Nez-Perces Indian

These Indians are (comparatively) peaceful, and have other qualities that are rare and comendable. They are said to be honest and truthful in their intercourse with the Whites, and their observance of religious ceremonies and rites is uniform and remarkable.

It is supposed that they derived this, in great part, from the Catholic Missionaries who have travelled amongst them. Their ceremonial, however, is a mixture of the civilized and the barbarous, and, although they will not hunt on a fête  day for fear of the Great Spirit, even if they are pinched with hunger, yet they are most inveterate gamblers, playing until all their possessions have been lost.

All these Indians seem to bear the impress of a doomed race, and they with bitterness of heart may exclaim:

They waste us, aye, like April snow,
In the warm noon we shrink away;
And fast they follow as we go
Towards the setting day,
Till they shall fill the land, and we
Are driven into the Western sea.

The ears of our subject are peculiarly ornamented, the rims are cut all round with a knife, and brought down with little weights; when these heal, many rings, sustaining strings of 'wampum,' are suspended to them. This he conceived to be very ornamental, and it is merely an exaggeration of a civilized lady's earrings, which is a relic of barbarism.

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