Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/93

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
69
OF THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE.

joined our army, and I will here note two singular incidents concerning them. One day we were at dinner at head-quarters; an Indian entered the room, walked round the table, and then stretching forth his long tattooed arm seized a large joint of hot roast beef in his thumb and fingers, took it to the door, and began to eat it. We were all much surprised, but General Washington gave orders that he was not to be interfered with, saying laughingly, that it was apparently the dinner hour of this Mutius Scaevola of the New World.

On another occasion a chief came into the room where our generals were holding a council of war. Washington, who was tall and very strong, rose, coolly took the Indian by the shoulders, and put him outside the door. The son of the forest did not protest; he concluded probably that his ejectment was a way of expressing by signs that his company was not wanted.

At another time a meeting was appointed with the chiefs and warriors belonging to several tribes, which resided at great distances from each other in different