Antoine of Oregon - James Otis

Driving away the Indians

How long those representatives of the Kansas tribe would have remained with us awaiting an opportunity to steal whatever they might, I cannot say; but at about eight o'clock John Mitchell urged that I drive them away, if indeed I dared. This last suggestion caused me to smile, for what fellow would not dare anything among the Kansas Indians, who know no more of courage than they do of cleanliness?

I speedily sent them out of the camp, and when, next morning, the whole tribe returned begging this or that, I threatened punishment to any who should dare linger around.

Again we had an opportunity to join forces with another company, for those emigrants whom we met at Little Sandy River were eager to journey with us, but intended to remain one full day on the bank of the stream in order to rest their stock.

I urged that we push on, lest they should travel with us whether we wished or not, and so we set off at an early hour across the prairie, arriving next day at the Republican Fork of the Blue River.

It was on the last day of May that we came to where the trail turns abruptly from the stream, stretching out twenty-five miles or more to the Platte River.

Then we advanced in wild, fertile bottoms, where wild peas abounded, and we were among the last of the oak and hickory trees that we would see for many a long day.