American Indian Culture

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MAGILL’S C H O I C E

American Indian Culture
Volume 1
Acorns—Headdresses

Edited by

Carole A. Barrett
University of Mary

Harvey J. Markowitz
Washington and Lee University

Salem Press, Inc.
Pasadena, California Hackensack, New Jersey

Copyright © 2004, by Salem Press, Inc. All rights in this book are reserved. No part of this work may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without written permission from the copyright owner except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. For information address the publisher, Salem Press, Inc., P.O. Box 50062, Pasadena, California 91115. ∞ The paper used in these volumes conforms to the American National Standard for Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, Z39.481992 (R1997) Most of the essays appearing within are drawn from Ready Reference: American Indians (1995), Great Events from History: Revised North American Series (1997), and Racial and Ethnic Relations in America (1999); essays have been updated and new essays have been added.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data American Indian culture / edited by Carole A. Barrett, Harvey J. Markowitz. p. cm. — (Magill’s choice) Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 1-58765-192-0 (set : alk. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-193-9 (vol. 1 : alk. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-194-7 (vol. 2 : alk. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-247-1 (vol. 3 : alk. paper) 1. Indians of North America—Social life and customs. I. Barrett, Carole A. II. Markowitz, Harvey. III. Series. E98.S7A44 2004 970.004′97—dc22 2004001362

First Printing

printed in the united states of america

Contents
Publisher’s Note . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix Contributors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xiii Alphabetical List of Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xvii Acorns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Adobe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Adoption . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Agriculture. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Alcoholism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 American Indian Studies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Anasazi Civilization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Appliqué and Ribbonwork . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Architecture: Arctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Architecture: California . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Architecture: Great Basin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 Architecture: Northeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 Architecture: Northwest Coast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 Architecture: Plains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Architecture: Plateau . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Architecture: Southeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Architecture: Southwest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Architecture: Subarctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Art and Artists: Contemporary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Arts and Crafts: Arctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Arts and Crafts: California . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 Arts and Crafts: Great Basin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79 Arts and Crafts: Northeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83 Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86 Arts and Crafts: Plains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90 Arts and Crafts: Plateau. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94 Arts and Crafts: Southeast . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97 Arts and Crafts: Southwest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Arts and Crafts: Subarctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104
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Contents

Astronomy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 Atlatl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 108 Aztec Empire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 Ball Game and Courts . . . . . . . Banner Stones . . . . . . . . . . . . Baskets and Basketry . . . . . . . . Beads and Beadwork. . . . . . . . Beans. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Berdache. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Birchbark . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Black Drink . . . . . . . . . . . . . Black Hills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bladder Festival . . . . . . . . . . Blankets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Boarding and Residential Schools Boats and Watercraft . . . . . . . . Booger Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . Bows, Arrows, and Quivers . . . . Bragskins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Buffalo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Buffalo Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . Bundles, Sacred . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 117 118 123 127 128 130 132 133 134 136 138 143 147 148 151 152 155 156 160 160 162 163 167 168 173 174 178 180 182 183

Cacique . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Calumets and Pipe Bags . . . . . . . Captivity and Captivity Narratives Chantways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chickee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Children . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chilkat Blankets . . . . . . . . . . . Clans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cliff Dwellings . . . . . . . . . . . . Clowns. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Codices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Corn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Contents

Corn Woman . . . . . . . . Cotton . . . . . . . . . . . . Coup Sticks and Counting Culture Areas . . . . . . . .

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Dances and Dancing . . . . . . . Death and Mortuary Customs . Deer Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . Demography . . . . . . . . . . . Disease and Intergroup Contact Dogs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dream Catchers. . . . . . . . . . Dress and Adornment . . . . . . Drums . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Earthlodge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Education: Post-contact . . . . . . Education: Pre-contact . . . . . . . Effigy Mounds . . . . . . . . . . . Elderly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Employment and Unemployment Ethnophilosophy and Worldview False Face Ceremony. . . . . . . Feast of the Dead . . . . . . . . . Feasts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Feathers and Featherwork. . . . Fire and Firemaking . . . . . . . Fish and Fishing . . . . . . . . . Flutes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Food Preparation and Cooking . Gambling . . . . . . . . . . . Games and Contests . . . . . Gender Relations and Roles . Ghost Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

vii

Contents

Gifts and Gift Giving. . Gold and Goldworking Gourd Dance . . . . . . Grass Dance . . . . . . . Grass House. . . . . . . Green Corn Dance . . . Grooming . . . . . . . . Guardian Spirits . . . . Guns . . . . . . . . . . . Hako . . . . . . . Hamatsa . . . . . Hand Games . . Hand Tremblers Headdresses. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Publisher’s Note
American Indian Culture joins three other publications in the Magill’s Choice series of core teaching tools for public, school, and college libraries: American Indian Biographies (1 volume, 1999, to be reissued in an expanded edition in 2005), covering 329 Native North Americans from the sixteenth century to the present day; American Indian Tribes (2 volumes, 2000), with surveys of the ten major culture areas of North America and nearly 300 tribes and nations; and American Indian History (2 volumes, 2003), with 224 essays covering the major events and developments in the history of Native Americans of North America, from the earliest prehistoric traditions through the activism of the present day. The current three volumes add 275 entries to the more than 800 covered in the companion publications. These essays are a mixture of both new and old: 259 are drawn from three previous Salem Press publications: Ready Reference: American Indians (3 volumes, 1995), winner of the American Library Association’s Outstanding Reference Source Award; Great Events from History: Revised North American Series (4 volumes, 1997); and Racial and Ethnic Relations in America (3 volumes, 1999). Updating of the bibliographies of previously published essays was accompanied by the addition of more than 180 new bibliographies as well as new citations to nearly all existing bibliographies. Care was taken to review datedness among the previously published essays, and several of the more timesensitive topics—“Demography,” “Elderly,” “Gambling,” “Land Claims,” and “Pan-Indianism”—were significantly revised and updated. In addition, 16 essays were newly commissioned for this publication. Arranged alphabetically by topic, each of the essays addresses a cultural phenomenon characteristic of the indigenous peoples of North America. Essays range in length from 250 to 3,000 words and cover the range of culture from lifeways, religious rituals, and material culture to art forms and modern social phenomena. Twenty separate essays cover both “Architecture” and “Arts and
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Publisher’s Note

Crafts” in ten North American culture areas: the Arctic, California, the Great Basin, the Northeast, the Northwest Coast, the Plains, the Plateau, the Southeast, the Southwest, and the Subarctic. In other entries, students will find everything from brief discussions of the importance of acorns or wild rice to a survey of agriculture; from a history of the atlatl to an essay on weapons in general; from entries on particular dance forms, such as the Ghost Dance, the Sun Dance, and the Buffalo Dance, to an overview of dances and dancing. Although the emphasis is on the traditional cultural heritage of North American indigenous peoples, modern social trends are surveyed and analyzed as well: such essays cover alcoholism, the impact of disease (both pre-contact and post-contact), education, family life, gaming, tourism, and urban Indians. It is perhaps as important to mention what will not be found here as what we have included: Key historic events, movements, laws, acts, treaties, organizations, reports, wars, battles, court cases, and other historical overviews are covered in the companion twovolume publication American Indian History; coverage of tribes and nations is addressed in American Indian Tribes; and more than three hundred biographies of historic Native American personages appear in American Indian Biographies. Each essay is arranged in a ready-reference format that calls out the following elements at the top: name of topic by key word; tribe or tribes affected or involved (topics are often, but not always, pantribal); and finally a brief synopsis of the topic’s significance. These reference features are followed by a description and discussion of the topic’s importance in American Indian culture. All essays end with a list of “Sources for Further Study,” which, as stated above, have been expanded and updated to offer the most recent and accessible print resources pertinent to the topic; Web sites are listed in the appendix “Web Resources.” All essays are fully crossreferenced to one another in the “See also” section at the essay’s end, where the name of the contributor also appears. The three volumes are illustrated with more than 135 photographs, drawings, maps, and tables, and several appendixes at the end of volume 3 serve as research tools:
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Publisher’s Note

• • • • • • • • •

Educational Institutions and Programs (expanded) Festivals and Pow-wows (expanded) Glossary Mediagraphy Museums, Archives, and Libraries Organizations, Agencies, and Societies Tribes by Culture Area Bibliography (expanded) Web Resources (expanded)

Subtopics addressed in the text are accessible through three indexes: • Category Index: essays by subject, from “Agriculture and Foodstuffs” through “Weapons and Warfare” • Culture Area Index: essays organized by the ten major North American culture areas as well as “Pantribal” for those of general application • Subject Index: a general and comprehensive index including concepts, forms of material culture, tribes, people, and organizations Finally, the front matter to all three volumes contains the full alphabetized list of contents for ready reference. A few comments must be made on certain editorial decisions. Terms ranging from “American Indian” to “Native American” to “tribe” are accepted by some and disapproved of by others. We have used “American Indian” in the title of this set, as it is today a widely accepted collective name for the first inhabitants of North America and their descendants. We have allowed authors to use either “American Indian” or “Native American” in their articles rather than impose a term editorially, recognizing that individual writers have their own preferences. The inclusion of line drawings, maps, and 90 photographs illustrates the social concepts and material culture presented in the
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Publisher’s Note

text. Where available historical or rare images were not of the best quality, the editors erred on the side of inclusion. The editors wish to acknowledge the invaluable guidance and assistance of Professors Carole A. Barrett of the University of Mary and Harvey J. Markowitz of Washington and Lee University, both of whom specialize in American Indian studies. They surveyed the table of contents, recommended new entries, and generously wrote many of them. In addition, we wish to thank the contributing writers, whose names appear on the following pages.

xii

Contributors
Thomas L. Altherr
Metropolitan State College of Denver

Richmond Clow
University of Montana

Richard G. Condon
University of Arkansas

T. J. Arant
Appalachian State University

Michael Coronel
University of Northern Colorado

Mary Pat Balkus
Radford University

Patricia Coronel
Colorado State University

Carl L. Bankston III
Tulane University

LouAnn Faris Culley
Kansas State University

Russell J. Barber
California State University, San Bernardino

Michael G. Davis
Northeast Missouri State University

Carole A. Barrett
University of Mary

Jennifer Davis
University of Dayton

Bette Blaisdell
Independent Scholar

Ronald J. Duncan
Oklahoma Baptist University

Kendall W. Brown
Brigham Young University

Dorothy Engan-Barker
Mankato State University

Gregory R. Campbell
University of Montana

James D. Farmer
Virginia Commonwealth University

Byron D. Cannon
University of Utah

Michael Findlay
California State University, Chico

Thomas P. Carroll
John A. Logan College

Roberta Fiske-Rusciano
Rutgers University

Cheryl Claassen
Appalachian State University

William B. Folkestad
Central Washington University xiii

Contributors

Raymond Frey
Centenary College

Helen Jaskoski
California State University, Fullerton

Lucy Ganje
University of North Dakota

Joseph C. Jastrzembski
University of Texas at El Paso

Lynne Getz
Appalachian State University

Bruce E. Johansen
University of Nebraska at Omaha

Marc Goldstein
Independent Scholar

Marcella T. Joy
Independent Scholar

Nancy M. Gordon
Independent Scholar

Charles Louis Kammer III
The College of Wooster

William H. Green
University of Missouri, Columbia

Nathan R. Kollar
St. John Fisher College

Eric Henderson
University of Northern Iowa

Philip E. Lampe
Incarnate Word College

Donna Hess
South Dakota State University

Elden Lawrence
South Dakota State University

C. L. Higham
Winona State University

Denise Low
Haskell Indian Nations University

Carl W. Hoagstrom
Ohio Northern University

William C. Lowe
Mount St. Clare College

John Hoopes
University of Kansas

Kenneth S. McAllister
University of Illinois at Chicago

Andrew C. Isenberg
University of Puget Sound

Heather McKillop
Louisiana State University

M. A. Jaimes
University of Colorado at Boulder

Kimberly Manning
California State University, Santa Barbara

Jennifer Raye James
Independent Scholar xiv

Contributors

Harvey Markowitz
Washington and Lee University

William T. Osborne
Florida International University

Lynn M. Mason
Lubbock Christian University

Martha I. Pallante
Youngstown State University

Patricia Masserman
Independent Scholar

Zena Pearlstone
California State University, Long Beach

Howard Meredith
University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

Victoria Price
Lamar University

Linda J. Meyers
Pasadena City College

Jon Reyhner
Montana State University, Billings

David N. Mielke
Appalachian State University

Jennifer Rivers
Brigham Young University

Laurence Miller
Western Washington State University

Moises Roizen
West Valley College

David J. Minderhout
Bloomsburg University

John Alan Ross
Eastern Washington University

Molly H. Mullin
Duke University

Richard Sax
Madonna University

Bert M. Mutersbaugh
Eastern Kentucky University

Glenn J. Schiffman
Independent Scholar

Gary A. Olson
San Bernardino Valley College

Michael W. Simpson
Eastern Washington University

Nancy H. Omaha Boy
Rutgers University

Sanford S. Singer
University of Dayton

Max Orezzoli
Florida International University

Roger Smith
Linfield College

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Contributors

Daniel L. Smith-Christopher
Loyola Marymount University

Gale M. Thompson
Saginaw Valley State University

Pamela R. Stern
University of Arkansas

Leslie V. Tischauser
Prairie State College

Ruffin Stirling
Independent Scholar

Diane C. Van Noord
Western Michigan University

Leslie Stricker
Independent Scholar

Mary E. Virginia
Independent Scholar

Harold D. Tallant
Georgetown College

Susan J. Wurtzburg
University of Canterbury

Nicholas C. Thomas
Auburn University at Montgomery

Clifton K. Yearley
State University of New York at Buffalo

xvi

Alphabetical List of Contents
Volume 1
Acorns. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Adobe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Adoption . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Agriculture . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Alcoholism . . . . . . . . . . . 14 American Indian Studies . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Anasazi Civilization . . . . . . 26 Appliqué and Ribbonwork . . . . . . . . . 31 Architecture: Arctic. . . . . . . 35 Architecture: California . . . . 40 Architecture: Great Basin . . . 43 Architecture: Northeast . . . . 45 Architecture: Northwest Coast . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 Architecture: Plains. . . . . . . 53 Architecture: Plateau . . . . . . 56 Architecture: Southeast . . . . 58 Architecture: Southwest . . . . 61 Architecture: Subarctic . . . . . 66 Art and Artists: Contemporary . . . . . . . . 67 Arts and Crafts: Arctic . . . . . 71 Arts and Crafts: California. . . . . . . . . . . 75 Arts and Crafts: Great Basin. . . . . . . . . . 79 Arts and Crafts: Northeast. . . . . . . . . . . 83 Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast . . . . . . 86 xvii Arts and Crafts: Plains . . . . . 90 Arts and Crafts: Plateau . . . . . . . . . . . . 94 Arts and Crafts: Southeast . . . . . . . . . . . 97 Arts and Crafts: Southwest. . . . . . . . . . 100 Arts and Crafts: Subarctic . . . . . . . . . . 104 Astronomy . . . . . . . . . . . 106 Atlatl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 108 Aztec Empire. . . . . . . . . . 110 Ball Game and Courts. . . Banner Stones . . . . . . . Baskets and Basketry . . . Beads and Beadwork . . . Beans . . . . . . . . . . . . Berdache . . . . . . . . . . Birchbark . . . . . . . . . . Black Drink . . . . . . . . Black Hills . . . . . . . . . Bladder Festival . . . . . . Blankets . . . . . . . . . . Boarding and Residential Schools . . . . . . . . . Boats and Watercraft . . . Booger Dance . . . . . . . Bows, Arrows, and Quivers . . . . . . . . . Bragskins . . . . . . . . . . Buffalo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 117 118 123 127 128 130 132 133 134 136

. . 138 . . 143 . . 147 . . 148 . . 151 . . 152

Alphabetical List of Contents Buffalo Dance . . . . . . . . . 155 Bundles, Sacred . . . . . . . . 156 Cacique . . . . . . . . . . Calumets and Pipe Bags . . . . . . . . . . Captivity and Captivity Narratives . . . . . . Chantways . . . . . . . . Chickee . . . . . . . . . . Children . . . . . . . . . Chilkat Blankets . . . . . Clans . . . . . . . . . . . Cliff Dwellings. . . . . . Clowns . . . . . . . . . . Codices . . . . . . . . . . Corn. . . . . . . . . . . . Corn Woman. . . . . . . Cotton . . . . . . . . . . Coup Sticks and Counting . . . . . . . Culture Areas . . . . . . Dances and Dancing . . Death and Mortuary Customs. . . . . . . . Deer Dance. . . . . . . . Demography . . . . . . . Disease and Intergroup Contact . . . . . . . . Dogs . . . . . . . . . . . Dream Catchers . . . . . Dress and Adornment . Drums . . . . . . . . . . . . . 160 . . . 160 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 162 163 167 168 173 174 178 180 182 183 189 190 Effigy Mounds . . . . . Elderly . . . . . . . . . Employment and Unemployment . . Ethnophilosophy and Worldview . . . . . False Face Ceremony . Feast of the Dead . . . Feasts . . . . . . . . . . Feathers and Featherwork . . . . Fire and Firemaking. . Fish and Fishing . . . . Flutes . . . . . . . . . . Food Preparation and Cooking . . . . . . . . . . . 258 . . . . 260 . . . . 263 . . . . 270 . . . . 279 . . . . 280 . . . . 281 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 287 289 291 294

. . . . 295 . . . 298 . . . 303 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 308 319 323 325 327 328 329 330 332 336 337 339 343 344 346 348

. . . 191 . . . 192 . . . 202 . . . 210 . . . 214 . . . 215 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 225 230 231 233 242

Gambling. . . . . . . . . Games and Contests . . Gender Relations and Roles. . . . . . . . . . Ghost Dance . . . . . . . Gifts and Gift Giving . . Gold and Goldworking . Gourd Dance. . . . . . . Grass Dance . . . . . . . Grass House . . . . . . . Green Corn Dance. . . . Grooming . . . . . . . . Guardian Spirits . . . . . Guns . . . . . . . . . . . Hako . . . . . . Hamatsa . . . . Hand Games . . Hand Tremblers Headdresses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Earthlodge . . . . . . . . . . . 243 Education: Post-contact. . . . 245 Education: Pre-contact . . . . 254

xviii

Alphabetical List of Contents

Volume 2
Hides and Hidework . . Hogan . . . . . . . . . . Hohokam Culture . . . . Horses . . . . . . . . . . Humor . . . . . . . . . . Hunting and Gathering. Husk Face Society . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 353 355 356 362 365 366 369 370 371 372 374 Maru Cult . . . . . . . . Masks . . . . . . . . . . . Mathematics . . . . . . . Mayan Civilization . . . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact . Medicine Bundles . . . . Medicine Wheels . . . . Menses and Menstruation . . . . . Metalwork . . . . . . . . Midewiwin. . . . . . . . Midwinter Ceremony . . Military Societies . . . . Missions and Missionaries . . . . . Mississippian Culture. . Moccasins . . . . . . . . Mogollon Culture . . . . Money . . . . . . . . . . Morning Star Ceremony Mosaic and Inlay . . . . Mother Earth. . . . . . . Mounds and Mound Builders . . . . . . . . Music and Song . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 425 427 431 432

. . . 438 . . . 446 . . . 454 . . . 455 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 456 457 459 460 462 463 468 473 474 479 481 482 483

Igloo . . . . . . . . . . . . Incest Taboo . . . . . . . . Indian Police and Judges . Irrigation . . . . . . . . . .

Joking Relations . . . . . . . . 375 Kachinas . . . . . . Kinnikinnick . . . . Kinship and Social Organization . . Kivas . . . . . . . . Knives . . . . . . . Kuksu Rituals and Society. . . . . . . . . . . . 377 . . . . . . 379 . . . . . . 380 . . . . . . 388 . . . . . . 390 . . . . . . 391 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 395 396 397 402 412 414 415

Lacrosse . . . . . . . Lances and Spears. . Land Claims . . . . . Language Families . Lean-To . . . . . . . . Longhouse . . . . . . Longhouse Religion .

