American Indian Fairy Tales

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American Indian Fairy Tales

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recording of American Indian Fairy Tales, collected by Henry R. Schoolcraft and retold by William Trowbridge Larned

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With no written language, Native Americans living in the Lake Superior region passed their cultural identity down through the generations by way of stories. Far more than mere tales to amuse children, they passed along the collective wisdom of the tribes. In the 1830s, government Indian Agent and ethnologist Henry R Schoolcraft learned the language of these people and went out to collect and preserve their stories before the tribes disappeared under the westward rush of American civilization. Though these stories were recast as children’s fairy tales in the 1920s, they contain much of the old wisdom of a culture which has largely disappeared. (Summary by Chip)

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