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post on Neothio River. Major Davenport was not long in seeing Claimore, shewed him the war-club, advised him to employ counsel for his people below, and told him that the Buffalo wished him to attend his trial, and see justice done liim. Claimore refused to attend the trial, as he considered it not safe to trust himself among enemies; but offered 500 dollars for counsel, which was accepted, and paid. When the trial came on at the Rock, and exertions corresponding with the importance of the case were made for the prisoners, no legal evidence was produced against them, nor a case made out to warrant conviction. Three of them were acquitted. But as it was thought necessary by the politic jury to make an example, which should strike terror among the Indians, the Mad Buffalo and the Little Eagle were selected as victims to the prejudice and vengeance of the neighbouring whites——the Buffalo, on account of his influence in the tribe ; and the Eagle, because the lot happened to fall on him.
The Buffalo behaved during the trial with the same resignation, the same calm courage and dignity, as he had all along exhibited. He and the Eagle were condemned to be hung, and the three who were acquitted, returned to their tribe. The sons of the Buffalo, some of whom were quite grown up, frequently visited Major Davenport at the garrison, and always requested to see the war-club.
After they heard that their father was condemned, and they despaired of again seeing him, they requested the major to give them the war-club. They would often secretly, and then silently, examine it, while the tears would roll down their cheeks. He promised to give it to the eldest of the sons, when it should be ascertained that their father never would return, but not before.
The Buffalo declared he would never submit to be hung up by the neck ; and made some unsuccessful attempts to destroy himself. The convicts were respited from time to time by the acting governor, who took occasion to visit them in prison. Upon being introduced, the Buffalo made him a speech, in which he expressed his sentiments in
lond, figurative, and fearless language. In the midst of his speech, the Eagle touched him, and told him that, in speaking so loud, he might give offence. “Give offence!' replied the Buffalo indignantly—am I not a man as well as he?'
Much interest was made by Major Davenport, Governor M‘Nair, and some others, to obtain their pardon. After about a year's imprisonment, they were finally pardoned by President Adams, soon after entering upon the duties of his office, in 1825. They were liberated at the Rock, and supplied by the people of the village with a gun, ammunition, and provisions for their journey home. Such, however, are the jealousy and hatred existing between the frontier settlers and the Indians, that to avoid the danger of being shot on the way, it was necessary for them to take a circuit round the settlements of more than 300 miles. With this view, they took the direction of the mountains, lying close by day, and travelling by night, until they had passed the last settlement. Here they were so much exhausted by hunger, fatigue, swelled legs, and sore feet, that they could proceed no further, and, to add to their sufferings, the Buffalo was taken sick. The Eagle left him, with a view of saving himself, and, if possible, of sending relief to his companion. Thus left to himself, the Buffalo heated a stone, and by applying it to his breast, was greatly relieved. He again pursued his journey, passed Eagle on the way without knowing when or where, and arrived at the garrison on Grand River, so much emaciated that Major Davenport did not know him. He had not felt himself safe until he reached this point; and he could not give utterance to his joy and gratitude, except by emphatic gestures and inarticulate sounds. The major gave him his war-club, supplied him with a horse and provisions, and sent him to his tribe. The Little Eagle arrived soon after, and was sent on in the same manner.
The document containing their pardon was soon after sent on, and delivered to them. But they could not comprehend its meaning. And as it was a large paper, and such as had been presented to them to sign when they
gave away their lands, they viewed it with much jealousy and alarm. After recruiting their strength a little, the Buffalo and Eagle, accompanied by about 200 of the Osages, returned to the garrison, to learn what the big paper meant.
On its being read and explained to them, and being told it said nothing about their lands, they went away perfectly satisfied, expressing the most friendly disposition towards their Great Father the president.
Thus terminated the affair and trial of the Mad Buffalo and his companions, strongly illustrating the character of these rude sons of the forest, their views of civilised jurisprudence, and the absurdity, if not injustice, of making them amenable to laws of which they must be wholly ignorant.
