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#1 Dec-23-2009 11:50:pm

sschkaak
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The Grandfathers Speak - a review

THE GRANDFATHERS SPEAK:  NATIVE AMERICAN FOLK TALES OF THE LENAPE INDIANS
by Hitakonanu'laxk (Tree Beard)

Let's begin with the Lenape language, as found in this book. On page vii, Tree Beard tells us that the Lenape used is what he calls "the Old Tongue, spoken in Pennsylvania and Ohio in the eighteenth century." By this, he can only mean the Northern Unami dialect used by the Moravian missionaries. However, time and time again, he employs words he can only have found in the Southern Unami works of Nora Dean, Jim Rementer, Frank Speck, etc. For instance, he says the Lenape word for 'the Soul or Spirit' is "lenapeakan." This is his attempt to copy the SU word, "lenapeokan," because the word is "wtellenapewoagan" in Northern Unami.  His "api'kan" must be SU, "ahpikon"--not NU, "achpiquon." Tree Beard's "Kishelamakang" ("Gischellemelank" in NU) "kukhus" ("gokhos" in NU), "kinkinhikan," "Asiskwataja'sak" ("Anschisktauwewak" in NU), "Misinkhalikan," "Maxa'xak," "pawim," "Pethakowe'jak" (this word would end in "-wak" in NU) "Tuksit" ("Ptuksit" in NU), and many other words, are all taken from Southern Unami forms. They are NOT in his so-called "Old Tongue."

Tree Beard gives a spelling and pronunciation guide on pages vii-viii, but it isn't properly applied. Of more than 120 Lenape words in this book, more than 90% of them are spelled incorrectly, yielding improper pronunciations. Some words have been invented, to suit the case. Unfortunately, these words don't meet the criteria of Delaware grammar. For example, "Amankitaxkwawikan'ank" is supposed to mean, 'Place of the Great Turtle's Back.' However, the word, "taxwox" ('turtle'), cannot be shortened to "-taxk-," as Tree Beard tries to do, here. "Bikanaki'hat" cannot mean 'Water Keeper,' either. "Bi" is the Southern Unami word for 'water.' "Genachgihat" is the Northern Unami word for 'keeper." But, the two can't be put together like this. "Bi" ('water') is an inanimate noun; "genachgihat" is a Transitive Animate participle, which requires both its subject and object to be animate ('he who keeps someone').

There's so much wrong with the Lenape used in this book that listing everything would be a monumentally tedious task!


I was put off the instant I saw the cover art on THE GRANDFATHERS SPEAK.  I don't think Tree Beard mentions the Walam Olum once, in the text; but, the bookcover shows at least four Walam Olum pictographs--and the author includes the Walam Olum in his bibliography. Oestreicher has shown this work to be a complete hoax, and anyone familiar with the structure of Lenape must see that his analysis is correct.

The next thing that sends up a red flag is the title page of the book.  These are supposed to be "folk tales of the Lenape," but this page says, "Collected and written by Hitakananu'laxk (Tree Beard)." "Collected AND WRITTEN by"? You won't find the words, "written by," in any authentic collection of folklore.


On the first page of his Introduction, TB states that stories which appear only in abbreviated form "in old books and publications" are presented, by him, in their "entirety." How'd he do that? I'd like to know where he found the missing details. Then he says, "There were others that had to be reconstructed, as parts of those stories were missing, and so I went to other Algonquin sources--Cree, Ojibwe, etc.--to make them as close to their original tellings as possible." We need no more than this in order to reject this entire corpus of stories.  You can't fill in what you THINK are missing details in a Lenape story by substituting story lines from another people.

The first four stories can be immediately rejected as phony. They all relate various deeds of the Ojibway culture-hero, Nanapush. This personage was unknown to the Lenape of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and he only appears in Rafinesque's ridiculous fraud, some of which is repeated herein.


In the so-called, "Lenape Creation," which is called "Lenape Kishelamawakan"--where the first word should be an adjective ("Lenapewi") and the second word doesn't exist in Lenape (it's made-up)--the tale begins with "Kunakwat, lowat, nuchink..." This is supposed to mean, 'Long, long ago, in the beginning...' The first word means 'it is high' or 'it is long.' It refers to the physical world--not to time. The second word should be "lawat"--NOT "lowat." The third word should be just "nuchi." It doesn't require a locative suffix ("-nk").  Further along, this story contains the non-Lenape honorific titles, Father Sun (should be 'elder brother'), Grandmother Moon (should be 'elder brother'), and other non-Lenape characters, like the "Great Toad." This whole thing was made up in very recent times.

In the story, "How Medicine Began," on page 61, TB calls the plant, 'black snakeroot,' by the invented "Lenape" name of "sukaxkuk chipik."  This is not 'black snakeroot,' but 'blacksnake root'! No such plant!  Besides which, the real Lenape name for 'black snakeroot' is "bleuhotik."


On page 69, TB informs us that "Misinkhalikan (as he writes the name of the Masked Being) ...often takes on physical form, as a great, hulking, hairy ape-like giant." According to TB, the Lenape Misinkhalikan and Sasquatch ("Bigfoot") are one and the same! I suppose he's one and the same as the Abominable Snowman, too!

In "Grandfather Thunder (page 70), TB calls the Moon "the first mother."  Here again, we have "Grandmother Moon" and Nanapush. None of these characters exist in authentic Lenape folk tales.

The mention of the trickster, "Coyote," in "Rainbow Crow," clearly dates this story to a time long after the Lenapes left Lenapehoking. 

"When the Animals Left Lenape Land" begins (p.76) "Long ago ...the animals left Lenape'hokink..." Nora Thompson Dean was the first to mention the word, "Lenapehoking," about 1984. OUTSIDERS DIDN'T HEAR OF IT UNTIL THEN!  Thus, this story was probably fabricated in the 1980's.


