It is easy to hate and it is difficult to love. This is how the whole scheme of things works. All good things are difficult to achieve; and bad things are very easy to get. — Confucius

Hannah of Kentucky - James Otis

Pelts Used as Money

During that winter Billy was very fortunate in getting furs, and brought in so many that father told him he was earning more than half enough to support the entire family, which made the boy exceedingly proud.

[Illustration] from Hannah of Kentucky by James Otis

We have very little real money, such as is used in the eastern colonies; even Colonel Henderson pays his laborers in goods or ammunition. We do our trading with furs. During our first year in Boonesborough it was agreed that a beaver, otter, fisher, dressed buckskin, or a large bearskin was equal in value to two foxes or wildcats, four coons, or eight minks.

To pay for linsey-woolsey enough for a dress for me, mother was asked to give two beaver and three mink skins; but she very wisely said I could wear my old frock another year, or make a new one of doeskin, rather than spend so much, for when we have our loom, she can weave all the cloth of every kind that may be needed.

During this winter, when our men had little to do save see that the fort was kept well supplied with meat, the people from Harrodstown, Boiling Spring, and Hinkson's, together with us of Boonesborough, sent a petition to the Virginia Assembly, protesting against many :things which Colonel Henderson had done and was doing. Among these matters they claimed that he had no right to our land, which he had already named Transylvania, because the Cherokees could not sell that which they did not really own.

We children heard the affair talked of so much that we could repeat nearly the entire petition, long as it was. Just now I remember only the last part of it, which was much like this:—


Front Matter

At Boonesborough
Beginning of the Story
Boone on the Yadkin
Boone Moves his Family
Ready for the Journey
What we Wore
Driving Cattle and Sheep
Camping at Nightfall
The Long Halt
Jimmy Boone Goes to Clinch
Murder of Jimmy Boone
A Time of Mourning
The Faint-hearted Return
A New Home
Making Moccasins
Tanning Leather
Governor Dunmore
Our Home on the Clinch
Household Duties
Attacked by a Wildcat
Fighting the Wildcat
Boone and Father Return
The Wilderness Road
Building the Forts
Gathering Salt
Our Home in the Fort
Ready for Cooking
Furnishing the House
The Hominy Block
The Supply of Water
Sports Inside the Fort
Wrestling and Running
Religion of the Indians
Indian Babies
Colonel Callaway Arives
News from Eastern Colonies
Venturing Outside the Fort
Dividing the Land
Who Owned Kentucky?
Ready to Build a Home
Billy's Hard Lot
Preparing Flax
Spinning and Soap Making
Broom Making
More Indian Murders
Indian "Signs"
Woodcraft and Hunting
Pelts Used as Money
Petition of the Settlers
Making Sugar
Building Fences
Capture of the Girls
My Willful Thoughts
Finding the Trail
The Pursuit
The Story Told by Jemima
Elizabeth's Heroism
Rescuing the Girls
Alarm Among the Settlers
Indians on the Warpath
The First Wedding
The Wedding Festivities
The Brides Home
The Housewarming
Attacks by the Indians
Besieged by the Savages
In the Midst of the Fight
The Assault by the Indians
Failure of the Assault
Watchfulness of the Indians
The Sortie
My Father Wounded
Our Wounded