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This tale was submitted by Rachel A. Powless, a member of the Wolf Clan of the Mohawk Tribe.


The Iroquois Confederacy and its tribes of the Mohawk, Onondaga, Seneca, Oneida, Cayuga, and Tuscarora for many centuries has honoured, revered, and respected the Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Lacrosse is also a time-honoured tradition within our nation and these two unlikely entities come together in celebration. Our Elders and storytellers tell us that it was the diminutive Ruby-throated Hummingbird that was selected to represent and symbolize our lacrosse players. Why would such a small creature carry such a burden, you ask? It has been said that our ancestors in forming the lacrosse stick shaped the stick in the likeness of a hummingbird's tail feather for it is the hummer that has speed, accuracy, and agility--all attributes our lacrosse players' desire.

The Great Spirit tells us that all lacrosse players after death realize their dreams by playing that Big Game where all of their friends, relatives, and even famous players suit up one more time each honouring the spirited-player.

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