‘The Lachine Massacre’

The Canadian people, and most certainly Canadian children, are almost continually subjected to Aboriginal Industry propaganda, a pillar of which is the historical narrative whereby murderous, thieving Europeans impose ‘genocide’ and violence on the innocent, saintly and otherwise virtuous aboriginal inhabitants. While not wishing to belabour the point, we still feel compelled to occasionally present some historical balance: 

“In the evening of August 4, 1689, the night of the Lachine massacre, a violent rainstorm hovered above the Saint Lawrence and the Island of Montréal. Lightning flashed repeatedly across the sky and deafening thunder resounded above the seventy-seven houses of the community of Lachine.

“As the Canadiens slept in their isolated farms, fifteen hundred Iroquois stepped ashore, undetected by the sentries who had sought shelter against the fierce storm. Hidden by the night, warriors fanned out in small bands and readied themselves to attack isolated farmhouses.

“They lurked on the edges of the woods, away from the dogs who might have given warning. These men dressed only in loincloths, their faces painted in grotesque shapes meant to frighten their victims, waited for the light of dawn to pillage the community. 

“About 10 miles downriver in Varennes, across Montréal Island on the south shore, my ancestor Louis Ledoux and his wife Marie Valiquet were abed—with their children nearby…

“As day broke, horrible war cries yanked the Canadiens upriver in Lachine from their sleep. Men and women, knowing all too well what the cries meant, jumped out of bed and rushed for the muskets they always kept loaded against such a time.

Iroquois gunstock war club
Iroquois gunstock war club

“Already, their doors were being hacked down by tomahawks. The habitants were able to defend themselves for a short while, but it was only briefly — the number of Iroquois pitted against them was too large. Soon, the grizzly warriors had broken down doors and were charging into the houses and axing their occupants. Blood flowed. 

“But, by no means did the Iroquois want to kill all the residents. No, they seized some Canadiens, by far less fortunate than those who had been murdered immediately in their homes, to take as prisoners. Later, these luckless men and women would provide the bands of Iroquois with some entertainment.

“Soon, having been pillaged of goods the Indians desired — especially the alcohol — much of Lachine was in flames. From the forts around Montréal, soldiers and the few Lachine colonists who had escaped could sometimes see the Iroquois as they continued to have free run of Montréal Island. The warriors stayed on the island for several days, ransacking, burning, killing.

“From Varennes, Louis and Marie had had only to look to the southwest to see smoke rising above Lachine…

{Warning: The rest of the post contains graphic descriptions…}

“In the nights that ensued, the colonists saw the bonfires of the Iroquois. These must not have been easy nights. Their husbands or wives or friends were being tortured. Some were burned slowly on a post set in a circle of faggots, awaiting a slow death that could be days in the coming; others were being eaten bit by bit, as parts of their flesh were hacked off their bodies and shared among their captors.

“As a result of the Lachine massacre, the settlement was almost entirely destroyed — its people gone, and fifty-six of the seventy-seven houses destroyed. As survivors walked around the land that had once been their farms, they found guns and knives the Indians had left behind. Many of these were of English manufacture.

“Eventually, when forty-two Canadien prisoners were exchanged for Indian captives, they returned to Lachine to tell grisly tales. During those first nights…Canadien prisoners had been tortured and eaten. They themselves had escaped death, but many bore the marks of torture…”

–‘Franco-American History and The Lachine Massacre’,
Denis Ledoux, The Memoir Network, April 17, 2015

Feature IMAGE: A depiction of the massacre and fire at Lachine in 1689 (COURTESY OF THE McCORD MUSEUM OF CANADIAN HISTORY — MONTREAL GAZETTE)


Seneca Warriors, late 1700s

“On the night of August 4, 1689, a violent summer hailstorm swept across Lake St. Louis. As the householders got up to make sure windows were closed, they heard the screeching war cry of the Iroquois rising over the noise of thunder and hail. Within minutes, swarms of naked Iroquois, armed to the teeth, came running down the lane, their faces smeared with war-paint. There were 1,500 of them, taking advantage of the storm to cross the lake unseen.