. . . 484 . . . 487

Names and Naming. . . . . . 496 Native American Church . . . 498 Ohio Mound Builders. . . . . 501 Okeepa . . . . . . . . . . . . . 506 Olmec Civilization . . . . . . 507 xix

Manibozho . . . . . . . . . . . 418 Maple Syrup and Sugar . . . 420 Marriage and Divorce. . . . . 422

Alphabetical List of Contents Oral Literatures . . . . . . . . 512 Oratory . . . . . . . . . . . . . 520 Ornaments . . . . . . . . . . . 523 Paints and Painting . . Pan-Indianism . . . . . Parfleche . . . . . . . . Pemmican . . . . . . . Petroglyphs . . . . . . Peyote and Peyote Religion . . . . . . . Pictographs . . . . . . Pipestone Quarries . . Pit House . . . . . . . . Plank House . . . . . . Pochteca . . . . . . . . Political Organization and Leadership. . . Potlatch . . . . . . . . . Pottery . . . . . . . . . Pow-wows and Celebrations . . . . Praying Indians . . . . Projectile Points . . . . Puberty and Initiation Rites . . . . . . . . . Pueblo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 524 526 531 532 533 536 540 544 545 547 549 Resources. . . . . . . . . . . . 614 Rite of Consolation . . . . . . 617 Rites of Passage . . . . . . . . 618 Sachem . . . . . . . . . . Sacred, the . . . . . . . . Sacred Narratives . . . . Salmon . . . . . . . . . . Salt . . . . . . . . . . . . Sand Painting . . . . . . Scalps and Scalping . . . Sculpture . . . . . . . . . Secotan . . . . . . . . . . Secret Societies. . . . . . Serpent Mounds . . . . . Shaker Church . . . . . . Shaking Tent Ceremony Shalako . . . . . . . . . . Shells and Shellwork . . Shields . . . . . . . . . . Sign Language . . . . . . Silverworking . . . . . . Slavery . . . . . . . . . . Snake Dance . . . . . . . Social Control . . . . . . Societies: Non-kin-based Spirit Dancing . . . . . . Sports Mascots. . . . . . Squash . . . . . . . . . . Star Quilts . . . . . . . . Stereotypes . . . . . . . . Stomp Dance. . . . . . . Subsistence . . . . . . . . Suicide . . . . . . . . . . Sun Dance . . . . . . . . Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths . . . . . . Syllabaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 622 623 630 633 635 636 638 641 642 644 645 647 649 651 651 654 658 659 662 666 667 670 678 679 683 684 686 691 692 702 703

. . . . 550 . . . . 561 . . . . 563 . . . . 568 . . . . 572 . . . . 575 . . . . 576 . . . . 580

Quetzalcóatl . . . . . . . . . . 582 Quillwork . . . . . . . . . . . 583 Ranching . . . . . . . Religion. . . . . . . . Religious Specialists. Relocation . . . . . . Repatriation . . . . . Resource Use: Pre-contact . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 585 586 595 603 608

. . . . . 611

. . . 709 . . . 711

xx

Alphabetical List of Contents

Volume 3
Symbolism in Art . . . . . . . 713 Tanning . . . . . . . . . Tattoos and Tattooing . Technology . . . . . . . Tipi . . . . . . . . . . . Tobacco . . . . . . . . . Tobacco Society and Dance . . . . . . . . Tomahawks . . . . . . Tools . . . . . . . . . . Torture . . . . . . . . . Totem Poles . . . . . . Totems . . . . . . . . . Tourism. . . . . . . . . Toys . . . . . . . . . . . Trade . . . . . . . . . . Transportation Modes Tribal Colleges . . . . . Tribal Councils. . . . . Tribal Courts . . . . . . Tricksters . . . . . . . . Turquoise. . . . . . . . Twins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 715 715 717 725 727 728 730 731 737 739 741 743 746 747 751 754 759 761 763 766 768 Weapons . . . . . . . . Weaving . . . . . . . . Weirs and Traps . . . . Whales and Whaling . White Buffalo Society . White Deerskin Dance Wickiup. . . . . . . . . Wigwam . . . . . . . . Wild Rice . . . . . . . . Windigo . . . . . . . . Wintercounts . . . . . . Witchcraft and Sorcery Women . . . . . . . . . Women’s Societies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 791 794 799 801 803 804 805 806 808 810 811 812 814 822

Zapotec Civilization. . . . . . 824 Educational Institutions and Programs . . . . . . . 829 Festivals and Pow-Wows . . . . . . . . . 857 Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . 874 Mediagraphy . . . . . . . . . 888 Museums, Archives, and Libraries . . . . . . . . 938 Organizations, Agencies, and Societies . . . . . . . . 976 Tribes by Culture Area . . . . 985 Bibliography . . . . . . . . . . 991 Web Resources . . . . . . . . 1019 Category Index . . . . . . . . 1029 Culture Area Index . . . . . 1037 Subject Index . . . . . . . . . 1043

Urban Indians . . . . . . . . . 769 Visions and Vision Quests . . . . . . . . . . . . 774 Walam Olum . . . . . Wampum . . . . . . . War Bonnets . . . . . Warfare and Conflict Wattle and Daub. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 777 778 781 783 790 xxi

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American Indian Culture .

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American Indian Culture .

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Barrett University of Mary Harvey J.MAGILL’S C H O I C E American Indian Culture Volume 2 Hides and Hidework—Syllabaries Edited by Carole A. Pasadena. Inc. California Hackensack. Markowitz Washington and Lee University Salem Press. New Jersey .

paper) 1. by Salem Press. California 91115. For information address the publisher. Barrett. 3 : alk. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-193-9 (vol. Harvey. 1 : alk. without written permission from the copyright owner except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. cm. Z39. All rights in this book are reserved. P. Harvey J. including photocopy. essays have been updated and new essays have been added. Inc. Barrett. I. Indians of North America—Social life and customs. Great Events from History: Revised North American Series (1997).S7A44 2004 970. p. II. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-194-7 (vol. E98. Pasadena.481992 (R1997) Most of the essays appearing within are drawn from Ready Reference: American Indians (1995). recording. No part of this work may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever or transmitted in any form or by any means. Series.004′97—dc22 2004001362 First Printing printed in the united states of america . electronic or mechanical. III. Salem Press. ∞ The paper used in these volumes conforms to the American National Standard for Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials.O. or any information storage and retrieval system. ISBN 1-58765-192-0 (set : alk.Copyright © 2004. Inc. Markowitz. and Racial and Ethnic Relations in America (1999). — (Magill’s choice) Includes bibliographical references and index. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data American Indian culture / edited by Carole A. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-247-1 (vol. Markowitz. Box 50062. 2 : alk. Carole A..

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kinnikinnick . . . . . . . . . . . . Joking Relations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Knives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lacrosse . . . . . . . . . . . . Hunting and Gathering Husk Face Society . . . . . . . . Kinship and Social Organization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lean-To . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Humor . . Horses . . . . . . . 375 Kachinas . . . . . . Hogan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kuksu Rituals and Society. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Incest Taboo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Longhouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kivas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Indian Police and Judges Irrigation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lances and Spears . . Land Claims. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hohokam Culture . . . . . . . . . . . . . xxxiii Hides and Hidework. . . . . . . . . . . . 377 379 380 388 390 391 395 396 397 402 412 414 415 xxix . . . Language Families . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Longhouse Religion . .Contents Alphabetical List of Contents. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 353 355 356 362 365 366 369 370 371 372 374 Igloo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Money . . . . . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact . . . . . . . . . . . Metalwork. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mathematics . . . . Maru Cult . . . Marriage and Divorce . . . . . . . Mosaic and Inlay . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 418 420 422 425 427 431 432 438 446 454 455 456 457 459 460 462 463 468 473 474 479 481 482 483 484 487 Names and Naming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mother Earth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Masks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mississippian Culture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Medicine Wheels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Midwinter Ceremony . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ornaments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Military Societies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Olmec Civilization . . Oratory . . . . . . . . . . Mayan Civilization . . . . . . . . . Maple Syrup and Sugar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Midewiwin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Contents Manibozho . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Menses and Menstruation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Medicine Bundles . . . . 501 506 507 512 520 523 xxx . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 498 Ohio Mound Builders Okeepa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mounds and Mound Builders. . . . . . . . . . . . . Mogollon Culture . . . Missions and Missionaries . . . . Music and Song. . . . . . . . . . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Moccasins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Oral Literatures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Morning Star Ceremony . . 496 Native American Church . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . Resource Use: Pre-contact . . 623 Sacred Narratives. . . . . . 585 586 595 603 608 611 614 617 618 Sachem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Puberty and Initiation Rites . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 630 xxxi . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pueblo . . . . . . . . . . Peyote and Peyote Religion . . . 524 526 531 532 533 536 540 544 545 547 549 550 561 563 568 572 575 576 580 Quetzalcóatl. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pictographs . . Religious Specialists . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 582 Quillwork . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Contents Paints and Painting. . . . . . Relocation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Petroglyphs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Parfleche. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rite of Consolation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rites of Passage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 583 Ranching . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pow-wows and Celebrations . . . . . . . . . . . . Plank House . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pochteca . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Projectile Points. . . . . . . . . . . . . Pit House . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 622 Sacred. . . . . . Pottery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pipestone Quarries . . . . Repatriation . . . . . . . . . Political Organization and Leadership. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . the. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pemmican . . . . . . . . Religion . . . . . . . Potlatch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pan-Indianism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Praying Indians. . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Squash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Secret Societies . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shields . . . . . . . . Stereotypes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths Syllabaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sculpture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sun Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scalps and Scalping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Subsistence . . . . . . Social Control . . . . . . . . . . . Shaking Tent Ceremony . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Slavery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Snake Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Stomp Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sign Language . . . . . . . . . . Star Quilts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shalako . . . . . . Spirit Dancing . . . . . . . . . . . Societies: Non-kin-based . . . . . . . . . . . . Salt . . . . . . . . . Silverworking . . . . . Sand Painting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shaker Church . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 633 635 636 638 641 642 644 645 647 649 651 651 654 658 659 662 666 667 670 678 679 683 684 686 691 692 702 703 709 711 xxxii . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shells and Shellwork . . . . . . . . . . . . Suicide . . . . .Contents Salmon. . . . . . . . . . Secotan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Serpent Mounds . . . Sports Mascots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

108 Aztec Empire. . . . 75 Arts and Crafts: Great Basin. . . . . . . 97 Arts and Crafts: Southwest. . . . . . Bragskins . . . . Baskets and Basketry . . . . . . . 2 Adoption . . Banner Stones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Berdache . . . . . . . . . . .Alphabetical List of Contents Volume 1 Acorns. . . . . 148 . . . . . . . 110 Ball Game and Courts. . . . . Birchbark . . . Bladder Festival . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Boats and Watercraft . . . 56 Architecture: Southeast . . . . . 138 . . 83 Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast . . . . 53 Architecture: Plateau . . 43 Architecture: Northeast . . 14 American Indian Studies . . . Black Hills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 143 . . . 115 117 118 123 127 128 130 132 133 134 136 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Alcoholism . 35 Architecture: California . 58 Architecture: Southwest . . . . . . . . . 45 Architecture: Northwest Coast . Boarding and Residential Schools . and Quivers . . . . . . 49 Architecture: Plains. 104 Astronomy . . . . . . . . . . 3 Agriculture . . . . . . . . . . 94 Arts and Crafts: Southeast . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Arts and Crafts: California. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Anasazi Civilization . . . . . 79 Arts and Crafts: Northeast. . . . . . . . Arrows. . . . . . . 67 Arts and Crafts: Arctic . . 31 Architecture: Arctic. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bows. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Blankets . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Arts and Crafts: Subarctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 152 xxxiii . Black Drink . . . . . . . . 40 Architecture: Great Basin . . . . Buffalo . . Beads and Beadwork . . . . . . 26 Appliqué and Ribbonwork . . . 86 Arts and Crafts: Plains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90 Arts and Crafts: Plateau . . . 66 Art and Artists: Contemporary . . . . . . . . . . . 151 . . . . . Beans . . . . . 106 Atlatl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Adobe . . . . . . . Booger Dance . . 61 Architecture: Subarctic . . . . . . . . . . . . . 147 . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . Codices . . . . Grass House . . . . . . . . Hand Games . 214 . . . . . . 287 289 291 294 . . . . . Deer Dance. . . . . . . . . . Grooming . . . . Ethnophilosophy and Worldview . Green Corn Dance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hand Tremblers Headdresses . . . . 192 . . . Cliff Dwellings. . . . 254 xxxiv . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Feathers and Featherwork . . . Ghost Dance . . . . . 225 230 231 233 242 Gambling. . . . . . . . . . 258 . . . 303 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dogs . 308 319 323 325 327 328 329 330 332 336 337 339 343 344 346 348 . . . . . . . . . . 263 . . . . . . . . . . . Chickee . Fire and Firemaking. . . . . 155 Bundles. 162 163 167 168 173 174 178 180 182 183 189 190 Effigy Mounds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Guns . . . . Dream Catchers . . . . . . . . . . Fish and Fishing . . 215 . . . . . . . . . . . . Cotton . 270 . . 156 Cacique . . . . . . . . . Children . Clans . . . . Employment and Unemployment . . . . . . . . . . . 281 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Demography . Hako . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . False Face Ceremony . . Calumets and Pipe Bags . . 191 . . . . . . . Corn. . . . . . Gourd Dance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 243 Education: Post-contact. Guardian Spirits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Captivity and Captivity Narratives . . . Elderly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Alphabetical List of Contents Buffalo Dance . Games and Contests . . . . . . . . Corn Woman. . . . . . . . . . . . . Death and Mortuary Customs. . . . . . . . . Flutes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Drums . . . . Gold and Goldworking . . . . Disease and Intergroup Contact . . . . Coup Sticks and Counting . . . Grass Dance . . . . . Dances and Dancing . . . . . . . 160 . . 298 . . . . . . . . . Food Preparation and Cooking . . Culture Areas . . . . . . . . Earthlodge . . . . . . . . . . . Dress and Adornment . . . . Gender Relations and Roles. . . 160 . . . . . . . Clowns . . . . . . . Hamatsa . . 260 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 279 . . . . . . . 280 . . . Chantways . . . 202 . . . . . . . . . . . . Feast of the Dead . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gifts and Gift Giving . . . 245 Education: Pre-contact . . . . . . . . . . . . Chilkat Blankets . . . 295 . 210 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Feasts . . . Sacred .

. . . . 506 Olmec Civilization . . . 375 Kachinas . . . . . . . . . . . . Hohokam Culture . . . . . . . Kuksu Rituals and Society. . . . Kivas . 391 . . . . . . . . 454 . . 377 . . . . . . . . . . 380 . . . . . 420 Marriage and Divorce. . . . . . . . . . . Husk Face Society . . Kinship and Social Organization . . . Midwinter Ceremony . . . . Medicine Wheels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 446 . . . . . . . . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact . . . Indian Police and Judges . Horses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 438 . . . . . Missions and Missionaries . 353 355 356 362 365 366 369 370 371 372 374 Maru Cult . . 484 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Military Societies . . . . . . . . Mayan Civilization . . . Moccasins . Medicine Bundles . Mounds and Mound Builders . Irrigation . 455 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 418 Maple Syrup and Sugar . . . . . . . . Metalwork . . . . . . . . . Masks . . 425 427 431 432 . . . . . . 498 Ohio Mound Builders. Kinnikinnick . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 496 Native American Church . . . . . . . Money . . . . . 422 xxxv . . . . . . . . Music and Song . Morning Star Ceremony Mosaic and Inlay . . . . . . Knives . . . . . . . . . . . Mississippian Culture. . . . . 390 . Language Families . . . . . . . . Joking Relations . . . . . Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact . . . . . 487 Names and Naming. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 456 457 459 460 462 463 468 473 474 479 481 482 483 Igloo . . 379 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Land Claims . . . Humor . . . 388 . . . . Midewiwin. 507 Manibozho . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mogollon Culture . . . Longhouse Religion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 501 Okeepa . . . .Alphabetical List of Contents Volume 2 Hides and Hidework . Longhouse . . . . . . . Hunting and Gathering. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lances and Spears. . . . . . . . . . . . Hogan . . . . Mother Earth. . 395 396 397 402 412 414 415 Lacrosse . . . . . . Menses and Menstruation . . . . . Lean-To . . . Mathematics . . Incest Taboo . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . Squash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 585 586 595 603 608 . . . . . Pipestone Quarries . . . Sports Mascots. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shaking Tent Ceremony Shalako . . . . . . . Suicide . . . . 711 xxxvi . . . . . . Sculpture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 524 526 531 532 533 536 540 544 545 547 549 Resources. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 576 . . .Alphabetical List of Contents Oral Literatures . Sacred Narratives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Salmon . . 617 Rites of Passage . . . . . . 568 . . . 611 . . . . . . . . . . Syllabaries . . 512 Oratory . 520 Ornaments . . Sacred. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pochteca . . . . . . . . . . 618 Sachem . Sun Dance . . . . . . . . Potlatch . Peyote and Peyote Religion . . . . Social Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shells and Shellwork . . . . . . . Relocation . . . . 550 . 709 . . . . . . . . . . . Pictographs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pueblo . . . . . . . 563 . . . 523 Paints and Painting . . . . . . Secotan . . . . . . . . . . . . . Subsistence . Shaker Church . . 582 Quillwork . . . Political Organization and Leadership. . . . . . Secret Societies. . . . . . . . Petroglyphs . . Slavery . . . . . . . Shields . . Pottery . . . . Plank House . . . . . . . . Religious Specialists. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Repatriation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths . . . . . Praying Indians . . . . . . . . . Star Quilts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 583 Ranching . . . . . . . . . . . . Snake Dance . . . . . . . Scalps and Scalping . . Stereotypes . . . . . . . 575 . . . . . . Societies: Non-kin-based Spirit Dancing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pit House . 572 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pemmican . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pan-Indianism . Silverworking . . Pow-wows and Celebrations . . . . Sand Painting . 614 Rite of Consolation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Stomp Dance. . Resource Use: Pre-contact . . . . . Religion. . . . . . 622 623 630 633 635 636 638 641 642 644 645 647 649 651 651 654 658 659 662 666 667 670 678 679 683 684 686 691 692 702 703 . . . . . Parfleche . . . . . . . . . Puberty and Initiation Rites . . . . . . 561 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Serpent Mounds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Salt . . . . . . . . . . . the . . . . . Sign Language . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 580 Quetzalcóatl . Projectile Points . . . .

. . Weirs and Traps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Twins . 991 Web Resources . . . . . . Warfare and Conflict Wattle and Daub. . . . . . Torture . . . . . . . . Technology . . . . Tribal Councils. . . . . . . 824 Educational Institutions and Programs . . . . . Tattoos and Tattooing . . . . . . 938 Organizations. . . Tipi . . . . . . . . . 888 Museums. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 874 Mediagraphy . . Windigo . . . . . . Archives. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 985 Bibliography . . . Weaving . .Alphabetical List of Contents Volume 3 Symbolism in Art . . . . . Witchcraft and Sorcery Women . . . . . . . . . . . 769 Visions and Vision Quests . . . . . . . . Tobacco Society and Dance . . . . . 774 Walam Olum . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 976 Tribes by Culture Area . Wintercounts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tobacco . . . . . . 1043 Urban Indians . . . . . . . 1019 Category Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Women’s Societies. . . White Deerskin Dance Wickiup. . . . . Tomahawks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 713 Tanning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Wild Rice . . . . . Tribal Courts . . . . . Wampum . . . 829 Festivals and Pow-Wows . . Totems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . War Bonnets . . . . . . . . . Toys . . . . . . Trade . . 1029 Culture Area Index . . . . . . . . . Transportation Modes Tribal Colleges . . . . White Buffalo Society . . . . . 857 Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Turquoise. . . . . Totem Poles . . . . . . . . . . Wigwam . . . . . and Societies . Agencies. . . . . . . . . . . Tricksters . Tools . 791 794 799 801 803 804 805 806 808 810 811 812 814 822 Zapotec Civilization. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 777 778 781 783 790 xxxvii . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tourism. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 715 715 717 725 727 728 730 731 737 739 741 743 746 747 751 754 759 761 763 766 768 Weapons . . . . . . and Libraries . . . Whales and Whaling . . . . . 1037 Subject Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Pasadena. Inc. New Jersey .MAGILL’S C H O I C E American Indian Culture Volume 3 Symbolism in Art—Zapotec Civilization Appendices Indexes Edited by Carole A. Markowitz Washington and Lee University Salem Press. California Hackensack. Barrett University of Mary Harvey J.