"The Seven Wise Men" (pp.86-7) is TB's "re-telling" of a real Lenape story. He translates "Seven Wise Men" as "Nishash Chak Lepa'chik." TB has misunderstood the pronunciation of the Northern Unami word, "tchoak," which he should have written as "txoak," in his spelling system.

In "Ball Player" (pp.88-93), TB makes up the translation, "Tukhikapapa'lit." The word for 'ball' is "ptukhikan." You can't drop the final "n" of this word, in combining forms. This story is a Southern Unami tale, but, for reasons known only to TB, he decided to change the SU word, "yakwahe" ('naked bear'), to the Northern Unami word, "amangachktiat." And, what's more, he tries to make one word out of two:  "amankaxkti'atmaxkwe." This is an impossible construction!  Finally, he makes up another word for 'naked bear,' "amankaxkwe," which would mean nothing more than 'big bear.' TB believes the naked bear was a real--rather than mythological--animal. To date, none of them have been unearthed by anybody!

In "The Greedy Maiden" (pp.103-4), the story begins, "Once, long ago, before the Wapsini, White Man, came to our land..." First of all, "Wapsini" isn't a Lenape word. The non-Lenape ending (-ini) was used by C.S. Rafinesque in his fraudulent Walam Olum. Secondly, the story goes on to say, "the young maiden did not flee like a whimpering coyote into the night."  If this took place before the White Man came, then it took place in what  we now call Lenapehoking--and there "WEREN'T NO COYOTES HERE," then!


Look: There's more, but I can't stand any more of this. This collection of stories is simply not authentic traditional Lenape folklore. Much of it has been invented, in recent times, and whatever part of it is real has been tampered with and rendered suspect. The Lenape language employed is absolutely terrible. I simply cannot recommend this book to anyone interested in real Lenape traditions.

Ray Whritenour
LENAPE TEXTS & STUDIES

Last edited by sschkaak (Nov-02-2010 09:29:am)

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#2 Dec-23-2009 11:54:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Thanks to Tree Hugger for salvaging this one.

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#3 Dec-24-2009 12:12:am

NanticokePiney
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

sschkaak wrote:

Thanks to Tree Hugger for salvaging this one.

......and thanks to you for composing it and reposting it here. smile


I don't have anger issues...just violent reactions to B.S.
---------------------------------------------------
      Warning:  Some Profanity
This might cause you to experience reason

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#4 Aug-14-2014 10:37:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

I was very discouraged to read, at Amazon, the following 5-star review of this book, written by a member of the Boy Scouts Order of the Arrow:

Grandfathers Speak - Mehukwa ties to new OA Brotherhood ceremony, May 30, 2014

By Michael E. Clark "Gardner Buffalo" 

nice read, prose form, various stories and tales from the Leni Lenape. in an early chapter, Mehukwa is introduced and his role within the Lenape explained. This is a key resource now mentioned in the new Order of the Arrow (OA) Brotherhood ceremony for full implementation in 2015.  A must have for any Arrowman, Ceremonies member & Adviser, history on the Leni Lenape.

The following comment on this review somewhat ameliorates my misgivings, but doesn't completely clarify what's going on:

Dr. says:

As the author of the new Order of the Arrow Brotherhood Ceremony, I can state categorically that any presumed connection between a character in the ceremony and a character in this book "The Grandfathers Speak: Native American Folk Tales of the Lenape People (International Folk Tales)" is purely coincidental and is *not* intended. I first heard of this book in July 2014, *after* the national release of the ceremony. Jay Dunbar


On a positive note, there is this new 1-star review of the book, with a link to my review, here at Woodland:

These are NOT Lenape Legends!, July 9, 2014

By George Waters

This would be a great book if these were authentic Lenape legends. Unfortunately they are not! The poor use of the Lenape language, the use of pan-Indian stories and traditions cited as Lenape and the poor research makes this book more harmful than helpful. These stories are far more "written by" than collected by an individual of questionable character claiming to be a "chief of the Lenape Nation" while presenting no evidence to support this claim. For an insightful review of this book visit: http://woodlandindians.org/forums/viewtopic.php?id=7201

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#5 Aug-14-2014 12:44:pm

tree hugger
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

See people do read here. cool

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#6 Aug-14-2014 12:59:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

So I see.  Some even "get it."   smile

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#7 Aug-14-2014 01:16:pm

Kavik
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

I've never seen or read the book in question, but can surmise that the name similarity of "Mehukwa" has got to be purly coincidental - The name of the character in the OA Brotherhood ceremony is actually written "Meh-kwa" and is a made up name coming from combining (sort of ) the Algonquin "Mahakwa", a reference to the Mohawks and "mehuk", NU word for "blood". No idea what the meaning, if any, is in the book "Grandfathers Speak".

As a sort of aside, actually, I'm not crazy about the name's use in the OA ceremony in question as he is supposed to portray a "traditional adversary" of the Lenape (i.e. read 'Mohawk' here). I would have thought the author would have chosen a more appropriate Iroquoian name.

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#8 Aug-14-2014 04:15:pm

Kavik
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Should have added -

The explanation of the name in the OA's B-hood ceremony comes from the explanation pages of the ceremony. The whole thing was re-written for the 100 year anniversary next year and this is an entirely new character which was introduced with this revised ceremony. I've no idea where the author came up with the name other than what is stated above.

The name with regard to the OA cermeonies is very symbolic but in and of it self, the name (if you write it in the modern spelling) Mukwa doesn't mean anything (at least I don't believe it does).

Not to pick on the guy, but this Michael Clark who did the review I think is somewhat representitive of the large percentage of Arrowmen (members of the OA) - they really don't understand the origins of the Lenape nomenclature used by the OA and unfortunatley it's books like the above which make matters even worse.