“It is said that those who died in the first few minutes of the onslaught were fortunate. Men and women were cut down by tomahawks, and the brains of little children were dashed out against door frames and bedposts. One hundred prisoners were taken to the Iroquois villages in the Finger Lakes area, tied to stakes, and burned or tortured.”



“…in May 1689, France and England declare war. In North America, the English of New York are first to hear the news — and immediately tell their Iroquois allies.

“The Iroquois have been rivals of New France for much of the last 80 years. They consider the French system of alliances a potent threat to their security and their territory.

“ In New France, no one knows that war has been declared. Most Canadians still live in unfortified villages — like Lachine, near Montreal,with its 375 habitants.

“At dawn on August 5, 1689, 1,500 Iroquois warriors attacked. Men, women, and children — no one was spared. André Michel, his wife Françoise Nadereau, their daughters Gertrude, Andrée and Petronille were all killed. 24 colonists in total were killed, more than 70 were taken prisoner, and 56 of the 77 houses were razed. 

“In his ‘History of Canada’, the Superior of the Sulpicians of Montreal, François Vachon de Belmont, described the horror:

“After this total victory, the unhappy band of prisoners was subjected to all the rage which the cruellest vengeance could inspire…


“They were taken to the far side of Lake St. Louis by the victorious army, which shouted ninety times while crossing to indicate the number of prisoners or scalps they had taken… Once they had landed, they lit fires, planted stakes in the ground, burned five Frenchmen, roasted six children, and grilled some others on the coals and ate them.”

“Later, a few prisoners managed to escape, and some were released in prisoner exchanges.

“Others were adopted by the Iroquois, among them Marguerite Barbary, born that year, and her sister Françoise. In all, forty-two habitants of Lachine were never heard from again.”

–‘The Lachine massacre’,
Canada – A People’s History, CBC


'Iroquois warriors in their land' (by Robert Griffing)
‘Iroquois warriors in their land’ (by Robert Griffing)

‘This is from the Summer 1988, “Je Me Souviens”, published by the ‘American French Genealogical Society’, Pawtucket, R.I.’:

“In 1689, the Iroquios attacked the small village of Lachine. Lachine is located a few miles southwest of Montreal. Here is a list of {some of} the victims of this attack:

– Vincent Aly dit Larosse, son of Mery and Louise Bouton. He was a former member of the Carignan Regiment. His wife, Marie Delphin Perrin, also perished but seven of their children managed to escape.

– Madeleine Boursier, daughter of Jean and Marthe Thibodeau, eleven-month-old child, was thrown into the river by the Iroquois…

– Marie-Genevieve Cadieu, daughter of Jean and Marie Valade, she was the wife of Andre Canaple dit Valtagagne. Her body was found decapitated…

– Noel Charmois dit Deplesses, husband of Marguerite Delorme, he was found burned in his house.

– Andre Danis, his body was found with Noel Charmois, burned.

– Jean Fagueret dit Petitbois. He was a soldier of the Carignan Regiment, his remains were found and buried 28 October 1694 on the property of Rene Chartier. There was evidence that the flesh had been eaten.

– Perinne Filastreau, daughter of Rene and Jeanne Herault, she was found decapitated.

– Therese Hunault, daughter of Toussaint and Marie Lorgueil, married to Guillaume Leclerc, she was found in a barn, brutally killed…

– Jean Michel, husband of Marie Marchesseau. Marie managaed to escape the massacre with four of their children…

– Indian Panis… she was found decapitated.

– Marie Delphine Perrin, married to Vincent Alix dit LaRosse, she and her husband were burned in their cabin with their children.

– Andre Rapin, son of Jean and Marie Boufandreau. Several bodies were found on his property, along with his wife, Marie Cadieu. He escaped unharmed.”

http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~sauve/lachine.htmLachineMassacreMemorial(TEXT)‘Lachenaie Massacre’

“On the night of 19 November 1689, a war party of 150 warriors of the ‘Iroquois Confederacy’ attacked the farming community of Lachenaie, New France seventeen miles north of Montreal. The attack resulted in the deaths of many French settlers including my seventh great-grandfather Leonard Ethier.

