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angela sidney The Stolen Woman One time there was a man who was camping with his wife close to a lake. He went out hunting, but she stayed home. You know how when they become a woman they wear a bonnet? She was wearing her bonnet yet. All of a sudden, somebody came. He started asking her questions, how come she’s staying there. ‘‘My husband went out hunting,’’ she told him. ‘‘Your husband shouldn’t leave you,’’ he said. ‘‘Come with me.’’ ‘‘No, I don’t want to do that. I love my husband – – I want to stay.’’ They argued for a while. Finally, he grabbed her and started to drag her away – – He threw her bonnet away,1 and dragged her. There was a little trail going down to the water – – That’s how her husband found her – – by following this little trail. All the time that man is dragging her, she grabs at little branches and breaks them. By the time they get through, it’s just like there’s a big road down to the water. He put her in his boat, then floated around until her husband came back. Finally, her husband came back. He came to the water, and here she was in the boat. angela sidney: the stolen woman  That man who took her took an arrowhead. He tied a little strip of gopher and loon’s head to it with babiche And he threw it to her husband. ‘‘Here, this is for your wife. I pay you.’’ ‘‘No,’’ that man said, ‘‘I want my wife. You can’t pay for her!’’ That man started to go, started to row. The husband started to follow, too. Paddle, paddle . . . keeps going, going . . . don’t know how far they go. Finally, they came to a place where they say a point of land in the lake lifts up. And that man went under it, to the other side. Well, that husband can’t go under it – – On the other side was winter. Snow. From there, where that point lifts up, that husband had to turn back. It took him two or three days to get back to camp. He dried up some meat and then he went to look for his brothers-in-law. He had told that man [who stole her], ‘‘She’s got lots of friends. Don’t think we won’t come after her! Don’t think you’re going to get away with it!’’ Ah, that man laughed at her husband. ‘‘You won’t come after us. You can’t!’’ When that guy who took that woman got past that point, he put up his boat. He followed a trail with that woman and caught up with his people. Meantime, her husband gathered up her brothers and his brothers. They’re going to follow. They go to the cache and get dry meat for their food. They travel along the shore. When they come to that point, here it lifts up and they go under it. On the other side, here it was really deep snow. There was an old trail there, so they started to follow it.  Tagish Here, there were two little old ladies camping there. They’ve got a little trail to the water and they’ve got a fishhook, fish for ling cod. Every day, they catch two or three. They cook them all. They had enough to supply people who went by. Just the husband went up to them. ‘‘Did you see my wife walk by with someone?’’ ‘‘Yes, we heard there was a girl from a different country going by with a bunch.’’ ‘‘How long ago?’’ ‘‘Quite a while ago, but you can follow this old trail,’’ they tell him. ‘‘Every evening late in the evening, Your wife always goes back along the trail to get wood.’’ He went back to his gang. One of them went back just to listen to those two old women, in case they say anything. One said, ‘‘My son used to go out to hunt early in the morning, just before daylight breaks.’’ The other one said, ‘‘My son used to go out a little while after when the daylight really breaks.’’ Both those women wished their sons would get away before anything happens: They know these men are going to make war on people. Then those men followed the trail. Sure enough, they start to catch up to people one evening, don’t know how many days...


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