ISBN 1-58765-192-0 (set : alk. 1 : alk. Barrett. I. recording. Carole A. by Salem Press. essays have been updated and new essays have been added. Z39.004′97—dc22 2004001362 First Printing printed in the united states of america . cm. Pasadena. including photocopy.Copyright © 2004. — (Magill’s choice) Includes bibliographical references and index. II. p. 2 : alk. 3 : alk. and Racial and Ethnic Relations in America (1999). California 91115. Markowitz. Great Events from History: Revised North American Series (1997). E98.481992 (R1997) Most of the essays appearing within are drawn from Ready Reference: American Indians (1995). Harvey J. Box 50062. Indians of North America—Social life and customs. electronic or mechanical. III. Barrett. Harvey.S7A44 2004 970. ∞ The paper used in these volumes conforms to the American National Standard for Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials. or any information storage and retrieval system. For information address the publisher.O. Markowitz. Inc. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data American Indian culture / edited by Carole A. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-247-1 (vol. P. No part of this work may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever or transmitted in any form or by any means. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-194-7 (vol. without written permission from the copyright owner except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. All rights in this book are reserved. Inc. Salem Press. paper) 1.. paper) — ISBN 1-58765-193-9 (vol. Series.

Sturtevant. and 5-10 percent fat. .0 2. Note: Acorns were of great importance to California Indians even in areas in which not many were available. 3-4 percent protein.Acorns / 1 Acorns Tribes affected: Tribes in California and the prehistoric Northeast Significance: Acorns provided a starchy food staple for various Indian groups.0 2.e. making them a nutritious foodstuff providing about 168 calories per ounce. Seven Oak Trees Used by California Indians Common Name Tan oak Black oak Blue oak Valley oak Coast live oak Oregon oak Engelmann oak Species Lithocarpus densiflora Quercus kelloggii Quercus douglasii Quercus lobata Quercus agrifolia Quercus garryana Quercus engelmannii Desirability Rating 1.: Smithsonian Institution. Vol. edited by William C.C. particularly in the Northeast and California.c. Washington. however. Acorns. Robert F. ed. 8 in Handbook of North American Indians. This abundant and easily collected nut became the dietary mainstay for various Indian groups. Archaeological sites in Massachusetts dating from a millennium later also have produced clear evidence of the eating of large quantities of acorns..5 1. By the historic period. California.9 2. 1978.5 1. the lower the number. Northeastern Indians were using acorns only sparingly as food. Baumhoff (1963).. The earliest unequivocal evidence of the dietary use of acorns comes from the Lamoka culture of New York.2 Source: Heizer. the nuts of oak trees. D. probably around 3500 b. average 40-50 percent carbohydrates.0 1. “Desirability rating” scale created by Martin A. the more preferable the acorns.

and families commonly obtained enough in one season to last them two years. This staple supported many California Indians into the late nineteenth century.e. The word can be used to describe the bricks themselves or the clay or soil from which they are made.2 / Adobe In California. meaning “the brick. Some of the oldest standing structures in the United States are . in some cases. To reduce infestation by vermin. for centuries. as well as the mortar sometimes made from them and the structures built with them.c.” Adobe bricks are made of clay and straw mixed with water and dried in the sun. Barber See also: Hunting and Gathering. some as much as 5 feet in diameter and 8 feet high. Adobe is used as a building material primarily in the southwestern United States by the Pueblo peoples. and bitter tannin was leached out by washing the acorn meal repeatedly with hot water. or fragrant laurel leaves might be included. made possible the typical buildings of the Puebloans of the Southwest. major use of acorns began later. The acorns typically were stored in baskets or wooden granaries. but it ultimately was more important. which in turn is taken from the Arabic word attoba. They build large community dwellings of masonry and adobe that endure. the base of a granary might be painted with pitch. an energy-efficient building material. Six species of acorn were gathered.. Russell J. often forming the bulk of the diet. Subsistence. which include such well-known tribes as the Hopi and Zuñi. “Adobe” comes from the identical Spanish word. Adobe Tribes affected: Pueblo peoples Significance: Adobe. The acorn meal was boiled into gruel or baked into pancake-biscuits on heated rocks. around 1000 b. The acorns were ground as needed.

Pueblo. Michael W. uncles. cousins. and adoption was a widespread practice. Simpson See also: Architecture: Southwest. Buildings made of adobe can rise up to five stories in height. aunts. Adobe is energy-efficient. In most American Indian cultures. parents-in-law. a family was not only the nuclear family but also parents. (National Archives) made of this material. as it insulates well against both heat and cold. and other related individuals who might need the “sponsorship” . It is a building material well suited to the desert environments in which it is most commonly used.Adoption / 3 A single-family Zuñi adobe dwelling in 1879. Adoption Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Native Americans had very different ideas about family from those now accepted in America. Pit House. many more people were considered family to begin with.

even when “rescued. share stories with. might be reared by the parents until a certain age and then allowed to live with relatives who might have special skills or children of similar age. make gifts for. That may be the reason that some children who had been captured and reared by Indians preferred to stay with them. and the person was treated as though he or she had been born into the family. such as a cousin’s child.4 / Adoption of a family. When a person of any age was claimed as a relative. sisters. brothers. and adults gave freely to all children. a bereaved parent mourning the death of a beloved child might be offered another child by a friend or relative. Among most nations. adore. but other adults continued to give them horses and beaded clothing and to treat them kindly throughout their lives. Among the Lakota. children were cherished. although they continued to identify themselves as Ute. also took place with orphans or captives. children without parents were taken in by relatives. A Cheyenne girl who showed particular interest in quillwork at nine years of age might go to live with an aunt who was skilled in this work. An example of one to be adopted would be a great aunt whose children had died or moved to another camp or tribe. Adoption could be temporary or permanent. educate. full family status was accorded to him or her by all members of the family. Her parents. The Winnebagos were known to have done this. they are frequently cited in the non-Indian literature about Indians as adoptions. For example. related children. The giving family was extending to the receiving family the right to love. These children then belonged to both families.” Indian families were very loving and supportive. Again. The child did not give up his or her birth family so . as defined by American society. these children were not considered as “belonging” to the receiving family. In another form of adoption. Individuals who had been adopted became part of the family. Adoptions. While these were not considered adoptions by Indians. and train the child. and cousins often continued to interact with her on a daily basis. the Ute allowed their children to live with Spanish-speaking residents of trading partners so that the children would learn a second language and culture.

and deliberate planting and raising of them at a prepared site in order to be able to harvest the resulting crop. It began with the domestication of one or two wild plants. for the Indi- . From there. Robert. Children of the Dragonfly: Native American Voices on Child Custody and Education. notably northward. What is not in debate is where it began: Mexico is clearly the location of the earliest efforts to produce cultivated crops. Most likely the first efforts were more like gardens than agricultural fields. Indian Orphanages. The child might reside in one home or the other at different times. Holt. Indian agriculture has steadily declined. knowledge and seeds appear to have radiated outward. 2001. Omaha Boy Sources for Further Study Bensen. Agriculture Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Although the North American Indians have a long tradition of agriculture. Nancy H. ed. See also: Captivity and Captivity Narratives. it has not been successfully integrated with white agriculture. Slavery. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. resulting in a stronger support system. 2001. the gathering of their seeds. Exactly when it began—when the native peoples of North America began relying on deliberately cultivated crops for a portion of their caloric requirements—is a matter of debate. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. The beginnings of agriculture among the Indians of North America stretch far back into prehistory. Marilyn Irvin. The benefits of both families were stronger relationships. The progress of agriculture was very slow. Children. perhaps as far back as seven thousand years.Agriculture / 5 much as he or she added another family.

By the time of European contact. That reduced their dependence on fruits and nuts they could gather and on game they could kill. In the earliest adaptations from wild plants. The story of Indian agriculture falls naturally into three phases. They came to specialize in the production of food for the group. All agriculture was hand labor. going off on hunting expeditions. and much of the harvesting work. some Indian tribes were supplying as much as 50 to 60 percent of their nutritional requirements from crops they planted. gourds were used as containers. covering perhaps five thousand years. The pre-contact agriculture of the North American Indians began in the highlands of Mexico. the cucurbits. In time. did become a regular foodstuff. the men remained the hunters. however. The seeds. As new varieties of cucurbit emerged (from careful seed selection by the Indians). The women were responsible for the planting. and harvested. metal tools. the pulp was too bitter to eat. the earliest cultivated plants were the gourds. cultivated. is all the time that transpired before Christopher Columbus initiated the flood of Europeans into the Western Hemisphere. cultivation. roughly from 1500 to 1783. There. Pre-contact Agriculture. when the Indians were wards of the federal government. The first phase. in the United States. constituting the “peanuts” of Indian agriculture. with tools that lacked the precise usefulness of modern. During much of the millennium prior to European contact. The second phase (at least in North America) is that covering the period from Columbus’ discovery to the close of the American Revolution. squashlike vegetables were produced and eaten regularly. The third phase.6 / Agriculture ans were constrained by two factors that did not affect residents of the Old World: The Indians lacked metal tools and they lacked domesticated animals. is the period after 1783. sometimes for weeks at a time. most Indians lived in relatively permanent villages. the Indians were able to produce larger and larger portions of their caloric requirements from agriculture. . however.

a process carried out by the men of the tribe. These places generally had light. the Indians generally girdled the trees and uprooted the shrubs. thrust into the ground and worked around to provide a hole into which the seed could be dropped. often only a digging stick. the Indians were cultivating a wide variety of crops. alluvial plains. otherwise agriculture was women’s work. The material was hung up in the sun until all the moisture was gone. It was then packed. had all come from central Mexico. By the end of the prehistoric period. beans came later. this was usually accomplished by drying. Once the land was cleared for cultivation. squashes. sometimes twice. In most cases. willow withes. Once the planted vegetables had come up. If the land chosen for cultivation had shrubs and trees growing on it. in this way they provided some lime and potash for the new crop.Agriculture / 7 The Indians settled in places where the soil could be easily worked with simple tools. beans. the Indian women weeded the crop at least once. to a lesser extent. The harvesting was also largely women’s work. in the Southwest. the men were responsible for the construction and the maintenance of the irrigation ditches. the crops were planted around the stumps of any remaining trees. Depending on the crop. Planting was done with the aid of a dibble stick. were burned. often in baskets made from plant material (corn stalks. though the men sometimes helped with it. sandy soil that could be easily worked with tools made from forked sticks. Their usefulness depended on the possession of pottery vessels in which they could be cooked. together with the herbaceous cover. The squashes came first. the Indians burned over a field assigned to be cultivated each year. and other flexible plant materials). probably around 1000 c. and corn.. . clam shells. and stone. the women took over. The most important of these. ridge tops. and stored.e. In the rare cases where irrigation was practiced. but in time came to constitute an important part of the Indian diet. The latter. the harvested material needed to be prepared so that it would keep. The favored locations were stream bottoms. and. frequently in pits.

The southwestern Indians also developed the necessary skills to convert the fiber to cloth. Cotton was grown only in the Southwest. There is. Tobacco was being grown all over what is now the United States by the resident Indians at the time of European contact. Additionally. and sunflower (Helianthus annus) were the most important of these native plants that were domesticated by the Indians. some of which were eagerly adopted by the Indians.e. goosefoot (Chenopodium bushianum or berlandieri). turned a portion of Indian agriculture into commercial agriculture. One important food plant that was never fully domesticated (although there is some evidence of domestication by the Chippewas) but was harvested for many centuries by the Indians of the northern tier of the United States was wild rice. Sumpweed (Iva annua). it was developed as a crop sometime after 500 c. 1500-1783. the Europeans brought many new crops. Two important crops that were not food crops were tobacco and cotton. The story of how the first Europeans to arrive as colonists sur- . Tobacco was grown (mostly by men. there is archaeological evidence of the cultivation of some native grasses that produced seeds rich in oil. How early a cultivated maize had developed in North America is under dispute among archaeologists. not women) for its ceremonial use. The Indians of Minnesota to this day have exclusive rights to the wild rice growing in those northern swamps. evidence that maize as a cultivated crop was widespread among Native Americans by 1000 c. Cultivation of these native species declined after the arrival of maize. as the latter fulfilled far more easily the carbohydrate nutritional needs of the Indians. The arrival of the European colonists profoundly altered Indian agriculture in two principal ways: The Europeans.e. by trading manufactured items with the Indians for agricultural products. Prior to the development of maize. a native of the central Mexican highlands. the most important Indian crop was maize. generally in irrigated plots. a cultivated version of the wild plant teosinte. however.8 / Agriculture Without a doubt.

where grazing is the only possible agricultural use of much of the dry land of that area. Both potatoes and tomatoes became part of the Indian diet as a result of European introduction. Apricots and apples were also grown in orchards after being introduced. and although some Indians (notably the Cherokee) were initially reluctant to use plows. and it became a major crop for the Indians of that area. The Indians of the Mississippi Valley also began growing wheat. notably axes. One of the most important crops brought by the Europeans was wheat. Watermelons and cantaloupes were also introduced by the Europeans. the former were needed by the colonists for survival until they could develop their own fields. The Europeans brought with them manufactured products. mules. The Spaniards also introduced the plow. and they were eager to acquire them. The Europeans brought horses. Sheep and goats became particularly popular with the Indians of the Southwest. In some areas Indians actually traded plow services from the colonists for skins and agricultural products. A major agricultural change introduced by the Europeans was the raising of livestock. Some of the midwestern and eastern Indians recognized the value of oxen and began to use them for plowing. The Spaniards introduced wheat to the Indians of the Southwest. and some tribes took to the idea. The latter were in demand in Europe and financed much of the early development of the European colonies. The Europeans introduced the idea of orchards.Agriculture / 9 vived only because they acquired food from the Indians is familiar to every American schoolchild. It is widely known that the Plains Indians acquired horses from the Spaniards and that the acquisition profoundly altered their lifestyle. as did the Plains Indians. many other tribes readily adopted plow agriculture. The Europeans added crops other than wheat to the traditional Indian produce. whose use the Indians could readily appreciate. and goats. The Indians had obtained all their meat from game prior to European contact. sheep. The Indians themselves had two things to offer: crops they had grown and skins from wild animals. cattle. . Peach orchards were particularly popular with the Indians of the Southwest. particularly peach orchards.

10 / Agriculture 1783-1887. That policy essentially involved separating the two groups—pushing the Indians into areas not inhabited by white Americans so as to open up more of the land for settlement by the colonists. as soon as it was well organized. considerable effort was devoted to inculcating white agricultural practices. an abrupt change occurred in the Indian policy of the federal government. The victory of the colonists in the American Revolution had a profound impact on Indian agriculture. Congress became convinced that it could significantly lessen the costs of Indian support (needed to supplement the produce of Indian agriculture) if it created the incentive of private property.” thus effectively separating them from the European Americans. as the Dawes Severalty Act. By acquiring vast lands in the trans-Mississippi region. The federal government. however. The title to the land was held in trust by the federal government for twenty-five . defining the relationship between Indians and white Americans. The Indian agents appointed by the federal government for each tribe were instructed to promote such agricultural practices among the Indians. otherwise called the General Allotment Act. a single man 80 acres. from its author. the federal government obtained western areas where it could establish new reservations to which the Indians could be “removed. In 1887. Although agriculture had been slowly gaining among the Indians. In the 1790’s. and a child 40 acres. 1887-1934. Congress passed what were known as the Trade and Intercourse Acts. With the Louisiana Purchase. Senator Henry Dawes. developed a definitive policy with respect to the Indians still living in the territory ceded by the British in 1783. At the same time. this policy of separating the Indians from the white Americans became more explicit. This act authorized the president to divide reservation land into individual allotments: Each head of household was to receive 160 acres. It therefore passed what was widely known. These acts stressed the development of white farming practices among the Indians and provided funds for tools (mostly plows and hoes) and even livestock to enable the Indians to become typical small farmers like the vast majority of white citizens of that time.

any notion of remaking . The funds derived from selling these “surplus” lands to whites were to be set aside in a trust fund for the benefit of the tribe. known as the Meriam Report (1928). If the reservation contained more land than was needed to allot each member of the tribe his prescribed share. The secretary of the interior commissioned a report to be produced by a group of specialists headed by Lewis Meriam. that the Indians gave up attempts at agriculture and instead began leasing their land to whites who had the capital and the expertise to farm it. Also crucially important was the fact that the land assigned to the Indians under the allotment system was incapable of providing subsistence for a family in the amount allotted. it was clear that the allotment policy was a failure. instead. There were a number of reasons for this failure. An allotment of 160 acres was simply too little land in an area of light rainfall. it in fact had the opposite effect. Most critics of the policy stress the fact that it attempted to impose. To Indians. that it should be used to amass individual wealth was wholly outside their sense of the appropriate. The result was. then the remainder of the land was opened to white settlement. but it required many more acres than the 160 allotted. Although the underlying concept of the General Allotment Act and the allotment policy was that it would hasten the time when all Indians would become at least subsistence farmers. First. had three principal recommendations regarding agriculture. by legislation. By the 1920’s. if it could be carried on at all. If that owner should die before the twenty-five years had elapsed. actually the most hopeful revenue for Indian agriculture in the plains states. at the end of which time full title to the land would be transferred to the Indian owner. Their report. a private-property culture on peoples whose own culture largely lacked such a concept. where tillage agriculture.Agriculture / 11 years. the land was made available by the Great Spirit for the use of his children. depended on heavy capital investment in plows and harvesting equipment. the land was to be divided among all his heirs. Raising livestock was a practical option. The allotment policy discouraged the development of tribal herds run on a cooperative basis.

has largely given up attempting to encourage agriculture among them. but only a modest portion of the more than 50 million acres once assigned to Indians but lost under allotment was recovered. poultry raising. so that now no more than 10 percent are agriculturally active. The Roosevelt Administration appointed a new commissioner of Indian affairs. In most recent years. although recognizing its continuing responsibility to the Indians. Gordon . who had new ideas about how to conduct Indian policy. Indians had had more than 100 million acres under their control. more government programs should be directed toward women to encourage subsistence gardening. Collier pushed tribal initiatives. John Collier. Second. Third. The report recognized that most Indian land was only suitable for grazing anyway. These recommendations laid the basis for a reversal of Indian agricultural policy under the New Deal of President Franklin Roosevelt. particularly cooperative agricultural efforts. The Indian Reorganization Act of 1934 ended allotments for any tribes that agreed with the new policy. These efforts had some success among Plains Indians. and modern methods of food preservation. Prior to allotment. Since 1934.12 / Agriculture the Indians into commercial farmers should be abandoned—the most that could be hoped for would be subsistence agriculture. the federal government. by the 1970’s that figure had dropped to around 50 million. the focus of Indian agriculture should shift from tillage to livestock raising. The steady decline in Indian land under the allotment policy was reversed. Any former reservation land that had been opened to white homesteading but not taken would be returned to the tribe. Nancy M. The period since World War II has seen vacillating Indian policy on the part of the government. and some funds were provided for the purchase of additional land. for which Indian men showed greater aptitude. Agriculture has continued to decline among Indians.

