Posts Tagged ‘Cheyenne’

Pete Hauser’s Demise

April 3, 2009

Last November I reported on an article that brought out some facts about Pete and Emil Hauser’s early lives. I recently reread it and noticed that I had overlooked something. The article from the The Kansan stated that he was killed in July 1935 while changing a tire near Bartlesville, Oklahoma. So far, I’ve come up mostly dry. I talked with Mark Schnabel, the reporter who wrote the piece, who told me he just reported what the speaker said. Now I’m trying to get in touch with the speaker, Carolyn Williams of the Halstead Historical Society. Like many historical societies in small towns, Halstead has very limited hours and I haven’t been able to make contact with her as yet.

I then browsed through the books I have in my possession and found mention of this event in the 2007 Sally Jenkins book. On page 307 she wrote, “He [Hauser] was killed in a roadside accident while changing a tire near Pawhuska in the 1940s.” Although her book has many endnotes, there is none for this item. I then began to look for a newspaper article about the accident and his obituary. I have found neither so far but haven’t completed the search. It will probably take a while.

While perusing the Cheyenne & Arapahoe censuses, I found his date of death. The 1934 tribal roll listed Pete Hauser as living on the Osage Indian Reservation. Perhaps he had married an Osage woman. That is something else to research. Pete’s listing was lined out but still readable. “Died 7/21/35” was handwritten above his last name. So, Carolyn Williams got it right about his date of death and Sally Jenkins got it wrong. Having the date of death established should help narrow down newspaper accounts of his death. Now for the location. The Osage Reservation is off US Route 60 more or less equidistant from Bartlesville and Pawhuska, which are 26 miles apart. Maybe I’ll get an email that solves the puzzle or I’ll locate a newspaper that covered it. Until then, it’s a loose end.

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Snookered by Wauseka

February 26, 2009

I just found out that, like almost everyone else interested in the Carlisle Indian School, I had been snookered. The trickster is a major figure in American Indian lore and another one has been brought to my attention. I bought the idea that Wauseka was Emil Hauser’s Cheyenne name. Now I learn that he made it up as a joke.

Pete and Emil Hauser were friends of Mike Balenti as was Albert Exendine and they visited him in his home in Oklahoma after all left Carlisle. It was during one of these visits that the joke was shared and Balenti’s son heard it. It turns out that Emil Hauser made up the name on a lark and it stuck. Knowing this raises a lot of questions, the answers for which can only be speculated.

When and where he coined his name is not known, but something is known about a similar action taken by his old teammate Charles Guyon. When Guyon and Hauser were both attending, and playing football for, Haskell Institute, Guyon would play summer baseball in the Midwest. When interviewed by one-too-many a newspaper reporter who couldn’t pronounce his Chippewa name, Charlie gave him the name of the town in which he was playing at the time, Wahoo, Nebraska. When he played at Carlisle he went by both Wahoo and Charles Guyon. In later years he was often referred to as Charlie Wahoo or Chief Wahoo.

Emil Hauser may have taken a page from his old teammate’s book and appropriated a geographic name as his own. A quick search identified towns in Illinois and Wisconsin named Wauseka and a county in Minnesota named Waseca. The truth probably won’t ever be known but this is a plausible explanation, particularly because a friend of his had previously done something similar.

Untameable Shrew

January 15, 2009

Kit Carson was a widower with a small daughter, Adaline, to care for when his Arapaho wife, Waa-nibe, died. The only thing he could do was to acquire another wife. Little is known about their courtship or the negotiations with her family but, nonetheless, Making-Out-Road, Cheyenne, became his second wife. He was her first husband. Because Cheyenne women typically didn’t marry until their mid-20s, she was hardly a child bride. Carson could then return to his usual ways of being gone on expeditions most of the time. After little more than a year of marriage and a lot of violent quarrels with this mostly-gone mountain man, she divorced him according to Cheyenne customs. On the day he returned from one of his trips, she pitched his belongings, including Adaline, outside their tent. An alternative version of this story is that Carson escaped rather than being thrown out. He complained that she wanted too many “fafurraws.”

Not long after that, she married Flat Head and then Wolf Man, and divorced both of these Cheyenne men. She wasn’t married to either of them very long, just long enough to make a pair of twin boys, a girl and another boy. About that time a Charles Rath was in need of a wife.

Rath surmised that there were two ways to get along with the Indians: sell them liquor or marry into their tribe. He chose the latter course and married Owl Woman. After her death came her sister, Yellow Woman. When she died, he looked toward Making-Out-Road, perhaps because, when she was younger, she was vivacious and turned heads. Once her male relatives found the gifts Rath offered to be acceptable, the two were married. They soon had a daughter. Because Roadmaker, as Rath called this wife, had been considered the Belle of the Cheyenne, he called his daughter Cheyenne Belle. When Belle was about two years old, Rath left never to return. Cheyenne Belle would grow up to be the mother of the Balenti brothers mentioned in an earlier blog.

Charlie Rath presumed that Making-Out-Road meant that his bride was a good tracker. Some others thought it had a more contemporary meaning, such as my way or the highway or hit the road, Jack.