Legend of Princess Greenmantle // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

By the shores of Gitche Gumee, near Thunder Bay, Ontario, lies a thundering cascade: Kakabeka Falls, the Niagara of the North.

Information signs tell the legend of Princess Greenmantle, daughter of the great Ojibwa chief, Ogama Eagle.

During her seventeenth summer, a neighboring band of Sioux warriors captured Princess Greenmantle and held her hostage in their camp on Dog Mountain. After preparing for battle, they forced Greenmantle to guide them down the Kaministiquia River, in order to launch a surprise attack on her Ojibwa village.

The courageous young lady, pretending to betray her people, led the war party down the river — and headed straight towards Kakabeka Falls.

Nearing the swirling whitewater at the top of the craggy precipice, the princess suddenly steered her canoe towards the west bank, leapt into the rapids, and swam to shore.

The Sioux warriors, caught off guard by this unexpected turn of events, were sucked into the foaming current and many were swept over the falls to their death.

Greenmantle dashed down the portage trail in time to warn her father of the impending attack. The Ojibwa quickly took up arms, and when the conflict came, the Sioux were decisively defeated.

(Another version of the story has the princess going over the falls to her death — but I like this one better!)

Moral of This Story: One person with a good dose of courage, conviction and creativity can definitely change the course of future events.

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