He came from across the Great Sparkling Water (Ontario), carrying the tidings of peace. Alone, in a stone canoe; or so the legend says.
His mission was suicidal. The southern shores of the Great Lake were torn by decades of a fierce warfare. Five powerful nations fought each other relentlessly, mercilessly, unable to stop what had, probably, begun as a few feuds and a few retaliations, developing over the years into a full scale war, into a vicious cycle of revenge and counter-revenge.
These wars brought nothing but destruction. These nations were doomed, he knew, unless stopped and made to think. Someone has to explain, made them see the reason. But he, of all people, was the less likely candidate to make himself heard, coming from the lands of the Crooked Tongues (Huron). Should someone stop to listen to his message, he would have difficulty to understand the stranger’s dialect.
But the Creator, the Right-Handed Twin himself, had entrusted him with this mission. He had no choice.
The misty shores of the Onondaga lands greeted him solemnly, reserved yet not hostile. Few hunters stared at the approaching canoe in disbelieve. Unafraid and businesslike, he informed them about his mission and sent them off to spread the word.
His fortune remained favorable when, next, he came to the dwelling of Jeconsahseh, a woman who kept her place neutral and who fed the passing by parties of warriors. Before entering her bark little lodge, the warriors were required to leave their weapons outside. She listened attentively and had no difficulty to understand the urgency of a peaceful solution. He promised her the leadership of the women, the Clan Mothers, when the peace is achieved.
Not afraid of the challenge, he then proceeded into the lands of the fiercest nation, the People of the Flint (Mohawks). Suspiciously, yet attentively, they listen to the stranger’s words. The situation must have been truly hopeless by this time, to make the warriors and their leaders’ minds so open. After a few miracles performed, they had agreed to listen. They had also no difficulty to understand the importance of his mission.
Still in the People of the Flint lands, he met Ayonwatha, the grief-stricken Onondaga leader, who has recently lost the last of his family in his strife against the loathsome and a very powerful sorcerer, Tadodarho. Removing Ayonwatha’s grief with the help of the wampum shells, the Great Peacemaker had instituted the traditional Condolence Ceremony for the generations to come. The Wampum Belts also had assumed their prominent place in the yet-to-be-born Great League of the Iroquois, documenting treaties and agreements that represented important events of the rich Five Nations’ history.
The both men now tried to meet the evil Tadodarho, but failed. So they proceeded into the lands of the neighboring People of the Standing Rock (Oneida) and the People of the Great Swamp (Cayuga). In the lands of the People of the Mountain (Seneca) the Peacemaker had to banish the sun from the noon sky to prove his might.
With four nations devotedly following, they returned into the lands of the evil Tadodarho once again, not deterred by the man’s repulsive appearances, nor by the snakes wrangling in his head. They song the Great Song of Peace and, eventually, were successful in pacifying the sorcerer’s evil mind.
With this last obstruction removed, the Great Peacemaker plunged into a more tedious task, establishing his great and a very elaborated set of laws, which would govern the united Five Nations for hundreds years to come, serving their purpose unfailingly and giving their example to the much-later-to-form USA constitution.