“Leonard Ethier arrived from France in the small trading village of Ville-Marie, New France (today’s Montreal) in 1670. Elisabeth Godillon arrived in Ville-Marie in a separate ship on July 31 the same year. After a short courtship, the couple was married less than two months later in a small wood chapel name Notre-Dame (Our Lady) on September 22. After several years, Leonard obtained a land concession of six acres in Lachenaie, which he began to farm.

“Every family in Lachenaie and in every settlement of New France was armed with rifles and carbines. This was because of the threat from the Iroquois Confederacy, which had been in conflict with the French colonists since Samuel Champlain and his men allied with the Huron and Algonquins to help defeat the Iroquois in 1609…

“Emboldened by their success at Lachine, about 150 Iroquois warriors of the Onandaga tribe of Chief Chaudiere Noire (Black Kettle) attacked Ile-Jesus and Lachenaie three months later, on the night of November 19. The attackers again surprised the residents in their sleep. Many homes and barns were destroyed, the harvest burned, twenty colonists were killed, and twenty others were taken prisoner. It was reported by some researchers that Leonard Ethier and his brother Francois were among those taken captive, tortured, and subsequently killed. Leonard left behind his widow, Elisabeth Godillon, and ten children…

“In the ensuing years, there were more Iroquois raids on Lachenaie. They attacked again in May 1691 under the same Chief, burning barns and houses and vandalizing crops. To make matters worse, 1691 was also a year of famine. Chief Chaudiere Noire again attacked the settlement in July, 1692. Several colonists died during these raids.

“Most of the land had been abandoned. The residents had to live under the constant protection of soldiers who had been brought in to protect the settlement. In 1692, only four houses were standing on the Lachenaie coast. Only six families were still farming the land. The population had decreased to 32 people that year from the 70 who occupied the area in 1683. The population would not recover to its pre-attack levels until the next century…”


Illustration from Hennepin's 'A New Discovery of a Vast Country in America', titled 'The Cruelty of The Savage Iroquois'
Illustration from Hennepin’s ‘A New Discovery of a Vast Country in America’, titled ‘The Cruelty of The Savage Iroquois’

“Of all the North American Indian tribes, the seventeenth-century Iroquois are the most renowned for their cruelty towards other human beings. Scholars know that they ruthlessly tortured war prisoners and that they were cannibals; in the Algonquin tongue, the word Mohawk actually means “flesh-eater”.

There is even a story that the Indians in neighboring Iroquois territory would flee their homes upon sight of just a small band of Mohawks. Ironically, the Iroquois were not alone in these practices.

There is ample evidence that most, if not all, of the Indians of northeastern America engaged in cannibalism and torture — there is documentation of the Huron, Neutral, and Algonquin tribes each exhibiting the same behavior. This paper will examine these atrocities…”
“The Iroquois were the dominant force in northeastern America until the Europeans came to the New World. Five smaller nations made up the ‘League of the Iroquois’: they were the Onondaga, Mohawk, Oneida, Cayuga, and Seneca tribes. The legendary Hiawatha joined these five tribes together into a single powerful confederation, after fierce blood feuds threatened to destroy all five nations.

“The date of the League’s formation could be any time between 900 AD and 1570; the confederation was certainly established before European settlers made first contact. Based upon Hiawatha’s plan, members of each nation could only marry members of other Iroquois nations; these blood ties formed a web of loyalties between the different tribes. This ‘Iroquois League’ now began to dominate the rest of the Native American tribes in the northeast…

“It is also important to establish that the practices of the Iroquois were more than the exaggeration and hearsay of excitable Frenchmen. The Iroquois surely performed torture upon war captives; many European settlers viewed first-hand the mutilated body-parts of war captives. However, there has been some doubt in the current century that cannibalism was really practiced by the Iroquois.

“Anthropologist W. Arens proposed in 1979 that there were no first-hand accounts of flesh eating among the Native Americans, and thus no solid proof for cannibalism. This controversial view has been refuted since, for there is indeed ample evidence in “The Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents” alone to prove Arens’s thesis wrong. With this assertion in mind, it is now possible to inquire why the Native Americans performed these appalling acts.”
“The death of family members had a profound psychological effect upon the Iroquois; thus, they required strong measures to relieve themselves of sadness. Essentially, they felt that they needed restitution in some form or another for the dead relative.

