E. Pauline Johnson - Tehakionwake

Encouraged by the efforts of Richard Pilant and other members of the Institute of
Iroquoian Studies in Brantford Ontario, the Canadian Post Office issued a stamp in
1961 to commemorate the one hundredth anniverary of E. Pauline Johnson's birth.


Chiefswood, the family home on the Six Nations Reserve where Pauline Johnson grew up, reflected the family's dual cultural perspective, with the door facing the road travelled by the white man mirroring the door facing the river travelled by the people of the reserve.

"I am an Indian, and my aim, my joy and my pride is to sing the glories of my own people. Ours was the race that gave the world its measure of heroism, its standard of physical prowess. Ours was the race that taught the world that avarice veiled by any other name is crime, and ours was the faith that taught men to live without greed and to die without fear."

- Quotation attributed to Pauline Johnson by Ernest Thompson Seton

A Chronology of the Life of E. (Emily) Pauline Johnson

March 10, 1861 - born on the Six Nations Reserve, Brantford, Ontario

1877 - attends Central Collegiate in Brantford for two years while boarding with the Curtis family

1884 - Johnson's father dies and the widow and two daughters move from the family home of "Chiefswood" to Brantford

1885 - "My Little Jean," Johnson's first published poem, appears in Gems of Poetry (New York) and in June Goldwin Smith's The Week purchases Johnson's poem "A Cry From An Indian Wife."

1892 - first magazine article (on Indian medicine men) is sold to Dominion Illustrated.

1894 - visits England for the first time and her first book, The White Wampum is published; makes makes her first comprehensive tour of Canada

1897 - appears on stage for the first time with Walter McRaye who later becomes her stage partner; meets banker Charles Drayton in Winnipeg

1898 - becomes engaged to Charles Drayton; Johnson's mother dies; engagement to Charles Drayton is broken off

1907 - travels to Britain for the last time

1908 - settles in Vancouver after final road tour with Walter McRaye

1912 - Flint and Feather, a collection of Johnson's poetry with a dedication to Prince Albert, the Duke of Connaught is published by the Musson Book Company. William Briggs publishing company assembles stories previously published in The Boys' World in The Shagganappi and Ryerson Press collects twelve articles and stories published in The Moccasin Maker the following year.

March 7, 1913 - dies of cancer that had been diagnosed in 1909 and has her ashes spread in Vancouver's Stanley Park on the following Sunday

1922 - a cairn is erected in Stanley Park

A memorial to E. Pauline Johnson beside
the Mohawk Chapel in Brantford.

"Miss Johnson swept into . . . remote communities like a vigorous and refreshing wind form civilization, bringing not only entertainment but a vision of Canada stretching from sea to sea. She preached the gospel of a united Canada at a time when the concept of Canada had still not encompassed the separate and rival concepts of Ontario, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, or even more limited regions."

- Marcus Van Steen in Pauline Johnson Her Life and Work


Gray, Charlotte. 2002. Flint and Feather - The Life and Times of E. Pauline Johnson, Tekahionwake. Toronto: HarperCollins.

Johnson, E. Pauline. 1981. Flint and Feather. Markham, Ontario: Paperjacks.

Keller, Betty. 1981. Pauline A Biography of Pauline Johnson. Halifax, Nova Scotia: Formac Publishing.

Van Steen, Marcus. 1965. Pauline Johnson Her Life and Work. Toronto: Musson Book Company.

Links to the E. Pauline Johnson Life page at the archives at McMaster University.

Links to Collected Poems from the National Library of Canada.

Links to a Biography from the National Library of Canada.

Several books by or about E. Pauline Johnson are available from Amazon.com. Click on the title for information on ordering a specific work or click on the logo to do your own search:

Legends of Vancouver by E. Pauline Johnson (with an introduction by Robin Laurence).

The Mocassin Maker by E. Pauline Johnson et. al..

Buckskin & Broadcloth : A Celebration of E. Pauline Johnson - Tekahionwake, 1861-1913 by Sheila Johnston and Raymond R. Skye (Illustrator).

Pauline : A Biography of Pauline Johnson by Betty Keller.

Pale as Real Ladies - Poems for Pauline Johnson by Joan Crate.

Title page of Pauline Johnson and Her Friends, a 1947 biography by
Walter McRaye, Pauline Johnson's stage partner from 1901 to 1909.

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