I will find an answer.
On another subject, my great grandmother’s friend, Ada, who was a great storyteller
passed this story to me. Ada was younger than my grandfather but great grandmother had taken Ada under her wing and taught her the art of the story. The trick was to write it down and if you were meant to remember the story it would be imprinted on your mind.
Here is the story said to have taken place in the 17th century in West Tennessee:
The season was the gathering of food for the families.A group of hunters had come from Northern Mississippi down the Hatchie River to a spot above Estanaula. They along with their families had made a temporary village on a site that had been used for years. The Chickasaw nation had used this land for centuries and passed down the location to the young hunters. The hunters would kill and gather their game. The hunters would bring their bounty back to the village. The men would skin the animals getting the hides ready for the French traders. The women would prepare the meat and fish by curing and smoking it to take it back to their villages . The vegetables had been gathered and what had not been consumed were ready for the trip home.
Everyone felt they had a successful season everybody but the young hunter, Koi ,young panther. His grandfather told him of the panthers he had seen in the bottoms as a hunter. When his grandson was born he had insisted on him being named Koi.
The night of his grandson’s birth he saw him standing by a panther with one of his arrows through the another animal’s heart. As tradition would have it the young hunter would carry the arrows of the elder in this case his grandfather’s. The young hunter had lost his father in a battled so he was taught hunting by his grandfather.
As they turned to go back to their canoe out of nowhere the largest bear he had ever seen came charging out of the woods. Before they could get their arrows ready out of the trees came the loud not of this world scream. The bear stopped in his tracks and then it happened out of the tree jumped the big panther. It knocked the bear down so Koi could shoot the bear. The bear was dead and from a distant he saw the panther who had run off deeper in the woods ,the panther saved his life.
When they finally made it back to their village the story had been spread Grandfather was proud and relieved.
He explained “the night you went on your hunt I had a visit from the panther. I knew you were in danger so I asked the panther to watch over you. The panther is meant to be your spirit guide listen and watch.”
Koi would go onto become a legendary hunter of the Estanaula hunting ground.
I love this story. When I was younger I would go to the Hatchie Bottom and listen for the scream of the panther.