Post by keogh on Jan 23, 2014 15:57:08 GMT -5
Jan 23, 2014 13:21:56 GMT -5 @hevat said:
Jan 21, 2014 13:04:21 GMT -5 @rosebud said:It doesn’t seem to be a “pet theory” but a theory Marquis thought he could adequately substantiate. He believed Wooden Leg and Kate, whether their account “would have us believe" it or not.
And why is it "sad" that Marquis translated and published Wooden Leg's and Kate's accounts? Should Indian accounts have been censored before they could have become controversial and contested?
Rosebud: Would you change your mind if you were to find out that Wooden Leg later said those words were from Marquis and not the real story? I can't find it right now but Keogh might be able to prvide the source for all to look at. I do tend to agree with you when you object to Keogh translating into his own words what we should take from these stories. I just ignore them because I know he will not quit.
So.....Keogh,if you could, would you provide the source and feel free to translate it for us
I classify the work of Marquis to be equal to Alice in Wonderland, or that type of reading. Fun to read but don't bet the ranch on his conclusions.
Wet powder, another dud
I've found the source. John Stands in Timber 1967 [sic!] says about Wooden Leg’s account:
“The Cheyenne warrior Wooden Leg in his book told about my grandfather being killed. He said he recognized the body by the shirt and warbonnet, but he was mistaken. Lamee White Man did not have anything on but a blanket and moccasins. He had not even had time to braid his hair. That was why the Sioux thought he was a scout for Custer, and scalped him. Wooden Leg said some other things he took back later. One was that the soldiers were drunk, and many killed themselves. I went with two army men to see him one time. They wanted to find out about it. I interpreted. They took him some tobacco and cash and other things, and we asked him if it were true that the Indians said the soldiers did that. He laughed and said there were just too many Indians. The soldiers did their best. He said if they had been drunk they would not have killed as many as they did. But it was in the book.”
It's remarkable that Wooden Leg doesn't simply deny that soldiers were drunk. He doesn't say anything at all about soldiers killing themselves. And he certainly doesn't blame Marquis.
It seems that we are in the business of creating our own myths on this board. <g>
Henk, John Stands In Timber tells us that Wooden Leg's account of the appearance and dress of Lame White Man, as he gave it to Marquis in his book was entirely incorrect. That fact alone establishes that either Wooden Leg was not being entirely truthful in his accounts to Marquis, or that Marquis was not being entirely truthful in his recording of Wooden Leg's story -- or we might simply conclude that Marquis simply mistranslated due to an inability to understand exactly what Wooden Leg was trying to tell him (considering that all of Marquis' interviews came from using simply sign language, with all of its inherent limitations.) The bottom line is that Wooden Leg's stories of the battle, as related by Marquis, are open to challenge. Did he actually say that the troopers did not all commit mass suicide? No. Did he strongly imply that this was not the case? Absolutely. Stands in Timber and the two soldiers went to speak with Wooden Leg to specifically confirm that was what he told Marquis. Did Wooden Leg confirm those controversial statements to Marquis? No, he did not. He laughed and then attributed the defeat of Custer's command not to mass suicide, but to the fact that there were just too many Indians. He said the soldiers did their best. Do you really think he would have made that comment if he believed they all committed mass suicide? Is suicide considered an act of bravery or honor in Cheyenne tradition? Was that really the "best" that they could do as warriors in battle? He clearly denied Marquis' allegations that many of the soldiers were drunk during the battle, claiming that they would not have killed as many warriors as they did had they all been drunk. By the same token, we can use the same logic to say that they would not have killed so many warriors had they all committed mass suicide. So, yes, Wooden Leg does not blame Marquis -- who I am sure was considered a good friend. More importantly, neither does Wooden Leg support or confirm any of the controversial claims that Marquis attributed to Wooden Leg in his book. Stands in Timber denies Marquis' claim that Lame White Man wore a headdress and war shirt in the battle. Wooden Leg denies Marquis' claims that the soldiers were all drunk, and by his reasoning for the latter, strongly implies the same about the ludicrous claims of mass suicide. Thus, when given the opportunity to back and support Marquis' claims of mass drunkeness and mass suicide to explain the defeat of Custer's command, he chose not to do so, instead claiming that the soldiers did the best they could, but there were too many Indians. I interpret these comments by Wooden Leg as a very polite contradiction to the ludicrous claims made on his behalf by an otherwise good friend. In other words, his denial was couched in diplomatic terms.