Study Guide

Alligator Bayou Chapter 8

By Donna Jo Napoli

Chapter 8

  • Calo and Frank take Calo's uncles' horses on a little adventure. They ride near the Mississippi River, and past a swamp. As they ride, Calo learns a little about American Indian history, and he thinks about howmuch he likes water.
  • After stopping for a drink, a man named Joseph creeps up behind them with a musket pointed at Calo—he is a real American Indian, and Frank's friend, so he welcomes them and explains that he is the Tunica tribe.
  • But how can one person be a whole tribe? Well, Joseph was forced to leave his land, and after he left, the remaining members of his tribe were killed, so that makes him the last full-blooded Tunica alive.
  • Joseph freaks out a little when Calo tells him he is full-blooded Sicilian, because Sicilians were blamed for bringing yellow fever to the States. Frank, however, says that this was a lie white men spread about Italians so no one would like them.
  • Joseph offers the guys some venison jerky, which Calo is surprised to find out that he really likes.
  • Then Joseph gets out some clay and says every Tunica man knows how to make pottery.
  • So they all make bowls outside while Frank chatters on about pottery.
  • Calo draws on the outside of his bowl while singing a song Patricia taught him.

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