What’s In Your Ouanga Bag?

A ouanga bag confiscated by Marines in 1921 near Gonaives is described as follows:

It was a hide bag, and in it were these objects : luck stones, snake bones, lizard jaws, squirrel teeth, bat bones, frog bones, black hen feathers and bones, black lamb wool, dove hearts, mole skins, images of wax and clay, candy made of brown sugar mixed with liver, mud, sulphur, salt, and alum, and vegetable poisons.

“From The Author’s Notebook”, appendix to The Magic Island (1929) by W B Seabrook (1884-1945), an “American Lost Generation occultist, explorer, traveller, cannibal, and journalist”, says the Wikipedia. Oh, also an alcoholic, a sadist, and a suicide.

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