Koontz John E John.Koontz at
Fri Nov 5 19:59:56 UTC 2004

I happened on this site, which offers what I'd consider a good explication
of the Sakakawea (etc.) name in connection with North Dakota's Lake
Sakakawea park.

No particular new information, but an interesting reference:

"The following brief article was published in the Collections of the State
Historical Society of North Dakota in 1906 (vol. 1, pages 69-72). The
editor of the Collections was Professor Orin G. Libby. The author, Rev. C.
L. Hall, was a missionary to the Fort Berthold Reservation in North
Dakota. The term Grosventre refers to the Hidatsa."

Hall comments "The words for bird and woman are given in place in this
dictionary. We thus get for the name The Bird Woman, Tsakaka-wia. The
dotted s at the end [comment refers to a form Tsakaka-wia-s<dot> which is
not present here - JEK] stands for sh in English, and makes the compound
word a proper name. It is equivalent to the definite article the.
Anglicizing this a little to suit those using only the English alphabet
and unfamiliar with the scientific use of the vowels, and leaving off the
initial t sound, which is hard for English tongues, we have the spelling
in English, Sakakawea. During the last thirty years I have made numerous
additions in manuscript to Mathews' book, and also some corrections, but I
have no occasion to correct the spelling of the words in question."

I don't know if Hall's annotated copy of the Matthews book is in a
collection that can be consulted.

John E. Koontz

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