tântê kâ-ohcîwâkopanê nistam-ininiwak - Where the first people came from

Simeon Scott

The first two people came down from the land above to the land where the Cree now live. They did not heed the warnings that only one person may look down from the spider's line and when both looked, they fell into the great eagle-nest. They were rescued by a wolverine and a bear, the latter of whom taught the pair the ways of life on this new land. Much later, the White men came.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 2009 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-natôkaminât mistamiskwa - Chahkabesh reaches for the giant beaver

Xavier Sutherland

Chahkabesh discovers a group of giants hunting beavers and despite his sister's warning never to approach them, he finds them again and, upon their taunting, snags a beaver out of the water. However, the beaver does not belong to him and when he runs off with it (breaking a giant's arm when they try to stop him), they come to his home and, not finding him, abduct his sister instead. Quickly, Chahkabesh finds his bow, follows them and kills all the giants to save his sister. Together they return to their home and make broth with the beaver meat and melted snow.

StoryTeller Xavier Sutherland Community Peawanuck (Winisk)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1960-62 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

tântê kâ-ohci-wîhcikâtêkopanê cîpayi-sîpiy - How Ghost River got its name

John Wynne

Ghost River got its name from an ambush in which Cree people killed a lot of Iroquois. Divination had allowed them to determine the enemy's position in advance.

StoryTeller John Wynne Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-58 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

mâwaci-oskac ê-takoshinowâkopanê ininiwak ôta askîhk - The arrival of people here on earth at the very beginning

Simeon Scott

Long ago the land we know as Canada was empty. People lived in another land, up above. An unseen voice asked a man and a woman, if they would like to go to another land down below. They agreed and went to see Spider to get there. They did not heed his warnings, however, that only one person may look down from the spider's line and, when both looked, they fell into the great eagle-nest. They were rescued by a wolverine and a bear. The bear taught the pair the ways of life on this new land. This is why the bear is respected and considered a wise person. When the White-Men came, they were interested in the Indians' coats and skins, but the two groups of people did not understand each other.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1955-57 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-isî-nakwâtât pîsimwa - How Chahkabesh snared the sun

Simeon Scott

One day, as Chahkabesh is looking for sustenance, he sees a trail leading over a ridge. He wants to know who created the trail and so he lays a snare. He returns home and forgets about it until the next morning when dawn never comes. His sister wonders what could have happened and then Chahkabesh remembers his snare. Sure enough, as he approaches it, he finds the sun unable to move. He cannot get close enough to free the sun without getting burned, and neither can other animals except for the mouse with the pointed nose who gnaws through the snare. That is why the mouse looks singed now.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1955-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-kî kohcipânihikot mishi-kinoshêwa - Chahkabesh is swallowed by the giant fish

Simeon Scott

When Chahkabesh wants to go hunt near the lake where the big fish live, his sister tells him to be careful not to lose his arrow in the lake or he'll be swallowed by the giant fish. Chahkabesh doesn't listen and when he tries to shoot at eagles, his arrow falls in the lake and he goes in after it. When he doesn't return home, his big sister worries and hooks the giant fish in the lake to see if her brother is inside it. As she begins to cut the fish's belly, she hears her brother's voice telling her not to cut too deeply or she will cut him too. When he's free she tells him never to go into the lake again.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh nêsta mâka maskwak - Chahkabesh and the bears

Simeon Scott

Chahkabesh finds tracks leading up a hill and wonders what animals are making them. When he tells his sister, she warns him that those are the animals that killed their parents, and that he was never to go looking for them again. Chahkabesh agrees but doesn't mean it. Instead he fashions arrows that can break even stones and when he finds the bears, he shoots one arrow that kills them all. He guts each bear but can't find his parents. When he tells his sister, she admonishes him but he ignores her again. Then, he goes outside to get snow and his big sister warns him not to look up at the moon but he does anyway and is drawn up and stuck on it forevermore.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-kî-ocipitikot tipiski-pîsimwa - Chahkabesh is drawn up by the moon

