A woman becomes a warrior
Oral tradition and primary sources provide evidence that some women became honored warriors in Ojibwa society.
Accounts speak of Aanakwad Agoodekwe (Hanging Cloud Woman), of the Lac Courte Oreilles band in Wisconsin, who became a warrior and something of a legend among her people.
Hanging Cloud Woman was apparently a favorite daughter of her father. As a young woman, she accompanied him and her brother on a hunting expedition where they were attacked by a war party of Dakota. Contemporary accounts suggests that after her father was killed she pretended to be dead long enough to satisfy enemy suspicions. Then she grasped her father's gun and pursued the fleeing Dakota to exact revenge on them.
In the months that followed her successful warrior exploits, she was honored in many Ojibwa lodges throughout the surrounding territory.
Hanging Cloud Woman eventually married, and at one point in her life found herself with two husbands. Apparently she assumed that a first husband had been killed in war and married another man, only to find out later that her first husband was alive. Hanging Cloud Woman ended her very long career as a housekeeper for a local lumber baron and died in 1919.
Reference: Buffalohead, Priscilla K. 1983. “Farmers, Warriors, Traders: A Fresh Look At Ojibway Women.” Minnesota History 48 (6). Saint Paul: 236–44.
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