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#9 Sep-05-2014 09:54:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Treebeard ways in, at Amazon, on my review of his book:

David Chamberlain says:

As author of this book, I just have to respond to this scathing review, the purpose of which is to continue Whritenour's ongoing dislike of me. Since I wrote this book in 1994, Whritenour has done nothing but attack and berate me on Internet sites. Why does he wait until my birthday in 2014 to write such a review? Is it just coincidence that this review is posted exactly 20 years after publication? lI think not!

Mr. Whritenour often posts on "the Woodland Indian Forum" and each week it seems they pick on someone to slander, libel and berate on this site. Most Native Americans I know avoid this site like the plague, or we go there to see who they are picking on this week. The negativity on this site is short of amazing. Mr. Whritenour is not Native American, and many of his fellow "have-nothing-good-to say" pals on this site are non-Native, with egos to boot. If one checks out Mr. Whritenour's other book reviews, you will immediately see they are scathing and mostly negative.

So, let's begin with the language in my book "the Grandfathers Speak". I will be the first to admit, that there are language errors. Why? In 1994, there were not that many who knew the Old/ Northern Unami language, let alone the Southern Unami/ modern Oklahoma dialect. All of the stories in this book are from Eastern Lenape Oral Story tellers in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana. The Elders who I consulted with to translate words were often in error; nothing deliberate on their part; they either thought they knew or tried their best to give me a translation with what they knew.

The pronunciation guide is not applied improperly. Whritenour goes by Moravian Missionary pronunciation and he would use different spellings. I received my pronunciations from modern speakers of Munsee in Canada & how they thought Norhern Unami would have been pronounced. Northern Unami is an extinct dialect, and my sources from Canada have said it is not Unami at all, but the so-called "Lost" Unalaxtako dialect; this is also recorded in Frank Speck's "the Celestial bear Comes Down to Earth" / a 30's Anthropologist.

In sound, most of my words are as in Moravian rendering; mostly my spelling is different from what Whritenour would deem "correct". Now we, the Big Horn/Eastern Lenape use a phonetic system. No words were invented by me. Any errors come from Elders I went to for translation.

As for the cover of my book, which has pictographs from the Walam Olum, this was not my doing, but the publishers. I did not include the Walam Olum in my book because I did not think it to be translated correctly. Now, years later, and knowing the language, I will include it in a future book. The Walam Olum is not a hoax, as so-called scholars would have you believe. What these detractors don't realize is that there is an intact alternate version that exists among Anishinabe People in Canada. Also, the language used therein is not entirely Unami based and is a spiritual shorthand much like exists among the Sioux.

Yes, the stories in my book were collected and written down by me, but not literally written by me. The Oral stories told to me often had more detail than their counterparts from existing published material; a couple had counterparts among Anishinabe/Ojibwe with more detail than written Lenape source material. Oral stories often differ from storyteller to storyteller. They were not set in stone, and my putting in more detail does not make them any less authentic.

The first four stories contrary to Whritenour's opinion, are authentic. Nanapush is not an Ojibwe culture hero, but Lenape, half man & half Spirit, right hand to the Creator on this Earth, connected to the life force in nature. The Ojibwe know him as Waynaboozhoo. not Nanapush! Nanapush is remembered by Eastern Lenape, Canadian Munsee Lenape, is a figure in the Walam Olum, and was recorded by Mark Harrington/ an 1930's Anthropologist, in his "the Lenape of New Jersey", gathering his info from Lenape Elders. Just because Nanapush is not remembered by Oklahoma Delawares means nothing. Seems they lost a lot. The Great Toad is another forgotten character set down by Harrington in the aforementioned book.

Father Sun & Grandmother Moon are terms used by Eastern Lenape, contrary to Mr. Whritenour's opinion. The Oklahoma Delaware saw the Moon as male; in the East & by Canadian Munsee & Mohicans, as well as Anishinabe, the Moon was seen as female. Just because the Western/Oklahoma Lenape consider something different does not make our view in the East unauthentic or made-up.

Whritenour makes fun of my equating Misinghalikan/Meeseenkw with bigfoot; but the Anishinabe/ Cree have no problem understanding my view.

Contrary to Whritenour, the yakwahe is the mastodon/wooly mammoth, not the naked bear. Harrington, in the "Indians of New Jersey" started this mix up. Richard Adams, an Oklahoma Lenape, had it right in his book.

This review by Whritenour is just a continuance of attacking and berating me, the author, and has been perpetuated for 2 decades! I am of Lenape-Mohican descent & I know a lot that books will never teach you. Whritenour, has no credentials, and is just a book-stuck scholar. Here in the East there is a rich body of Traditional, Oral knowledge, that he will never know.

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#10 Sep-05-2014 10:05:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

My response to his remarks--inside double brackets {{  }}:

David Chamberlain (Treebeard) writes:

As author of this book, I just have to respond to this scathing review, the purpose of which is to continue Whritenour's ongoing dislike of me. Since I wrote this book in 1994, Whritenour has done nothing but attack and berate me on Internet sites. Why does he wait until my birthday in 2014 to write such a review? Is it just coincidence that this review is posted exactly 20 years after publication? l think not!

{{The only "purpose" of my review of this book is to point out what's wrong with it.  I have no personal vendetta against the author.  I did not "attack and berate him."  I critiqued his book.  I had no idea it was his birthday (whatever day that was), and, as he knows (since we've discussed it before), I wrote this review years ago, but never posted it here until now.  His book was not published "exactly 20 years" ago, so far as I know, because it has a copyright date of 1993 (i.e., 21 years ago)--so, he didn't write it in "1994."}}


Mr. Whritenour often posts on "the Woodland Indian Forum" and each week it seems they pick on someone to slander, libel and berate on this site. Most Native Americans I know avoid this site like the plague, or we go there to see who they are picking on this week. The negativity on this site is short of amazing. Mr. Whritenour is not Native American, and many of his fellow "have-nothing-good-to say" pals on this site are non-Native, with egos to boot. If one checks out Mr. Whritenour's other book reviews, you will immediately see they are scathing and mostly negative.

