Land of Goshen, Part Five
It is hereby recognized by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that Viktor Wozniak, of the City of Allegheny, being of sound mind and body, has delivered the ownership and all rights thereof related to the property located on Lot 87, in the Borough of Madison, to the gentleman called Aaboukingon. Please find included the property deed and all necessary paperwork for the legal transfer of ownership.
Signed in the presence of Robert Norris, Notary Public, this 13th day of November, in the year of our Lord 1905.
Land of Goshen, Part Four
12 November 1905
I sincerely apologize for not tarrying with you after church to-day. I left in quite a hurry and have only just recovered from the most distressing news.
As you and Brandon saw on your visit Friday, Abe and I have been attempting to establish his full identity. His ability to actually command the water in our creek was a surprise to both of us, and he was so proud to have been able to entertain you both with it free from judgement. However, it appears that others have learned of this gift, and have conspired to label him a witch, or worse, a demon.
Rev. Halzberg was intensely cross about his broken arm, and would not even allow Abe to enter the church for service! I tried to explain that it was merely an accident, and Abe apologized profusely, but the Rev. cited rumors of magic being performed on the estate and insisted that no evil spirits would be allowed in this church as long as he was ministering there. Doc. Price even threatened to throw Abe out of the building himself if we would not comply!
What charity the Rev. shows! When I begged him to show mercy as our Lord has shown to us, he told me that I should have to choose between himself or Abe. Well, Marilyn, I do not wish to sound disrespectful of the cloth, but it appeared to me in that moment that Abe was in need of help which I could render, and the Rev. was in need of help I could not. And so we departed.
My parents are greatly troubled by this turn of events. They have begun to speak, where they do not think we can hear, of giving Abe a parcel of land with a small house they no longer use, south-east of Pittsburg. Abe has informed me that if it would make my life easier, he would accept such an offer, and I would of course be welcome to spend as much time as I like there. I do not wish to see him go, but I fear if they make the offer it shall be either that or throwing him out into a community that wishes to see him harm.
Do thank Brandon for the resources he sent over. We noticed in one writing that ‘Aaboukingon’ is the name one tribe had for the river from which Abe emerged. We shall have to look deeper into that lead, perhaps he simply took the name of the first thing he recognized. Abe has sworn to repay you both for your kindness.
Land of Goshen, Part Three
7 November 1905
Excerpt from the daily records of Dr. Harold Price, of Allegheny City, Penna. (now part of Pittsburgh)
My first visit after lunch was the Reverend Liam Halzberg, and the nature of the case was so bizarre that I feel it deserves special consideration. It seems he had received concerns about Miss Joanna Wozniak and her strange visitor. I confessed to the Reverend that I had heard of this affair, and was quite under the impression the Injun fancied himself a suitor, though I had no knowledge of the lady’s opinion on the matter and liked to think she was above such foolish notions.
The Reverend, of course, felt it his duty to appraise the lady’s fidelity, and to ensure the lad had no aims at abusing her charity. She confided to the Reverend, and he in myself, that she had had no improper relations with the man, that she was trying to help him recover from some unknown trauma, and that she would appreciate the faith and assistance of those who feel more comfortable speaking about her than to her. I do not know the wording she used, but it is clear that it was delivered in a manner the Reverend found distasteful.
But then came the injury. Concerned that Miss Wozniak was keeping something of the matter, he went in search of the Injun, who was taking a rest at a creek running through the estate. He reports that the man appeared to be in something of a trance, and when he attempted to speak with him in a level tone, he did not answer. The Reverend recounts that he then raised his voice and repeated his concern, that the man be not misguided about any lasting benefits from his situation, and appeared to have won the man’s attention. But when the man started muttering in some dark, unknown language at the Reverend, the latter grew afraid that he was responding with a curse.
The Reverend tells me he then grabbed the man’s shoulders and demanded consideration of his words, whereupon the latter threw the Reverend across the creek! When I met with the Reverend, who left the estate quickly and in a daze, his arm was broken, his side and leg bruised, and his clothing torn from the rocks. I set his arm, of course, and praised his efforts to protect the young lady from such a beast, even at his own peril. Neither I nor the Reverend know whether it was the fall or the man who broke the arm, but we are convinced that Miss Wozniak is entertaining a dangerous savage, and will be spending the morrow ensuring that our neighbors keep a safe distance until this matter can be resolved.
Land of Goshen, Part Two
4 NOvember 1905
I must confess, the rumor you ask about is somewhat true. Yesterday, on my afternoon walk, I did come upon a Red man who seemed in grave distress. He was lost, in borrowed clothes, confused about where and who he was, though the report that he smelled of liquor is entirely false. I’ve never seen a man more lucid, which made his questions all the more peculiar.
He said that he remembered nothing before crawling out of the River some two days prior, save the ringing of a bell, though he seemed to expect his people to be here and not the city. I do not know what wild people are his, and neither does he. He introduced himself as Aaboukingon, which I found difficult to manage and solicited his permission to call him Abe for a time. When it became clear that he was an honest man in a dangerous state, I brought him to the estate where he was given fresh clothes and a room in an outer house.
As I write, he is in the back, staring at the trees as though he expects something of them. I have arranged for a journey into Pittsburg today to find any knowledge about him or his people as can be had. I should like your dear Brandon to meet him, as he deals so much with the Indians of these parts. Perhaps we can welcome you both for dinner this week-end? Do reply quickly, you know how mother hates unexpected guests. She is troubled enough by Abe, I would not have her turn against you, of all people.
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