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Beyond Penn's Treaty

Journal, Visit to Indians in New York State, v.2

Page out of 56

they entertain that it is not decent or
respectful to take possession or bring
them into use sooner-- they are then bro.
into Council & held up to public view, the
Indians present being informed that here
are the Goods of such a Deceased Chief.
on the Articles being thus severally held
up Any of the Young Men who in
clince, are at liberty to advance & Snatch
them away, till the whole are thus dis
tributed. the Relatives of the Deceased
making no claim in consequence of Con
nection. This Custom still prevails
among some of the Indians in the Southern States
but some of the more thoughtful among
the Senceas

, since their building of good
Houses & increase of Property, do not
seem satisfied with the foregoing Cus
toms & in two or three Instances they
have made Wills to divide their
Possessions & Improvements among
their Children. this is a Natural Con
sequence of an advance toward Civilization
& must obtain more place among them.
The Gun & other things were formerly buried
with the Deceased, but latterly this custom is
much Discontinued. --