2.5.14.2.5 Eskimos

0 Content 2 Background  2.4 Culture 2.5.14 Americas 2.5.14.2 Early People

1600-2x2-neuter 2.4.14.2.7

2.4.14.2.6 Remembering Niagara The Neuter Nation

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      1 Introduction
      2 Father L'Allemant's report was dated May 19, 1641.
      3 The only previous preaching 1626
          3.1 Remembering Niagara
      4  The horrendous torture.
      5  Niagara Neuters 
          5.1  Neuter population was exterminated by the Seneca
 

1 Introduction

0ne of the most incisive accounts of the Neuter Indians came in a seventeenth-century letter from Jesuit missionary Father Gabriel L'Allemant to the Jesuit provincial in France.

The Neuter, or Neutral Indians. occupied the Niagara Region on both sides of the Niagara River in the seventeenth century. Early French fur traders called them Neuter because they kept a neutral territory between the warring Hurons in Canada and Senecas to the east. 

  2 Father L'Allemant's report was dated May 19, 1641. It was sent from the Jesuit Mission of Saint Mary's located in Canada near Lake Huron. He wrote of the trip of two other Jesuits, Jean Brebeuf and Joseph Chatumonot, to Me Neuter nation. The Senecas later tortured to death both Fathers L'Allemant and Brebeuf.

Concerning the Neuters. L'Allemant's letter stated, "Father Brebeuf is particularly fitted for such an expedition. God having in an eminent degree endowed him with a capacity for learning languages.- While many French traders had visited the area "to profit by their furs and other commodities," L'Allemant reported that "few missionaries visited there.- 

3 The only previous preaching of the Catholic gospel, he wrote, was by "Father De La Roch Daillon, a Recollect, win. passed the winter there in the year 1626." It was a four- or five-day journey from the land of the Huron to the Neuter Nation. The explorers estimated that there were about forty villages of Neuters. all but three or four of them on the western, or Canadian, side of the Niagara River. They described the Great Lakes' drainage pattern as flowing 'into the lake of Erie, or the Nation of the Cat, from thence it enters the territory of' the Neuter nation and takes the name of Onghiaahra [Niagara] until it empties into Ontario, Or St. Louis Lake."

Regarding the Neuter population. L'Allemant wrote that. "according to the estimate of these illustrious fathers who have been there. the Neuter Nation comprises about 12,000 souls. which enables them to furnish 4,000 warriors." 

REMEMBERING NIAGARA 

L'Allemant believed the Neuter name was aptly applied because "their country being the ordinary passage by land between some of the Iroquois nations and the Hurons. who are sworn enemies, they remained at peace with both."

About the origin of the Native Americans, L'Allemant wrote: 

There is every reason for believing that not long since the Hurons, Iroquois and Neuter Nations formed one people and originally came from the same family: but have in the lapse of time became separated from each other, more or less in distance. interests and affliction so that some are now enemies, others neutral and others still live in in intimate friendship and intercourse. 

He said their food was similar to that of the Hurons and consisted of corn, beans and gourds. fish and game. including deer. buffaloes. wildcats, wolves, wild boars, beavers and wild turkeys. Hunting was good that year. he said, because of a heavy snow. "It is rare," he wrote, "to see snow in this country more than half a foot deep. But this year it is more than three feet."

He described their dress thus: 

The men like all savages, cover their naked flesh with skins but are less particular than the Hurons in concealing what should not appear. The squaws are ordinarily clothed, at least from waist to knees. but are more flee and shamless in their immodesty than the Hurons. 


According to L'Allemant, the Neuters differed front the Hurons in that they were "larger, stronger and better formed. They also have more affection for the dead and have a greater number of fools or jugglers." 

A day's journey to the east of the Neuters was the Seneca Nation, "most dreaded by the Hurons." Although these missionaries returned safely from the Neuter Nation, the dread of the Senecas proved to be prophetic. A section of The Jesuit Relations was titled "A Veritable Account of the Martyrdom and Blessed Death of Father Jean de Brebouf and of Father Gabriel L'Allemant in New France in the Country of the Hurons by the Iroquois. Enemies of the Faith." 

4 The horrendous torture. The Senecas took the Huron village of Saint Ignace and captured the two priests, "stripped them entirely naked and fastened each to a post.- The horrendous torture, described in detail. included heating them with clubs, ripping out their fingernails. pouring boiling water over them and burning them with red-hot hatchets. During this torture, Father Breheuf kept preaching about God so that. "to prevent him from speaking more, they cut off his tongue and both his upper and lower lips. After that they set themselves to strip the flesh from his legs, thighs and arms, to the very bone, and then pin it to roast before his eyes in order to eat it.."

