Marten Falls / Ogoki

Diary Excerpt

25th July. A short run brought us to Marten Falls. at the head of which we were landed. after which the Indians navigated the canoes down the rapids. On rounding a point we came in sight of the H.B. Co buildings on a rather high hill. We were not seen until we had arrived almost at the landing place but it did not take long for the Indians to gather to see the King’s men of whom they had heard from the Fort Hope men who had called there on their way to Albany.

Mr. Iserhoff, in charge of the post, appeared to think that we were rather formidable party, but he was noon convinced that we would not be a source of trouble to him in any way.

Mr. Iserhoff had not had many opportunities of meeting with whitemen, and seemed hardly to know just how he should act under the circumstances. Marten Falls is rather an unimportant post of the HB CO. We had met over 3000 Indians at Osnaburgh and over 400 at Fort Hope. At Marten Falls there were only about 125, and these in physical development were not at all equal to those at other posts.

An old mortar or cannon mounted to overlook the river reminded us of the time when those in charge of these out of the way posts had to be prepared to defend themselves against attacks from both white and red enemies.

We lost no time In beginning work on the preparation of lists and pay tickets. At noon we met five representative Indians and made the usual explanations regarding the treaty.

The representative signified their acceptance of its terms, and the treaty was duly signed and witnessed.

Some of the Indians seemed to think that there would be something behind the offer of the Govt of which they were not aware.

It seemed to them that an offer was being made to give them something for which they were not expected to make any return. The explanation however eventually set at rest the fears they appeared to entertain, and the money paid to them was accepted with gratitude.