{{To be precise, that's the "Woodland Indians Forum," for those who want to look it up on their search engines.  I never "slander" or "libel" anyone.  I might "berate" phonies and liars, on occasion.  True, I am not Native American.  I'm a palefaced, blue-eyed, gray-bearded (when I let it grow) white man, with a family tradition of American Indian ancestry--EXACTLY LIKE THIS AUTHOR.  The main difference is that I have always known I am a white man, am comfortable in my skin, have never wanted to be an Amrican Indian, and have proved my family tradition of Indian ancestry was a fantasy via DNA testing; while Mr. Chamberlain has made himself a "chief" and "medicine man" of a "nation" he, himself, made up, with the aid of another Wannabe white man named Sam "Gray Wolf" Hannah.  So, if he wants to talk about "ego," or arrogance, I suggest he take a look in the mirror.  As for my book reviews, here--two are positive.  The rest are negative.  (I read a lot of really bad books, in order to steer others away from them!)}}


So, let's begin with the language in my book "the Grandfathers Speak". I will be the first to admit, that there are language errors. Why? In 1994, there were not that many who knew the Old/ Northern Unami language, let alone the Southern Unami/ modern Oklahoma dialect. All of the stories in this book are from Eastern Lenape Oral Story tellers in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana. The Elders who I consulted with to translate words were often in error; nothing deliberate on their part; they either thought they knew or tried their best to give me a translation with what they knew.

{{In 1994, there weren't ANY who spoke Northern Unami.  A close study of the works of David Zeisberger and other Moravians would have gotten you nearer a proper orthography than you achieved by relying on people who didn't know the dialect.}}


The pronunciation guide is not applied improperly. Whritenour goes by Moravian Missionary pronunciation and he would use different spellings. I received my pronunciations from modern speakers of Munsee in Canada & how they thought Norhern Unami would have been pronounced. Northern Unami is an extinct dialect, and my sources from Canada have said it is not Unami at all, but the so-called "Lost" Unalaxtako dialect; this is also recorded in Frank Speck's "the Celestial bear Comes Down to Earth" / a 30's Anthropologist.

{{Why, it must be asked, did he ask Munsee speakers how to pronounce Unami words, when there were still fluent Unami speakers in Oklahoma--especially, since he used so many Southern Unami words in his book?  Frank Speck did not report that Northern Unami is "Unalaxtako" (as Chamberlain spells it).  Speck's exact words are these:  "At Oshweken the name Una'mewak is known as being appicable to the Delawares at Moraviantown, and those now in the West, but no specific translation of the term is offered.  Speakers of the Munsee dialect also apply it similarly.  ...The confusion of the old terms for the geographical divisions is increased by the frequent reference to the Moravian Delawares as Wna'laxtgowak and Wehwunala'xtgowak, "Unalachtigo-speakers" by the Oshweken people."  (Speck, The Celestial Bear Comes Down to Earth, p.13)  Thus, the Moravian Delaware were called BOTH Unami and Unalachtgo, by some Canadian Delaware.  This is fitting, since the Moravian Indians included people from both those dialect groups--as well as Munsees.  HOWEVER, the Moravians wrote their works in Unami, as is indicated by their own testimony to that fact.}} 


In sound, most of my words are as in Moravian rendering; mostly my spelling is different from what Whritenour would deem "correct". Now we, the Big Horn/Eastern Lenape use a phonetic system. No words were invented by me. Any errors come from Elders I went to for translation.

{{So, he admits to using incorrect words in his book that were made-up by "Elders" he consulted.}}


As for the cover of my book, which has pictographs from the Walam Olum, this was not my doing, but the publishers. I did not include the Walam Olum in my book because I did not think it to be translated correctly. Now, years later, and knowing the language, I will include it in a future book. The Walam Olum is not a hoax, as so-called scholars would have you believe. What these detractors don't realize is that there is an intact alternate version that exists among Anishinabe People in Canada. Also, the language used therein is not entirely Unami based and is a spiritual shorthand much like exists among the Sioux.

{{The text of the Walam Olum is not included in this book; however, the book does include a bibliographical reference to it.  The "detractors" are well-aware of this so-called "alternate version" of the Ojibwe.  It came to light AFTER the publication of Rafinesque's Walam Olum, and in a work by someone quite familiar with the Walam Olum.  In short, it's a fraud, too.}}


Yes, the stories in my book were collected and written down by me, but not literally written by me. The Oral stories told to me often had more detail than their counterparts from existing published material; a couple had counterparts among Anishinabe/Ojibwe with more detail than written Lenape source material. Oral stories often differ from storyteller to storyteller. They were not set in stone, and my putting in more detail does not make them any less authentic.

{{In fact, "putting in more detail," in this manner, does, indeed, make them less authentic.  As Eliot A. Singer has written, "Authors naturally insist that folktales exist in versions and variants and are constantly changing, so they should have a right to retell a story as they please, "weaving several sources together, mixing and matching in the true storytelling tradition," as dePaola suggests in his preface to Quail Song (Carey 1990). This argument shows a flawed (and self-serving) understanding of how the "folk process" truly works--"  ("Fakelore, Multiculturalism and the Ethics of Children's Literature").}}


The first four stories contrary to Whritenour's opinion, are authentic. Nanapush is not an Ojibwe culture hero, but Lenape, half man & half Spirit, right hand to the Creator on this Earth, connected to the life force in nature. The Ojibwe know him as Waynaboozhoo. not Nanapush! Nanapush is remembered by Eastern Lenape, Canadian Munsee Lenape, is a figure in the Walam Olum, and was recorded by Mark Harrington/ an 1930's Anthropologist, in his "the Lenape of New Jersey", gathering his info from Lenape Elders. Just because Nanapush is not remembered by Oklahoma Delawares means nothing. Seems they lost a lot. The Great Toad is another forgotten character set down by Harrington in the aforementioned book.

