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Chapter 15

"What is truth?" Pontius Pilate. This question may be said to be both the inration and quest of all science.

Not exactly disbelieving what the Amerinds hadtold me, yet I was skeptical, for it did not seem probable that an island had been the homeland of isolation where the great disharmonic cross had consolidated its racial type. I haunted shelves of the public library for days. Then began searching through the rare book sections book stores. One day I was rewarded. It was fairly thick book, in a dark red cover with gold lettering - The Traditions of Decoodah. In gold the cover was the etching of a proud Indian sachem of more than a century ago. I bought it I took it home. Reading it took my night which should have been spent sleeping.

Instead, in breathless imagery I roamed though the dark woods just beyond St. Louis, Missouri where a young surveyor had become intrigued with the "earthworks" of the Amerind. He wandered over them and finally began to survey them. He carried no food or other equipment except his survey tools and papers, a gun for obtaining food, a pan to cook it and a blanket for sleeping.

One day while working he was startled to find an Indian standing beside him silently watching what he was doing. The Indian was a tall man, straight as an arrow, though a few streaks of white in his hair showed that he was not young. Both facts here are typical of the Amerind. You will think that you are alone perhaps even entertaining the intriguing delusion that you are the first human being to have stepped upon this lonely mountain ledge or to have knelt down to drink of this lovely spring, when suddenly there he is, as if he had materialized from the mist of the morning. To your surprised greeting he will simply nod, or perhaps if you are more lucky he will smile and tell you that he has been following you for hours.

Pidgeon was not entirely naive in the ways of the Amerind, and he knew that a streak of white in the hair meant that his observer was near the century mark. I personally have seen such men

"The Joy Of Returning Spring". Original painting by Harry Epoloose, Zuni Junior High School student.


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