The Story of Šiipaakana
Šiipaakana was a warrior and chief of the Myaamia.
When he was a boy he lived near Kiihkayonki (Fort Wayne). Once, some boys were bathing. They were diving to see who could dive the longest. They all dove, one after another, and came up quickly. Except for Šiipaakana, he didn’t come to the surface. For a long time they waited for him on the bank. Afterwards, they went home. They reported that Šiipaakana had drowned.
In the evening, Šiipaakana came. He told what he saw. “When I dove I saw all the fish. I saw everything that lives in the water. When I came to the bottom, I saw a road. I followed it. I saw a house. I stood at the door. “Come in, my grandchild”, someone said to me. I went in. A big beast with horns was lying down. ‘Only for this have I called you, my grandchild. You are pitiful. You will receive mercy from me. Whenever you are in trouble, remember me.’ Then I went out the door, I think. I came out of the water.”
Once he was a young man, he was a warrior. Us warriors were crossing the Ohio River on a raft. We were fighting the Americans. The Americans were chasing me. We got scattered. His comrades and I thought he had been killed. But when we crossed the river, Šiipaakana was standing on the bank. Šiipaakana said, “They were following me very closely. They almost caught up with me. Then I jumped into the water. While I was swimming I thought I would drown. Then I remembered what my grandfather told me: ‘I will help you’. I thought of him. Something lifted me up. He carried me straight across. I came out of the water onto the shore.”
Later, Šiipaakana married Mahkoonsihkwa. He lived on the bank of the Mississinewa river. Then, when he was an old man, he became deaf. Then he was called ‘Keekiiphšia’ (Deaf Man).