Saturday, January 4, 2014

How Flint Creek got it's name

Flint Creek appears on early maps with that name, apparently referring to the large Indian Flint quarry at "Arrow Point" aka "The Eyebrow" near Maxville. Here is the Salish tale of Flint and Flint Creek, told by Chief Charlot, and recorded by Helen F. Sanders in "Tales Through Western Woods", published in 1910.

"In the old times the animals had tribes just like the Indians. The Coyote had his tipi. He was hungry and had nothing to eat. He had bark to shoot his arrow with and the arrow did not go through the deer. He was that way a long time when he heard there was Flint coming on the road that gave a piece of flint to the Fox and he could shoot a deer and kill it, but the Coyote did not know that and used the bark. They did not give the Coyote anything. They only gave some to the Fox. Next day the Fox put a piece of meat on the end of a stick and took it to the fire. The Fox had the piece of meat cooking there and the Coyote was looking at the meat and when it was cooked the Coyote jumped and got the piece of meat and took a bite and in it was the flint, and he bit the flint and asked why they did not tell him how to kill a deer with flint.
"'Why didn't you tell me?' the Coyote asked his friend, the Fox. 'When did the Flint go by here?'
"The Fox said three days it went by here.
"The Coyote took his blanket and his things and started after the Flint and kept on his track all day and evening and said, 'Here is where the Flint camped,' and he stayed there all night himself, and next day he travelled to where the Flint camped, and he said, 'Here is where the Flint camped last night,' and he stayed there, and the next day he went farther and found where the Flint camped and he said, 'The Flint started from here this morning.' He followed the track next morning and went not very far, and he saw the Flint going on the road, and he went 'way out that way and went ahead of the Flint and stayed there for the Flint to come. When the Flint met him there the Coyote told him:
"'Come here. Now, I want to have a fight with you to-day.'
"And the Flint said:
"'Come on. We will fight.'
"The Flint went to him and the Coyote took the thing he had in his hand and struck him three or four times and the Flint broke all to pieces and the Coyote had his blanket there and put the pieces in the blanket and after they were through fighting and he had the pieces of flint in his blanket he packed the flint on his back and went to all the tribes and gave them some flint and said:
"'Here is some flint for you to kill deer and things with.'
"And he went to another tribe and did the same thing and to other tribes and did the same until he came to Flint Creek and then from that time they used the flint to put in their arrows and kill deer and elk.
"That is the story of the Flint.

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