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The Sacred Fire Of Nachez


Source: Myths And Legends Of Our Own Land

The Indians of the South, being in contact with the civilized races of
Central America, were among the most progressive and honorable of the red
men. They were ruled by intelligence rather than force, and something of
the respect that Europeans feel for their kingly families made them
submit to woman's rule. The valley of Nacooche, Georgia, indeed,
perpetuates in its name one of these princesses of a royal house, for
though she ruled a large tribe with wisdom she was not impervious to the
passions of common mortals. The Evening Star died by her own hand,
being disappointed in love affair. Her story is that of Juliet, and she
and her lover--united in death, as they could not be in life--are buried
beneath a mound in the centre of he valley.

The Indians of that region had towns built for permanency, and possessed
some knowledge of the arts, while in religion their belief and rites were
curiously like those of the Persian fire-worshippers. It was on the site
of the present city in Mississippi which bears their name that the
Natchez Indians built their Temple of the Sun. When it was finished a
meteor fell from heaven and kindled the fire on their altar, and from
that hour the priests guarded he flame continually, until one night when
it was extinguished by mischance. This event was believed to be an omen,
and the people so took it to heart that when the white men came, directly
after, they had little courage to prosecute a war, and fell back before
the conqueror, never to hold their ancient home again.

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