The Sydney morning Herald
Wednesday, May 16, 2007 Hubbard!
Curiously, officials of the Blackfoot Nation, who never practiced the act of blood brotherhood, do not recall anyone called "Old Tom", the name appearing nowhere in the tribal scriptures. http://blogs.smh.com.au/thedailytruth/a ... bbard.html Staking a Claim to Blood Brotherhood (Sunday, 24 June 1990, page A38:5)
As L. Ron Hubbard told it, he was 4 years old when a medicine man named "Old Tom" made him a "blood brother" of the Blackfeet Indians of Montana, providing the inspiration for the Scientology founder's first novel, "Buckskin Brigades." But one expert on the tribe doesn't buy Hubbard's account. Historian Hugh Dempsey is associate director of the Glenbow Museum in Calgary, Canada. He has extensively researched the tribe, of which his wife is a member. He said that blood brothers are "an old Hollywood idea" and that the act was "never done among the Blackfeet." As for "Old Tom," Dempsey has informed doubts. For one thing, he said, the name does not appear in a 1907 Blackfeet enrollment register containing the names of hundreds of tribal members. For another, "It's the kind of name, for that period (1915), that would practically not exist among the Blackfeet," he said. "At that time, Blackfeet did not have Christian names." http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Library/Shel ... 90-1e.html
Soderqvist1: isn’t strange that this picture is in The Glenbow Museum? Alouette Canada http://recherche.alouettecanada.ca/resu ... +desc&&p=4
Hugh Dempsey is associate director of the Glenbow Museum, and evidently did not know that there was a photo of Old Tom in the Glenbow archives.
Let's examine some of Dempsey's other claims:
Dempsey maintains that Blackfoot Indians in Montana, circa 1915, would not have had Christian names like Tom.
The Alouette photos include a shot of James White Calf, South Piegan policeman, dated 1900. James is a Christian name.
There is also a pic titled 'Group of Piegan', which shows John English, Johnny Crow Eagle, and Philip Big Swan, dated 1913. All have Christian names.
A photo titled 'Anglican Synod, Calgary Alberta' features Frank Big Old Man, Silas Wolfcollar, and William Bear Chief, among others. It is dated 1914. Silas, Frank and William are all Christian names.
I'm sort of wondering now if there really is such a person as Hugh Dempsey, and if he really is associate director of the Glenbow Museum, how can he make such claims as he does. Did Joel Sappell and Welkos of the LA Times make up the quote from Dempsey? Or does Dempsey know about as much about the Blackfoot as Swift knows about CoS?