John Manke is an active former Bay View resident who is involved in numerous neighborhood organizations, including the Bay View Historical Society, the Humboldt Park Fourth of July Association and the Shore Shore Farmers Market. He believes Bay View has a fine tradition in its past that we do not want to lose in the future.
Today we all hear about efforts to help save the environment for the future. If we look back into the past, we can see how the Indians took care of their environment. They only killed the animals that they needed to feed and make clothes with. They knew that if they protected their living area, that there would most likely be food and game for a long time. Care was taken as to what water was used for drinking. If their area became too exhausted for survival, then they moved to a new area to live and hunt in. The women had to serve the men and cook, make clothing, clean their clothes, have their children, care for their children and serve their family in all needed ways. Simplicity was one of their ways of survival. Many times they traded with other tribes for things that they needed in form of bartering. Money had little value to them. Their skills and possessions were their valuable assets. Through living in this area, they learned what weather conditions could occur. They were able to plan ahead and keep the whole tribe in knowledge of what was happening around them. When the white man came along, he had no understanding of what it meant to use only what you needed to exist. They destroyed many of the Indian's habitats and eliminated the game that they needed to survive on. White man polluted the land and waterways in a great way. The Indians had no immunity to white man's diseases. Measles, mumps, chicken pox and small pox wiped out many of them. Typhoid and cholera wiped both white man and Indians. Polluted water caused this problem. Many times the Indians were forced to move west so that we could claim their lands. Look at the history books and see how the land looked before the Indians moved west, and then afterwards when white man settled on their land. We can see a need for ecology after looking at these pictures. Perhaps if we did some conservation work and cleaned up our waterways, we could return to some of the old ways. Most of the damage will last for a very long time. Take the time to study our drinking water supply and remember what happened to our early settlers. There are still mass graves around of people who died during a typhoid or cholera epidemic in the past. Please protect our drinking water supply for our future use. Unless you want to drink recycled water like in California, do something about protecting our environment and water supply. Contact your library to read materials on this subject manner. The contact your elected officials to do something about it. Please support the Bay View community