We have followed De Soto into the land of the Chickasaws. He and his followers were the first white men to visit their country and to look into their faces. They were great travelers and ever on the alert, and the news that De Soto had put other Indians into chains and captivity, as well as the news of the battle at Mauilla, had doubtless reached the Chickasaws long before the expedition had reached their country. Biedma says the expedition was detained at the river three days before a passage was effected, which was finally accomplished and the expedition installed for the winter as shown above.It seems to me as this is the dawn of history for the Chickasaws, and that history not written by them, but by the Spaniards, who delighted to call themselves Christians, it is highly important to inquire what manner of people were the original Chickasaws who roamed the forest when first seen by white men. Here is a brief pen picture of that splendid race now almost extinct in the course of a few years. The average citizen believes that our Chickasaws were a shiftless kind of savage, wandering over the country, living in bark or skin tepees and depending entirely upon the chase and fishing for a living. This is a very great mistake. They were a self-reliant, self-respecting people; and it may be added they required others to respect them. They had good houses, suitable to their conditions and means of building, to live in, those for the summer months being somewhat different from those they lived in for the winter, which were so constructed as to be warmer and more comfortable. Their houses were not only clean, but their lives pure, and their women were gracious, many of them very handsome; and what is more important, they were chaste and pure, for Haywood, regarded as the father of history in Tennessee, assures us that no Chickasaw girl was ever known to give birth to a child before wedlock. Of how many so-called civilized people can this be said?