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Every once in a while an Indian (read American Indian) will give a friend or family member a nickname. Sometimes these names are given just for fun, other times they are given to help that person be humble. “Dances With Wolves” comes to mind.

I actually know some of my aunts and uncles by their nicknames: Ishky, Bunny, and Boogens are three.

I told my wife that I finally figured out what her Indian nickname was.

“Well, what is it?”, she asked.

“Too Many Pillows”, I said.

She laughed… because she knew it was true.

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I hear the crows converse,
I see the cloudy skies.

I feel it pleasantly cool outside,
in Red Lake.

How strange,

that I will miss the amusing sounds of the crows,
the melancholy overcast skies,
and the invigorating feel of the cool air,
when I return to someplace else
where I live.

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4:20 a.m.

As I step night-side,

I awaken and muse in her warm embrace.

I hear the sound of the wind

rushing through the trees

in Red Lake.

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I found this picture while searching for family photos at the Minnesota Historical Society way back in ’77. (1977, not 1877)

I managed to find out where I could write to Bob Hope at the time and sent him a copy, hoping that he might have some information about it. I received this letter from him along with my returned photo.
Bob Hope Letter
Mr. Hope couldn’t provide me with any new information except to suggest it may have been taken in a studio. (I was thinking Cali-for-nii-aa) but I was pleased nonetheless to have received a personal letter back along with his autograph!

I recently signed up for a five day free trial of Newspapers.com (I needed a credit card but was told how I could easily cancel my trial before the five days were up.)
During that period, I pretty much dedicated myself to looking up as many possible Ancestor references for myself and friends who were interested. I probably looked at a thousand possible articles and was rewarded with a score or more, which I “Clipped” and then downloaded. This was one of them.
Bob Hope and Ben Littlecreek at the Nicollet Hotel
Yep, same top hat, same sport coat, same two people. BINGO!!! Mystery solved.

Part of the article reads:

“Forever a gagster, Bob Hope invaded Minneapolis Monday. He put on a two-hour stage show in Minneapolis Auditorium. Sang a duet with Mayor Eric G. Hoyer, said nasty things about Bing Crosby, and was made an honorary Indian. Most of the shenanigans took place in Nicollet Hotel, where, among other things, the ski-nosed comedian attended a dinner put on by the Theadore Peterson American Legion Post.

*   *   *

In Picture below, Hope meets Chief Ben Littlecreek of the Red Lake Chippewa Indian Tribe. Hope made the Chief an honorary “Paleface”, from the movie by the same name.”

As a side note, I like Hope’s irony here. That’s the first time I’ve heard of an Indian being made an honorary Paleface!

All kidding aside, for you genealogy buffs out there, Try the Newspaper.com free Trial. It was worth it! (And, they actually made cancelling the trial easy!) All irony aside, I will pay for a subscription–which I can get for just one month if I want–should I need to research other ancestors in the future.

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I hear the owls in the distance,

friends who have moved on.

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Grampa Ben with unknown menI recently came across this picture of my grandfather, Benjamin Odawa Littlecreek posing with a group of unknown men. I would like to know who they are. He traveled extensively during the winters when he wasn’t working at his Trading Post at Itaska State Park in Minnesota. He often went to other countries. He worked at Itaska from about 1947 to at least 1960 (That’s when I think I was about 5 when I saw him there).  So I believe this was taken during that time period–most likely from the thin ties I would say in the fifties. At least it gives people a general period around which to look.

Who are these guys? Could they be Russians? Are they from the Minnesota state capitol? Are they U.S. Marshals? Does that weird column or lamp post on the right give any clues? The guy just on the right of gramps could be Indian, he could be Russian… Can anyone identify the badges? Any clues, help, or answers would be appreciated. If you work at the FBI, or the CIA, or MI6, or the KGB, or even the Minnesota Historical Society, anonymous, or other tips welcome.

 

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Hazy snow flurries.

Winter white waves

glisten in the headlights,

ebbing and flowing across the blacktop,

as I drive home late at night,

in Red Lake

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