“Grieving matriarchs petitioned the tribe’s warriors to retrieve captives from an offending tribe. The Iroquois warriors then established a raid solely to gather captives; scholars call this practice “mourning-wars”.

“According to Anthony Wallace, the grieving Iroquois could find restitution in one of three ways. The first was for a warrior to bring back the scalp of an Indian from the killer’s tribe and to present it to the grieving person. Though the scalp represented a captive, live prisoners were preferred.

“The other two options involved a live captive: the Iroquois either vengefully tortured the prisoner to death or adopted him or her into the tribe. Since the Iroquois were a matriarchal society, the mourning woman would ultimately decide the fate of those captives that were brought to the village, mostly based upon the amount of grief that she felt for her dead relation.

“Reverend Father Barthelemy Vimont presented a harrowing example of Iroquois torture that occurred in 1642 in “The Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents”. In this account, he told of an Iroquois war band that captured a small group of Algonquin, and himself.

“Immediately, the Iroquois cut off a few fingers from each captive, using fish scales. The Iroquois intended to take the captives to their village. On the way, one Algonquin woman, realizing what her fate would be, ran into a icy river and drowned herself rather than face the impending torture. Once they had arrived at their captors’ village, the Iroquois made their prisoners sing and dance upon a scaffold. Vimont’s companion, a converted Algonquin named Adrian, wouldn’t sing in the Iroquois’ language, and they slit his fingers lengthwise to cause him intense pain. Next, they cleared the scaffold except for one Algonquin named Awessinipin, and they began burning his body with brands. The Iroquois forced an Algonquin woman to take a torch and burn Awessinipin and then killed her when she finally complied. Throughout this entire ordeal, the Algonquin man showed no pain. They continued this torture throughout the night, building to a fervor, finally ending at sunrise by cutting his scalp open, forcing sand into the wound, and dragging his mutilated body around the camp. When they had finished, the Iroquois carved up and ate parts of his body. Iroquois-Indian-torture

“The Jesuit Relations”, “The Explorations of Radisson”, and “Narrative of the Life of Mrs. Mary Jemison” offer other detailed descriptions of Iroquois atrocities, but generally the torture followed the same pattern. First, the victorious Iroquois warriors would mangle the prisoners’ hands; they did this by pulling out the captives’ fingernails and/or cutting off some of their fingers. The victors usually subjected the prisoners to a heavy beating at the same time.

“Thereafter, the Iroquois took the captives to their village and subjected the men to the gantlet (or gauntlet). They then humbled those who survived in a number of ways; for example the Iroquois might strip them naked in front of the village and force them to sing and dance. This process always ended either in a slow death by fire and scalping, or with adoption into the Iroquois village. The Iroquois tortured only men to death when they weren’t adopted; they killed quickly women and children who were unadopted.”
“There are definitely reasons behind this torture that do not extend into metaphysical domains… The Iroquois would execute without ceremony those captives who fell and did not get up, which indicates disdain for mental and physical weakness. Indeed, the Iroquois expected even those captives who underwent subsequent lethal torture to stand strong and not cry out—the warriors would disgustedly dispatch a captive who lost his composure.

“As the night went by and the prisoner remained silent, the entire tribe would become more and more frenzied, until the sun came up and the prisoner was killed. Thus, it seems that torturing captives to death was a ritualized act of vengeance that was truly fulfilled only when its objective (making the victim respond to the torture) failed!

“The warriors were not the only ones who conducted the torture, however; the women and children of the village had just as much of an active role as the men did. While the captives were perched upon the scaffold, the children of the tribe would jab at the prisoner’s feet with knives. In addition to this, every person in the village took turns with the burning torches during the night ritual. In fact, the rest of the tribe would scorn anyone who did not partake in the torture as a weak and lazy individual.