Ford. The author of the preeminent history of New England agriculture looks at the culture that preceded it. and Land: The Dawes Act and the Decline of Indian Farming. Richard I. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press. The author is critical of the policy pursued as lacking in consideration for the special constraints imposed by Indian culture. Hanover. Carlson includes an economic model of the behavioral response that might be expected to allotment-type inducements. extensive notes to text. New York: Oxford University Press. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. “The Bountiful Earth. but the general picture is clear. Northern Utes. and Tohono O’odhams. Prehistoric Food Production in North America. R. Indian Agriculture in America: Prehistory to the Present. An intensive study of the effect of the allotment system on the participation of Indians in agriculture. Russell. The bulk of the book is devoted to discussing the Indian policy of the federal government as it relates to agriculture. 1980. A good general survey. Conn. Douglas.Agriculture / 13 Sources for Further Study Carlson. 1987. Rivers of Change: Essays on Early Agriculture in Eastern North America. Bureaucrats. Notes.H. Part 4. and index. extensive bibliography. Notes and bibliography. 1994. and Agrarian Change. Environment.. 1981. A collection of papers by archaeologists involved in seeking data on prehistoric agriculture. N. Smith.” describes the agriculture of the New England Indians. The detail is fairly exhaustive.: Greenwood Press. Neither Wolf nor Dog: American Indians. An alternate view of how prehistoric North Ameri- . Leonard A.: University Press of New England. Hurt. 1985. Lewis. Selected bibliography. Westport. Indian New England Before the Mayflower. Bibliographic note. with contributions by C. Hoffman. David Rich. ed. Howard S. Bruce D. 1992. Indians. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. An examination of the effects of the federal agrarian system on three Native American groups—Hupas. Wesley Cowan and Michael P..

and merchants often gave Indians liquor as a gift or ex- . and the stresses involved in adjusting to non-Indian life. whether living on or off reservations. Thomas. With the exception of parts of the Southwest. The reasons for the problem are complex. Both Indian and nonIndian sources. Beans. Peter A. Early French and English explorers. many Indian problems with crime. and poverty are related to heavy drinking. contemporary and historical. References. Technology.14 / Alcoholism can cultures evolved from hunting and gathering societies to agricultural-based societies. health. See also: Anasazi Civilization. A thoughtful consideration of the thorny question of whether the Indians or the European settlers were more efficient and effective users of the land. also point to drinking as one reaction to the profound disruption of Indian societies that began soon after Europeans landed in the Americas and which intensified through the years. Alcoholism Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indians. though they were widely used by Central and South American natives. Early Contact Years.” Ethnohistory 23 (1976): 1-18. The most severe health problem among contemporary American Indians is alcoholism. Squash. Irrigation. Food Preparation and Cooking. Corn. Subsistence. trappers. “Contrastive Subsistence Strategies and Land Use as Factors for Understanding Indian-White Relations in New England. but central among them are poverty. have extremely high rates of alcoholism. a pervasive sense of despair (particularly among young reservation Indians). alcoholic beverages did not exist in North America before the Europeans came.

among them the Pawnee. were known for not drinking at all. there were occasional drunken revels that would essentially engulf a whole village or town and end when the liquor was gone. life would then return to normal. There were no religious strictures or stigma attached to being under the influence of alcohol. Regardless of what some whites believed. French Canadian traders were encouraging the use of alcohol among the Huron. among the Iroquois. Drinking patterns varied by individual and by tribe. The Lakota Sioux called alcohol “the magic water. even though the Catholic church deplored such practices and the French government outlawed the sale or use of liquor in trade. and being drunk may have developed religious overtones in some Indian cultures.” for example. European traders cultivated the desire for liquor among Indians. and some scholars have noted a link between drinking liquor until drunk and the traditional Indian practice of going on a vision quest seeking wisdom and strength through fasting. he said. .” The white stereotype of the dangerous firewater-drinking Indian became established early. however. a number of cultures. as European cultures did. and discontented. Alco- . and prayer until a state of altered consciousness is achieved. creating a market. was that Indian cultures. . did not have a set of social norms or expectations governing drinking. This situation. Whiskey and rum quickly became prime items of trade—and killers of Indians. meditation. having no previous experience with alcohol intoxication. wretched. Eighteenth century accounts suggest that. they realized that trading liquor was a cheap way to obtain valuable furs. Indian drinking behavior was no more dangerous or violent than that of the Europeans who lived along the frontier. the truth is simply that some Indians drank and others did not. As early as 1603.Alcoholism / 15 changed it for food or furs. French priests in Canada reported that many natives were drinking alcohol heavily during their ceremonies and dances. . By the early 1600’s. for example. John Stuart stated in 1776 that English traders obtained five times as many animal skins from the Choctaws of the Southeast through trading alcohol than through the trade of English manufactured goods of any real value. was making the Choctaws “poor. A difference.

is fetal alcohol syn- .000) than for other Americans (6.16 / Alcoholism hol intoxication may also have been considered akin to being influenced or possessed by a supernatural being. almost always caused by alcoholism. Smugglers made huge profits. with alcohol being the chemical most often abused. concluded that alcohol abuse was the most severe health care problem faced by Native Americans. Many tribal leaders tried to ban alcohol from their villages. but such efforts rarely succeeded. The suicide rate among Native Americans— which drinking undoubtedly influences—was more than double the national rate. when Congress permitted its sale if local tribal governments voted to allow it.000). another was the PanIndian movement led by Tenskwatawa. A number of post-contact religious movements. In the Indian Trade and Intercourse Acts of 1834.1 per 100. Easier access to alcoholic beverages led to a steady increase in cases of alcoholism among Native Americans. among American Indians included abstinence from liquor as a central tenet: One was the Longhouse religion established by Handsome Lake. and the death rate from drunk driving on reservations was three times the rate for the general population. Death from cirrhosis of the liver. It found that almost one-half of Indian adults had some sort of chemical dependency.3 per 100. established by Congress in 1975 to survey major reservation problems. A report issued by the American Indian Policy Review Commission. Many tribal political and religious leaders soon recognized the danger that alcohol posed to traditional culture. one which has been recognized relatively recently. Alcohol remained illegal on Indian reservations until 1953. and bootlegging became one way of becoming very rich on the frontier. but enforcing the law proved impossible. Statistics at the time of the commission’s report emphasized the prevalence of the problem: Seventyone percent of all arrests on reservations involved alcohol. was more than four times greater for Indians (27. the United States government prohibited the sale of alcohol to Native Americans. Impact on the Indian Population. or revitalization movements. Another alcohol-related health problem.

and there is little pressure put on alcoholics to seek help or change their ways. Native American women have been found to have babies born with fetal alcohol syndrome at a rate greater than ten times that of the rest of the U. to encourage drinking actively. population. following the awakening (and suppression) of Indian activism in the 1960’s and 1970’s. recognizing the severity of the problem. A 1985 study reported that one-third of all Indian deaths were related to alcohol—three times as many as the U. Drinking is tolerated by many adults on reservations. Many adults supported the idea that individuals have the right to become publicly intoxicated. drunkenness was seen as a way of acknowledging that one is no better than one’s neighbor and that one knows how to have a good time. The economic situation of American Indians. average. particularly those on isolated reservations. by some.S.Alcoholism / 17 drome (FAS). viewed in this way.S. younger Indians became increasingly aware of past injustices toward Indians and increasingly desperate regarding what seemed to be the lack of future opportunities. and alienation. drinking may be seen as representing a sense of community. is grim compared with that of most Americans. Congress enacted the Indian Alcohol and Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act. In the late twentieth century. In addition. One study of a reservation in North Dakota found that most residents faced almost daily pressure from friends and family members to drink. Other aspects of Indian alcoholism are the social factors thought. a disease that stunts growth and interferes with brain development in the babies of alcoholic mothers. a Native American displays contempt for those who destroyed his or her culture and who now do not offer opportunities in theirs. . poverty. It has been suggested that drinking may amount to a form of social protest: By not obeying the rules of white society. In 1986. Those who have studied Indian drinking generally believe that alcohol abuse among Native Americans results from the same factors that lead to high levels of alcoholism among other populations: It is a means of coping with unemployment.

Conduct Disorder and Social Change: Navajo Experiences. _______. Deadly Medicine: Indians and Alcohol in Early America. New York: Harper & Row. 2000.Y. As Indian cultural pride and solidarity increase. Groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous have opened chapters in Indian communities. Michael. Ithaca. Task Force on Indian Alcoholism. Washington. Westport.: Praeger. 1989. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. new possibilities exist for stemming the tide of alcoholism. The Urban Experience in America. 2000. 1996. Md. American Indians: Stereotypes and Realities. Urban Indians. Devon A. Peter C.: Cornell University Press.18 / Alcoholism There is hope that the situation will begin to improve.S. Leslie V. N. 1995. approaches involving groups and entire communities have proved more beneficial than have private counseling and treatment. Because Indian alcoholism so often involves group activity. 2000. D. Levy. Mancall.. In addition. Lanham. Atlanta.: University Press of America. Mihesuah. Addictions and Native Americans. French. as more Indians themselves work for the Indian Health Service (which serves reservation communities). 1997. . Counseling American Indians. New York: Oxford University Press. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact. Fixico. Stephen J.: Clarity. Indian Health Service. Stereotypes. Ga. Donald Lee. The Broken Cord. Kunitz. Government Printing Office. and Jerrold E. See also: Employment and Unemployment. Alcoholism: A High Priority Health Problem. 1977. and as sufficient funding becomes available. Relocation. Tischauser Sources for Further Study Dorris.: U. the search for an Indian answer to alcoholism has involved the reawakening of interest in Indian spiritual and cultural traditions. Conn. Drinking. Laurence Armand.C.

As professor Henrietta Whiteman has stated. Despite limited funds. Since the late 1960’s. and sacred. Establishment of Programs. These also represent . and service to cross cultural boundaries and create an atmosphere for understanding. Though it is equally as valid as Anglo-American history it is destined to remain complementary to white secular American history. human. American Indian studies use teaching. American Indian studies (or Native American studies) programs have served as the most important scholarly approach to knowing and understanding American Indian culture. the American Indian studies degree programs are the only non-Western courses of study on campus. in all probability will never be incorporated into American history. objective academic disciplines such as history and ethnology. seek to preserve and understand American Indian history and culture. and by extension Indian history. American Indian or Native American studies programs vary considerably in method and subject matter. unlike Western. These culture bearers provide the understanding essential to legitimate study of the native peoples of the Americas. “Cheyenne history. Most American Indian studies programs focus on long-term goals involved with cultural preservation. In many instances. research.” This specific difficulty led in large part to the creation of American Indian studies programs in existing institutions of higher learning. Traditional teachings of tribal and village elders remain the solid foundation of American Indian and Native American studies. Dependence upon European American (notably Anglo-American) source materials has made for distortion in scholarly studies.American Indian Studies / 19 American Indian Studies Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indian studies programs. which began in the late 1960’s. because it is holistic. personal. Native American programs began to emerge as interdisciplinary curricula.

In 1968. Dull Knife Memorial College. at least nine additional colleges have been initiated. budget size. the University of Arizona. eighteen programs offered a major leading to a bachelor’s degree. and Stone Child . Two degree programs were created in Oklahoma in the early 1970’s. California had the largest Native American population in the United States. Colleges that followed the creation of Navajo Community College include Sinte Glista College. the University of Illinois (Chicago). Evergreen College. Oklahoma had the second-largest native population. Other American Indian studies degree programs were created at the University of Minnesota. and quality of program leadership. and the University of California. and Northridge. Little Bighorn College. among others.20 / American Indian Studies different degrees of institutional support. Blackfeet Community College. Montana State University. one at Northeastern State University at Tahlequah. By the mid-1980’s. Tribally controlled colleges added new energy to American Indian studies. In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Dartmouth College. Navajo Community College was a success and led to the passage of the Tribally Controlled Community College Assistance Act of 1978. Fullerton. Berkeley. This act provides for some federal support for tribally controlled colleges initiated by tribes in the western United States. Los Angeles. Since the act’s passage. and Cornell University. Other programs developed in the California State University system on campuses at Long Beach. the Navajo Nation created the first tribally controlled institution of higher learning. The Native American studies degree program at the University of Oklahoma was accepted by the higher regents in 1993. Of these. various programs began to emerge at the University of California. the University of Washington. this helped support thirteen tribally controlled colleges. At that time. Tribally Controlled Colleges. Standing Rock College. the capital of the Cherokee Nation. the University of New Mexico. six programs also offered a master’s degree. Initially. the University of North Dakota. Salish Kootenai College. Washington State University. and one at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma in Chickasha.

There was additional attention being given to the way people feel as well as the way they behave. The tribally controlled colleges offer hope to tribes that have. the tribally based community colleges have not only aided the education of individual Indian young people but also improved the development of the tribal communities that they serve. In the early 1990’s. Sinte Glista College on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation has grown to become the first fully accredited tribally controlled four-year institution of higher learning. the expansion of traditional approaches to knowledge and wisdom. the acceptance of grammar and logic stemming from native languages. and the hope of differentiating Western-based interpretation from traditional knowledge all reflected the aim of uncovering purpose. and intent. The tribally controlled colleges are far outstripping the state-supported and private colleges and universities in retention of American Indian students. The tribally controlled colleges have become important centers of research. . In all these examples.American Indian Studies / 21 College. roles. survived in a climate of despair. Of primary importance is that Indian people are now controlling institutions that directly affect them. meaning. not dry and forbidding pieces of analysis. The quest for meaning appeared in many guises. There was also a movement in American Indian studies toward narrative storytelling in the literature. among others. structures. American Indian studies emerged in a period of questioning current methods and practices concerning spirit. and perspectives on truth in presentation. The interest in the emotional component of community life. philosophy. all too often. however. Lummi College of Aquaculture in Washington has expanded to become the Northwest Indian College. American Indian studies places human beings and the comprehensible societies in which they live into the story. These are real stories. Issues and Concerns. These colleges are proving to be better suited to the needs of American Indian students and communities than their state-supported and private counterparts. There was pervasive anxiety that the individual is being submerged in community. contexts.

They appeal to an interest in behavior that is very different from Anglo-American intellectual concerns. dragging the latent out of the manifest. stating. or of a special task for its practitioners. it is not inconsistent with one. Questions of the use of quantification arise because of the almost exclusive use of United States and Western social science data. What is at stake is a profound epistemological question. Analytical and technical research is increasingly limited. requires such personal feats of imagination and use of language that questions about plausibility and proof are bound to arise.22 / American Indian Studies The quest for meaning only multiplies the pluralism of current research and teaching. hardly seems plausible. attitudes. As American Indian studies turns to more emotional content. A clear. The obverse of the quest for meaning is an uneasiness with the material conditions of life that until recently seemed so compelling. American Indian studies is united in its respect of tribal traditions. the demand is for a more elusive process of comprehension. Senior faculty at one state-supported university in Oklahoma challenged the continuation of a bachelor’s degree in American Indian studies. not just a disagreement over collection of data. neither is the telling of a sustained story. of a set of methods or purposes indigenous to the Americas. The insights are justified within a specific tribal context with powerful rhetorical and imaginative methods. The establishment of an agenda for American Indian studies.” This type of Euro-American bias makes it difficult to pursue knowledge and wisdom in an atmosphere with freedom of thought and feeling. American Indian studies many times are very personal and intuitive. which is a special mark of scholars and teachers in American Indian stud- . and symbolic acts become more prominent. “While the program is inessential to a liberal arts education. The very process of recovering deeper motivations and attitudes. There is observation of certain fundamental rules for using evidence so as to be intelligible across cultural boundaries. but never claim to be definitive. as mental patterns. None of these skills is difficult to learn. single idea emerges from the doubts that have been expressed about the power of economic development.

For example. All scholarship must access this wisdom and knowledge to reflect tribal tradition and history. Oklahoma. Tribal elders have become wary of “instant experts. which functions as a trustee for the United States government. intellectual and cultural assumptions. social arrangements. These records were placed in trust in 1906.American Indian Studies / 23 ies. These are held in a variety of ways. The most important repository of American Indian knowledge remains with the tribal elders. The one form of synthesis used most often by those in American Indian studies blends the disparate methods of current research in examinations of tribally specific localities. Contact with the tribes is the best means to understand their respective record-keeping systems. the Wichita and Affiliated Tribes maintain their tribal archives as a part of the Wichita Memory Exhibit Museum at the tribal complex on reserve land north of Anadarko. with mythic patterns and images. and political behavior. A third example is that of the Cherokee Nation.” whether Indian or non-Indian. This synthesis convincingly links physical conditions. just before Oklahoma statehood. This knowledge and wisdom can be gained only with real commitment over a significant period of time. Archives and Tribal Records. Once removed from this vital core of information are the tribal archives and records. . Each tribe maintains its records in an individual way. before the National Archives of the United States was created. while the records of the Cherokee Nation from 1839 through 1906 are held in the Indian Archives of the Oklahoma Historical Society. economic and demographic developments. There is no substitute for this significant information. which maintains a portion of its records in the Archives of the Cherokee National Historical Society in Tahlequah. which collects and preserves its records as a part of the Navajo Tribal Council Reference Library in Window Rock. A second example is that of the Navajo Nation.

National Archives. however. Large numbers of records about American Indian peoples are held by the National Archives of the United States. The National Archives endeavors to keep records in the order in which they were maintained by the respective agency. Additional materials concerning Indian-white relations are contained in the United States Supreme Court decisions. American Indian studies has long been limited in perspective because of the heavy dependence upon documents generated by Euro-American policymakers. the research that was used in the Indian Land Claims Act of 1946. not for the benefit of researchers. American Indian people were . including the files of individual members of Congress.24 / American Indian Studies U. The papers of the presidents and many of those of other high officials. Suitland. Another useful volume is Indian-White Relations: A Persistent Paradox (1976). are regarded as their personal property.S. such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs and its predecessors. These are housed in the Washington National Records Center. There are important guides to assist in research efforts. These personal papers are collected in large part by state-supported university manuscripts collections. The basic organizational unit in the National Archives collections is the record group. Maryland. The agency filing system was designed for administrative purposes. The two most important of these are Guide to the National Archives of the United States (1974) and Guide to Records in the National Archives of the United States Relating to American Indians (1981). and in eleven regional Federal Archives and Records Centers throughout the United States. businesspersons. and in the manuscript collections of major universities throughout the western United States. and military personnel. Additional records holdings concerning American Indian peoples are contained at the presidential libraries administered by the National Archives and Records Service. This refers to the records of a single agency. which includes papers and proceedings of the National Archives Conference on Research in the history of Indian-white relations. Scholarly works accepted many of the assumptions of those who produced these sources.

G.A.: Author. Hill. Los Angeles: American Indian Studies Center.S. In the last decade. Issues for the Future of American Indian Studies.J. 1989. Los Angeles. politics. University of California. All American culture and society is being shown in a new light as a result of the creative images and ideas of American Indian studies. and David E. Reviews the colleges that have been established for Native Americans. Edward E. scholarship in American Indian studies has changed significantly from this approach. Grounds. A scholarly examination of law. 1985. Guide to the Records in the National Archives of the United States Relating to American Indians. More balanced efforts are being made by American Indian scholars utilizing native languages and tribal sources. Native Voices: American Indian Identity and Resistance. Howard Meredith Sources for Further Study Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.C. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. Helps researchers find information contained in the archives. Charlotte.. comp.American Indian Studies / 25 perceived either negatively as an enemy or romantically as part of the environment.: National Archives and Records Service. and religion as related to Native American studies programs. Oral Literatures. Richard A.. Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. Tinker. Wilkins. 1981. . Tribal Colleges: Shaping the Future of Native America. eds.. Examines the field of American Indian studies. D. Princeton. Tribal Colleges. George E. See also: Education: Post-contact. N. Heth. 2003. Language Families. and Susan Guyette. Washington.

