A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 17 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 787 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 17.

The divers having returned to their boats, we continued to row till towards evening, when we landed upon a low point.  As soon as the canoes were hauled up, they employed themselves in erecting their wigwams, which they dispatch with great address and quickness.  I still enjoyed the protection of my two good Indian women, who made me their guest here as before; they first regaled me with sea-eggs, and then went out upon another kind of fishery by the means of dogs and nets.  These dogs are a cur-like looking animal, but very sagacious, and easily trained to this business.  Though in appearance an uncomfortable sort of sport, yet they engage in it readily, seem to enjoy it much, and express their eagerness by barking every time they raise their heads above the water to breathe.  The net is held by two Indians, who get into the water; then the dogs, taking a large compass, dive after the fish, and drive them into the net; but it is only in particular places that the fish are taken in this manner.  At the close of the evening, the women brought in two fish, which served us for supper, and then we reposed ourselves as before.  Here we remained all the next day, and the morning after embarked again, and rowed till noon; then landing, we descried the canoes of the Indian men, who had been some time expected from an expedition they had been upon.  This was soon to make a great alteration in the situation of my affairs, a presage of which I could read in the melancholy countenance of my young hostess.  She endeavoured to express herself in very earnest terms to me, but I had not yet acquired a competent knowledge of the Indian language to understand her.

As soon as the men were landed, she and the old Indian woman went up, not without some marks of dread upon them, to an elderly Indian man, whose remarkably surly and stern countenance was well calculated to raise such sensations in his dependants.  He seemed to be a cacique or chief man among them, by the airs of importance he assumed to himself, and the deference paid him by the rest.  After some little conference passed between these Indians and our cacique conductor, of which, most probably, the circumstances of our history and the occasion of our coming here might be the chief subject, for they fixed their eyes constantly upon us, they applied themselves to building their wigwams.

I now understood that the two Indian women with whom I had sojourned were wives to this chieftain, though one was young enough to be his daughter; and as far as I could learn, did really stand in the different relations to him both of daughter and wife.  It was easy to be perceived that all did not go well between them at this time, either that he was not satisfied with the answers that they returned him to his questions, or that he suspected some misconduct on their side; for presently after breaking out into savage fury, he took the young one up in his arms, and threw her with violence against the stones; but his brutal resentment

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