Simeon Scott

When Chahkabesh, a child orphaned by the great bears, grows up and find the tracks of his parents' killers, he ignores his sister's warnings to leave them be and instead fashions strong arrows and kills them all. He guts each bear but can't find his parents and so he returns to his home and tells his sister what happens. She admonishes him but he ignores her again. He then goes out to collect snow and she warns him not to look up at the moon or he'll be drawn up. He agrees but doesn't mean it. As he collects snow, he looks up and the moon draws him up. That is where he's been ever since.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community
Age/Level preschool Language
Year Recorded 2009 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

mistâkanâsh kâ-kî-nipikopanê, êko mâka kâ-kî-wanishkâkopanê - Mistaganash who is supposed to have died and then to have risen

Simeon Scott

Mistaganash awoke from the dead and returned home to the delight of his mother. He returned to hunting and excelled at it, but someone tried to kill him again over a woman. Thankfully, Mistaganash's step-father intervened.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

mêmishôsh kâ-mitêhkêkopanê - Memishoosh the conjuror

Simeon Scott

Memishoosh the conjuror adopted young orphan boys, raised them to be his sons-in-law, and then routinely killed them off. One of them, however, was also a conjuror and saved himself from Memishoosh's plans until he managed to reverse one of his father-in-law's plots and the man froze to death.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

wîhtikôwak - The windigoes

Simeon Scott

A windigo is speared through the neck while hunting an Indian. Instead of saving his life, the wise windigo makes sure he dies so that they can eat him. The wise windigo proclaims, however, that whenever the windigoes see each other after that, they will kill each other. That is why the windigoes no longer live together. Then, some windigoes began to marry their captives and one day, one of these windigoes went hunting Indians with his son. The Indians, however, escaped, got back to their home and laid a trap for the pair. Both windigoes were killed, their icy insides melted in the fire.

StoryTeller Simeon Scott Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

cahkâpêsh nêsta mâka mistâpêskwêwak - Chahkabesh and the giant women

Xavier Sutherland

Chahkabesh hears a strange sound, which his sister tells him is the giant women collecting wood in the morning. He promises his sister never to go back but the next day he returns to where he heard the sound, equipped with a bladder of fish-fat for a snack. As he nears the place, a whiskey-jack alights near him and he kills it to wear its skin and fly into the giant women's camp. When they discover the whiskey-jack, they figure it is Chahkabesh and try to boil him to make a broth but he opens his fish-fat bladder to stop the boiling. When the women come to look at the cauldron covered with fat, Chahkabesh bursts out and pours the broth all over them, killing them. He also kills the wounded giant whose arm he broke before.

StoryTeller Xavier Sutherland Community Peawanuck (Winisk)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1960-62 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-nakwâtâkopanê pîsimwa - Chahkabesh snares the sun

Xavier Sutherland

Chahkabesh finds what appears to be a blazed trail and wishes to set snares to trap whatever caused it but his sister forbids it because that region is where the sun walks when it rises in the morning. Chahkabesh does not heed his sister's warnings and sets a trap where the sun walks. The next morning, both brother and sister wake up early but the dawn does not arrive and they figure it must be because Chahkabesh actually snared the sun. He sets off to free it but the sun is shining too hot to get near so he asks his friend, the littlest mouse, to gnaw through the snare line so the sun may walk again.

StoryTeller Xavier Sutherland Community Peawanuck (Winisk)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1960-62 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-kî-kohcipanihikot mistamêsa - Chahkabesh is swallowed by the giant fish

Xavier Sutherland

When Chahkabesh shoots an arrow at a bird and misses, it lands in the lake. He is too afraid to retrieve it, however, because of the strange creatures creating ripples on the surface. He tells his sister about it and she warns him never to return to that lake because if he goes into the water the fish will surely grab hold of him. Chahkabesh ignores the warning and jumps into the lake the very next day and is promptly swallowed by a fish. His sister grows worried when he doesn't come home and goes to the lake herself and hooks the fish that swallowed him. She slits the fish down the middle and saves Chahkabesh.