. These designs gave rise to later Anasazi pottery painting traditions. earrings. the art appears to have been part of community life. Baskets (some woven tightly enough for cooking). necklaces.” The earliest Anasazi are known as the Basket Makers because of their extraordinary skill in basketry. perhaps occupied seasonally. and Colorado). are the best known of the Southwest prehistoric cultures. Found near the villages. The villages. The term “Anasazi” derives from an Englishlanguage corruption of a Navajo term. circular houses dug into the ground. Smaller slab-lined structures were used for storing food. Stone slabs were used for some houses. The Anasazi.” or “ancient enemy. advanced architecture and agriculture. which were not mutually understood. hair ornaments.e. Different groups of Anasazi spoke at least six languages. flourishing about 200-1250 c. Elaborate headdresses. sandals. and then vanished. Anasazi rock art of the period illustrates humans with broad shoulders. and very large hands and feet. comprised a few pit houses: low. Tunnellike side entries faced the east. in what is now the Four Corners area (the junction of New Mexico. Inhabitants of these early villages planted maize and squash. These early people were indistinctive initially. Arizona. approximately seven feet across. trapezoid-shaped bodies. The houses had fire pits and were entered by ladders placed in the smokehole of the roof. a skill learned from their ancestors. highly stylized with geometric motifs. Larger pit houses were for ceremonial use.” “enemies of the ancient ones. with a few cave sites and rock shelters along the San Juan River and open sites in the Rio Grande Valley.26 / Anasazi Civilization Anasazi Civilization Significance: This Basket Maker civilization of the Southwest emerged. and other articles were of high caliber. Upper walls and roofs of many dwellings were made of wood and adobe or wattle and daub. which describes the many stone ruins of the Four Corners region and may mean “ancient ones. believed to be descendants of ancient Desert Archaic people. Anaasa’zi. Utah. and sashes adorn the figures. but also hunted and foraged.

a central fire pit.Anasazi Civilization / 27 As the Basket Maker Anasazi population grew and their territory expanded. benches. their villages became larger. some thirty-five feet across. but many were larger. Excavated holes called sipapu were Area of Anasazi Culture UTAH o llor Coo ado rad vr veer Rii oR COLORADO C San Juan Ri ve r Mesa Verde Mesa Verde Cha co R Kayenta Kayenta Canyon de Canyon de Chelly Chelly iv e r Rive r o ra do Co l Chaco Canyon Chaco Canyon NEW MEXICO Rio Gr a nde ARIZONA Gila River NEW MEXICO ve r s Ri MEXICO o Pe c . Earth-covered wooden roofs were supported by four posts with crossbeams. Slab-lined storage buildings and ramadas—roofed. and a draft deflector between the fire and the ventilator shaft were found in many dwellings. Some houses were dome-shaped. Some kivas were modified houses. Almost all had ritual rooms. which the later Hopi called “kivas. open-walled structures shading work and living areas—were built on the surface. Storage bins. Within the village were many outdoor work and cooking areas. more complex.” Pit houses became deeper. and spacious. Roof or side entrances were retained.

hunting scenes. the bow and arrow. and the kiva were the focus of community life. introduced from Mexico. and a sipapu. Turkeys and dogs were domesticated. Jars. Basketry. Turquoise or other offerings were placed in the sipapu. and weaving also became increasingly elaborate.. were cultivated. and ladles were frequent forms for pottery. Buildings usually faced a plaza located to the south or southeast. and cooking and serving food. or in other open locations. To ensure successful crops.. storing food and water. on mesa boulders. bowls. Home. Infants were bound to cradle boards so that the child could be near the mother. although some local dif- . sandalmaking. Human handprints covered some cliff walls in massed profusion. village. and figures playing the flute. Maize was ground on large stone mortars using two-handed grinding stones. By 900 c. check dams and devices were used in fields near villages. Architecture gradually developed into rectangular surface buildings of dry masonry or stone and adobe that followed a linear arrangement with multiroom units. the opening to the underworld from which people emerged. a ventilator shaft. animals. Feathers and rabbit fur were woven into robes.e. Pots were used for rituals. near hunting trails. Rock art was near or in villages. The quantity and variety of rock art increased. trade activities and movement of the people had engendered a certain amount of cultural uniformity. By 600 c. roof support poles. beans.e. Pottery making developed as both an occupation and a basis for trade. One or more kivas were built in the plaza.28 / Anasazi Civilization dug near the center of the floor in many homes and in most kivas. a central fire pit. Kiva architecture included an encircling bench attached to the wall.. Villages varied in size from small complexes to those with more than a hundred dwellings.e. cotton. Farming became increasingly important to the Anasazi.e. By 700 c. The kiva was entered by ladder through a roof opening that also allowed smoke to escape. Subjects included birds. and stone tools were used generally. The Pueblo period of the Anasazi began about 700 c. which endeavored to encourage and ensure agricultural prosperity.

. mark the solstices and equinoxes. It took 150 years before the planned village of Pueblo Bonito realized the conceptions of the original designers. the cliff houses of Mesa Verde. Rooms were organized into units of two or three. Fajada Butte is the most famous. Many communities of this period and virtually all of the Chaco-style “great houses” were planned or renovated into single. the Chaco Anasazi built a complex of twelve elaborate towns that became their religious. a five-story D-shaped structure with eight hundred rooms and thirty-seven kivas. the public space of the plaza was enclosed. self-enclosed structures. Skilled as astronomers. The thirty-foot-wide roads were paved and curbed. Straight paths cut through or were built over gullies. sun daggers fall through the slabs onto the spirals in different places and. political. with a doorway facing the plaza. squash. the Anasazi built celestial observatories on clifftops. Linear units grew into L-shapes when a room was added at the end of a row to enclose space. and commercial center. Three stone slabs lean against a vertical cliff face on which two spiral petroglyphs are carved. Each day before noon. or sometimes burial chambers. trash. and wild vegetables and cornmeal cakes. The Chaco Canyon district included nine great houses and eighteen great kivas within an eight-mile area.Anasazi Civilization / 29 ferences occurred in agriculture. Grandest of all the great houses was Pueblo Bonito. covering three acres. The Chaco Anasazi built an elaborate road system of about fifteen hundred miles. architecture. depending on the time of year. New rooms were attached to older ones. “Great kivas” were usually built in the Chaco plazas in addition to smaller ones. If a village grew or became old enough. corn mush. The building of Chaco Canyon. Beginning about 1050. Families occupied suites of rooms in the great houses. turkey pens. Ladders led to upper-level units. Of these. Anasazi ate stews of meat. Other rooms were for storage. The Anasazi realized their cultural apogee between 1000 and 1300. and the ruins of Kayenta date from this time. hills. and pottery. L-shapes became U’s and U’s turned into rectangles.

One hundred years later. New York: Rizzoli International Press. Norton. W. Concentrates . J. Large pueblos developed. Color photographs and illustrations. Slowly the people left the basin. too. A savage. Roadside shrines were constructed in widened parts of the road. perhaps as watchtowers. and updated ed. Frazier. The Mesa Verdeans left as the crisis intensified. The Mesa Verde Anasazi prospered for some time in their cliff dwellings. As their legacy they left descendants who became the Hopi. Kendrick. The Anasazi. never to return. the Chacoan culture began to decline. By 1300. leaving access by ladder only. but decline fell upon these Anasazi. 1990. Some of the cliff dwellings became quite large. twenty-three-year drought occurred in the Southwest. 1999. People of Chaco: A Canyon and Its Culture. and other Pueblo peoples. Soon. New York: W. although they continued to farm the mesa. Mary Pat Balkus Sources for Further Study Brody. Cliff Palace numbered two hundred rooms with twenty-three kivas. About 1100. The peace-loving people of Pueblo Bonito walled up the doors and windows facing the outside of the great houses. Rev. Presents a definitive view of the Anasazi. few Anasazi remained in their once-large domain. Today the adobe pueblos of the Southwest serve as reminders of the great stone houses of their Anasazi forebears. the Mesa Verde Anasazi moved into the caves below the mesa. These roads may have served some ceremonial purpose. as well as some of their religious and social traditions. the Mesa Verde Anasazi began to abandon many small settlements in the mesa. Stone towers were built. which initially followed the traditional Mesa Verde pattern with the kiva in front of the main dwelling. Walls were made of large rectangular sandstone blocks with little mortar. Mud plaster was applied inside and out. from prehistoric tribes to modern Pueblo people. J. the kivas were enclosed within the circle of houses and walls. By 1150. Stones closed the entrance to the pueblos. Zuñi.30 / Anasazi Civilization or cliffs.

Lister. Donald. Focuses on historical events that led to exploration. with details of each archaeological site. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. Boulder. Pike. Pueblo. some garments themselves are literally passed down through many generations. Stuart. Baskets and Basketry. Palo Alto. Colo. excavation. Since such garments are usually . 2000. Appliqué and Ribbonwork Tribes affected: Northwest Coast. Clothing is a silent communication of personal or cultural values and beliefs. An examination of the Anasazi people. See also: Agriculture. Those Who Came Before. Robert H. Southeast tribes Significance: The personalized designs for these traditional garment decorations both express individual style and maintain group identity. Hohokam Culture. Cliff Dwellings. and interpretation of artifacts. 1983. Kivas. but they are usually aware that a certain style is not accidental. Provides insight into the development of the Chaco roads. Decorations such as appliqué and ribbonwork may lend similarity (if not uniformity) to the clothing of a people. Illustrated with color photographs by David Muench. Mogollon Civilization. Observers may not understand the meanings being expressed. Eastern Woodlands. Anasazi America. Roads to Center Place.Appliqué and Ribbonwork / 31 on the Anasazi of Chaco Canyon. Photographs and illustrations. 1974. and Florence C. David E..: American West. Anasazi: Ancient People of the Rock. Styles of clothing and decoration may be maintained over time as part of a people’s culture.: Johnson Books. Photographs and illustrations. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. 1991. Gabriel. Architecture: Southwest. Kathryn. Calif. Photographs and illustrations. Lister. Pottery.

the red blankets carry large blue or black appliquéd crests of Raven. Woodlands men wear aprons and leggings of black velvet decorated in stylized nature designs. they are a visible history of a family. The young dancers whirl in their one-of-a-kind satin shawls decorated with bright. Eastern Woodlands women put aside their deerskin outfits and decorated their cotton shawls and skirts with wide borders of silk appliqué. Appliqués are cutout decorations of contrasting color or fabric stitched to a garment. The next day. In addition to expressing wealth. Seminole and Miccosukee women of Florida have raised the use of decorative ribbons to an art form. or shells. or Eagle Clans. These are typically rendered in colorful combinations of appliqué. an extravagant giveaway once banned by the Canadian government. women wear button blankets as they dance in the smoke-filled great house. beads. younger Woodlands women adapted this style to create the cape dancer’s outfit now often seen at pow-wows. The Kwakiutl people are well known for the ceremonial potlatch. On the eve of the potlatch. Appliqué. clan. the wearing of these blankets imparts the qualities of clan animals. For ceremonies and pow-wows. Ribbonwork. helping to drive away sadness so the celebration can proceed. the men in their crested button blankets perform the Chiefs’ Dance to begin the potlatch. The Kwakiutl people of the Northwest Coast are famous for their appliquéd button blankets. and beads. While the women sing mourning songs. Worn as ceremonial shawls. These formal outfits are worn in ceremony and at social gatherings. One of the . or a people and are thought to carry the essence of the original wearer. bold appliqués and yards of fringe. Outlines of gleaming mother-of-pearl and abalone buttons (as many as three thousand) emphasize the crests and trim the edges of these magnificent blankets. In the mid-twentieth century. embroidery. After contact with Europeans provided new fabrics.32 / Appliqué and Ribbonwork handmade. They are often embellished with stitching. Wolf. the iridescent buttons sparkle in the firelight.

The practice may have begun after contact with Spanish officials who wore striped brocade on dress uniforms. the hand-cranked sewing machine was readily adopted by Southeast women to adorn calico skirts and shirts. some of these attractive designs have been used for many decades. maps of culture areas. Both men and women wear garments of this distinctive type. Thompson Sources for Further Study Billard. More than 440 color illustrations. such as checkers or rattlesnake. Copying of designs by those who admire them is considered an honor to the originator. The World of the American Indian. formerly of the Southeast.. Women and girls wore full-length ribbon skirts topped with a lightweight cape edged in ribbons. et al. Jules B. In the trading days of the late 1800’s. poems and chants. Gale M. Designs are treasured but are not claimed as personal property. The strips are combined with bands of ribbon in a manner similar to that used in quilting and sewn together. D. The annual ceremony reaffirms and honors the role of women within the community. Washington. and tribal location supplement. In the Ribbon Dance. index. Back-pocket map. women wear rainbow-colored headdresses of cascading ribbons as they parade through the public square.: National Geographic Society. suggested by something they resemble.Appliqué and Ribbonwork / 33 most recognizable styles in North America. They are shared with friends and handed down within families.C. The early tradition was knee-length shirts for elderly men and longer shirts for younger men. The early patterns of wide bands of single contrasting colors soon evolved into elaborate multicolored patchwork strips. Traditional Seminole patterns are still used and are often altered as the tailor expresses her own ideas. Later a popular waist-length jacket was rendered in a Seminole ribbon style for men. . Complex designs have names. and acknowledgments. The use of ribbons in ceremonial dress was carried to Oklahoma by the Creek. 1974.

Comprehensive account of culture areas. Maxwell. Milanich. and designs of Seminole ribbonwork clothing. The North American Indians: A Sourcebook. Sixth impression. Collection of original (edited) articles dating from 1888 to 1963 and arranged by culture areas. political. The Seminole. Dress and Adornment.. 2000. James A. Red Man’s America: A History of Indians in the United States.. color and black-and-white photographs. et al. and other features of their daily existence. Owen. The Seminole Indians of Florida. cultural. . America’s Fascinating Indian Heritage. 1967. Headdresses. Sturtevant. and social perspectives of the mid-twentieth century. material culture. Culture. Shells and Shellwork. and social issues of early twentieth century. 1960.34 / Appliqué and Ribbonwork Garbarino. Clay. housing. Seminole resistance under leader Osceola. and archaeological sites. Quillwork. history. and effect of European contact on the Seminole people. social customs. religion. historic villages. et al. Includes references. See also: Arts and Crafts: Southeast. 1978. and mythology. Foreword by Jerald T. Merwyn. Surveys origins. evolution. Roger G. Macmillan: New York. history. Gainesville: University Press of Florida. crafts. 1989. introduction by William C. prehistory (including Mesoamerican). and a directory of 250 educational films. Ruth M. Written from the perspective of the first peoples of North America. Beads and Beadwork. Includes more than seven hundred color illustrations as well as descriptions of ceremonies. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. history. A definitive report on the Seminole people which provides an examination of their clothing and ornaments. New York: Chelsea House. Pleasantville: Reader’s Digest. Underhill. additional reading list. List of museums. MacCauley. and demography.

it actually had a very limited distribution. semi-subterranean sod and rock houses. the dome-shaped snow house was the most remarkable architectural achievement of Arctic populations. At the time of European contact. Inuit. and the West Greenlanders. the igloo) is the form of shelter most commonly associated with the Arctic. Throughout the Arctic. the snow house was the primary winter shelter in most areas of the Central and Eastern Canadian Arctic. cut with a large snow knife. Any snow house that was to be occupied for more than one or two nights would have a porch attached to provide storage space and protection from the wind. The entrance generally sloped . Rather. housing styles were largely a function of four factors: local weather conditions. requirements for mobility. a typical strategy involved building large snow house communities on the ocean ice from which hunters would depart daily to engage in breathing-hole seal hunting. and walrus-skin houses elevated on stilts. the Aleut. and household size and organization. availability of raw materials. a number of other types of structures have been used by groups in the Arctic culture area. granular snow that was uniformly compressed by blowing winds. there was a wide range of architectural styles. in a circular pattern spiraling upward. It was essential that the right kind of snow be used: hard-packed. In these areas. The spiral ensured that each snow block placed in line had another block to lean against. Many Arctic groups. Yupik Significance: Although the domed snow house is the most widely recognized Arctic habitation. Without a doubt. never built snow houses. Snow Houses. such as the Yupik of south-western Alaska. including aboveground plank houses. This made the construction process easier and maximized the structural integrity of the shelter. The snow house was built by arranging the snow blocks. While the domed snow house (in common parlance.Architecture: Arctic / 35 Architecture: Arctic Tribes affected: Aleut. semi-subterranean log houses.

Caribou skins or musk ox skins would be placed on the sleeping platform for additional insulation. Often. Because of the great effort involved in building and maintaining such shelters. stone. In North Alaska. which provided protection from the cold air on the floor below. A piece of ice might also be placed into the wall to provide natural lighting. At least half of the interior included a raised sleeping and sitting platform. or whalebone framework covered with insulating sod. found from East Greenland to South Alaska and the Aleutian Islands. they tended to be used by groups with year-round or seasonally occupied villages.36 / Architecture: Arctic The Arctic Culture Area Saint Lawrence Island Eskimo Siberian Eskimo North Alaskan Eskimo West Alaskan Eskimo Aleut Yupik Polar Eskimo East Greenland Eskimo Mackenzie Eskimo Netsilik Copper Eskimo Caribou Eskimo Sallirinuit Quebec Inuit Labrador Coast Eskimo South Alaskan Eskimo Iglulik West Greenland Eskimo Baffin Island Eskimo downward so as to create a cold trap. houses were rectangu- . Excavated several feet into the ground. these shelters generally consisted of a wood. a small hole would be punched through the roof to provide some air circulation and hence a guarantee against asphyxiation. Semi-Subterranean Houses. Far more common than the snow house was the semi-subterranean house.

Since the Aleut lived in a far milder climate than most Eskimo groups. easier access to wood resulted in this material being a more significant component in house construction. an underground passageway was not necessary. which was entered through a trapdoor in the floor. The Aleut constructed large semi-subterranean houses which have been documented to range between 70 and 200 feet in length. wood was even more evident in house construction. These houses had log supports and roof frames made of either wood or whalebone. entrance into the house was down one or more notched log ladders positioned under the structure’s smoke holes. entry was generally through a ground-level doorway. These houses tended to be slightly larger and were often made with a frame of whole logs covered with sod. cooking. In the Bering Sea region. which included a raised sleeping platform. among Chugach and Koniag Eskimos. Since these longhouses generally accommodated a large number of related families. Rather. The long tunnel ended under the main living area. Farther south. The main living areas often had sleeping platforms on all three sides as opposed to the single sleeping platform of the North Alaskan house. they lacked the sloping entranceways characteristic of more northern groups. which were then covered with sod. Entrance to the house was through a passageway which sloped from ground level downward to a depth of about 4 to 5 feet. and food preparation.Architecture: Arctic / 37 lar and constructed of a whalebone and driftwood frame covered by sod. A central fireplace fueled by wood and placed under a square smoke hole in the roof was the primary source of heat. although body heat alone was sometimes adequate to keep it warm. On either side of this passageway were side rooms used for storage. A membrane-covered skylight provided light to the interior. A wood planked floor marked the main living area. Although these houses were semi-subterranean. Woven grasses were placed on the roofs. This main living area was usually kept warm by a soapstone lamp. often an entire village of . Such dwellings occasionally had two entrances: a ground-level entrance for summer use and an underground passageway for winter use. Even in winter.

or snowblocks covered over with a skin roof. In East Greenland. Skin tents were ubiquitous throughout the Arctic region. these houses were built with horizontally placed logs for the side walls and with vertically placed planks for the front and back walls. and were often dug into a hillside. but these generally had underground passageways to function as cold traps. they were built aboveground with ground-level entrances. these longhouses invariably housed an entire village. These houses were typically found at spring and summer fishing camps. sod. rarely housing more than one nuclear family. with their . These shelters tended to be small and triangular-shaped. the qarmaq was made of a circular wall of stone. was used by certain Central Arctic groups. house walls were constructed of stone and sod. Aboveground wood houses had a limited distribution. Usually occupied only during transitional seasons. Stilt Houses. Grasses were woven into partitions to separate the living areas. Aboveground Wood Houses. In North Greenland. In the YukonKuskokwim region. while roofs were made of sod placed over driftwood rafters. and Men’s Houses. Semi-subterranean longhouses were also used in Labrador. Given the scarcity of wood.38 / Architecture: Arctic thirty to forty people. they were the primary form of summer residence throughout much of the region. since they required ready access to timber. for example. West Greenland. The gabled roof was covered with wood planks and bark. so they constructed their semi-subterranean winter houses of cantilevered stone covered by sod and snow. They were the dominant form of summer residence among Yupik groups in southwestern and southern Alaska. Typically made of caribou or seal skin. Even the Alaskan Yupik. and East Greenland. called a qarmaq. especially among those groups that were highly nomadic in summer. A similar style of structure. the Polar Eskimo had extremely limited access to wood. Tents. Since the houses were occupied only during the warm months of the year. each family was assigned a living area along the outside walls.

