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Anishinabe Maple Syrup Legend

 

Anishibabe (“The People”)

 

Anishinabe lived in the Great Lakes area including Minnesota
 

Legend has it that the Great Spirit, Gitchee Manitou, made life easy for Anishibabe by providing abundant game and crops
 

Gitchee Manitou filled the maple tree with thick sweet syrup
 

One could break off a branch and let the sweet syrup drip into your mouth
 

Manabohzo, the hero and trickster of Algonquians, saw the Anishibabe were ignoring their work and getting fat and lazy from drinking too much syrup
 

Manabohzo collected water from the river in a birch bark basket and poured it in the top of the maple tree to thin out the syrup
 

Manabohzo also ordered that the trees only flow for a short time in the spring