THE STRANGE FISH:
AN ENGLISH VILLAGE SKETCH.
AFTER many years of toil and vicissitude, having betaken myself to the retirement of a small country village, with an income which gave me no right to look down upon my less well-born neighbours, and an education, family connections, and profession, which entitled me to visit the higher classes, I felt a strong degree of interest in the fate and fortunes of the whole of the little community around me. About half a mile from the village, there stood a house which, in consequence of some inconveniences attending it, had been for a long time empty. It was sufficiently large to accommodate a family of some fortune, but it was placed awkwardly enough at the angle of two cross-roads, with only a three-cornered piece of ground in front, and rather a small garden behind. It was the sort of place which did not seem to suit anybody, and some thoughts were entertained about pulling it down, when, just as it began to assume a very deplorable aspect, the windows being broken, and the shutters swinging in the wind, it was suddenly taken. No one seemed to know anything about the new occupant, but all the workmen in the neighbourhood were put into requisition, and extraordinary were the changes which they effected. All the colours of the rainbow were employed in painting the exterior of the house : the doors were bright yellow ; the shutters, which, by the way, were patent iron, bright green ; the lower part of the front blue; and the upper white, something like the fashion of painting on a ship’s side.
All this looked singular enough, but we were still more surprised by the manner in which the piece of ground in front was laid out : embrasures were thrown up, and six guns (six-pounders) planted in a most formidable way. The hedges of the garden were replaced by high walls, surmounted by so strong a chevaux-de-frise, that egress or regress, excepting by a low postern-gate, seemed impossible; in short, no precaution was omitted to render the mansion proof against open or concealed assaults. A person from London superintended the repairs, alterations, &c.; and none, excepting the workmen employed, were permitted to enter the house. Wagons and caravans laden with furniture now began to arrive; and the curious were assured of the occupation of the family, by the appearance of an exceedingly stout and frightful negro, who came into the village to make purchases, and was to be seen planting flowers amid the cannon which bristled in front of the house. This ill-favoured personage was a man of very few words, English words at least; for though he could make himself well understood whenever he wanted anything, the moment that he was questioned concerning things which had no reference to his bargains, he replied in an unintelligible language, completely mystifying the elders, while the children were absolutely scared away by the hideousness of his aspect, and the uncouthness of his expressions. Having a good deal of what I might please to call learned
or retired leisure upon my hands, I must confess that I amused myself with speculations concerning the new owner of a mansion which had always arrested my attention whenever I turned my footsteps that way. I now passed it more frequently in my walks, and as, notwithstanding the numerous precautions which had been taken to secure it from invasion, it lay open, and exceedingly conspicuous to the view, I was soon gratified by the sight of its inhabitants. Disappointed in my expectations of finding a humorist or a Cockney, a very strange specimen of humankind presented itself in the master. At first, I perceived a delicate fair girl of sixteen fitting about amid the guns and the flowers, and sometimes singing sweetly but in low tones, which would be suddenly arrested, while the hilarity of youth, which would occasionally break forth, seemed to be struggling against cares which should belong only to a riper age ; afterwards I caught a glimpse of a young man, in whose handsome but melancholy countenance the marks of a troubled mind were more distinctly visible ; then of a female, who might be said to have advanced beyond middle age, and who, with the air and deportment which proved her to have sprung from no mean origin, seemed evidently worn down and subdued by sorrow. A single glance at the husband and father was sufficient to account for the dejection which characterised the features of his dependents. He was a squarebuilt man, with one leg, possessing a most sinister countenance, scarred all over, and bronzed by long exposure to wind and weather; and every way worthy of the appellation of 'a strange fish,' which was at once bestowed upon him by the villagers. However fierce or eccentric, there is usually something open and frank about a sailor; and Captain Grindell, as he styled himself, although evidently a tyrant of the most despotic description, would occasionally shew a heartiness of manner which tended to efface the disagreeable impression occasioned by his appearance. At first he seemed to be averse to any kind of communication with his neighbours : the clergyman of the parish called, and our village Esculapius also left his