1984. . Some of these houses are reported to have been large enough to seat up to five hundred people. David. Among the Yupik of southwestern Alaska. Washington. ceremonial houses were built in a style similar to regular residences. each ceremonial house (karigi) was associated with one or more whaling crews. Condon and Pamela R. the men of the village slept and ate in the ceremonial house (qasgiq).: Smithsonian Institution Press.C. Jr.C. Ceremonial men’s houses constituted an important part of village life throughout most of Alaska. permanent ceremonial houses were not found anywhere in the Central or Eastern Arctic. edited by William Fitzhugh and Aron Crowell. Foreword by Andrew Tooyak. Aron. Stern Sources for Further Study Crowell.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Fairbanks: University of Alaska Press with the University of Alaska Museum. In North Alaska. Vol. Reinhardt. 5 in Handbook of North American Indians. Although large ceremonial snow houses were sometimes built by Central Arctic groups for midwinter games and dances. D. and Gregory A. Eskimo Architecture: Dwelling and Structure in the Early Historic Period. Molly. ed. 2003.Architecture: Arctic / 39 wooden summer houses. but women were allowed to visit and participate in certain ceremonies.” In Crossroads of Continents: Cultures of Siberia and Alaska. “Dwellings. Washington. located in the Bering Strait. used tents while traveling or hunting over long distances. although somewhat larger. They were regarded as men’s houses. Richard G. Perhaps the most unusual houses in the Arctic were the summer stilt houses of King Island. Arctic. Settlements. D. and Domestic Life. These small houses were usually erected next to the semi-subterranean winter houses and were boxlike structures with walrus hide walls. These houses were also used for sweatbaths and for important religious ceremonies such as the Bladder Feast. Damas. 1988. Throughout Alaska. Lee. Their elevation on wooden stilts was necessary given the steep coastline of the island and the lack of level ground for building.

food storage. they constructed homes of earth. dance chambers. Nelson. large rectangular plank houses were made of cedar. or bark. Wiyot.C. Cupeño. Luiseño. Karok. Quechan. Edward. Gabrielino. wood. The Eskimo About Bering Strait. Tolowa. was the earth- . Washington. Juaneño. Pomo. Serrano. Wailaki. sand. Yokuts. Tubatulabal. Peter. Chumash. The Indians of California lived in climates ranging from foggy. These had circular side door openings which had to be crawled through. Mattole. and sweatbaths. Earth-covered semisubterranean houses were common. brush. Yana. Atsugewi. Yuki. Hupa. 1989. Native American Architecture. Costano. sometimes having several pitched roofs and excavated floors. Eighteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology for the Years 1896-1897. Patwin. Shasta. Buildings were used for summer and winter houses. Wintun. Using materials available in their natural environment. New York: Oxford University Press. Salinan. Chemehuevi. Sweathouses for male clan members were made of wood and had wood or earth floors. D. 1983. Miwok. Oswalt. Longhouse. damp coastlands in the north to dry desert regions in the south. and most characteristic of the central region. Kateo. In the north. Yahi. Architecture: California Tribes affected: Achumawi. San Francisco: Chandler. and Robert Easton. Alaskan Eskimos. Reprint.40 / Architecture: California Nabokov. Plank House. 1967. Maidu. Kamia. The most common form of Indian architecture in the California region. Yurok Significance: Indian architecture in California was of a wide variety because of climatic variations throughout the state.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Wendell H. See also: Igloo.

The California Culture Area Tolowa Karok Shasta Yurok Hupa Wiyot Wintun Mattole Sinkyone Wailaki Yuki Achumawi Atsugewi Yana Yahi Maidu Pomo Patwin Wappo Coast Miwok Miwok Costanoan Monache Esselen Yokuts Salinan Tubatulabal Chumash Fernandeño Chemehuevi Serrano Gabrielino Luiseño Juaneño Cupeño Diegueño Quechan Kamia Cahuilla .

or bark had round or cone-shaped roofs and were used by the California region Indian. brush.42 / Architecture: California A typical design found in central California was this Mono wickiup-style brush structure. tule. This pit house was a small structure with an excavated earth floor. These structures were covered with bark slabs in winter for greater protection from the cold and could house many families. Dwellings made of willow poles. an earth roof. Ladders ran up the sides of such dwellings in order to gain access to the entry hole. . dome-shaped brush structures such as the wickiup as well as four-post sand-roofed houses were built. Small slat openings in the lower sides of the earthlodges could be used to crawl through. After the arrival of the Spanish. adobe bricks were used and made into mud-thatched one-room homes much like those found in neighboring Mexico. which was also used for entry. Ceremonial halls and men’s sweathouses were smaller circular or rectangular buildings of the same type. (Library of Congress) lodge. and a roof smoke hole. In the southern regions.

flat-roofed houses. cooking. Great Basin Indians also made grass huts with a center ridgepole. Indians lived in grass huts. Ute. round assembly or dance hall made of wood with metal nails and split shingles. Paiute. Pit House. The Great Basin area north of the Colorado River. mobility was a significant factor in the design of their dwellings. or low. and open side walls made of vertical poles. . slanted roof. Native American Architecture. The Paiute made a fiber structure known as the wickiup with small forked branches twisted into the shape of a small cone or dome and then covered with grass and brush with an open door space. Wickiup. Walapai. Diane C. Van Noord Source for Further Study Nabokov. Mono. dry desert and continental steppe. wickiups. was a large. Gosiute. open ends. 1989. Washoe Significance: In the sparsely populated Great Basin region. basically comprising present-day Utah and Nevada. as well as for protection from the sun. In the hot summer. Kawaiisu. Shoshone. Grass House. This structure was used for sleeping.Architecture: Great Basin / 43 The roundhouse. largely the result of European contact. Plank House. Earthlodge. they looked much like an open-sided tent. New York: Oxford University Press. The Indians inhabiting this wide area never settled long in one place but constantly moved about in search of fresh food sources. tipis. The wickiup was either left in place when they moved or carried with them to a new location. See also: Adobe. Numaga. For all but those Indians living along the Colorado River. and storage. Architecture: Great Basin Tribes affected: Bannock. mostly consists of hot. Peter. and Robert Easton.

The Great Basin Culture Area Northern Paiute (Paviotso) Northern Shoshone Bannock Eastern Shoshone Washoe Western Shoshone Mono Gosiute Ute Panamint Kawaiisu Southern Paiute . frame homes near the foothills were covered with mud thatch for greater protection and warmth.44 / Architecture: Great Basin In the winter. Those who lived near other geographical regions often borrowed the architectural styles of the neighboring Indian tribes.

Peter. the adobe of the Southwest. Huron. Mattaponi. Tipi. The buildings of the Northeast region Indians were constructed in woodlands. These houses also included open ramadas for additional living space. Lumbee. religious. Wickiup.Architecture: Northeast / 45 Structures included the tipi of the Plains. including the wigwam and the longhouse. Micmac. Along the Colorado River. Metis. Winnebago Significance: The woodlands of the Northeast provided basic building materials. Wampanoag. Pennacook. Architectural styles were versatile. Diane C. Passamaquoddy. Penobscot. Narragansett. Nauset. Montagnais. on mountains. along the Atlantic coast. such as saplings. for a variety of buildings. Onondaga. Grass House. Susquehannock. and Robert Easton. Montauk. Nottaway. the earthlodge of California. Mohawk. adapting to the particular climate and the social. and bark. Mountain. Cahokia. Moneton. Illinois. flat sandroofed homes built on poles with excavated floors. Architecture: Plateau. Ottawa. See also: Architecture: California. Niantic. Native American Architecture. Lenni Lenape. The roofs were used for food storage and socializing as well as for protection. Architecture: Northeast Tribes affected: Abenaki. Nanticoke. Miami. brush. Tobacco. Architecture: Southwest. and economic . Fox. Nipissing. Cayuga. Kickapoo. Maliseet. Erie. Mohegan. Van Noord Source for Further Study Nabokov. Menominee. Ojibwa. 1989. and the pit house of the Plateau. Neutral. and along inland lakeshores. Wappinger. Massachusett. Oneida. Nipmuc. Mahican. New York: Oxford University Press. Algonquian. Pequot. Indians developed low. Iroquois.

The basic structure of the wigwam was made of sapling frames bent into arches and tied together with fibercord The Northeast Culture Area Micmac Maliseet Passamaquoddy Nipissing Ojibwa Ottawa Algonquin Penobscot Abenaki Pennacook Menominee Potawatomi Winnebago Sauk Fox Miami Kaskaskia Illinois Kickapoo Huron Petun Neutral Erie Seneca Cayuga Onondaga Oneida Mohawk Nottaway Nipmuck Pequot Massachusett Wampanoag Narragansett Wappinger Lenni Lenape Susquehannock Nanticoke Powhatan Piankashaw Shawnee Moneton Secotan Tuscarora Pamlico Mahican . architecture also expressed the Indians’ way of life. In the eastern portion of this region. The smoke holes were also sources of light. The longhouse. which varied in length and accommodated more than a hundred people. Primarily used for protection. Its simple construction of a frame and covering could be easily moved. could be enlarged to make room for newly married couples. the Iroquois and Huron built long communal buildings which were used year-round by clan groups. The pole-framed structure had a barrel or vaulted roof. Sleeping bunks ran along the sides of the building. A typical dwelling structure of Northeast region Indians was the wigwam.46 / Architecture: Northeast needs of the particular tribe. Smoke holes placed about 25 feet apart represented the space given to an individual family. Doors and storage areas were at each end.

Along the North Atlantic coast. the floor was covered with fir boughs. these poles met at the center point of a circular shape on the ground. (National Archives) and then covered with rolls of bark or reed mats. They were sometimes insulated by laying grass over the frame and covering this with sheets of birchbark.Architecture: Northeast / 47 The tipi was among the various structures erected by the Algonquins along the North Atlantic coast. The Algonquin used a variety of bark-covered and mat-covered wigwams and barrel or gabled roofs as well as conical tipis using straight poles covered with bark. and an opening in the side provided a doorway. on the circumference of which were positioned the poles’ ends. The smoke hole was at the top of the tipi where the poles met. Sapling stringers were lashed to the frame for stability. tipis were made by leaning straight poles vertically together. and smoke escaped through a parting of the mats. . at the top. A central fire was used for cooking and heating. There were many different styles of the basic domed wigwam.

it was made of a sapling frame covered with bark or canvas. Great Lakes Indians: A Pictorial Guide. Diane C. N. the Indians also used the tipi type of dwelling. Wigwam. Indian New England Before the Mayflower. an extension of the domed type by use of a ridge pole. 2003. A small religious structure called the shaking tent was a single-person hut. Jr. Grand Rapids. 1970. Hanover. Nabokov. and it shook while the shaman was moving and speaking inside as he performed a rite. They were made with poles of cedar. See also: Birchbark. 1980. Lewis H. William. and the summer square bark house. Kubiak. Washington. 1989. Longhouse. Howard S. Houses and House-Life of the American Aborigines. David I. Peter. Ceremonial lodges and many-sided dance lodges were the largest structures built by the Great Lakes Indians. used mainly in winter. the conical wigwam.48 / Architecture: Northeast The Great Lakes region had several basic house types.H.: University Press of New England..: Government Printing Office. 1919. Native Villages and Village Sites East of the Mississippi. often covered with canvas or animal hides. Used by the shaman.: Baker Book House. Van Noord Sources for Further Study Bushnell. Native American Architecture. and Robert Easton. Reprint. . These were the domed wigwam. Tipi. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press. with vertical walls and a gabled roof. Morgan.C. considered to be sacred. New York: Oxford University Press. D. Mich. Where the Northeast region came closer to the Plains region. Russell. 1881.

The commissioning of a house was restricted to the wealthy. permanent plank buildings. often including the erection of a totem pole. Siuslaw. the prevalent building wood. from skilled craftsman to manual laborer. Tlingit. Salish. Kwakiutl. Tlingit. Snohomish. Among the Tsimshian. A potlatch celebration. Every workman. At this time. principal houses were given names that referred to totemic crests of the lineage or to a distinct quality of the house. Northern House Style. was expected by the community in order to consecrate the house and the status of the owner. Primary living quarters for Northwest Coast Indians accommodated large extended families up to fifty or more persons. Family houses served also as meeting halls for clan events as well as theaters for annual performances. Houses faced the shoreline. Samish. These were raised into foundation . gabled longhouses that regionally varied but could average 60 by 100 feet in area. Tsimshian. large houses for wealthy extended families measured up to 50 feet by 60 feet and had gabled roofs and vertical plank walls. Haida. with the chief having the largest house. and the building of houses was designated to trained specialists. usually of no relation to the owner. Architectural relief carvings or paintings required additional artists and ceremonial feasting at its completion. other Northwest Coast tribes Significance: The abundance of the environment and the ready availability of wood enabled groups in the Northwest Coast area to construct large. Nootka. with a lineage leader’s house in the middle and less important family homes on the perimeter. Haida. Nisqually. Quileute.Architecture: Northwest Coast / 49 Architecture: Northwest Coast Tribes affected: Chinook. Tillamook. The first elements constructed on the site were the corner poles. Cowlitz. and Haisla (the northern Kwakiutl). Cedar. Houses varied in size depending upon the wealth and status of the owner. was paid for each assigned task. Haisla. Umpqua. was hewn into planks to create rectangular.

The Northwest Coast Culture Area Eyak Tlingit Nishga Gitksan Tsimshian Haida Haisla Bella Bella Bella Coola Kwakiutl Nootka Squamish Semiahmoo Cowichan Nooksack Makah Quileute Clallam Quinault Skokomish Chehalis Twana Chemakum Duwamish Chinook Snoqualmie Puyallup Klikitat Clatskanie Nisqually Cowlitz Tillamook Siletz Yaquina Kalapuya Alsea Siuslaw Coos Umpqua Tututni Takelma Chasta Costa Klamath .

which. an engraving of a Chinook lodge in the Oregon Territory. The horizontal beams were elevated into the notched holes of the vertical uprights. Tall ridgepoles supported heavy posts at the front and back. and the house front typically exhibited elaborate carved and painted totem crests that validated the ancestral legacy of the Based on a sketch from the 1830’s. with the lineage head and his family occupying the rear. The upper platform provided assigned sleeping space for each family. platform floor with bench steps (sometimes movable) leading down to a central fire pit located directly below the roof smoke hole. often fitted with a movable shutter. which in turn supported the roof planks with a central opening for a smoke hole. The interior contained a planked. allowed directed interior ventilation. Once the structural framework was constructed. the tapered vertical wall planks were put into place.Architecture: Northwest Coast / 51 holes by pulling and wedging them into position. followed by the elevation of cross beams. interior planked screen. The entrance was an oval or circular doorway cut into the base of the center ridgepole facing the shoreline. (Library of Congress) . interior vertical support poles. The center ridgepole.

mortuary houses. the framework for these houses was frequently permanent. Additionally. Sweatlodges were typically walled with tightly fitted planks or logs supporting a roof of boards and earth. enclosed plank structures on stilt poles served as warehouses for fish storage. A smokehouse was a plank framework with horizontal poles functioning as drying racks for smoking fish. commercially sawed lumber. often without flooring. and decks. The Wakashan house measured from 36 to 40 feet wide by 40 to 150 feet long. served to house families during the summer fishing and gathering activities. fire pit. Unlike the northern house style. and an entrance toward the water. and stoves (replacing the central fire pit). European architectural influences were evident in the introduction of framed doorways and windows in traditional houses. Secondary Structures. though they were sometimes much longer when expanded by building end on end. while the planks and materials for the side and roof were brought by the owners each season. the walls of horizontal planks created a shell around the house frame. Southern House Style. the use of nails instead of notched joints. The most common secondary architectural structures included summer houses. sweatlodges. When summer activities occurred annually in the same place. a summer house could serve as a drying area for the fish in the absence of a separate drying structure. The pitch of the shed roof houses was created by the shoreline vertical poles being taller than the rear support poles. Rough. By the nineteenth century.52 / Architecture: Northwest Coast house owner. smokehouses. The center-sloping gabled roof of the Wakashan house was created by the center ridge beam being of a larger diameter than the two eave beams. this structure made a controllable interior space for steambaths. With sand floors. Small house replicas (8 feet by 6 feet) or small . Two types of house construction differentiate the southern style that dominated throughout the Coast Salish region: the shed roof and the Wakashan. Shed-roof houses averaged about 38 by 80 feet. Roughly built structures.

Michael Coronel and Patricia Coronel Sources for Further Study Drucker. . the best-known Plains dwelling is the tipi. N.Architecture: Plains / 53 shed-roof shelters built of logs or planks. Plains Indian architecture is marked by contrasts between mobile and permanent constructions. functioned as grave houses.: Douglas & McIntyre. 1991.Y. Architecture: Plains Tribes affected: Plains tribes Significance: Plains tribes used a variety of temporary and permanent dwellings. Garden City. and House Types of the Northwest Coast. Canoe. New York: Harper & Row. Emmons. 1991. 1984.” circles of rocks probably used to hold down the sides of small hide-covered dwellings. Vancouver. Jamake. George Thornton. Cedar: Tree of Life to the Northwest Coast Indians. Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths. Seattle: University of Washington Press. Philip. Arts of the Indian Americas: Leaves from the Sacred Tree. Hillary.: Natural History Press.C. Edited by Fredrica de Laguna. Stewart. Indians of the Northwest Coast. B. Adze. 1963. Totem Poles. Olsen. Highwater. Ronald L. Plank House. See also: Longhouse. The Tlingit Indians. including earthlodges and grass houses. with platforms to hold the deceased. They also left “tipi rings. Prehistoric tribes constructed brush-covered lodges supported by stationary cones of branchless trees. Open-deck structures or raised platforms on stilts constructed on the beach provided designated gathering areas in fair weather. Evidence suggests that both types of dwelling have a long history in the Plains region. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 1983.

The Plains Culture Area Sarsi Plains Cree Blood Blackfoot Piegan Atsina Assiniboine Crow Hidatsa Mandan Arikara Teton Sioux Yanktonai Sioux Santee Sioux Cheyenne Ponca Yankton Sioux Pawnee Omaha Iowa Oto Kansa Missouri Arapaho Kiowa Osage Quapaw Comanche Apache of Oklahoma Wichita Kichai Tonkawa Lipan Apache Caddo .

The best-known of these is in the Bighorn Mountains of northern Wyoming. Petroforms. Palisades protected the Mandans’ earthlodge dwellings. and sod. Along the upper Missouri. From the Dakotas to the northeast. villagers used the terrain to augment defenses consisting of dry moats or log palisades. and sod. (National Archives) . suggest a southeastern Indian cultural influence in the Canadian and Dakotan plains. The rectangular format of the Mandans’ sacred Okeepa lodge was a reminder of its prehistoric architectural origins. which surrounded plazas dominated by a wooden shrine honoring the mythic hero Lone Man. the earthlodges of the prehistoric seminomadic agricultural communities were primarily rectangular and consisted of wooden uprights joined by cross beams and rafters covered with sticks. Mandan post-and-beam construction was overlaid by wooden rafters supporting willow branches. circular constructions of boulders with both terrestrial and celestial alignments. grass. were another early architectural achievement. rock designs resembling animal and human figures. A Pawnee family stands outside their earthlodge in Nebraska during the late nineteenth century. grass. the typical house type was the earthlodge. Along the Missouri River.Architecture: Plains / 55 Medicine wheels.

