where it was closed.) The good mind experiences thathis brother was at variance with the works of creation, and feels not disposedto favor any of his proceedings, but gives admonitions of his future state.Afterwards the good mind requested his brother to accompany him, as hewas proposed to inspect the game, &c., but when a short distance from theirnominal residence, the bad mind became so unmanly that he could not conducthis brother any more. The bad mind offered a challenge to his brotherand resolved that who gains the victory should govern the universe; andappointed a day to meet the contest. The good mind was willing to submitto the offer, and he enters the reconciliation with his brother; which hefalsely mentions that by whipping with flags would destroy his temporallife; and he earnestly solicits his brother also to notice the instrument ofdeath, which he manifestly relates by the use of deer horns; beating hisbody he would expire. On the day appointed the engagement commenced,which lasted for two days: after pulling up the trees and mountains as thetrack of a terrible whirlwind, at last the good mind gained the victory byusing the horns, as mentioned the instrument of death, which he succeededin deceiving his brother and he crushed him in the earth; and the lastwords uttered from the bad mind were, that he would have equal powerover the souls of mankind after death; and he sinks down to eternal doom,and became the Evil Spirit. After this tumult the good mind repaired tothe battle ground, and then visited the people and retires from the earth.
A REAL ACCOUNT OF THE SETTLEMENT OF NORTH AMERICA ANDTHEIR DISSENSIONS.
In the ancient days the Great Island appeared upon the big waters, theearth brought forth trees, herbs, vegetables, &c. The creation of the landanimals; the Eagwehoewe people were too created and resided in the northregions, and after a time some of the people become giants and committedoutrages upon the inhabitants, &c. After many years a body of Eagwehoewepeople encamped on the bank of a majestic stream, and was namedKanawage, now St. Lawrence. After a long time a number of foreign peoplesailed from a port unknown; but unfortunately before reached their destinationthe winds drove them contrary; at length their ship wrecked somewhereon the southern part of the Great Island, and many