Great Peacemaker

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The Great Peacemaker, sometimes referred to as Deganawida or Dekanawida (note that as a mark of respect, some Iroquois avoid using the personal name except in special circumstances) was, along with Hiawatha, by tradition the founder of the Haudenosaunee, commonly called the Iroquois Confederacy, a political and cultural union of several Native American tribes residing in the present-day state of New York. The union created a powerful alliance of related Iroquoian peoples in Ontario, Quebec, Pennsylvania, Ohio and other places.

Iroquois confederacy

The Haudenosaunee name for the Great Peacemaker (Skennenrahawi in Mohawk) means “Two River Currents Flowing Together.” There are numerous legends about the Great Peacemaker, some with conflicting information. It is reported that he was born a Huron, and by some accounts it was a virgin birth. Others say he was born an Onondaga and later adopted by the Mohawks. By all accounts, he was a prophet who counseled peace among the warring tribes, and he also called for an end to cannibalism. His follower Hiawatha, a Mohawk renowned for his oratory, helped him achieve his vision.According to archaeologist Dean R. Snow, the Great Peacemaker converted Hiawatha in the territory of the Onondagas; then he made a solo journey to visit the Mohawk tribe who lived near what is now Cohoes, New York. Initially, the Mohawks rejected the message of the Great Peacemaker, so he decided to perform a feat to demonstrate his purity and spiritual...
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