{{"Nanapush," so written, is the spelling used by the Chippewa (i.e., Ojibwe) author, Louise Erdrich.  There are many dialects of Ojibwe and many different spellings of this name among those dialects.  However you wish to spell the name--he is not a traditional Lenape culture hero.  He belongs to the Central Algonquians.  He was unknown among the Munsee, until they moved to Canada and came into contact with the Ojibwe.  In fact, while Harrington was normally a very good scholar, he took extensive liberties in his children's novel, Dickon Among the Indians (later titled, The Indians of New Jersey:  Dickon Among the Lenape Indians), when he inserted an Ojibwe Nanapush story (p.282) that he gleaned from The History of the Ojebway Indians, (p.33) by Ojibwe author Peter Jones, first published in 1860.  Wisely,  Harrington did not mention either Nanapush or the "Great Toad" in his 1921 scholarly monograph, Religion and Ceremonies of the Lenape.  Lenape in Oklahoma held on to their traditional, non-Christian, culture much longer than any other Lenape tribe in the U.S.A. or Canada.  To say that "they lost a lot" is ridiculous.  The Walam Olum is a hoax, as has been proved by Dr. David Oestreicher, in his masterful doctoral dissertation, "Walam Olum:  A nineteenth century anthropological hoax."  (You may consult my comments, here at Amazon, on McCutcheon's The Red Record, to read the current scholarly opinions regarding its inauthenticity.)  This "Great Toad," which is actually called "a huge Toad" by Harrington--exactly matches the description of it used by Peter Jones in the above-referenced Ojibwe tale, which Harrington had "borrowed" for use in his children's novel about the Lenape.  (p.282)}}


Father Sun & Grandmother Moon are terms used by Eastern Lenape, contrary to Mr. Whritenour's opinion. The Oklahoma Delaware saw the Moon as male; in the East & by Canadian Munsee & Mohicans, as well as Anishinabe, the Moon was seen as female. Just because the Western/Oklahoma Lenape consider something different does not make our view in the East unauthentic or made-up.

{{Over 240 years ago, Zeisberger recorded the phrase, "gischuch wikheu," which means, literally, 'the Sun or Moon builds a house,' and designates a 'halo' seen around either one of those luminaries, at times, in cloudy weather.  House building was strictly the work of men in traditional Lenape society.  (Heckewelder, Indian Nations, p.155)}}


Whritenour makes fun of my equating Misinghalikan/Meeseenkw with bigfoot; but the Anishinabe/ Cree have no problem understanding my view.

{{Bigfoot is, supposedly, a giant hairy ape-like creature, said to weigh about 500 pounds.  The Mesinkw is a man-sized being who sometimes rides on the back of a deer, and has a mask for a face ("living-solid-face")!  Mesinkw is a guardian of the animals and a medicine-being.  Mesinkhoalikan has frequent intercourse with human beings, and carries a snapping-turtle rattle.  It has nothing in common with Bigfoot, except a hairy body.}}


Contrary to Whritenour, the yakwahe is the mastodon/wooly mammoth, not the naked bear. Harrington, in the "Indians of New Jersey" started this mix up. Richard Adams, an Oklahoma Lenape, had it right in his book.

{{Yakwahe is 'naked bear' in Southern Unami.  It is a loanword from Seneca, nyakwaehe:h ('naked bear'). When mammoth and mastodon skeletons were being found in the Ohio valley, circa 1790-1800, the Lenapes who were asked about them informed the whites that they were yakwaheak ('naked bears')--the only animal they could think of which fit the description of these huge skeletons. Hence, the erroneous application of the name to "mastodon"--a mix-up which entered both Euro-American and some Lenape lore.}}


This review by Whritenour is just a continuance of attacking and berating me, the author, and has been perpetuated for 2 decades! I am of Lenape-Mohican descent & I know a lot that books will never teach you. Whritenour, has no credentials, and is just a book-stuck scholar. Here in the East there is a rich body of Traditional, Oral knowledge, that he will never know.

{{Here in the East, there is a rich body of misinformation masquerading as traditional Lenape folklore, cultural practices, language and history.  If David Chamberlain (a.k.a., "Hitakonanolaxk; yclept "Treebeard") didn't have such an aversion to books--except, of course, his own!--he might have realized this, at some point in the past.}}

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#11 Sep-05-2014 02:42:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

And, now, Treebeard's reply. 

David Chamberlain says:
Mr. Whritenour, this could go on ad nauseum. Agreed Ms. Pfleghardt, his views are heinously opinionated.

My book was put to print in 1994. You have had 20 years but wait till now to give it an opinionated bashing. No one to pick on in the Woodland Indians Forum of late?

You never slander, libel or berate anyone? How can you say this with a straight face? When that is all you and your forum buddies see fit to do?

My whole family knows we are Native and even the clan affiliation of my Great Great Grandmother. And why do you keep talking about things you know nothing about trying to make me look bad? If this isn't slander, what is? I did not make myself a Chief nor a Medicine Man, and I have paperwork to show this.

Again, another of your erroneous opinions, that Sam Gray Wolf wasn't Native. Natives from Canada and across the US knew he was, where have you been?

As far as ego and arrogance, those who know me, and there are many, know these are lacking in my personality. However, a cousin of yours, who is a friend of mine says you reek of arrogance & self-importance. So, who needs to look in the mirror?