A mosaic portrait of Saint Jean Brebeuf is among the lineup of saints and prospective saints above the pews in Saint Mary of the Cataract Church, the mother church of Niagara Falls, New York. Some believe that Father Brebeuf had a beatific vision of a huge cross and that he saw it in the mist of the falls. 

Eighteenth-century French Jesuit explorer and historian Pierre Charlevoix described the fate of the Neuter Nation. He wrote: 

A people larger, stronger and better formed than any other savages and who lived south of the Huron country were visited by the Jesuits who preached to them the kingdom of God. 

They were called the Neuter Nation because they look no part in the wars which desolated the country But in the end, they could not themselves escape entire destruction. 

To avoid the fury of the Iroquois, they finally joined them against Me Hurons, but at nothing by the union. The Iroquois that like Iions that have tasted blood cannot be satiated, destroyed indiscriminately all that came in their way and at this day there remains no trace of the Neuter Nation. 

 5                            http://www.townofcambria.com/historian.asp

5.1 Neuter population was exterminated by the Senecas

The earliest known occupants of the Niagara Region of Western New York were the Neuter Indians, who occupied this area in the early 1600's. A peaceful nation, they lived in villages on both sides of the Niagara River and as far east as the territory of present day Orleans County. In 1651, however, nearly the entire Neuter population was exterminated by the Senecas who then claimed the Neutersí lands as their own.

Niagara Falls Reporter

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CONSUMED BY WAR THEY TRIED TO AVOID, NEUTER NATION FELL VICTIM TO SENECAS

By Bob Kostoff

One of the most incisive accounts of the Neuter Indians came in a 17th-century letter from Jesuit missionary Father Gabriel L'Allemant to the Jesuit provincial in France.

The Neuter, or Neutral, Indians occupied the Niagara region on both sides of the Niagara River in the 17th century. Early French fur traders called them Neuter, because they kept a neutral territory between the warring Hurons in Canada and Senecas to the east.

Father L'Allemant's report was dated May 19, 1641, and was found in the archives "Relations of the Jesuits." It was sent from the Jesuit Mission of St. Mary's, located in Canada near Lake Huron. He wrote of the trip of two other Jesuits, Jean De Brebeuf and Joseph Chaumonot, to the Neuter Nation.

The Senecas later tortured both Fathers L'Allemant and De Brebeuf to death.

About the Neuters, L'Allemant's letter stated, "Father Brebeuf is particularly fitted for such an expedition, God having in an eminent degree endowed him with a capacity for learning languages."

While many French traders had visited the area "to profit by their furs and other commodities," L'Allemant reported, "few missionaries visited there."

The only previous preaching of the Catholic gospel, he wrote, was by "Father De La Roch Daillon, a Recollect, who passed the winter there in the year 1626."

It was a four- or five-day journey from the land of the Hurons to the Neuter Nation. The explorers estimated there were about 40 villages of Neuters, all but three or four of them on the western, or Canadian, side of the Niagara River.

They described the Great Lakes drainage pattern as flowing "into the lake of Erie, or the Nation of the Cat, from thence it enters the territory of the Neuter nation and takes the name of Onghiaahra (Niagara) until it empties into Ontario, or St. Louis Lake."

Regarding the Neuter population, L'Allemant wrote, "According to the estimate of these illustrious fathers who have been there, the Neuter Nation comprises about 12,000 souls, which enables them to furnish 4,000 warriors." About the Neuter name, L'Allemant said it was aptly applied because, "their country being the ordinary passage by land between some of the Iroquois nations and the Hurons, who are sworn enemies, they remained at peace with both."

About the origin of the Native Americans, L'Allemant wrote, "There is every reason for believing that not long since the Hurons, Iroquois and Neuter Nations formed one people and originally came from the same family, but have in the lapse of time became separated from each other, more or less in distance, interests and affection so that some are now enemies, others neutral and others still live in intimate friendship and intercourse."

He said their food was similar to that of the Hurons and consisted of corn, beans and gourds, and fish and game, including deer, buffalo, wildcats, wolves, wild boars, beaver and wild turkeys.

Hunting was good that year, he said, because of a heavy snow. "It is rare," he wrote, "to see snow in this country more than half a foot deep. But this year it is more than three feet."

He described their dress thus:

"The men, like all savages, cover their naked flesh with skins but are less particular than the Hurons in concealing what should not appear. The squaws are ordinarily clothed, at least from waist to knees, but are more free and shameless in their immodesty than the Hurons."

The Neuters differed from the Huron, he wrote, in that they "are larger, stronger and better formed. They also have more affection for the dead and have a greater number of fools or jugglers."

A day's journey east of the Neuters, he said, was the Seneca Nation, "most dreaded by the Hurons."

Although these missionaries returned safely from the Neuter nation, the dread of the Seneca proved to be prophetic.

