As for the Seattle speech, I read about the invention of it by chance a couple of days after posting it on my FB wall! Wise words, but I won't be referring to them again. Shame though, as they do express a great truth, but the lack of authenticity is an issue of course. Ah well, there's plenty of genuine Native American wisdom to find truth from.
Aye, but don’t give up on it completely Mr T. Seattle's original speech was given in Lushotseed, his native tongue (his mother was Duwamish while his father was Suquamish). The speech was delivered to Isaac I Stevens, the new Governor and Commissioner of Indian Affairs for Washington Territories, at a meeting in December 1854 and was in reply to President Franklin Pierce's 'offer' to buy a tract of Seattle's land. His interpreter at that meeting, Dr Henry B Smith, had only lived for some two years in the area that Seattle and his people occupied and his knowledge of Lushotseed may not have been particularly refined. It’s also true, however, that the general 'meaning' of the Speech has been accepted by the present-day elders of the Duwamish and Suquamish peoples.*
We discussed this on two TMA threads back in 2006 (boy, things were livelier here back then!). About ten years earlier I wrote a paper on the Speech (from which the above quotes are taken). It's only a short paper called How Can You Buy the Sky? but it's as factual as I could make it and I'd be happy to send you a copy if you're interested.
* Gifford, Eli, The many Speeches of Chief Sealthl: The Manipulation of the Record for Religious, Political an Environmental Causes. Occasional papers of Native American Studies, No. 1, Soma State University, California, 1992.
Thanks so much for your informative post. So it has validity after all. We're talking about translation here, and this validity has been accepted by the Elders. I'd be really interested in reading your paper on this subject. Thanks for the offer!