Henry and Thompson: "Cannot persuade him," 1801

The manuscript journals of Alexander Henry and David Thompson describe their Exploration and Adventure among the Indians on the Red, Saskatcheuan, Missouri, and Columbia Rivers. An entry of January 2, 1801, is titled by its 1897 editor "Swiftness of the One-Eyed Sodomist."

Berdash, a son of Sucrie [Sucre, Sweet, or Wisecoup], arrived from the Assiniboine, where he had been with a young man to carry tobacco concerning the war. This person is a curious compound between a man and a woman. He is a man both as to members and courage, but pretends to be womanish, and dresses as such. His walk and mode of sitting, his manners, occupations, and language are those of a woman. His father, who is a great chief amongst the Saulteurs, cannot persuade him to act like a man. About a month ago, in a drinking match, he got into a quarrel and had one of his eyes knocked out with a club. He is very troublesome when drunk. He is very fleet, and a few years ago was reckoned the best runner among the Saulteurs...[1]


Jonathan Ned Katz, Gay American History: Lesbians and Gay Men in the U.S.A. (NY: Crowell, 1976) pg. 292.

  1. Alexander Henry and David Thompson, New Light on the Early History of the Greater Northwest: The Manuscript Journals of Alexander Henry and David Thompson, 1799-1814, ed. Elliott Coues, 3 vols. (N.Y.: Francis P. Harper, 1897), vol. 1, p. 163-65; for additional details see part omitted. The note in brackets appears to be by editor Coues. Also see pages 53, 348, 399.