Gray on Grasshoppers

George Moses Gray continues his recollections about California grasshoppers:

When I told the General about it [i.e., Indians harvesting grasshoppers] he said, “I have eaten a great many good grasshopper pancakes,” and told me the following story.

He said, “When I lived in the Adobe house two men from the East were staying with me overnight. They had pancakes for breakfast. As they finished easting Nopaney, his cook and housekeeper, came in and said, ‘General, no more pancakes. Grasshopper meal all gone.’ One of the men said, “‘What! We have not been eating grasshoppers, have we?’ The General said, ‘You certainly have.’ They both said, ‘We don’t believe it.'”

The General said, “Nopaney, bring in the can you had the meal in.” She did and the General knocked on the bottom of the can and poured the contents on to a plate and passed it around, and when they saw the little pieces of legs, they believed him and said they were good anyway.

Nopaney wouldn’t have called Bidwell “General” at that time. I don’t know what she would have called  him, but he was a Major in the California Battalion back when he lived in the adobe house.  But by the time Gray knew Bidwell, everyone called him General, so that’s the term Gray used.

About nancyleek

Nancy is a retired librarian who lives in Chico, California. She is the author of John Bidwell: The Adventurous Life of a California Pioneer.
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