28 June 2007

Gideon and the Indians II

Now if there could be born an honest, liberty-loving leader who would take things in hand, concentrate the Indian forces, capture all the praying white races and their allies, the mixed-blood cut throats, and chop off their damn heads, there would remain the most innocent, law-abiding people on earth -- the pure Indian. GID

From Georgia to Mississippi especially, Gideon Lincecum had intimate contact with Indians. He worked, played, and lived side-by-side with them. His first childhood friends were Muskogee. Gideon learned native knowledge of hunting and fishing from them and so became good with a bow and arrow and blow-gun. He wrote:

By the time I was five years of age, the use of these destructive implements had become a perfect passion with me. I vied with the best marksmen of my age among the Indian boys; could knock the picayune out of the split stick at ten paces distant as often as any of them...During my eleventh and twelfth year I had five nice, good-natured fellows...All strove manfully to excel; but superior skill or extraordinary success was never alluded to by the performer...These boys could, and so could I, imitate the call notes of all the birds...The most deadly and murderous deception practiced by us, and which was attended with the greatest success, was to take a blow-gun and plenty of arrows...A good blow gun and strong healthy lungs can propel one of these arrows seventy-five yards...it is certain and fatal as a rifle. I knew an Indian woman who killed her husband with a blowgun. Nobody blamed her, for he called her ugly. In Indian etiquette that is the most unpardonable offensive word that can be used...My father retired before the unholy, intrusive tramp of civilization, and my Indian companions were frequently changed; but the new ones I came in contact with on the borders always seemed proud of me on account of my being able to talk with them, and my sports would be continued in my new life.

Gideon later lived and traded with the Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Cherokee Indians along the Tombigbee River in Mississippi. When he first arrived in the area, Gideon found John Pitchlynn living in the Choctaw village. John was 2nd cousin to Sarah Hickman, Gideon's mother.

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