Grampa’s Uncle Henry Konst used to tease him for being so many ethnicities and called him, “The Duke of Mixager.”
You see, Grampa’s father was half Scottish and the other half was a little bit of a lot. Grampa’s mom’s family (Uncle Henry's, too) was German. All German but with a possible hint of illicit Native American.
While I grew up thinking I was Indian because my dad was born in Indiana, I really didn’t know about the whole possible Native American connection. But apparently on Great Grama’s death bed, she whispered, “There is some Indian in us.” Coming from California in the 21st Century, it’s difficult to imagine that being anything but awesome, but times were different in the homestead years and some things were apparently not something the family was proud of.
But all I have to go on for this illicit Native American is a death bed statement, a tease from Uncle Henry about Grampa being named Pierre for a French Indian, and a story from Grampa’s childhood.
When he was a boy, his grampa, Tony Konst, took him to the Indian Reservation. They went into a tee pee and all sat in a circle and the men smoked a peace pipe. Grampa doesn’t remember where this was, but he remembers thinking that it was important that they were there and that his grampa was important to these Native Americans.
So was Tony’s mom or dad not who we think but actually a Native American? Or were Tony’s children those to first house the possible Native American DNA?
We may never know.
But it's cool.