Giving Is Our Bank


Once I was in Victoria, and I saw a very
large house. They told me it was a bank,
and that the white men place their money
there to be taken care of, and that by and
by they got it back, with interest.
We are Indians, and we have no such bank;
but when we have plenty of money or blankets,
we give them away to other chiefs and people,
and by and by they return them, with interest,
and our hearts feel good. Our way of
giving is our bank.

source: Maquinna, Nootka Chief
image: Eddie’s Image Collection, Nootka Woman

 please note: anything reposted should remain in the original format.


18 thoughts on “Giving Is Our Bank

  1. One day dear Eddie, this type of ‘Banking’ will return.. for man has lost his way in the material world of money and knowing what true wealth in the world is..
    Love and Blessings my friend.. Enjoy your week..
    Sue 🙂

  2. This is Maquinna’s territory here where I live on the west coast of Vancouver Island. A nearby town has a street named after Chief Maquinna and years ago I worked on a boat named after him as well. The potlatch is what he is describing here, where the wealthiest people give away lots of blankets and food and such. For years they were outlawed, but now the potlatch is practiced. To be an Indian giver in this way is a true honour, not like the white man’s way of promising this or that, only to take it way or to break promise after promise. Thanks for posting this Eddy.

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