The Mohicans of Stockbridge

By Patrick Frazier | Go to book overview

3
APPROVAL ON BOTH SIDES

Despite Sergeant's optimism and the Housatonics' enthusiasm, the mission was not yet a foregone conclusion. Konkapot and Umpachenee were concerned about what the principal Mohicans would think of them. According to rumors, or what the Indians called flying birds, the Mohicans at the main council fire on the Hudson highly resented the Housatonics' acceptance of a minister and a schoolteacher without approval by a full council of the nation. These same birds said that there was already resentment over Konkapot's and Umpachenee's military commissions. There was even talk of a plot to poison the two. It is possible that traders started such rumors to scare the Housatonics away from a mission. But it is also quite possible that Mohicans who preferred their nation to remain Indian held contempt for those who would choose Christian over Indian ways. Konkapot and Umpachenee, therefore, sent word east that they would like the support of ministers at a January council of the several tribes to be held at the Housatonic. Sergeant knew that such a conference would either encourage the mission "or almost entirely quash it." He wrote the Indians a letter of encouragement: "I know you have many temptations to draw back. They cannot be your friends that try to discourage you. They only endeavour to keep you in ignorance, that they may be under better advantage to cheat you. Knowledge is certainly good: it is to the mind what light is to the eye. You would think them your greatest ene

-28-

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