At every first meeting of red men and whites, the whites were inferior in numbers, and yet were received with the utmost kindness, until they treacherously betrayed the men who had helped and harbored them. Even Christopher Columbus, blind and burnt up with avarice as he was, and soul-poisoned with superstition, and contempt for an alien race, yet had the fairness to write home to his royal accomplices in crime, the King and Queen of Spain:

"I swear to your Majesties that there is not a better people in the world than these; more affectionate, affable or mild. They love their neighbors as themselves, and they always speak smilingly. (Catlin, "N. A. Indian," II., p. 246).

Jonathan Carver, who lived among the Sioux from 1766-9, after speaking of their severity in dealing with enemies, says:

"But if they are thus barbarous to those with whom they are at war, they are friendly, hospitable, and humane in peace. It may with truth be said of them, that they are the worst enemies and the best friends of any people in the whole world." (" Travels, "p. 157).

"We shall likewise see them sociable and humane to those whom they consider as their friends, and even to their adopted enemies: and ready to partake with them of the last morsel, or to risk their lives in their defence." (P. 269).

And, again:

"No people are more hospitable, kind and free than the Indians." (P. 171).

"Nothing can exceed the tenderness shown by them to their offspring." (P. 247).

Catlin, writing of the Plain Indians generally, says:

"To their friends, there are no people on earth that are more kind; and cruelties and punishments (except for capital offences) are, amongst themselves, entirely dispensed with." (Vol. II., p. 241).

Schultz evidently went among the Blackfeet with the usual wrong ideas about the Indians, but he soon wrote:

"I have read, or heard, that an Indian's loss of to-day is forgotten on the morrow. That is certainly not true of the Blackfeet, nor the Mandans. Often and often I have heard many of the Blackfeet mourn for one dead long years since." ("My Life as an Indian," p. 154).

And again:

" I have often heard the Blackfeet speak of various white men as utterly heartless, because they had left their parents and their youthful home to wander and seek adventure in a strange land. They could not comprehend how one with right feeling might absent himself from father and mother, as we do, for months and years. 'Hard hearts,' 'stone hearts,' they call us, and with some reason." (Schultz, p. 155).

"There are few people so generous as the Indians.

In their religious and war ceremonies, at their feasts, festivals, and funerals, the widows and orphans, the poor and needy are always thought of; not only thought of, ... but their poverty and necessity are relieved.


"I have seen white men reduced to the last 'hard tack,' with only tobacco enough for two smokes, and with no immediate prospect of anything better than horse-meat 'straight.' A portion of the hard bread was hidden away, and the smokes were taken in secret. An Indian, undemoralized by contact with the whites, under similar circumstances, would divide down to the last morsel." (Clark's "Sign Language," p. 185 and 186).