Other permanent Plains structures were the ceremonial Sun Dance lodge (of the Kiowa. Peter. Architecture: Plateau Tribes affected: Bannock. the ubiquitous sweatlodge. funerary platforms. Native American Architecture. Shoshone. and Cheyenne). Gosiute. and sweathouses. Tipis developed from the “tipi ring” shelter and the Northeastern Woodlands three-pole conical tent. a cone of poles covered by sewn and tanned buffalo hides and staked to the ground. Kawaiisu. was widely used for temporary shelter and later became a year-round mobile dwelling. Arapaho. isolated menstrual huts. Grass House. With the arrival of horses to serve as transportation. The tipi. and Robert Easton. religious structures. William B. and Wichita of the southern Plains constructed permanent grass houses of thatch bundles fixed to a wood pole frame. such as the Sioux inipi. Washoe Significance: Plateau architecture was characterized by circular pit houses. menstrual huts.56 / Architecture: Plateau The Caddo. Shoshone. tipis became larger and more elaborate. there were essentially two types of winter dwelling: the circular semi-subterranean pit house and the inverted-V rectangular tule mat lodge. excavated food storage pits. Folkestad Source for Further Study Nabokov. The principal structures within the Plateau culture area were sleeping dwellings. and temporary lean-to shelters. Tipi. Kichai. Ute. Though architecture type varied through time and spatial distribution. made of bent willow saplings covered with buffalo hides. See also: Earthlodge. Medicine Wheels. New York: Oxford University Press. The older pit house . 1989. food-drying scaffolds and racks. Panamint. Paiute.

circular pit measuring 9 to 15 feet in diameter. which were covered with sewn willow mats. flat. The aboveground shape was achieved by erecting three or four top-forked poles which. with gradually sloping earthen walls of 3 feet. The exterior was made of layered sewn tule mats.Architecture: Plateau / 57 The Plateau Culture Area Lillooet Shuswap Nicola Lake Methow Wenatchi Okanagan Kutenai Sanpoil Colville Chelan Columbia Wanapam Spokane Kalispel Klikitat Yakima Wishram Tenino Molala Umatilla Cayuse Walla Walla Palouse Coeur d’Alene Flathead Nez Perce Klamath Modoc was an excavated. with the apex of the structure being open to serve as a smoke hole and en- . when secured. accommodated smaller lodge poles to support cedar planks.

they could accommodate three to six extended families. tule. Architecture: Southeast Tribes affected: Southeast tribes Significance: Wattle and daub structures. Pit House. and longhouses. John Alan Ross Source for Further Study Nabokov. Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths. Tipi. See also: Lean-to. Peter. Southeastern tribal architecture is distinguished by a tradition of monumental mound building. Entrance was usually from both ends. Often the floor was excavated to a depth of one foot. Various grasses. chakofas. These rectangular structures averaged 30 feet in length and approximately 10 feet in width. 1989. and cattail mats began to give way to canvas as a preferred covering material for sweatlodges. bark. usually with no ridge pole. but the best-known Southeast constructions were large earthen mounds. runged ladder. Southeastern mound construction may have originated with Mexican Indians who moved to this lo- . The second type of winter village dwelling was the tule matcovered. In the mid-1800’s.58 / Architecture: Southeast trance up or down a notched log or hafted. A major influence on southern Plateau architecture was the introduction of the horse. and chickees were among the dwelling types of the Southeast. Native American Architecture. as evidenced by the adoption of the tipi. and Robert Easton. where firewood was kept. tipi dwellings. New York: Oxford University Press. old tule mats. food was stored in hemp and pliable root bags suspended from the ceiling. permitting greater involvement with Plains culture through trade and bison hunting. This structure was often used for large gatherings and ceremonial rituals. inverted-V-type pole-constructed lodge. some of which can still be seen. and bear skins covered the dwelling floor.

) raised cone-shaped burial mounds. The dwellings were covered with thatched roofs. from Wisconsin to Louisiana. The Hopewell cul- . They date from about 1200 b. Louisiana. depicting bears.e. panthers.c.e. Adena effigy mounds.Architecture: Southeast / 59 The Southeast Culture Area Manahoac Saponi Monacan Tutelo Chickasaw Coushatta Tuskegee Caddo Hasinai Yuchi Cherokee Cheraw Catawba Waccamaw Creek Hitchiti Tunica Alabama Ofo Chiaha Yazoo Yamasee Guale Natchez Choctaw Tohome Houma Mobile Biloxi Apalachee Chitimacha Timucua Ais Seminole Calusa Atakapa cale to participate in the trade that occurred from the Great Lakes region to Florida.) in southern Ohio is 1. and birds.c.247 feet in length and portrays a serpent clutching an egg in its mouth. The Adena culture of the Ohio River valley (1000 b. known as geoforms.e. The Great Serpent Mound (800 b.e.e.-400 c. survive. are associated with this cultural influence. The concentric ridges of shaped soil that define a large central plaza at Poverty Point.-200 c. reptiles.c. a type of construction called wattle and daub. They also built dwellings that were 20 feet to 70 feet in diameter and had clay-covered latticework walls.

Wattle and Daub. and economic center of the Mississippi tradition. Cahokia’s central pyramid is the largest manmade structure north of Mexico. was the political.e. Under the Mississippi tradition (700-1000 c. monumental circles. . where the Seminoles built wide-eaved. found in the Ohio Valley. and Robert Easton. The Natchez Indians of Mississippi continued the temple mound building tradition into the early eighteenth century. William B.000 feet in length. The Cherokees also built communal structures on low earthen mounds to house sacred fires. By the nineteenth century.e. 1989. measuring more than 1. communities periodically enlarged their flat-topped trapezoidal mounds. succeeded the Adena constructions. Mounds and Moundbuilders. Folkestad Source for Further Study Nabokov. religious. Mississippian Culture. the result of fourteen different building campaigns over three centuries.). These mounds supported chieftains’ houses and public buildings or contained burials. Louis. Native American Architecture. Creek and Yuchi Indians built large villages with ceremonial plazas and ball courts. open-sided dwellings with elevated platforms of cypress poles and palmetto thatch known as chickees. The Creek chakofa was a communal structure with a thatched conical roof. The Cahokia site (800 c. Peter. squares.) near St. Missouri. 700 feet in width. they encountered Indian townsites with shaped mounds dominating the community and its plaza.60 / Architecture: Southeast ture’s funerary mounds. and pentagonal geoforms. New York: Oxford University Press. One notable exception was in Florida’s southern marshes. See also: Chickee. When European explorers first arrived in the Southeast. and 100 feet in height. many southeastern tribes had adopted European-style buildings.

During the Development Pueblo period (700-1100). the Anasazi evolved building techniques which resulted in structures that were considerably more complex and sophisticated. A true masonry technique evolved from jacal. Chaco Canyon. three major Anasazi centers developed: Mesa Verde. Hopi.e.” a method similar to wattle and daub. using stone tools not much harder than the sandstone itself.) in the Four Corners area built crude circular subterranean structures with flat roofs. with the addition of stone slabs placed against the bottoms of walls and held in place with adobe. irregular rocks were laid end to end and packed solidly with adobe. Later in this period. Mogollon. The pit house continued as a kiva. and then to pueblos built in the historic period in the Rio Grande Valley and at Zuñi and Hopi. consisting of slightly curved rows of contiguous flat-roofed rooms. but dwellings were now aboveground.Architecture: Southwest / 61 Architecture: Southwest Tribes affected: Anasazi. In these villages. Basket Maker Anasazi (circa 1-700 c. The earliest utilization of stone was in “jacal. Hohokam. All three prehistoric cultures in the Southwest were pit house builders. entered by ladder through the smoke hole. only the load- . Stone Masonry. The Hohokam built square or rectangular pit houses randomly scattered over a large area (the settlement at Snaketown covers almost a square mile). At first. other Southwest traditions and tribes Significance: Architecture in the Southwest evolved from the crude pit house to the magnificent stone pueblos of the prehistoric Anasazi. Toward the end of this period. Zuñi. wherein large. circular pit houses were as much as 25 feet in diameter and often were divided into ceremonial space and living space. The Mogollon constructed circular pit houses grouped in small villages of fifteen to twenty families. and Kayenta. the Anasazi shaped sandstone rocks into building blocks. each housing an entire family. Basket Maker and Developmental Pueblo. Eastern Pueblo.

producing a wall that was both aesthetically pleasing and strong. but eventually both visible surfaces were smoothed as well. the Anasazi refined their masonry further. This new masonry technique resulted in an increase in both the size and complexity of the pueblos. Stone masonry also affected the kiva. whose walls and floor were now lined with carefully shaped and fitted stone blocks.62 / Architecture: Southwest bearing surfaces were shaped. developing walls built with a three- The Southwest Culture Area Navajo Jicarilla Tiwa Apache Tewa Zuni Yavapai Jemez Pecos Laguna Maricopa South Acoma Quechan Tiwa Coyotero Cocopa Apache Mimbreño Tohono Apache O’odham Mescalero Chiricahua Apache Apache Pima Suma Hopi Opata Seri Jumano Tarahumara Lipan Apache Karankawa Coahuiltec Havasupai Walapai Mojave Yaqui Tobosco Comarito Lagunero Zacatec . with a stone bench and stone pilasters to support the flat roof. some were as large as thirty or more contiguous rooms and were two stories high. During the Classic Pueblo period (1100-1300).

Flat roofs were constructed with beams laid across with poles and brush and covered with several inches of clay and mud. housing more than one thousand people and covering almost four acres. with eight hundred rooms rising in tiers from a single frontal story to five stories at the back. Chaco Canyon. (Library of Congress) ply construction: an inner and outer facing of shaped sandstone blocks with an interior filling of loose stones and adobe. They apparently made the move for reasons of defense. their influence had spread from the upper Rio Grande Valley to Texas and Nevada and to central and southern Arizona. with heavy beams set into the walls to support the floors above ground level. Varying the shapes of the blocks created linear patterns.Architecture: Southwest / 63 Taos Pueblo in New Mexico. adding visual interest to the walls. Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon was the largest pueblo in the Southwest. Mesa Verde. and Kayenta continued to be major centers of Anasazi culture. The Anasazi at Mesa Verde built large stone pueblos on the mesa tops but abandoned them a hundred years later in favor of the cliff dwellings—stone buildings erected in irregularly shaped caves in the cliff faces. being without . Pueblos of this period often rose to as many as five stories. because the caves were much less desirable places to live.

the Anasazi began to leave their major centers to migrate elsewhere. The platform was retained by a massive adobe and rock wall. it transformed the architectural styles of both the Mogollon and the Hohokam. Anasazi Influence. Keet Seel and Betatakin were the largest pueblos at Kayenta. Casa Grande has deeply trenched walls 4. with a second wall built around the pueblo itself. invasion. The main two-storied structure was set on a base of earth 5 feet high. probably because crops grew less abundantly there. There are several theories which attempt to explain this. In any case. There they built forty rooms in five deep caves 150 feet above the canyon floor. such as those at Gila Cliffs in southern New Mexico. pueb- . or plague. some of the cliff dwellings contained as many as two hundred rooms. the stonework was not as skillful as that of the earlier pueblos. Pueblos both in the open and in the cliffs were built with masonry that was inferior to the other sites. tapering to 2 feet at their height. a subsoil with high lime content.5 feet thick at the bottom. twenty-three kivas. suggesting that it may have served as an observatory. Pueblo Grande. As Anasazi culture spread during the Pueblo period. and limited in size. in the Zuñi Mountains. About 1300. difficult to reach. Even so. Built of caliche. on the outskirts of Phoenix. was built of adobe and stone masonry on an earthen platform. and in the area of the Hopi Mesas. providing an unobstructed view of the surrounding countryside. Although construction varied according to time and place.64 / Architecture: Southwest sunlight much of the day. and both square and round towers. along the Little Colorado River. Having been built in haste in a less desirable location. among them drought. Pueblo culture was reestablished in large communities in the Rio Grande Valley from Isleta Pueblo to Taos. The Mogollon abandoned their pit houses in favor of aboveground masonry structures. The Hohokam were also influenced by Anasazi pueblo architecture. a center that was never as populous as Chaco Canyon or Mesa Verde. A single room atop the building had holes in one wall that lined up precisely with sunset at the equinoxes. as evidenced by the ruins of Casa Grande in the Arizona desert.

The Anasazi: Ancient Indian People of the American Southwest. J. and Florence C. The Magic of Bandelier. Lister. See also: Anasazi Civilization. Oreg. The Puebloans of the Southwest and many of their pueblos survived the Spanish. the Mexican. Flagstaff: Museum of Northern Arizona. The traditions that evolved in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries formed the basis for the Pueblo cultures that exist in these areas today. Charles A. People of Chaco: A Canyon and Its Culture. Jones. W. Anasazi World. and finally the United States’ occupation of their lands. Norton. and Kayenta: large communal structures with hundreds of rooms. Stuart. Rev. Cordell. Lister. 1989. LouAnn Faris Culley Sources for Further Study Ambler. New York: Oxford University Press. Cliff Dwellings. Kivas either were above ground and incorporated into the room blocks or were square or circular subterranean structures located in the plazas. 1981. often multistoried. Kivas. Nabokov. Brody. Pueblo. Native American Architecture. Pit House. Rev. N. Richard. 1999. Portland.: Ancient City Press. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 1949. The Anasazi: Prehistoric People of the Four Corners Region.Mex. Los Angeles: Southwest Museum. Peter. J. 1985. and Robert Easton. New York: Rizzoli International. J. Hohokam Culture. New York: W. and Linda S. Kendrick. 1990. Chaco Canyon: Archaeology and Archaeologists. Some continued the techniques of stone masonry.Architecture: Southwest / 65 los generally followed the traditions established at Chaco Canyon. and updated ed. . while others were built with solid adobe or mixed adobe and stone construction. ed. Robert H. Mesa Verde. Amsden. Santa Fe. Prehistoric Southwesterners from Basketmaker to Pueblo. 1989. 1989. built around a central plaza.. Frazier. Dewitt. David.: Graphic Arts Center.

Kaska. and animal skins. and streams. Dogrib. evergreen forests. bark. Beaver. planks or logs. log houses. Carrier. lean-tos. Chilcotin. Hare. In the Northwest. Koyukon. Double lean-tos made of wooden frames were covered with bark. is a land of mountains. Tutchone. Subarctic Indians made wooden plank houses. Naskapi. lakes. Slave. the Subarctic region. and tipis. comprising much of presentday Canada. brush. expansive Subarctic region was primarily wigwams. Ingalik. Han. with cold winters and heavy snow. tundra. basically three types of shelters were used. Yellowknife Significance: The architecture of the sparsely populated. Chipewyan. Geographically. Cree. or brush. Tanaina. animal skins.66 / Architecture: Subarctic Architecture: Subarctic Tribes affected: Algonquian. Portable The Subarctic Culture Area Koyukon Ingalik Tanaina Tanana Kutchin Ahtna Han Hare Mountain Tutchone Tagish Tahltan Yellowknife Dogrib Tsetsaut Kaska Slave Sekani Carrier Chilcotin Beaver Chipewyan Western Woods Cree Swampy Cree West Main Cree Saulteaux Naskapi East Cree Montagnais . Raw materials used for dwellings were saplings. Kutchin. Beothuk. As a result of contact with Northwest Coast Indians.

The floors were layered with pine boughs. Double walls filled with brush in the wigwams provided cooling in the warm months. Diane C. Wigwam. Lean-to. Framed with wooden arched poles. Tipi. and sorrows. the wigwams were covered with rolls of bark which had been sewn together. Van Noord Source for Further Study Nabokov. Contemporary American Indian art was spawned by the mid1960’s Civil Rights movement and the 1962 founding of the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. Art and Artists: Contemporary Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Drawing both on antiquity and on the present. and the larger wigwams had central hearths or family fires. 1989. the cone-shaped wigwam was covered with birchbark rolls.Art and Artists: Contemporary / 67 tents for summer and winter were used in the northwest Subarctic with snow piled against the sides for winter insulation. they were made of wooden poles and animal skins. In the Subarctic. A simple log building constructed on poles off the ground provided a place for food to be stored out of the reach of animals. Peter. some Indians migrated to warmer climates during the winter. New Mexico. New York: Oxford University Press. the innovative work of Fritz Scholder (Luiseño) and his stu- . and Robert Easton. Tipis were used throughout the region by those who moved often because they were quickly built and portable. A basic need of Subarctic community was safe food storage. insights. By the late 1960’s. See also: Birchbark. Indian artists depict their history. Brush-covered conical lodges and tents were also used as summer dwellings. Native American Architecture. and earth-covered conical structures and log cabins with moss-covered roofs were used in winter. legends. In the eastern Subarctic region.

a trading post—is distinguished from those who reproduce traditional patterns. often stereotypically. Florence Riggs (Navajo). Many artists. seeing these times as aspects of merging and intersecting cycles. which may be woven from a number of different cultures. women. by others. or outlook. Today’s Indian artists balance the traditional and the contemporary. artists feel free to pursue their own views and concerns rather than having their lives and traditions expressed. There is no singular position from which to examine American Indian art and artists. and history. Individuality. continues the Northeast tradition of artful containers by placing his self-portrait on a paper bag (Aotearoa/Ganondagan. on the other hand. for example. no distinctive style. Peter Jemison. Edna Jackson reflects both her Tlingit and European ancestry. continue to weave or sculpt with clay. a self-portrait. C. 1986). Sylvia Lark (Seneca) has been attracted to the arts of Asia. like Jemison. In Kaaswoot (1982). and who may believe that cultural identity has no place in the definition of their art. They are doing this in many different ways. however. Political and social statements are often conveyed through these modern interpretations. each with their own culture. Many speak through their art to their individuality. Cannon (Kiowa/Caddo) had alerted other American Indian artists to new ways of depicting the world. In the new atmosphere created by the Civil Rights movement and its aftermath. Lark’s fellow Seneca. It can never be assumed that all have a similar history or see themselves unilaterally in relation to European Americans or other American Indians. Those who redefine the old ways. sometimes drawing on ancient forms and styles. Subscribing to another position are those who define themselves as American rather than American Indian. materials. Today’s American Indians belong to or are descended from hundreds of unique peoples. Some artists draw on traditions other than their own. generally attract more critical attention than those who follow the old ways.68 / Art and Artists: Contemporary dent T. language. Thus. do continue the traditional arts and ideas of their culture and gender. . who weaves the life around her—a circus.

intertwined with culture and religion. and dozens of other factors. American Indians are particularly responsive in their work to the loss of their lands and the destruction of the environment. the piece includes “Pocahontas Underwear. speaks to the dominant view that anything Indian is worth collecting and displaying. standardized. Since the earliest days of European conquest. Hopi.” which is decorated with feathers. culture. some American Indian artists continue. assuming similarities across social class. personal taste. and pottery shards labeled “Scientifacts” and “Real Indian Blood. American Indians are sensitized to the past and present manipulation of their land. Part of the text is written backward to force the viewers to face the past. Edgar Heap of Birds (Cheyenne/Arapaho) in Native Hosts (1988) put up aluminum signs in New York parks with messages such as New York today your host is Shinnecock to indicate to today’s residents whose land they occupy. Jimmie Durham (Cherokee). Addressing this objectification in The Good Doctor’s Bedside (1983). and packaged. beads. the Diablo Canyon nuclear facility being struck by lightning—a statement against the destruction of sacred sites for the fostering of European American technology. and others have been compressed.Art and Artists: Contemporary / 69 Shared Concerns. The cultures of the Iroquois. many of these artists do share a sense of community resulting in part from a common history. As the only group in America who live on and visit their ancestral lands. and social position at the hands of the politically and economically dominant. Lance Belanger (Maliseet) documents the stitchwork of a physician who closed the operation scar of a native woman with beads. in his installation On Loan from the Museum of the American Indian (1986). Sioux.” James Luna (Diegueño/Luiseño) in 1986 took the ultimate step in illustrating . While American Indian art can never be funneled into a single definition. peoples. in both traditional and contemporary styles. degree of assimilation. Jean La Marr (Paiute/Pit River) in They’re Going to Dump It Where? (1984) shows. At the same time. to acknowledge the land as sacred. religion. there has been a tendency by European Americans to objectify all American Indians. reflected in the eyeglasses of a Paiute woman. education.

