10. THE ORIGIN OF THE MEDICINE-MEN.*

In days of old people knew the animals and were on friendly terms with them. All of the animals possessed wonderful powers and they sometimes appeared to people in dreams or visions and gave them their power. Often when men were out hunting and were left alone in the forest or on the plains at night, the animals came to them and spoke to them in dreams and revealed their secrets to them. The man who had had a dream of this kind woke up and went home. There he remained several days in silence, refusing to talk to any one, thinking only of the things that had been revealed to him. After a time he called some of his friends and the old men of the tribe to his lodge and told them of his powers and asked them if they would be taught his secrets. If they agreed the man taught them his songs and dances. After he had taught them all the necessary things they declared themselves ready to give a Medicine-Men's dance, and gave themselves the title of medicine- men. Then if any one was sick in the village and sought the aid of the medicine-men they prepared to hold the dance in behalf of that person, that they might try their powers of healing on him. They built a large grass lodge, and the dance Was held in this lodge for six days and nights.

The first medicine-men ever to receive power and give the dance were two young brothers. These boys were brave hunters, and one time when they were out on the hunt night overtook them far from any habitation. They made a camp in the lonely woods and laid down to sleep, for they were very weary. In their sleep they both had a dream and in their dreams each met the other, and they dreamed that they were walking together toward the east. On their way they saw a man coming toward them, and he was walking rapidly toward the west. They met him and he stopped and talked with them in their language. After they had talked long, the man revealed a bag that he carried and said, "Choose from this any kind of medicine that you want. If you wish to live long and be hard to kill, take this," and he handed them certain medicine. When the boys had accepted it he said, "Now that you have the same power that I have, I will show you how to use it." He spent a long time teaching them how to use the medicine and then he continued his journey toward the west. At break of day both boys woke up, and each remembered his dream, but said nothing to the other or to any one, but thought long on what the man had taught him. After many months each began to try his powers.

____________________
*
Told by Wing.

-20-

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