Chief Dark Cloud at Hollywood Forever…

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Chief Dark Cloud

aka Elijah Tahamont

 

 

BORN: September 20, 1855, St. Francis Indian Village, Quebec, Canada

DIED: October 17, 1918, Los Angeles, California

CAUSE OF DEATH: Lobular pneumonia following Spanish Influenza

BURIAL: Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Section 10W

 

By Allan R. Ellenberger

 

Chief Dark Cloud, whose real name was Elijah Tahamont, was a Native American film actor sometimes billed as William Dark Cloud. He was also a popular and highly paid model who posed for over twenty years for famed sculptor, Frederic Remington. He was a chief of the Algonquin tribe (or Abenaquis tribe depending on the source) and prior to his film career was known as a popular lecturer.

 

 

Dark Cloud began working for American Mutoscope and Biograph in 1910, making his first screen appearance under the direction of D. W. Griffith. Moving west, he appeared in scores of westerns and other films.

  

 

 

 

Dark Cloud was married to Soaring Dove (Margaret Camp), also a model, and the father of actress Beulah Dark Cloud (1887-1945) and Bessie ‘Bright’ Eyes Tahamont (who died at the age of fifteen in September 1907, in Astoria, New York). Both girls were the first Native American children to attend a New York public school.

 

 

Dark Cloud was reportedly an alcoholic and womanizer, which gained him many enemies. Influenza, which was at a world-wide epidemic, was the official cause of his death in 1918. However, rumors at the time claimed that he was either murdered by a jealous husband or died from accidental drowning.

 

 

 

Thanks to Jim L of Hollywoodunderground for Dark Cloud’s date and cause of death

 

The preceding is one in a series of biographical sketches of
Hollywood Forever Cemetery residents.
 

 

 

 

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20 Responses to “Chief Dark Cloud at Hollywood Forever…”

  1. Melissa says:

    As intriguing as the rumours may have been, given the date of death, chances are he probably died of influenza….more’s the pity :p

    Love your site, Allen; always look forward to the latest installment. You’re the best!!

  2. Allan Ellenberger says:

    Thanks Melissa. I agree with you that influenza was most likely the cause. I searched everywhere for an obit on Dark Cloud but found nothing. I’m always surprised when obits are NOT published on well-known people. Stay tuned.

  3. Scott Groll says:

    There was a paid obituary in the October 18, 1918 L.A. Times: “DARK CLOUD, October 17, at No. 4336 Russell Avenue. Elijah Tahamont Dark Cloud, aged 63 years. Funeral private, Saturday October 19, 2 p.m. from chapel of W.M. Strother, No. 6240 Hollywood boulevard.”

  4. Allan Ellenberger says:

    Thanks so much for that information Scott.

  5. Josiah Simpson says:

    I was woundering how tall how Dark Cloud was?

  6. Teri Brewer says:

    researching Tahamont’s friendship with cameraman and stuntman Harry James who founded a youth organization influenced by him. Would love to talk to you on the phone sometime
    ______________________________
    A. Contact me at my email address: Hollywoodland23@aol.com. Thanks. — Allan

  7. Ryan Patterson says:

    hi my name is ryan patterson, my grandmothers name is Elizabeth Tahamont we are members of the abenaki tribe, my great grandfather was Buck Tahamont Chief and full blood native, is it possible i am related to Dark Cloud?
    ______________________
    Hi Ryan, I suppose its possibly. Can you ask your grandmother or other older members of your family?

  8. G. Hayden says:

    He was an Abenaki. Your place of birth for him is their reservation. The Algonquins were a language group that included many tribes in Eastern North America. “Chief” is part of his stage name, not his actual tribal status. One of his grandaughters married Iron Eyes Cody, the Crying Indian, who also was an actor.

  9. G. Hayden says:

    His father, Lazare, was born about 1830 at the reservation. Dark Cloud lived around Lake George NY before he moved to Hollywood.

  10. Dylan says:

    I am Dark Cloud’s 4 great grandson my grandmother has hes real war club and bow for when he used to hunt. And Ryan Patterson i am lenipi so i dont know what tribe your from but I would ask and find out about if your related or not.

  11. Ryan Patterson says:

    What is your full name Dylan? This may help me find more information about my great grandfather…I recently purchased a text book called “ABORIGINAL PEOPLES AND THE CANADIAN MILITARY: HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES.” Within it mentions him during his duties in the Canadian army. Mainly though it explains that he posed for a picture in full headdress while in uniform. For reasons of his own most likely. I also have all of his army issued term cards and a newspaper clipping. In the newspaper it explains that he is a full blooded Abenaki, Native American… This is information i’ve gathered thus far, it may not be much but is so greatly appreciated on my families part to have. Thanks everyone for the replies, I hope that there is more out there…

  12. Christopher Roy says:

    Elijah Tahamont was definitely Abenaki. I’m an anthropologist working with many of Elijah’s relatives and would be interested in speaking with other Tahamonts out there like Ryan and Dylan. Feel free to e-mail me at caroy@pshift.com.

  13. Dylan says:

    I am not talking about Elijah Tahamont ,I am talking about the (pacific and atlantic) Chief Darkcloud. It is the black and white picture with the man sitting on the rocks with his leg up .

  14. Ryan Patterson says:

    Hello Christopher,

    That’s incredible that you say you study anthropology. We should discuss the culture of The Abenaki, Native Americans. Although the majority of “Indians” First peoples, are today living on reservations. As given to them by the Europeans that launched one of the largest genocides on the Aboriginals. Going as far as too poison blankets giving them to our women and our children. It was only once the governements at the time realized it was actually cheaper to keep them on reservations and end the 400 year war on the people. My Tribe… was brutally attacked to the point of near extinction. A general Rogers launched an attack at St. Francis that killed an estimated 200, he must have estimated the population the night before the attack at about 220. There were only 20 survivors. The village must have contained a disproportionate number of women and children at that moment because many warriors were away. He killed our women and children. 20 survivors. Those warriors who survived should never let this die in their hearts.

  15. Ryan Patterson says:

    I found out more information from my family this might help… My Great Grandfather was Clarence Buck Tahamont but everybody who new him called him Buck. He was born in the U.S. lived on a reservation in the Republic of Missisquoi (State of Vermont). He moved to Quebec area and was associated with the reservation in Odanak…
    That is when he met my Great Grandmother.He also served with the North West Mounted Police before they became the RCMP.

  16. Guy Agnew says:

    What tribe was Dark Cloud from ? Is it related to the Crow Tribe in montana

  17. phpstudioe8 says:

    A lawyer I once knew told me of a strange case, a suffragette who had never married. After her death, he opened her trunk and discovered 50 wedding gowns.Marguerite Young

  18. Ryan John Patterson says:

    Hello I commented on this website some time ago about my Great grandfather Clarence Tahamont. Since then I have been given information that I am related to Elijah Tahamont “Dark Cloud.” Here is a video made in Odanak, Quebec. The same Indian village Dark Cloud was from. The following reading is from “The Only Good Indian.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TxhfxKxDafo&feature=plcp

  19. Rev. Hugh Bradley says:

    Greetings: I am working on my family tree. My father told me that we are part American Indian. It is told that his great grandmother was married to an Indian, named Chief Dark Cloud and his daughter, Bright Eyes Cloud was the one who married into the family through Treen name. If there is anyone who can help—much appreciated.

    Rev. Bradley

  20. Terry williamson says:

    Hello Ryan my grand father was buck tahamont .I would to speak to you to find out more.

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