Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 50 > Page 94 - From Ruth Whitehead's Micmac Album

Page 94 - From Ruth Whitehead's Micmac Album

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1989/1/1 (242 reads)

left the kettle; and they, like good fellows, com? prehending the situation, knew enough to look unconscious, and to better carry out the joke, urged them to stop and taste a little fish; but they did not wish to do anything of the kind, they were in such a hurry, saying coupouba. coupouqa. "many thanks, many thanks." Our people answered: "now may God be with you since you are in such a hurry." P6re Biard. in Jesuit Relations 1"7' C ??'''6 same year, 1745, several - / "O -bodies of the savages, de? ceased, and buried at Port Itxalouze (Toulouse -present-day St. Peters), were dug up again by the Bostoners, and thrown into the fire. The burying-place of the savages were demol? ished, and all the crosses, planted on the graves, broke into a thousand pieces. In 1746, some stuffs that the savages had bought of the English, who then traded in the bay of Mega- gouetch at Beau-bassin. there being at that time a great scarcity of goods over all the country, were found to be poisoned, so that more than two hundred savages of both sexes perished thereby. Pere Maillard 10OQ ?? The present amount of the popu- Ofc w ?? lation, including all classes of in? habitants in Cape Breton and its dependen? cies, is estimated at thirty thousand, the greater number of whom are indigent and ig? norant Scotch islanders, every year receiving an increase of a thousand or two fresh emi? grants, equally poor and illiterate, and almost all of the Roman Cath? olic persuasion. The French descendants are next in number, an ac? tive people, chiefly employed in the fisheries, and the building of small vessels.... The remnant of the original population, rather absurdly called Indi? ans, are of the''icmac tribe; and it seems were formerly subjected by the Mohawks, it being very lately, if not still, a custom with them to send, at stated periods, a canoe and several men up the St. Law? rence, to pay homage to the chiefs of that tribe in Canada. These na? tives were savage warriors, in the time of the French possession of the Island, and unmercifully massacred and scalped the crews of the unfortunate English line of battle ships wrecked on the S. E. coast. It does not appear that the French discouraged their barbarity, al? though the priests had nominally converted them to the Roman Cath? olic faith. It was their policy to flatter the natives with titles and hon? ors; and one old man still exhibits a commission, bearing the signature of Louis the Fifteenth, conferring on his ancestor the dignity of King of the tribe. Another may be seen wearing a medal, bestowed by the same monarch. Their manners softened, with change of cir? cumstances, and their present descendants, probably three hundred in all, are a very mild and patient people. Their families appear uni? versally to possess an inexhaustable stock of spirits and good hu- nrx)ur. Roman Catholic priests are still their religious instuctors, and considering the small advantages of these poor people, their charac? ter is not bad. Dishonesty is seldom heard of among them, and even intoxicatton is not general, a fact that cannot be affirmed of the popu? lation of Cape Breton generally, whose chief enjoyment appears to be derived from the latter source, with the honorable exception of the St. Anne's settlers, and in some measure the French. The tribe of Cape Breton Micmacs is dwindled, as already observed, to the number of about three hundred; thus following the invariable Butter-tub makers at Whvcocomaah. 1916 law, which the ancient inhabitants of the new world seem doomed to obey, wherever Europeans have fixed their ominous residence. Ab? solute extinction, however, will probably be averted, so long as the lands, now considered their peculiar property, be preserved inviolate to their use.... It is much to be desired, that these grounds were con? stituted their unalienable property by legislative enactment, or grant from the crown. The land will increase in value, as the surrounding country becomes appropriated, and these poor natives will find in ag? riculture a refuge from their impending fate, when no longer permitted to fish and hunt at large. Thomas C. Haliburton. Esq. 1 QQQ ?? T'''y 3''? J?W"' '"' '" 9??' humour, enjoying a joke. If I 005/ -they have nothing to eat, they sing and sleep. In gener? al the Micmacs are of good physique and well built. They possess great delicacy of morals and take wise precaution in regard to ttieir children who are of age to wed. Between these, no frequentation or familiarity is allowed. They often know one another by sight only. As soon as the intended married couple have given their consent, every? thing is prepared for the marriage. The old people look after impedi- ment''onsanquir' The Violin Sliop ' Johannes Sturm VioUnmaker/repairer Quality Repairs to String Instruments Custom Work Bow Rehairing New and Used Instruments Strings Accessories For information or appointment, call (902) 345-2883 R. R. 1, Grand Anse, Richmond County, N. 8. BOE 1V0 PIPER'S TRAILER COURT Featuring: Fully Licensed Dining Room Laundromat Mini-Mart Ocean-Side Campsites Swimming Pool 929-2233 929-2067 Indian Brook on the Cabot Trail (Hallway between Baddeck and mgonlsh) Skiers! On the Road to Cape Smokey: The Old Manse GUEST HOUSE with Bed and Breal(fast
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