“Because everyone took part, it becomes clear that besides being an act for grieving family members to vent their frustration on an unyielding victim and in so doing, feel avenged for the loved ones’ deaths — it was a reassertion of Iroquois dominance and power

“Lethal torture was not always the fate of the captives. In fact, the grieving Iroquois more often than not adopted the captive into his or her family. Only when the captives were feeble, old, or unusually ugly — or the Iroquois matriarchs were particularly upset or felt they had suffered a great loss — then death by torture would be the guaranteed result. This stems from the belief that a clan or village lost power when its members died. The best way to maintain that power, in the eyes of the Iroquois, was to maintain the status quo by getting another individual to take the place of the slain family member…

“The Iroquois usually chose the captives who were adopted during their torture, specifically after they had run the gantlet or were suffering the humiliation stage. Pierre Radisson exemplifies this when his adopted Iroquois parents drag him by the hair from the gantlet in his second captivity.

“At first, the practice of torturing a potential family member seems extraordinarily odd, but the Iroquois had a reason for this, too. When the Iroquois adopted a captive, the torture acted as a symbolic end to the captive’s old life. In theory, the captive rejoiced that his tormentors had saved his or her life and was happy to join the Iroquois. In practice, this did not always guarantee the adopted member’s loyalty.

“This is also demonstrated by Pierre Radisson when he was captured twice; though he even came to empathize with his new parents after his second capture, he still chose to escape when he had the opportunity. Yet, a significant number of accounts do indicate that many captives, nearly all from other Native American tribes, did elect to stay with their new Iroquois families. 

Lachenaie Massacre

“Though modern Americans do not associate other tribes with the practice of ‘mourning wars’, they performed the same methods of torture that the Iroquois did. These accounts are much less frequent than descriptions of Iroquois torture; nevertheless, they do exist and are no less ruthless in nature.

“Samuel de Champlain’s notes contain accounts of the Algonquins, Montagnais, and Etechemins as the aggressors. After they captured a handful of Iroquois in battle, these “friendly” tribes proceeded to torture the captives to death. They burned the body of one captive Iroquois, then poured water on him in cycles so that his flesh would fall off his body. When they had finally killed him and threw his innards into the river, the Indians told Champlain that this act was done in vengeance for their own mutilated tribesmen.

“There is mention in “Relation des Hurons” of the Neutrals and Hurons performing the same cruelties, and the Hurons are mentioned for taking captives to be adopted. Nevertheless, there are no vastly-different reasons that can be determined for the atrocities of the other northeastern tribes. All of these other tribes practiced torture as an act of vengeance for their own mutilated dead and in some cases, even performed similar adoption ceremonies…”

“As previously mentioned, the Iroquois were not alone in this practice, as various accounts describe the Winnebagos, Huron, and other French-sympathizing Indians partaking in feasts of human flesh. In the aforementioned Champlain account, the Algonquins, Montagnais, and Etechemins did not actually eat the Iroquois captive’s flesh but rather, forced the other captives to eat his heart.

“Though this makes a case against cannibalistic practice, another account one year later tells of these same three tribes taking a quartered body home to be eaten. In another part of the country, a Neutral brave is recorded in “Relation des Hurons” saying to the Jesuit Father Brebeuf and his company,

“Enough of the dark-colored flesh of our enemies… I wish to know the taste of white meat, and I will eat yours.”

“In the same set of accounts, the Jesuits chastise the Hurons to “eat no human flesh”, so that they could be good Catholics…”Iroquois Warriors

“The Aztecs are a perhaps the best-known nation of people besides the Iroquois who possessed cannibalistic practices. High priests ritually sacrificed victims to their god Uitzilopochtli by removing the captive’s heart. When they had finished with the body, they threw it down the steps of the sacred pyramid, where it was taken and eaten by the citizens.

“Despite the association with religion, contemporary anthropologists have come to the conclusion that the act of cannibalism had less to do with the sacrificial ceremony and more with improper nutrition. Their practice results from a protein-deficient diet in which human beings are the only real source of meat.

“While there are instances of Native Americans resorting to cannibalism in very hard times, these northeastern Indians generally had no lack of meat and since their cannibalism was limited to war prisoners, this reason is unlikely. This is not to say that cannibalism was never practiced for food by the Iroquois or their neighbors, just that it was definitely not the primary practice in the present context.

“Bringing up the Aztecs, however, leads to another worthy point of examination: that the practice of cannibalism might have been religious in nature. There was indeed a single god of war, sun, and fire, who was present by various names in many of the northeastern Indian tribes. His name was ‘Aireskoi’ and he required sacrifice and consumption of human flesh in his honor.

