Billy Bowlegs and Suite
Our artist has presented for us below, a very fine and lifelike picture of an Indian party from the western wilds, as they lately appeared in New York. The party consisted of the famous Billy Bowlegs, six Indian chiefs and an interpreter. Billy is himself a short, stout built and quite ordinary looking man of about forty years of age, and was clad in a calico frock, leggins, a belt or two, and a sort of short cloak. On his head he wore a sort of turban enclosed in a broad silver band, and surmounted by a profusion of black ostrich feathers. Billy is the hereditary chief of the Seminoles, and nephew of Micconopy, the old chief, who ruled the tribe at the commencement of the Seminole War in 1835; he is also a relative of King Payne, who gave our people so much trouble in Georgia and vicinity in1812.
Another of the party is John Jumper, a subordinate chief of the Seminoles; his father Jumper was famous as a persevering enemy. Nocose Emanthla is still another Seminole chief, whose people are yet in Florida. Nocose dresses in a calico shirt, fringed and rudely embroidered around the edges; he also wears a turban, formed of a narrow shawl, wound several times around his head. Chocote Tustenuggee, a Miccasukie chief, living at Sam Jones's settlement, is also one of the members, and is, perhaps, the best looking of the whole delegation. Fasatchee Emanthla is another of the red skin visitors; but what entitles him to the importance of a delegate to Washington is not made public. He is probably a subordinate chief of the Seminoles, to which tribe he belongs. Sarparkee Yoholo and Pasackccathla are two Seminole chiefs, who, with their people, have removed from Florida to Arkansas. They visited Florida for the purpose of inducing the Indians to emigrate to the West. The say where is better hunting and more comfort in their new home, than the Florida Indians can possibly have. Abram, the negro interpreter, is no unimportant personage in this suite. Abram is about 70 years, but holds his own remarkably. All together form a wild group of the red race of America, and the picture will be a very suggestive one to the minds of our readers.
The whole delegation appears to look up to Billy Bowlegs as their leader, and he is not at all modest in the matter, for he always assumes the chief prerogatives. Nor does he do this with any show of even savage politeness. He is surly, and at all times cross and unmanageable. There seems to be but little of the "noble Indian" about him. When Osceola was alive, Billy Bowlegs was hardly known, except among his own people. After the death of that celebrated chief, however, Billy took rank, and soon became known as a wily, dangerous foe of the white man. He soon gained the reputation of being treacherous and cruel, and has, down to the present time, proved a troublesome fellow. He now pretends that he is willing, and in fact, desirous, to emigrate; he says that game is getting scarce in Florida, and he thinks he can do much better at the West. He is utterly surprised at what he has seem since he cam North, and is perfectly satisfied, that with the big guns, powerful steamboats, and "much folks" which he finds, that the great Seminole nation itself must yield before the white man.