StoryTeller Xavier Sutherland Community Peawanuck (Winisk)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1960-62 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

cahkâpêsh kâ-ocipitikot pîsimwa - Chahkabesh is drawn up by the moon

Xavier Sutherland

After hunting one day, Chahkabesh's sister tells him to get snow from outside but warns him not to look up at the moon. Soon, however, he looks up at the moon and stares at it as hard as he can and is consequently drawn up by it. That is why Chahkabesh now appears on the moon.

StoryTeller Xavier Sutherland Community Peawanuck (Winisk)
Age/Level preschool Language Swampy Cree (n dialect)
Year Recorded 1960-62 Year Last Edited 2010
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings Genre

nîsho ililiwak ê-nakishkawâcik wâpaskwa - Two men meet a polar bear

John Wynne

As two men hunted in their canoe (without their moose-shot rifle), they saw a polar bear passing close to them. They quickly got to shore and ran away but when the faster of the two looked back, the polar bear was running away across the water.

StoryTeller John Wynne Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-58 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ê-pâshiwâtahk kîwêtinohk - A northern blizzard

John Wynne

Four people were once trapped by a blizzard that buried both them in their tent and their dogs outside. They only managed to dig out their dogs the next day.

StoryTeller John Wynne Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-58 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

atimwak ê-kotaskâtitocik - A dog-team race

John Wynne

The Attawapiskat dogs were thought to be smarter than the Albany dogs but the latter proved to be faster and they won the race.

StoryTeller John Wynne Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-58 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ê-'nâtawimôswâniwahk kwêtipawahikani-sîpîhk - Moose-hunting on the Kwetabohigan River

Joel Linklater

Joel Linklater and a companion were hunting moose and as soon as one of their prey waded into the water, they shot at it. They only managed to wound it, however, and they continued to chase it until at last Linklater shot it and it went into the willows to die.

StoryTeller Joel Linklater Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ê-âhkwatâhkwacit môs'-wayânihk - Stuck frozen in a moose-hide

Joel Linklater

One winter, a hunter shot a moose and killed him, but night was approaching and he was far from home so he decided to skin the animal to keep from freezing. When morning came, however, he was stuck in the frozen hide and remained there for three days until someone came to thaw him out.

StoryTeller Joel Linklater Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ayâkwâmsîtotaw môs! - Beware of the moose!

Joel Linklater

During mating season, two hunting companions decide to play a trick on a nearby moose.

StoryTeller Joel Linklater Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ê-wanishininâniwahk nôhcimihk - Lost in the bush

Joel Linklater

Joel Linklater got lost at night in unknown territory and finally decided to spend the night in the muskeg. When his three companions went out looking for him, they too almost got lost but eventually found their home again. When Linklater awoke the next morning, he could see that he'd only been about 2 miles from his tent.

StoryTeller Joel Linklater Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1957-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Marie-Odile Junker & Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

ê-kî-kîwê-miskahk kâ-kî-wanitâspan opâskisikan - Retrieval of a lost rifle

Joel Linklater

While trapping beaver with a young companion on the Pagashi river, Joel Linklater's gun fell into the water. He fashioned a hook out of a stick but couldn't grab it, so he stripped down and swam for it. He finally found it about six feet below the surface.

StoryTeller Joel Linklater Community Kashechewan (Fort Albany)
Age/Level preschool Language Kashechewan Cree (mixed n-l dialect)
Year Recorded 1956-57 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

shâwanohk ê-ishi-âpatisinâniwahk - A job outside

Silas Wesley

Silas Wesley found the life of trapping with his father very difficult and decided to find work far from home. He worked as a tanner for six months and enjoyed that life but he disliked the heat and finally returned home to his previous work with his father.

StoryTeller Silas Wesley Community
Age/Level preschool Language
Year Recorded 2009 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre

pêyakwâ wêskac - The old days

Hannah Wynne

Hannah Wynne recalls the old times when they lived by traveling and making camps, only eating that which they found and killed in the country. The life, she remembers, was very hard and they would sometimes go three days without food but they enjoyed it nonetheless. In comparison, it seems the new generations have it very easy, they have all they could ever want.

StoryTeller Hannah Wynne Community
Age/Level preschool Language
Year Recorded 2009 Year Last Edited 2009
Described by Doug Ellis
Topics
Teachings
Genre