“There are some further links between him and the atrocities the Iroquois committed. In a particular act of torture recounted by a Jesuit, Father Brebeuf, the Iroquois set eleven bonfires around their captive and tortured him until sunrise, when Aireskoi could look upon their work. Though not usually referred to in such religious terms, the practice of torture did last the entire night in most accounts. The bulk of Iroquois lethal torture consisted of the use of flame upon the captive’s body, which is also indicative of Aireskoi’s domain (of course, fire was also excruciatingly painful, and non-lethal in the way the Iroquois used it). Though these points begin to make a case that religious worship was the cause of northeastern Indian atrocities, there are no other accounts besides this one, written by a priest, that claim religious motivation for the cannibalism. Iroquois cannibalism generally occupies part of a torture routine; however, it is more akin to “brunch” than a Thanksgiving dinner.

Another religious figure that has cannibalistic associations is one of the creators of the earth, the ‘Good Twin’. While the Iroquois creation myth is too long and involved to be mentioned in detail here, what bears importance to this paper is that the ‘Bad Twin’ killed the ‘Sky-Mother’ when the two were born and blamed it on the Good Twin, who was expelled from Family. The Good Twin would wander the earth and help man when he could.

“In years that they predicted a famine, the Iroquois mystics would “see” the Good Twin holding a withered ear of corn and eating a human leg. This suggests cannibalism might have begun as a result of famine, but once again the circumstances under which it was conducted and its association with mourning raids had little to do with starvation. Instead, the existence of this imagery certainly proves that this practice had been around for a long time in Iroquois history…

The Iroquois also hold the belief that to eat a thing is to gain its power. This follows naturally…because even in death, the body’s remains keep at least part of its soul. This is most apparent in the everyday diet of the Native Americans. For example, the people of the river villages Akwesasne and Kahnawake were known to be excellent swimmers, and this was reputedly caused by the large amount of fish in their diets. A hunter’s talent was also supposed to depend upon the amount of game that he consumed (which only makes sense because the better hunter would be able to acquire, and thus consume, more game).

“With these two premises, it follows that devouring the flesh of a great warrior would transfer his prowess into the one doing the eating. There is no mention that the Iroquois ate the flesh of those captives who did not die ceremoniously; perhaps these “weak” prisoners were considered unworthy to be eaten. There is also no mention that the Iroquois ate the flesh of anyone who was not tortured to death — those people who did not have had a chance to prove themselves.

“Yet, like the previous spiritual explanation, only one account exists that establishes a link between great warriors and the humans they eat. A Huron Indian who escaped Iroquois captivity described how a Jesuit was killed and eaten. The priest had endured great pain before his death, and the Iroquois told the Huron that they drank his blood and ate his flesh so that they could be as strong as the priest had been.

“This hypothesis for cannibalism has yet another more important implication. As stated previously, the three ways to appease a grieving Iroquois were with an enemy scalp that represented a prisoner, or with a captive who would be adopted, or tortured to death. In each of these scenarios, the Iroquois brought a captive or a physical representative of the captive to the tribe, and in each case that individual remained with the tribe in a very physical way. Though eating another warrior did not transfer his prowess into the one who devoured him, his “essence” stayed with the village; in this manner, the status quo remains, and the unwanted prisoners would not be wasted. This belief also allowed for the possibility of revenge by torture without detriment to the tribe’s power…”
“The Native Americans were incredibly superstitious, and a spiritual solution would be a reason to condone nearly any sort of behavior. Many of a tribe’s decisions were made only after supernatural omens or dreams were consulted, which clearly demonstrates that spiritual influences had deep effects in the Indian psyche. Supernatural meaning in dreams played an especially large role in Iroquois life, often to the point that something received in a dream could be bestowed upon the dreamer in reality, or an action performed while dreaming would be reenacted by the entire tribe.

“The same supernatural forces imbued shamans with great powers and influence beyond even the chief’s authority. The Iroquois even had a purpose for tobacco smoking—the pungent smoke was supposed to be an offering to the spirits of the dead. A belief system with this kind of spiritual emphasis in its make-up could easily condone cannibalistic practices.