I relied on mUnsee speakers at the time of writing, as they were the Delaware I had contact with at that time. They had access to Moravian material and had a different view on pronunciation than yourself. They also stated emphatically that the Delawares of the Moravian Mission were Unalaxtako, not Unami.

You are good at putting words in my mouth. I do not admit to purposely using incorrect words in my book, and Elders certainly did not make up the words; they tried their best to give translations from what they knew.

That the Walam Olum is a fraud and hoax is but you and other misguided scholars opinion on the matter. I and many Anishinabe People disagree with you, as they have their own version of this.

Nanapush is called Waynaboozhoo by the Ojibwe I know. The p & b make sense/ Delaware "wape = white" Anishinabe "wabe = white". Just because Nanapush isn't mentioned in most of the literature doesn't mean anything, as he isn't mentioned in the traditional call of Spirit Beings.

Again, the Great Toad, mentioned in the Rev.Peter Jones work "the History of the Ojebway Indians", only attests to the similarities of the two cultures, and that they were originally as one. Harrington didn't borrow it.

Again, your concept of the Big Foot being,stated as fact, but merely your ignorant opinion. I've hunted with the Cree & talked to Anishinabe. Their opinion is the same as mine. The ojibwe call him "Bugwayjinini".

And if you, Mr. Whritenour, would open up your mind a little and listen, instead of taking info out of books as absolute fact and continuing you unrelenting attacks on those who disagree with you, you might not appear as ridiculously ignorant as many, many, people view you.

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#12 Sep-05-2014 02:52:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

My final reply:

Balderdash! You are obviously incapable of taking constructive criticism. I leave you to your errors. Enough!
Sschkaak out!

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#13 Sep-05-2014 02:52:pm

NanticokePiney
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From: Hopewell Twp., New Jersey
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Posts: 4214

Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Wow! Mr. Chamberlain is really full of crap! I can't figure how all of it fit's inside him. yikes He's never hunted with the Nishnabs or the Cree. He's too God damn dumb. hmm


I don't have anger issues...just violent reactions to B.S.
---------------------------------------------------
      Warning:  Some Profanity
This might cause you to experience reason

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#14 Sep-05-2014 04:01:pm

tree hugger
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Posts: 11032

Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Treebeard. You may want to look up the legal definition of liable and slander. You are here MULTIPLE TIMES a day, and you have an open format to prove what is said is wrong. You see that's the tricky thing, we back up our posts with facts and valid research. To prove liable or slander you have to prove the facts/statements made are incorrect.

Hey, but I want to sincerely thank you for the multiple mentions on Amazon and other sites. It gives people a chance to visit and form their own opinions.

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#15 Sep-06-2014 11:17:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Amazon has deleted TB's comments in #11, above.  At whose urging, I don't know--except that it wasn't mine.

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#16 Sep-06-2014 11:32:am

tree hugger
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

That's strange. Was it Amazon or a personal delete?

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#17 Sep-06-2014 11:48:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

All it says is:  [Deleted by Amazon 9 hours ago]   I don't know if that means Amazon did it on their own, or if they did it at someone's request.  Perhaps, it was due to the reference to my "cousin," whoever that is.

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#18 Sep-06-2014 12:39:pm

tree hugger
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Posts: 11032

Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Thanks, I'm not familiar with how that works on Amazon. I find it odd that particular response contained the libel and slander reference, and it went poof not long after my post here about the legal definition. Coincidence, I'm sure.

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#19 Sep-06-2014 12:50:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Almost all his replies say I "slander" or "libel" him--including the ones still there.  His responses were the same, 10 years ago (if memory serves), at another forum.

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#20 Sep-06-2014 11:16:pm

Suckachsinheet
Member
Registered: Sep-11-2007
Posts: 966

Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

sschkaak wrote:

{{Over 240 years ago, Zeisberger recorded the phrase, "gischuch wikheu," which means, literally, 'the Sun or Moon builds a house,' and designates a 'halo' seen around either one of those luminaries, at times, in cloudy weather.  House building was strictly the work of men in traditional Lenape society.  (Heckewelder, Indian Nations, p.155)}}

There is an etymological argument here that may not be completely clear to the uninformed reader, so I will make an attempt to flesh it out, in order to make sure I fully understand it. Then sschkaak can tell me where I have erred...

Kraft asserts that the Lenape saw sun, moon and stars as male entities; elder brothers. This is backed up by the argument above as follows: Everyone seems agreed that the sun is a male entity, except that Treebeard's sources taught him that the sun is Father, nux kischuk. But the moon would also be seen as male because it was thought of as the night sun, hence the word "gischuch" could apply to either body. And, because house building was the province of the men, the phrase "gischuch wikheu" would indicate a male activity. If the moon were seen as female, e.g. a grandmother, a different euphemism would be used, such as "the Moon weaves a blanket" or something in the domain of feminine activities.


It's in the blood; I can't let go. - Robbie Robertson

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#21 Sep-07-2014 08:47:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Essentially, that's correct.  I suppose the closest word we have to "gischuch," in English, is "luminary."  When careful distinction is made, the Sun is sometimes called "gischguniwi gischuch"--translated as either 'day sun' or 'day moon;' while the Moon is rendered as "nipahwi gischuch" ('night sun' or 'night moon').  "Moon" may be better, since "gischuch" also means 'month' in Lenape. 

Unlike the Sun and Moon, when speaking of the stars and other plural entities which are called "brothers," one has to be more careful about assigning gender.  For instance, one Lenape variant of the story of the origin of the Pleiades, makes these stars females.  So, the term "brothers" can be seen as something like our English word "brotherhood," which often includes people of either sex; for example, in the phrase "brotherhood of man."  Other Lenape "brothers" include bears and turtles.  In these cases, the term certainly isn't limited to the males of those species.

The key, however, to the long-held masculinity of the Moon, in Lenape belief, is, as you say, his house-building activity.  This, added to his designation as "elder brother" by the Oklahoma Delaware, pretty much confirms the argument.

