We do not know his name: Klatsassin and the Chilcotin War
   
 

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Fear of Writing by R. C. Lundin Brown, 1873

...They [the Chilcoatens] have, be it observed, a very special horror of having their names written down. They look upon paper as a very awful thing, they tremble to see the working of a pen. Writing is, they imagine, a dread mystery. By it the mighty whites seem to carry on intercourse with unseen powers. When they are writing, there's no telling what they may be doing. They may be bidding a pestilence come over the land, or ordering the rain to stay in the west, or giving directions for the salmon to remain in the ocean. Especially is the Indian appalled when he sees his own name put on paper. To him the name is not distinct from the person who owns it. If his name is written down, he in written down: if his name is passed over to the demons which people his hierarchy, he is sure to be bewitched and given as prey into the teeth of his invisible foes. So when those Chilcoatens saw their names taken down and heard themselves threatened with disease, they were only too ready to believe the threat. They talked about it a great deal among themselves. They recollected that something of the same sort had been said by another white man two years before, at a place called Puntzeen, in the interior; he had said small-pox was coming, and in the winter of 1862-63 it had come ay, and carried off the best part of whole tribes. Had not the Shuschwaps lost many of their warriors? and the Indians who lived away at Lillooet, on the great river, as many as two-thirds of their whole tribe? It was only too likely that those awful whites would fulfill their threat, and send the foulest of all diseases which ever came forth from the jaws of hell, to sweep their tribes away into everlasting night.

Source: R. C. Lundin Brown, "Klatsassan, and Other Reminiscences of Missionary Life in British Columbia" (London: Gilbert and Rivington, Printers, 1873), 10-11.

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Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History