The War Chief of the Six Nations eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 100 pages of information about The War Chief of the Six Nations.
officers at Montreal encouraged Brant to undertake the journey which he fain would make.  It may be that it was they who first showed him how such a journey was possible.  At any rate, before the ice had begun to lock the green waters of the St Lawrence, in the year 1775, he had passed through the Gulf and was tossing on the billows of the deep Atlantic.  Towards the end of the year he arrived, along with Captain Tice, in the English metropolis.  London had altered greatly since the days of Queen Anne more than half a century before, when his grandfather had been there.  It had become a greater market for trade, and the common people had been elbowing their way to the parts where only fine residences had once stood.  Two kings of the House of Hanover had in the meantime reigned and died, and now King George III, another of that line, sat upon the throne.

On reaching London Chief Brant was escorted to a small hostel of not very imposing appearance called ’The Swan with Two Necks.’  It was intended that he should soon be taken to other lodgings that would be more in keeping with his rank; but the innkeeper and others were so kind to him that he was loth to leave, and could not be coaxed to other quarters during his whole stay in London.  In the streets he was accustomed to dress like the Europeans of the day, but on state occasions he wore a gala costume, his head crowned with waving plumes and his body decked with those fancy ornaments that pleased the proud Indian.  On the burnished tomahawk that glistened in his belt was traced the initial ‘J,’ followed by his Indian title, ‘Thayendanegea.’

Brant appeared at court and had audience with the king, for whose person he felt a sacred reverence.  He loved freedom, but at the same time he always had a great respect for authority.  A story is told of the pointed answer he made to his old instructor, Dr Wheelock, who, thinking to draw Brant over to the side of the colonists, or at least to keep him neutral, had written him a long and earnest appeal.  The Mohawk chief replied in a kindly fashion, referring to the pleasant hours he had spent at the school.  He remembered especially the prayers that were said in the household, and one prayer in particular that had been repeated over and over again; as they bent their heads in entreaty before the Maker of all things, the request had ever been ’that they might be able to live as good subjects, to fear God and honour the King.’

Not only did high officials in London treat Brant with consideration, but men of learning, as well as of social position, vied with one another to make his visit interesting and pleasant.  Among those who entertained him was James Boswell, who knew all the gossip of London society and was a man of rare talents.  He took a peculiar liking to the bronzed chief of the Six Nations and persuaded him to sit for his portrait.  The Earl of Warwick also wished to have Brant’s picture, and the result was that he sat for George Romney, one of the most famous

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The War Chief of the Six Nations from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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