Marshall Historical Society
Johnnie Deuel at Big Creek
by Ted Townsend, 1951
We mentioned the Brothertown Indians and their reservation along the Oriskany, near Deansboro. This brought a number of observations from different readers, and a story from Capt. Johnnie Deuel, the author and flier. The captain has made several dams in Big Creek , a branch of the Oriskany, and he takes several swims daily. It's somewhat of a bother to dry out the swimming trunks, so it is suggested if you visit the captain's home close to Forge Hollow, that you whistle loudly as you approach the stile behind the house adjacent to the creek.
Johnnie was taking a dip in one of the pools when three men came up the stream. They were not dressed in the latest style, in fact their clothing was really "below average," so the captain said.
"How" says one, and Johnnie said, "How" in reply. "Gotta Squaw," said one, and the owner replies, "No Squaw," The trio talked in some language unknown to the captain, and then the second one said, "No Squaw?" "No Squaw", said Johnnie the second time. More debate, and then the third fellow said, "No Squaw in the house"? "No squaw in the house," said Johnnie , now thoroughly interested.
"OKEH," said the leader and off came their clothes and in they went for a dip.
After drying out on the bank in the sun, one of the fellows said, "We Indians, WE come from Wisconsin. Our Grandfather said look up Big Creek, lots of fish. We no find any fish.
Then the trio climbed into his clothes and left. Shortly Johnnie heard a terrific racket out on the road and having dressed, walked out to investigate.
It was the most dilapidated old car he had seen in years, said the captain, but the trio all climbed into the front seat and waved, "No Squaw!" said one, and all laughed as they headed down stream toward Deansboro.
The captain went into the house, dug out the deed for his property, and found the land had come originally from the Brothertown Indians.
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