Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Leave it to Beaver

The O.sage Indians, their name came from the river along which they warred and hunted, but their proper title, as they called themselves, was "the Wabashas,"(Ma carrying the message connected to Skull and Bones Freemasonry) and from them, in later years, we derive the familiar name of Wabash. A curious tradition of this people, according to the journal of Lewis and Clark(the beavers), is that the founder of the nation was a snail, passing a quiet existence along the banks of the Os.age, till a high flood swept him down to the Missouri, and left him exposed on the shore. The heat of the sun at length ripened him into a man; but the change of his nature he had forgotten his native seats on the Osage, towards which he immediately bent his way.

He was however, soon overtaken by hunger and fatigue, when happily, the Great Spirit appeared, and, giving him a bow and arrow, showed him how to kill and cook a deer, and cover himself with the skin. He then proceeded to his original residence; but as he approached the river he was met by a beaver, who inquired haughtily who he was, and by what authority he came to disturb his possession. The Osage answered that the river was his own, for he had once lived on its borders. As they stood disputing, the daughter of the beaver came, and having, by her entreaties, reconciled her father to this young stranger, it was proposed that the Osage should marry the younger beaver, and share with her family the enjoyment of the river. The Osage readily consented, and from this union there soon came the village and the nation if the Wabasha, or Osages, who have ever since preserved a pious reverence for their ancestors, abstaining from the chase of the beaver, because in killing that animal they killed a brother of the Osage.


BEAvers are very skillful in building their houses. The simplest form is merely a burrow, opening under the water, ans so concealed. But the most interesting kind of house is the lodge. There are three distinct kinds. The "island-lodge" is built on a small island in a pond. There are two entrances, both underneath; one is straight, through which the wood for winter food is passed; the other called the "beaver entrance," is often winding in its course. Both these entrances open into a moat around the house, too deep to freeze easily, so the beaver are not apt to be shut in. Another kind of lodge is built of the BANK of a stream or pond, and a third kind called the "lake lodge," is built on the sloping shores of lakes, with a large part of the hut out upon the water.

Their legendary dam building skills are stimulated by the sound of running water. If beavers notice that the water levels are falling after their dam is built they will seek out the cause and block it with more wood, mud and vegetation. People used to assume this was a uniquely intelligent act but experiments with the tape recorded sound of running water in a dry field have caused beavers to try and create a dam on top of the tape recorder. A less than practical response.