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Interview with Samuel Hodges

Hodges, Samuel
Martini, Paul
Date of Interview: 
Stories and Storytellers; Childhood Adventures
Samuel Hodges retells a campfire story that he heard as a Cub Scout; the story is about a Native American ghost in search of his arm.
Charlotte Narrative and Conversation Collection
Collection Description: 
Paul Martini interviews Charlotteans to collect stories for a class project at UNC Charlotte.
Interview Audio: 
PM (Paul Martini): Okay, this is Paul Martini. Ah, it's ah April 14th at about six o'clock on Friday and we're here with Sam Hodges and he's going to tell us a story he heard ah when you were a child, is that right?
SH (Samuel Hodges): Yeah, basically when I was a child.
PM: And how old were you when you heard the story?
SH: Umm, I'd say I was in actually Cub Scouts at the time so I guess that would put me about probably about, about eight or nine.
PM: Eight or nine that's--
SH: So--
PM: // Pretty long time ago huh? //
SH: // So this was this was in the mid, um this was late, late 1970s about '78. //
PM: Cool. And, uh, Sam, ah, is a resident of Charlotte for 11 years and he was born in Durham and he is, um, he's a Caucasian male banker who has education of BS in international business and um I think we're ready for the story now.
SH: Okay, good, um.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: The story actually started out and I heard it first when, when I was growing up as a kid but as I mentioned earlier Cub Scouts were actually out camping so it's definitely a story.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: It's a horror story no doubt so you have to picture the setting that it's around.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: Um, I was about eight, um, um we were out camping in the back basically in the back of a friend of mine's house in Orange County.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: Which is the county right next to where I lived. He basically they had basically woods outdoors and there were parents there with us but we were only eight so we're learning how to camp um we actually slept that night in a tee-pee, uh, uh an original tee-pee that uh were used by Native Americans at one time, sort of as a historical artifact. So we're getting ready for bed, we've eaten dinner, we're around the campfire, and the owner of the property, it's Dwayne Hobgood, I guess I can say his name.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: Um says, "Boys I've got a story for you."
PM: [Laughs]
SH: Now picture this. There's about six or seven of us, little kids, eight-years old, this is a man that's going to be giving a good story.
PM: [Laugh] Right. And we'll take a little break here while we answer the cell phone. Do you want to hear or do you want to keep? [Phone ringing]
SH: Where was I before we were interrupted?
PM: The uh, you were uh, Hobgood's property and.
PM: A bunch of kids are listening and he's got boys I've got a story for you now.
SH: "Eh boys, I've got a story for you," and we're sitting around the campfire he goes, "Gentlemen let me tell you the story of Two Feathers." He goes, "Two Feathers was," and this time political correctness wasn't.
PM: [Laugh] Right.
SH: Wasn't par for the course wasn't nomenclature. He said, "Boys I've got this story about an Indian for you. His name is, ah, Two Feathers. He grew up in Orange County," or what was Orange County it wasn't named Orange County at the time. Um and act and he says, "Two Feathers was, um, once again was an Indian who, uh, lived there back before, before it was settled by the Europeans." He says Two Feathers grew up, he hunted he fished bas, basic, the basic Indian life um until one day when he was about 20, 25 he was out hunting and he was hunting a mountain lion. He came across a mountain lion.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: And um they got into a tussle.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: He stabbed the mountain lion a few times, the mountain lion bit him a few times.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: They struggled back and forth struggled back and forth. Finally the mountain lion ripped off his arm his left arm.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: And, uh, takes off with it, goes. So he doesn't know but he, he doesn't die he survives um and grows old becomes an old, old, an old Indian and, um, um, becomes you know one of the leaders of the tribe but he's always got this one goal is to find that mountain lion that got his arm and really he doesn't really care that much about the mountain lion he wants his arm or somebody's arm.
PM: Right. [Laugh]
SH: So, um, time goes on and, um, he dies but he comes back as a ghost.
SH: Um, and what happens is as the settlers move in, he actually finds um, because he doesn't want to take people, you know, from his own tribe's arm but he needs an arm so he's spending all of eternity hunting for his arm and, um, as, you know, time comes on and the settlers start in, the region settlers.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: Um, one day one guy wakes up in the morning; he's bleeding; he felt like he doesn't have an arm and he sees this ghost of an Indian.
PM: Uh-huh.
SH: He's got his arm and uh he's trying to put it on his body and it didn't fit and it's too short and it didn't look like his arm so he throws it aside and goes on. Um, this happens all throughout history and he was telling us how it keeps going on and on.
PM: [Laugh]
SH: And you know as an adult it's not, it's, you know, he, it's a good story but as an eight-year-old kid you're worried about your arm.
PM: That's right. [Laughter]
SH: And because he usually catches people not in their house but when they're out camping or sleeping.
PM: In a tee-pee right. [Laugh]
SH: In a tee-pee yeah. So.
PM: [Laugh]
SH: He tells us his story, he says, you know, "You've got to watch out for your arm. Spend the night," um, you know, "because if he comes his name's Two Feathers," but there's a chant, um, in regards to you know to getting him away and it goes something like, "Two Feathers be gone I want my arm.''
PM: [Laugh]
SH: Um and there's also other things you can do to deter him. You can also, um, in front of your tee-pee you have to stack stones in a certain manner in order to say, "Hey I'm a friend and not a foe, I'd like to keep my arm."
PM: [Laugh]
SH: So he proceeds to have us, um, build the stones and, um, you know, learn the chant, we're chanting, and sends us off to bed. Now we all spend the whole night staying awake listening for Two Feathers. "Two Feathers is coming, Two Feathers is coming." He would do that to us in the night. "Two Feathers is coming."
PM: That's terrible. [Laugh]
SH: [Laugh] Uh, so you have eight scared boys that are Two Feathers. Now I don't know if this actually applies as a story I heard sort of an embellishment on this story in regards to I give you the details but.
PM: Uh, a good campfire, um.
SH: It's a good campfire story, um, so it's, I guess something to start with.
PM: Yep that's good.
SH: Um.
PM: Yeah, that's about 15 minutes I'd say.