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#22 Sep-07-2014 09:55:am

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

He's back...

Treebeard has re-done the post they deleted.  I note he left out the reference to my supposed "cousin" who is his supposed "friend."  Here's his new version at Amazon (plus a separate little comment):

In reply to your post on Sep 7, 2014 6:37:33 AM PDT

David Chamberlain says:

Why Amazon deleted my former reply is a mystery indeed! Mr. Whritenour, this could go on ad nauseum. Agreed, Ms. Pfleghartdt, his views are highly opinionated. A good review should be unbiased. My book was published in 1994. One has to wonder why Mr. Whritenour has waited 20 years to bash my book on Amazon? He has been bad mouthing my book on internet sites for 20 years. No one to pick on in the Woodland Indians Forum (which I might add, most contributors are non-Native) of late?

You never berate anyone? How can you say this with a straight face? When that is all you and your forum buddies see fit to do?

My family knows we are Native and even the clan affiliation of my Great Great Grandmother. And why do you insist on stating as fact things you know nothing about, trying to make me look bad? If this isn't slander, what is it? I did not make myself Chief or Medicine Man, and have paperwork to attest to this, as well as our Chief, Tamakwanaxk.

As far as ego and arrogance, I don't believe these are a part of my personality, and I believe those who know me would agree.

I relied on Munsee Speakers at the time of writing, as they were the Delaware I had contact with. They had access to Moravian material and had a different view on pronunciation than yourself. They also stated emphatically that the Delawares of the Moravian Mission were Unalaxtako Speakers. Both words you show above refer to Unalaxtako, not Unami!
I did not purposely use incorrect words in my book, Elders consulted tried their best to give me translations from what they knew.

That the Walum Olum is a fraud and hoax is but the conjecture of misguided scholars on the matter. I and many Anishinabe know otherwise. There are Munsi words that Rafinesque had no knowledge of. Mahr was right.

Nanapush is called Waynaboozhoo by Ojibwe I know, but there are some who call him Nanabush/Nanaboozhoo. The Lenape would use a "p" where the Ojibwe would use a "b". Compare Lenape "wape" with Ojibwe "wabe", both meaning "white".

Just because the Oklahoma Lenape do not seem to know of Nanapush means nothing. The Canadian Munsee certainly did. He wasn't a Spirit mentioned in the Traditional Call of Spirit Beings.

The Great Toad, mentioned in the Rev. peter Jones work "the History of the Ojebway Indians", only attests to the similarities of the Lenape & Ojibwe. Harrington didn't borrow it, merely your opinion.

Also, your concept of the Big Foot Being, is merely your opinion. I have hunted with the Cree and discussed this with the Bugwayjinini.

Yakwahe is "mastodon" Mr. Whritenour, attested to by Richard Adams and Wape Gokhos/Canada.

You are not Native Mr. Whritenour, so you would be better off not trying to act as some Authority figure on the Lenape. You may accept the words of the Moravian Missionaries as the final word on Lenape Culture, Spirituality, etc. and that is all that you will never know, NOT MUCH!   

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In reply to your post on Sep 7, 2014 6:38:34 AM PDT

David Chamberlain says:

More like "destructive criticism".

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#23 Sep-07-2014 02:14:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

And, of course, my response (inside double brackets):


David Chamberlain writes:


Why Amazon deleted my former reply is a mystery indeed! Mr. Whritenour, this could go on ad nauseum.

[[So, you've decided to let it do just that by continuing with this post.]]


Agreed, Ms. Pfleghartdt, his views are highly opinionated.

[[Yes.  Opinions based on the facts revealed by real Lenape Indians.]]


A good review should be unbiased.

[[A good review should be honest.]]


My book was published in 1994. One has to wonder why Mr. Whritenour has waited 20 years to bash my book on Amazon?

[[I wonder that, myself.  Why on Earth did I wait so long?]]


He has been bad mouthing my book on internet sites for 20 years.

[[I didn't even read your book until 10 or 11 years ago.  I haven't been on the internet for 20 years.]]


No one to pick on in the Woodland Indians Forum (which I might add, most contributors are non-Native) of late?

[[Oh!  There are a multitude of Wannabes, Phonies, Snake-oil Salesmen and lousy scholars to "pick on."  We've barely scratched the surface of this crowd at Woodland Indians Forum.  People may go to the New Age Frauds and Plastic Shamans site, if they want to see how many are out there in the way of these types.  Funnily enough, I don't really consider you a fraud.  You certainly believe what you say.  You may even have Indian ancestry.  Who knows?  However, your book is terrible.]]


You never berate anyone? How can you say this with a straight face? When that is all you and your forum buddies see fit to do?

[[I spend very little time berating anyone on that forum.  Most of my time is spent on genuine Lenape history, current events, culture and language.  I said I don't slander or libel anybody.]]


My family knows we are Native and even the clan affiliation of my Great Great Grandmother.

[[Unfortunately, nobody else knows these things, since you've provided no evidence other than the hearsay evidence of a family tradition.  You don't look like an Indian.  (I've seen your picture in an old newspaper article.)  You may very well have Indian ancestry, but where is the evidence?  However, this is a tangential issue, since whether your a full-blood American Indian, a white man with some Indian ancestry, or 100% non-Indian the flaws in your book remain the same.]]


And why do you insist on stating as fact things you know nothing about, trying to make me look bad?

[[Because you insist on presenting things as Lenape which aren't; and then, continue to defend these things after being shown the problems with them.]]


If this isn't slander, what is it?

[[Slander requires someone to make "false" statements, which damage someone's character.  Where, in my review, did I make any "false" statements?]]


I did not make myself Chief or Medicine Man, and have paperwork to attest to this, as well as our Chief, Tamakwanaxk.

