"O Machecawa, my brother, it is not well that you grieve. If Newitchewagan had lived she would many times have been hungry and cold and weary; but in the happy hunting-ground, whither she has gone, there is neither hunger nor cold nor weariness. Therefore you should be glad." He then drew his hunting-knife from his belt, and, slashing it through the birch-bark wrappings, cried:
"You have conferred upon me a great honor, Machecawa," said Abbie, smiling, "but you shall have to wait for several years, for I have many things to learn before I could become the squaw of an Algonquin chief."
"You must go out more, my child," she said. "You have had a long siege of nursing. You look worn out."
Her husband's "worldliness," her sons' lack of interest in religious matters and their tendency to adopt the language and expressions of the low and the vicious, afforded matter for constant reproof, rebuke and exhortation. Her efforts to develop in her children the highest ideals of Christian manhood and womanhood were not fully appreciated by the Chief, who was too feudal in his views of woman to understand a life like hers. The phenomenon of a woman superior to himself in mind and soul had never ceased to be a matter of perplexity to him. Her ideals were beyond his comprehension. He had not arrived at the conclusion that a wife should be allowed free scope for the exercise of her own individuality. Her position in the home was one of utter subjection and servitude. She was permitted to have no will but his, no plans but his, and to have no ideas but his. At the marriage ceremony "they two were made one," and that one was her lord and master.
Whereupon the Indian said: "It is the custom of our chiefs to chose a manitou, who will protect them in times of danger and who will give them success in the chase."
"Come along, Chris," said Phil, her eldest brother. "Let us go for a stroll down to the shore."
"The White Chief of the Ottawa" is not fiction. It is not a tale with a carefully concealed plot, meant to delude the reader at the beginning and to surprise him at the end. It is something stranger than fiction, a sketch of the life experiences of Philemon Wright and his family, the first settlers in the district of Ottawa. With the exception of the love of Abbie and Chrissy, which are based upon fact, the story is mainly a simple recital of actual facts which cannot be controverted.