Friday, December 18, 2009

Two Stones

The Stone Turtle in front of the
Cherokee County Historical Museum, Inc. in Murphy, Cherokee County
A large soapstone turtle (approx. 3' x 5' x 8') welcomes you to The Cherokee County Historical Museum in North Carolina (

The Oneida Stone and Things Worth Knowing About Oneida County
November 29, 2009 by Mrs. Mecomber


JimP said...

"The Oneidas are divided between Pagans and Christians. We took some pains to inquire into the principles of the former, and meeting with an old man of eighty, who is reputed the head of the Pagan party, we requested Mr. Dean to enter into conversation with him, and give us the result. It was this. Some of them addressed their devotions to the wind, others to the clouds and thunder, he to the rocks and mountains, which he believed to have an invisible, as well as visible existence, and an agency over human actions. To this kind of superintending power, he had always trusted for success in hunting, and in war, and had generally obtained his desire. He had either killed, or taken captive, his enemy, and had been fortunate in the chase. He regarded the Oneida Stone as a proper emblem or representative of the divinity which he worshipped. This stone we saw. It is of a rude, unwrought shape, rather inclining to cylindrical, and of more than an hundred pounds weight. It bears no resemblance to any of the stones which are found in that country. From whence it was originally brought, no one can tell. The tradition is, that it follows the nation in their removals. From it the name of the nation is derived, for Oneida signifies the upright stone." (Belknap [1796]1968:14-15)

BELKNAP, Jeremy; Jedidiah Morse. [1796] 1968. Report about Indians and Missionaries. In Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society, For the Year 1798. Vol. V. Reprint, New York: Johnson Reprint Corporation.

Norman said...

If my memory is correct, I remember reading that the Oneida stone (the one that was on that pedestal) was removed and taken to the Oneida Nation and put in their museum.