“There is also a question as to why the same cannibalistic practices were not performed on members of the same tribe. If it did indeed occur, then it was very rare or very private, since no accounts have been found telling of this occurrence. By the previous solution, dead members of one’s own tribe should have been the first ones to be eaten. The confederation system itself is perhaps the solution; instead of fighting amongst other ‘nations’ for the rights to the dead body, it was more productive to let it be buried.

“Perhaps the more likely solution to this snag is that the Iroquois could not bear to eat one of their own tribesmen. Since the grieving process upset the Iroquois so much, they were probably unable to bring themselves to cannibalize their own “flesh and blood”. This also places emphasis on the “replacement” act of the ‘mourning wars’, rather than “recycling”.

Eating one’s enemies in order to regain lost power has a very broad appeal that also accounts for cannibalism in other northeastern Indian nations. Nearly all of the tribes in this area descend from the Iroquoia people and many of the primitive beliefs, like their shared language, would also have been passed on to the presently-developed tribes.

“The Iroquoia area, between Lake Erie and the Atlantic Ocean, had more than five large rivers flowing out from its heart, which guaranteed this prehistoric people the opportunity to spread their culture. Capturing prisoners and eating their flesh may very well have come from this prehistoric time; whereas the ritual of the mourning war was a contemporary practice brought on by the infighting between the five ‘nations’ that later formed the ‘Iroquois League’…

“While torture served as vengeance against a tribe’s enemy and emotional venting of grief over a relative’s death, cannibalism served to keep the tribe’s supernatural power constant while permitting torture to occur. Eating an enemy’s flesh in order to retain this spiritual strength allowed a tribesman to vent his or her frustrations without subtracting from the tribe’s power as a whole. Without the practice of cannibalism, torture probably would still have existed, but certainly not on the large scale in which it had been present. Torture was more the domain of the “mourning wars” and ensuring that captives would remain with the tribe, while cannibalism had more to do with supernatural belief. Both were tied together by the need to adopt enemies…

“Though many (especially the religious views) may have influenced these abominable practices to varying degrees, the source of these acts stems from the need of the Iroquois to strengthen their own tribes by inducting physically or supernaturally a replacement for a slain member. This practice — known as mourning wars — did not extend in name to the other tribes, but they doubtlessly performed acts of cannibalism and torture for similar purposes. Though it is not a rationale that we can fully comprehend, cannibalism and torture nonetheless served a very important purpose to the Iroquois and their neighbors.”

–“Adoption or Entree”, David Scheimann


Seneca -- 'Keeper of the Genesee Valley' (Dave Hasler)
Seneca — ‘Keeper of the Genesee Valley’ (Dave Hasler)

‘ History of Orange County, New York 1888’

“There has been no more intellectual nation among the aborigines of America than the Senecas of Western New York — the most original and determined of the confederated Iroquois — but its warriors were cruel like the others, and their squaws often assisted the men in torturing their captives.

“When Boyd and Parker were captured in the Genesee Valley in the Sullivan campaign of 1779, Brant, the famous half-breed chief, assured them that they would not be injured, yet left them in the hands of Little Beard, another chief, to do with as he would, and the prolonged tortures to which he and his savage companions subjected them were horrible. After they had been stripped and tied to trees, and tomahawks were thrown so as to just graze their heads, Parker was unintentionally hit so that his head was severed from his body, but Boyd was made to suffer lingering miseries. His ears were cut off, his mouth enlarged with knives and his severed nose thrust into it, pieces of flesh were cut from his shoulders and other parts of his body, an incision was made in his abdomen and an intestine fastened to the tree, when he was scourged to make him move around it, and finally as he neared death, was decapitated, and his head raised on a pole.”


See also:
‘THE CHILCOTIN MASSACRE’ {July 5, 2016}: https://endracebasedlaw.wordpress.com/2016/07/05/the-chilcotin-massacre/

‘Rewriting Canadian History – Quebec’ (Education) {March 27, 2016}:

‘Mea Maxima Culpa: The Ruse of Political Apologies’ {February 5, 2016}:

‘The Myths Of Caledonia’ {November 20, 2015}:

‘How We Teach History Matters Most’ {November 6, 2015}:

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