[[In 1989, you wrote:  "My good friend, Chief Sam Hannah Gray Wolf, ...has given me the help and paperwork to form a local/area Lenape' Band/Tribe ..."  So YOU formed this "tribe"--not anybody else who's in it.  You had the help of a Wannabe white man to set it up; and another "adopted" white man became your tribal chief, though you became "Medicine Chief."  We can split hairs over whether or not you "made" yourself a "chief."  Too bad you don't have any paperwork (i.e., documentation acceptable to a certified genealogist or genealogical society) or DNA test results to attest to your American Indian ancestry.]] 


As far as ego and arrogance, I don't believe these are a part of my personality, and I believe those who know me would agree.

[[Very commendable.]]


I relied on Munsee Speakers at the time of writing, as they were the Delaware I had contact with.

[[Contacting the last Unami speakers could have been done through the mail; so, this fails as an excuse.]]


They had access to Moravian material and had a different view on pronunciation than yourself.

[[Whoever these Munsee speakers were, their "view" on Northern Unami pronunciation was wrong, if that view is accurately reflected in your work.]]


They also stated emphatically that the Delawares of the Moravian Mission were Unalaxtako Speakers.

[[It appears they led you astray, again, if this is true.]]


Both words you show above refer to Unalaxtako, not Unami!

[[Uh...  I showed three words above.  You've conveniently left out that they were called Uname'wak (i.e., "Unamis"), by Munsees and Ohsweken Delawares, also.  And, you've left out the fact that the Moravians called the dialect they used, "Unami."]]


I did not purposely use incorrect words in my book, Elders consulted tried their best to give me translations from what they knew.

[[Who said you did?  I said you used incorrect words.  I didn't accuse you of doing so, "purposely."]]


That the Walum Olum is a fraud and hoax is but the conjecture of misguided scholars on the matter.

[[No.  Oestreicher has proven it's a hoax.  Anyone with knowledge of the Delaware language can see that his arguments are correct.  Rafinesque was a forger.]]


I and many Anishinabe know otherwise.

[[You are obviously mistaken, then.]]


There are Munsi words that Rafinesque had no knowledge of. Mahr was right

[[There are no such words in the Walam Olum.  I have no idea about what Mahr was right.  I know this, though:  Almost all of Mahr's analyses of Delaware words are incorrect.]]


Nanapush is called Waynaboozhoo by Ojibwe I know, but there are some who call him Nanabush/Nanaboozhoo. The Lenape would use a "p" where the Ojibwe would use a "b". Compare Lenape "wape" with Ojibwe "wabe", both meaning "white".

[[Louise Erdrich, a Chippewa (i.e., Ojibwe), calls him "Nanapush."]]


Just because the Oklahoma Lenape do not seem to know of Nanapush means nothing. The Canadian Munsee certainly did.

[[The Canadian Munsee learned of him from the Ojibwe, after they moved to Canada.]]


He wasn't a Spirit mentioned in the Traditional Call of Spirit Beings.

[[So?]]


The Great Toad, mentioned in the Rev. peter Jones work "the History of the Ojebway Indians", only attests to the similarities of the Lenape & Ojibwe.

[[No.  This creature does not appear in any other of Harrington's works on the Lenape--nor anyone else's.  He doesn't even give a Lenape name for it.  And, neither Jones nor Harrington called it "the Great Toad."  That's something you or one of your informants came up with.  Jones called it "a huge toad," and Harrington followed suit.  It's strictly an Ojibwe conception, and part of the same story with the Nanapush tale.]]


Harrington didn't borrow it, merely your opinion.

[[I was being kind.  He "purloined" it is more accurate.]] 


Also, your concept of the Big Foot Being, is merely your opinion.

[[Yes:  Based on the facts, again.  Your opinion on this matter is based on your imagination.  You tried to equate the Mesinkw with Big Foot by distorting his appearance to match that of Big Foot.  You wrote:  "Misinkhalikan ...often takes on physical form, as a great, hulking, hairy ape-like giant."  Where, on Earth, did you come up with that description?  Except for "hairy," none of it describes the Mesinkw!]]


I have hunted with the Cree and discussed this with the Bugwayjinini.

[[Wow!  So, you've discussed this matter with "Big Foot"?  In what language did you converse?  Did you serve tea and crumpets?]]


Yakwahe is "mastodon" Mr. Whritenour, attested to by Richard Adams and Wape Gokhos/Canada.

[[Jasper Hill ("Wape Gokhos") was a Christian Munsee speaker who wouldn't even know the Southern Unami name, "yakwahe," unless he was just repeating what he read in Richard Adams.]] 


You are not Native Mr. Whritenour, so you would be better off not trying to act as some Authority figure on the Lenape.

[[I merely repeat what various REAL Lenape Indians have told us about all these things.  They are the authorities which contradict what you have written.]]


You may accept the words of the Moravian Missionaries as the final word on Lenape Culture, Spirituality, etc. and that is all that you will never know, NOT MUCH!

[[Considering the fact that the Moravian missionaries lived with the Lenape for more than a century, at a time when many traditional ways were in full force, their extensive writings on these things--especially the language--is an excellent source of knowledge.  However, most of my arguments come from scholars, such as Morgan, Harrington, Speck, Weslager, Goddard, Grumet, Rementer, Bierhorst, et al., who have meticulously recorded what the Lenape told them; as well as from primary source materials such as colonial documents, deeds, and ethnological descriptions--and, from Lenape Indians I have known, both through personal friendship and via correspondence; all of which I trust much more than the things you have written in your book and other statements.]]

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#24 Sep-07-2014 03:17:pm

tree hugger
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Very insightful!

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#25 Sep-07-2014 03:44:pm

sschkaak
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Re: The Grandfathers Speak - a review

Thank you.  Always trying to help Treebeard see the error of his ways.

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