Another section of the "Relations of the Jesuits" was titled "A Veritable Account of the martyrdom and Blessed Death of Father Jean De Brebeuf and of Father Gabriel L'Allemant in New France in the Country of the Hurons by the Iroquois, Enemies of the Faith."

The Senecas took the Huron Village of St. Ignace and captured the two priests, "stripped them entirely naked and fastened each to a post." The horrendous torture, described in detail, included beating them with clubs, ripping out their fingernails, pouring boiling water over them and burning them with red hot hatchets.

During this torture, Father Brebeuf kept preaching about God, so that "to prevent him from speaking more, they cut off his tongue and both his upper and lower lips. After that they set themselves to strip the flesh from his legs, thighs and arms, to the very bone, and then put it to roast before his eyes in order to eat it."

A mosaic portrait of St. Jean De Brebeuf is among the lineup of saints and prospective saints above the pews in St. Mary of the Cataract Church. Some believe that Father Brebeuf had a beatific vision of a huge cross and that he saw it in the mist of the falls.

The fate of the Neuter Nation was described by 18th-century French Jesuit explorer and historian Pierre Charlevoix. He wrote:

"A people larger, stronger and better formed than any other savages and who lived south of the Huron country were visited by the Jesuits who preached to them the Kingdom of God.

"They were called the neuter Nation because they took no part in the wars which desolated the country. But in the end, they could not themselves escape entire destruction.

"To avoid the fury of the Iroquois, they finally joined them against the Hurons, but gained nothing by the union. The Iroquois, that like lions that have tasted blood, cannot be satiated, destroyed indiscriminately all that came in their way, and at this day there remains no trace of the neuter Nation."


FADING INTO HISTORY -- The original 45-year-old Gourmandes Club, a monthly get-together at the now-closed Alps Restaurant for lovers of eating fine food, is no more. The originator, George Teeker Poulos, said time and circumstance has retired the organization. But, a lover of nostalgia and history, he seeks to start over with the New Gourmandes Club. The initial dinner meeting will be at 7 p.m. on Oct. 25 at The Bakery restaurant on Niagara Street.

 


Bob Kostoff has been reporting on the Niagara Frontier for four decades. He is a recognized authority on local history and is the author of several books. E-mail him at RKost1@aol.com.

 
Niagara Falls Reporter www.niagarafallsreporter.com October 24 2006

Common Myth?

2.4.14.2.5 Niagara Maiden Sacrifice

 History of the Great Lakes. Volume I

  

by J. B. Mansfield, ed.
 

Their is much Indian Activist and Academic Sophistry

Criticizing "Falsification of History 

by Anglo-Saxon and commercial interests."

See 2.4.3. 9 Niagara 

For and Indian version see 2.4.3.9. 7 Niagara (Indian Source)


A transcription for the Maritime History of the Great Lakes site by Walter Lewis and Brendon Baillod


Halton Hills, ON, Canada : Maritime History of the Great Lakes

2003


based on the original document:

J. B. Mansfield, ed., History of the Great Lakes. Volume I, Chicago: J. H. Beers & Co., 1899


Legend of Niagara Falls:
The Maiden's Sacrifice
Legend of Niagara Falls. -- The Neuter nation of Indians, who were closely allied to the Eries, occupied the territory west of the Niagara river, and as it was the custom of the Indians everywhere to give their name to, or take it from, the chief natural feature of the country which they inhabited, they were called Onguiaahra, the name of the river. These Neuter Indians are said to have regarded the river with a feeling of awe and reverence, and considered the Great Spirit of Niagara as the embodiment of power. They heard in the thunder of the falls the voice of the Great Spirit, which they were taught to believe existed over all, and they regularly contributed a part of their crops and the fruits of the chase to him, and even went so far as to offer human sacrifice on their return from wars waged upon them. As an annual offering of good will and gratitude for the blessings they had received during the year, and for their deliverance from many evils which had threatened them, it is related that they offered up each spring the fairest maiden of their tribe, sending her over the falls in a white canoe filled with fruits and flowers, the canoe being guided by her own hand.


Legend of Niagara Falls: The Maid of the Mist

The honor of being selected for this sacrifice was eagerly sought after by the young women of the tribe, and that clan, which happened to be the one possessing the maiden selected, took great pride to itself for the honor thus conferred. What terminated this superstitious practice is said to have been the selection one spring of the daughter of the principal chief of the nation. Upon the day fixed for the sacrifice the father was perfectly self-composed and stoical, as became an Indian chief, and did nothing to show that he preferred the sacrifice should not be made; but as the canoe containing the maiden and the fruits and the flowers moved out over the rapids above the falls, another canoe containing the father shot rapidly out from the shore, and both disappeared over the great cataract almost at the same moment. The loss of their beloved chief was too great, and it is said from this time on the sacrifice in the spring of the fairest of the flock was discontinued.

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