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arms and at the council fire. She was welcomed with kindness and affection wherever she went; endeared to them as she was by the memory of the wise and valiant man her father, and by her own gentle disposition. When they spoke of her, they likened her, in their metaphorical language, to all that was beautiful, harmless, and
the animals—the fawn of the wood, and the yellow-bird of the glades, wandering and homeless, and to which they delighted to afford shelter.
The young maiden of whom I speak, had beheld in her childhood the beautiful Cascade of Melsingah; and the form of the Manitto had once been revealed to her as the evening was setting in, standing in his wolf-skin robes before the waterfall. After that she saw him often in her dreams, and at a proper age she chose him for her tutelary spirit. A circumstance soon after occurred to strengthen the reverence with which she regarded him, by blending it with the feeling of gratitude.
One day she went alone to his abode to pay him her customary offerings in behalf of herself, the friends she loved, and her nation. She carried in her hand a broad belt of wampum, white honeycomb from the hollow oak, and on her way she stopped and platted a garland of the
gayest flowers of the season. : On arriving at the spot she went down into the narrow little glen through which the brook flowed before it poured itself over the rock, and standing near the edge, she dropped her gifts one by one into the current, which instantly carried them down the waterfall. The pool into which the water descends was deeper than it is at present, the continual crumbling of the rocks for more than an hundred years, having partially filled up the deep blue basin. The stream too, at that time, had been lately swelled by profuse rains, and rushed down the precipice with a heavier torrent and a louder noise than she had ever known it to do before. In approaching more nearly to the edge, and looking down to see what had become of her offerings, she incautiously set her foot on a stone covered with the slimy deposit of the brook; it slipped, and she was precipitated headlong with the torrent into the pool below.
What followed she did not recollect, until she found herself lying on the margin of the pool, and awaking as if from an unpleasant sleep, with a sensation of faintness at the heart. She thought at first that she must have been taken from the water by somebody who belonged to her nation, and looked round to see if any of them were
But there was no human trace or sound
to be discovered: she heard only the whisper of the wind and the rush of the cascade, and beheld only the still trunks and waving boughs, the motionless rock and the gliding water. On her return to the village where she lived, she made the most diligent inquiry to learn if any of her people had assisted her in the hour of danger, or if any thing was known of her adventure. Nobody had heard of it-none of the tribe had passed by the cascade that day; and the maiden became at length fully convinced that she had been preserved from a violent death by her guardian spirit, the Manitto of the waterfall. Her gratitude was in proportion to the benefit received; and ever afterwards she paid an annual visit to the cascade at the season when she was thus miraculously rescued, sometimes alone and sometimes in company with the young females of
On these occasions the dark rocks around were hung with garlands, and bracelets of beads were dropped into the clear water, and a song was chanted, commemorating the maiden's deliverance by the benevolent spirit of the place.
The Indians of the Hudson, who lived above the Highlands, and those who possessed the country below, although belonging to the same great family of the Lenni Lennape, were not always
on friendly terms. At the time of which I am speaking, a serious misunderstanding existed between them. An Indian of the tribe above the Highlands was found encroaching on the hunting grounds below, and was killed in a fierce dispute which ensued. His people anxiously sought an opportunity to revenge his death, nor was it long before it was put into their hands. warrior of the lower tribe, ambitious to signalize himself by some act of heroic daring, boasted that notwithstanding what had happened, he would bring a deer from the hunting grounds to the north of where the great river broke through the mountains. Accordingly he set out alone, in one of the light canoes of the natives, on his way up the river. He landed on the east bank, five or six miles above the Cascade of Melsingah, and after no long search had killed a deer, dragged the animal to his canoe, and put off from the shore. But his motions had been observed, and he had not yet gained the middle of the river, when a canoe in which were five northern Indians, made its appearance, coming round the extremity of a woody peninsula, that projected with its steep bold shores far into the water. Immediately one of them raised his firelock to his eye, and levelled it in the direction of the young Mohegan, but another who seemed to be the leader of the
party, placed his hand on the piece, which was immediately laid down, and an oar taken up in its place. A single glance served to show the warrior that they were all well armed, and that his only chance of safety lay in reaching the shore before them, and trusting to the swiftness of his feet to effect his escape. He therefore plied his oar with great diligence, and his little vessel shot rapidly over the water; but his enemies were gaining fast upon him, and it was now evident that they must overtake him before he could reach the land. In an instant he had leaped into the water and disappeared; but his pursuers were too well aware of his object to slacken their exertions, and held on their way towards the shore. When he rose again to the surface, their canoe was at no great distance. Two of the strongest of them plunged into the river, one of whom, swimming with exceeding swiftness, soon overtook him, and seized him by the hair of his head. A desperate but brief struggle ensued, in which both the combatants went down. In a moment afterwards, the young warrior re-appeared without his antagonist, who was seen no more: but his pursuers had already surrounded him. They secured him without difficulty, carried him to the shore, and there binding his hands behind him,