Cannon’s The Collector (or Osage with Van Gogh) shows an elder in traditional dress sitting in his comfortable Western living room with his European American possession. C. speak from two worlds. their insights and their sorrows. Contemporary Native American Art. Janet Catherine. Brody. but most poignantly. 1983. in which sets of dolls’ clothes are labeled “Special Outfit for Trading Land with the U. Some artists with wry humor turn the tables. . New York: Oxford University Press. or both. makes reference to Plains art and Dada sculpture.70 / Art and Artists: Contemporary this objectification when he put himself on display.S. on his Shield for a Modern Warrior or Concession to Beads and Feathers in Indian Art (1984-1985). as an American Indian artifact (The Artifact Piece).S. Most American Indian artists today. Zena Pearlstone Sources for Further Study Berlo. Stillwater: Gardiner Art Gallery. Hammond. In works that call on antiquity and the present. Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (Cree/Flathead/Shoshone) powerfully addresses past maltreatments of her people in Paper Dolls for a Post-Columbian World with Ensembles Contributed by U. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. Government (1991). the crushed beer cans in the center speak to the past and ongoing tragedy of alcoholism among native peoples. Indian Painters and White Patrons. they depict their history and their legends. on an Indian reservation. Oklahoma State University. Government for Whiskey with Gunpowder in It” and “Matching Smallpox Suits for All Indian Families After U. Ron Nogonosh (Ojibwa). Harmony.” Other artists address the present conditions of American Indians. 1998. with the appropriate labels. Richard Ray Whitman (Yuchi/Pawnee) presents the plight of the urban homeless in a set of photographs entitled Street Chiefs Series. a Van Gogh painting. Native North American Art. and Jaune Quick-to-See Smith. curators. whether they live in a city. J.S. 1988. Government Sent Wagon Loads of Smallpox Infected Blankets to Keep Our Families Warm. T. 1971. J.

Gerald. . walruses.. New York: Routledge. Arts and Crafts: Arctic Tribes affected: Aleut. Reservation X. Seattle: University of Washington Press. and fur-clad hunters. New York: Pantheon Books. Rushing. 1990. 1985. it grew in commercial importance in the years after World War II. 3 (Fall. tapestries of wool and fur. McMaster. The manufacture of arts and crafts. and prints are widely exhibited in art museums and galleries. 1998. whalers. Inuit. wood and skin masks. Visitors to the region sought souvenirs of their adventures. baskets. These hastily made souvenirs of the Canadian Arctic may be the best-known objects of Eskimo tourist art. “Recent Native American Art. See also: Paints and Painting. Race-ing Art History: Critical Readings in Race and Art History. is exhibited and sold throughout the world. and sculpture of stone. and ivory. Visitors to nearly any Canadian city cannot help but notice the ubiquitous small black and gray stone carvings of polar bears. 1992): 6-15. tapestries. and Sage. bone. Pottery. basketry. bone. Sculptures of stone. dolls. Yupik Significance: Art of the Arctic.Arts and Crafts: Arctic / 71 Women of Sweetgrass. but they are hardly representative of the great variety and fine quality of representational art from the Arctic region. Pinder. Historical Roots. can be traced to early contacts between Arctic peoples and European explorers. New York: Gallery of the American Indian Community House. 2002. ed. Lippard. W. Lucy R. no. and ivory. Mixed Blessings: New Art in a Multicultural America. and traders. first for trade and later for cash sale. Kymberly N. Symbolism in Art. Cedar. Jackson.” Art Journal 51. seals. including prints.

this trade accelerated and grew in importance at the beginning of the twentieth century. He returned to Montreal. much of the early tourist or souvenir art consisted of models or miniatures of items of traditional material culture. Houston was later instrumental in starting the printmaking industry in the Baffin Island community of Cape Dorset. Thus. which were shipped south for sale. the Canadian government was instrumental in the establishment of arts and crafts cooperatives in most Canadian Inuit communities. Inuit artists began experimenting with larger carvings made from soapstone and serpentine. where he organized an exhibition sponsored by the Canadian Handicrafts Guild. Throughout the Arctic culture area. concerned about the dire financial situation of most Inuit communities. in Canada the cooperatives continue to play a vital role in the training of artists and the marketing of their work. At the same time. a young Canadian artist named James Houston traveled to Port Harrison in northern Quebec. Throughout the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. Although the organization of arts and crafts production varies somewhat from one northern community to another. The export of arts and crafts from the North remained modest until after World War II.72 / Arts and Crafts: Arctic and native residents quickly discovered that they could obtain desirable trade goods by providing those souvenirs. An umbrella organization known as Canadian Arctic Producers was established to assist in the purchase of raw materials and the distribution of finished products. where he became entranced by the miniature carvings made by local Inuits. Public reaction to the fine carvings was so exuberant that Houston returned to the Arctic the following year to encourage Inuits to produce more of these pieces. the skills necessary to produce artwork were widely distributed. . when a time of economic hardship existed for Arctic natives because of the dramatic drop in fox pelt prices. As the volume of arts and crafts exports increased each year. In 1948. the federal government of Canada. hired Houston to act as a roving arts and crafts officer. In Alaska. often in the form of miniatures of native material culture. natives had manufactured and decorated highly sophisticated utilitarian objects. For generations.

These small. Commercial art. but for sale. Yupik legend. artwork for local consumption became less common. On both the eastern and western extremes of the Arctic culture area the art forms draw heavily on spiritual motifs. including Holman. animals. Printmaking is most developed in several Canadian Inuit communities. and Cape . they no longer followed. however. It is ironic that natives were often encouraged to produce images depicting a traditional way of life that. Povungnituk. fine craftsmanship in the manufacture of everyday items was highly valued. Although the tupilaks are physical representations of Inuit helping spirits.Arts and Crafts: Arctic / 73 Scholars generally agree that throughout the Arctic. increasingly. There have been a number of well-known instances in which native-produced art was believed to have been overly influenced by Western styles or motifs and was therefore rejected by the market as not native enough. There is considerable variation in both motifs and materials among the three native groups of the region. the masks are representations of plants. they have always been produced. Consequently. the forms that arts and crafts took were heavily influenced by the demands of the marketplace. The hunting cultures of the region believed that animals preferred to be killed by individuals who took the time to produce beautifully designed and decorated weapons. figurines are generally carved from sperm whale teeth. This is seen most clearly in the tupilak sculptures from East Greenland. still are) an integral part of the dance and ceremonies that accompanied the annual subsistence cycle. for example. As natives accepted more southern manufactured goods and produced fewer utilitarian objects. Baker Lake. not as amulets. relates that seals would give themselves up to men whose wives sewed with skill but would avoid men whose wives were slovenly in their sewing habits. Often made of driftwood. the spirit masks produced by Alaska’s Yupik Eskimos were (and to some extent. grew in importance as people sought the cash with which to purchase the imported goods. Contemporary Forms. often grotesque. To the contrary. and helping spirits.

Some notable recent pieces have depicted social concerns such as alcohol abuse. 1993. time. Pamela R. Dolls. and stone block printing. Quebec: Canadian Ethnology Service. Canadian Museum of Civilization. Among the Iñupiat of North Alaska. many of these tend to be artifacts of local printmaking techniques. The primary differences in artistic style are those of gender—men tend to produce scenes of hunting and other “male” activities. there are also a few makers of coiled baleen baskets. Few Aleut women continue this painstaking activity. Although there are clearly developed community styles. and patience. while women more often depict relationships. Graceful birds delicately shaped from musk ox horn are also a recent innovation. many of the images are of animals and hunting. Stern and Richard G. Mercury Series Paper 124. Twined Aleut baskets are among the most delicately woven in the world. and spirits. and lithography are the most common printmaking methods. Condon Sources for Further Study Black. Prints are produced in series of fifty per image. and beard. located in the Brooks Range of North Alaska. In the Shadow of the Sun: Perspectives on Contemporary Native Art. families. Sculptures of fossil whalebone and soapstone are produced from St. and a finely made basket commands a high price. Juneau: Friends of the Alaska State Museums. hair. residents make a unique caribou-skin mask that is pressed into the shape of a human face and decorated with sealskin and fur for the eyebrows.74 / Arts and Crafts: Arctic Dorset. Most carvers are male and. . Lydia T. Lawrence Island in the west to Baffin Island in the east. In the Iñupiat community of Anaktuvuk Pass. the almost clothlike baskets require great skill. and baskets are also produced in the region. The stiff baleen is extremely difficult to work. Generally woven from wild rye beach grasses. The first baleen baskets were produced in Barrow around 1914 at the request of the trader Charles Brower. jewelry. as with printmaking. Glory Remembered: Wooden Headgear of Alaska Sea Hunters. 1991. Hull. stenciling.

1983.” In Arctic Life: Challenge to Survive. Canada: Winnipeg Art Gallery. The southern- . Eskimo Art: Tradition and Innovation in North Alaska. Edith. Ottawa: National Museum of Man. “Inuit Art. I Like My Hood to Be Full. and fished. ed. Miwok. 1979. Although they neither produced monumental art nor possessed a complex art tradition as did the tribes of the Southwest or the Plains. Hupa. Cupeño. Special issue on Canadian Inuit arts. and they were divided into many relatively small groups. Inuit Journey.Arts and Crafts: California / 75 Driscoll. Winnipeg. Beaver 298 (1967). Yurok Significance: Californian tribes are known for fine basketry work and rock art. 1977. Dorothy Jean. Fernandeño. Jacobs and James B. Foreword by Aldona Jonaitis. Richardson III. Modoc. Nelson H. Wintun. Pittsburgh: Carnegie Institution Press. Tolowa. Artistic traditions were divided into three geographical zones within the state of California. they were nevertheless masters in basketry. 1981. Arts and Crafts: California Tribes affected: Chumash. Salinan. Gabrielino. 1977. Seattle: University of Washington Press with the University of Alaska Museum. Seattle: University of Washington Press. California tribes hunted. Luiseño. Sculpture. Seattle: University of Washington Press. The Inuit Print/L’Estampe Inuit. Aleut and Eskimo Art: Tradition and Innovation in South Alaska. Iglauer. Baleen Basketry of the North Alaskan Eskimo. Maidu. gathered. Bernadette. Pomo. Yana. 1980. edited by Martina M. 1998. _______. Seattle: University of Washington Press. See also: Baskets and Basketry. H. Graburn. Ray. Lee. Hudson’s Bay Company. Goetz. Molly. Yokuts. Patwin. Helga. Kato.

carved stone bowls and figures (including stone effigies). were master basketmakers. and basketry. dugout canoes. and basketry hats. rock art. slat armor. Image not available A sampling of basketry made by the Northern California Hupa tribe. The central groups. especially the Pomo.76 / Arts and Crafts: California most groups had poorly made pottery. (Ben Klaffke) . The northern groups were influenced by Northwest Coast arts and crafts and made plank houses.

The original culture hero and creator discovered a village where there was . white. baby boards. considered to be the property of women. Basketry was used to make most containers and to provide many other functional necessities. and marriage. probably forming part of self-identity. and parallel line designs. They were usually cremated along with the woman at death. and was a part of religious rituals and the life passage rituals of birth. but in others they became a second layer which totally covered the basket and formed designs of their own. and boats. Baskets also play a crucial role in mythology. Shells hung along the rim or sides of the basket as ornamentation. The preeminent craft of Native Americans in California has been basketry. crosses. including mats. but were also made as gifts for other women. They were seen as a special ceremonial gift for a woman at important life passage points in her life. Red. and green feathers were used. The finest examples of basketry are the “jewel” or “gift” baskets made by Pomo women. blue. The aesthetic accomplishment in the finer baskets from this region goes far beyond the functional needs for which the basketry was made. In some cases the feathers and shells were used sparingly to heighten the basketry design. They used both coiling and twining techniques. One story says that the earth did not originally have the light of the sun. These “jewel” baskets were not only made by women. such as birth. Basketry has always been a woman’s art among the California groups. steps. puberty. with coiling being done by the southern groups and twining by the northern ones. and death. Basket designs. Stylized figures of plants and people were also made. black. These baskets had emotional importance for Indian women. were usually geometric and abstract. including circles. Natural vegetable colors were used to achieve the designs. These special baskets incorporated feather mosaics into the design along with clam and abalone shells. and it provided the women with their primary means of aesthetic expression. marriage.Arts and Crafts: California / 77 Basketry. Basketry was also used to make decorative objects such as headdresses. puberty.

Rock art consisted of painting highly personalized dream images onto rocky cliffs or overhangs. and Identity: Essays in Native American Art to Honor J. and boiling food. This art may have reproduced hallucinogenic images seen by men after the ceremonial taking of datura. Ronald J. The Fine Art of California Indian Basketry. Functional baskets were important to the economy of the California groups. saturated hues of red. white. Rock art consists of compositions of geometric forms. Although some groups sealed their baskets with pitch or tar. and other groups from central California made coiled baskets so tightly bound that they were naturally waterproof.: Heyday Books. 1996. J. 2001. The colors normally used were strong. and people. Able to steal one of the magic sun baskets. The Chumash seem to have been the only group to practice it. . Brian. and blue. Berkeley. including circles. juxtaposed with figures of animals. ed. diamonds.. ed. Water containers were also made from baskets.78 / Arts and Crafts: California light which was kept in baskets in a sacred sweatlodge. black. grinding. Paints and Painting. Duncan Sources for Further Study Bibby. Painters. toasting. Joyce M. chevrons. Szabo. Brody. and crosses. yellow/orange. See also: Baskets and Basketry. and the paints were made from minerals and bonded with vegetable and animal oils. plants. Patrons. The practice of this art seems to have died out in the late 1800’s without the meanings being explained in historical records. he hung it in the sky so that all would have light. Calif. Patwin. baskets were used for cooking and domestic purposes which included storing. Rock Art. zigzags. the Pomo. Since most groups did not have pottery. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.

Paviotso. and this relationship has continued to the present day. Decorative Baskets. Gosiute. It is characterized by a circular band of deep red that is bordered by . The designs on Paiute baskets seem to have been largely borrowed. some were made by the twining technique. The earliest baskets known from this region used the stacked rod coiling technique. The wedding basket is a tray or open bowl shape of twelve to fourteen inches in diameter. Washoe Significance: The arts and crafts of the Great Basin are primarily baskets and other objects created through basketry techniques. In addition to that design. which suggests that the early decorative patterns were borrowed from neighboring basket-maker groups. including carrying baskets. Ute. serving baskets. Some of the earliest baskets collected from the Paiutes in the nineteenth century were decorated. Shoshone. the Paiutes were making decorated baskets for the Navajo. reflecting a material culture adapted to a desert environment. Mono. The wedding basket is an interesting case of one cultural group doing important ceremonial craftwork for another group. which refers to the plaiting of two or more coils. The early decorated baskets were made with a technique different from the one normally used. basketry techniques were also used for making other items. By the 1890’s. the baskets themselves may even have been made by other groups. and water jars. Many different kinds of baskets were made. The arts and crafts of the tribes of the Great Basin represent the highest degree of dependence on basketry techniques of any of the Native American culture areas.Arts and Crafts: Great Basin / 79 Arts and Crafts: Great Basin Tribes affected: Bannock. Numaga. especially wedding baskets. it was used by the Navajo to serve cornmeal mush to the honorees and guests at important ceremonies. from clothing to boats and houses. the Paiute basket makers borrowed others from Navajo textiles. Walapai. Paiute. and since that time there has been an evolution in designs. Although most baskets were coil made. Kawaiisu.

food was sometimes cooked or parched with hot stones in the lined baskets. and they were made by coiling or twining. During ceremonial use of the basket. The sewing splints are narrow. a style that continued throughout the remainder of the century. and it is sometimes called the door. the styles of California tribes were imitated initially. the Navajo Spider Woman cross. Basket bowls and shallow circular trays were used for preparing seeds and nuts for eating. A break in the encircling band is left to provide an opening from the center of the basket outwards. the “door” is pointed eastward. and the rims are finished in a herringbone design with diagonal plaiting. Some Washoe baskets were characterized by bold designs. some burden baskets were made with dyed splints. They were often about 18 inches high and 16 inches across at the opening. The San Juan Paiutes experienced a period of florescence during the latter part of the twentieth century based on the borrowing of design patterns. The largest utilitarian baskets were the conical burden baskets carried on the back with supplies of nuts. and red and black decoration. and Havasupai angular designs. Although utilitarian baskets were rarely decorated. however. Star or snowflake patterns may be created by the black triangles in the center of the basket if the encircling red band is small and the triangles are large. There were also seed beaters in various shapes. Burden baskets could be made with a tight weave for the carrying of seeds and small nuts or made with an open weave for carrying heavier roots. The trays were also used for winnowing out chaff from eatable food. or other foods. fine stitching. including the use of Navajo yei figures. There was a period of outstanding Washoe decorative baskets during the early part of the century. the Washoe baskets were distinctive because of their large size. Decorative trade baskets have also been made by various groups. roots. including the Washoe and the San Juan Paiutes.80 / Arts and Crafts: Great Basin black triangles along both the inside and outside edges. Wedding baskets are made with coils of three bunched rods of sumac. Since traditional Washoe baskets were undecorated. among others. ranging from “snowshoe” to . Utilitarian Basketry.

Arts and Crafts: Great Basin / 81 handfan designs. water jars were sealed inside with pitch. toys. Scoops. These were used to knock seeds off grasses into a conical carrying basket. (Library of Congress) . and Houses. Pot-shaped storage baskets with tight weave and small necks were used to protect food. The people of the Great Basin could live in basket-made structures from the cradle to A late nineteenth century mother holding her baby in the traditional cradleboard. Cradleboards. and other small objects were also made from basketry techniques. Canoes. brushes.

N. Feder. edited by Daniel L. with a curved hood to protect the head and a soft back. American Indian Art. midway up. 1988. Abrams. Duncan Sources for Further Study Arkush. New York: Harry N. and near the top. Wade. Margaret M. The cradleboard for a larger infant was made with a wooden frame onto which a basketry back and hood were woven.” In Native North Americans: An Ethnohistorical Approach.Mex. They were tied together by other willows running horizontally—just above the ground. Marvin.: School of American Research Press. Berlo. Southwestern Indian Baskets: Their History and Their Makers. New York: Oxford University Press. Whiteford. Norman. similar to reed boats made in Peru. Janet Catherine. Houses were also made with basketry techniques and were essentially upside-down baskets. Small canoes were also made with bulrushes (or tule). edited by Edwin L. New York: Hudson Hills Press. Bulrush duck decoys were also made. “The Great Basin Culture Area. Boxberger. Survival Arts of the Primitive Paiutes. Armload bundles of bulrush were tied together with twisted cattail leaf ropes in such a way that a narrow prow was formed. Long grass could also be used to form the walls. Dubuque. . Ronald J. and the mats were tied into place to form the walls.” In The Arts of the North American Indian: Native Traditions in Evolution. Cohodas. Santa Fe. A willow frame was made by setting up twelve or more vertical willows that were approximately 10 feet long. Cattail leaf mats were woven around other willows. Wheat. Reno: University of Nevada Press. 1990. Iowa: Kendall/Hunt. A cradleboard for a small infant was made completely by basketry techniques. Andrew Hunter. Brooke S. 1998. Native North American Art. 1965.82 / Arts and Crafts: Great Basin death. 1986. The top of the frame was tied inward to form a closed-in shape. “Washoe Innovators and Their Patrons. 1967. leaving a broader stern where a person could sit and direct the craft.

and wood carvings. quillwork. Onondaga. Sauk. 2000. Miami. Lumbee. Colo. Narragansett. such as beadwork showing the multicolored hues of flowers and vines that were a natural part of the flora. Oneida. Shawnee. Colorado Springs. Iroquois-made wooden and cornhusk masks are the most striking art form in this region.: Taylor Museum of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. Huron. beadwork. It might also represent everyday themes. The Northeast covers New England.Arts and Crafts: Northeast / 83 Wroth. mythology. Potawatomi. Ute Indian Arts and Culture: From Prehistory to the New Millennium. William. Fox (Mesquaki). and masks of the Northeast tribes are among the finest in North America. beadwork. Arts and Crafts: Northeast Tribes affected: Algonquian. Kickapoo. quillwork. Men carve and paint wooden masks. and the eastern Great Lakes region down to the Ohio River valley. Ottawa. Menominee. Pottery was lost in this region soon after contact was made with European groups who introduced the Indians to metal containers. while women braid cornhusk ones. Mohawk. Micmac. The art of Native Americans from the northeastern area of the United States used themes associated with nature. Winnebago Significance: The baskets. and the supernatural. It might represent otherworldly themes. Cayuga. Lenni Lenape. Included in this rich array of arts were birchbark boxes. Susquehannock. Tuscarora. ed. See also: Baskets and Basketry. such as a quillwork ornament representing a thunderbird which protected the wearer from the panther spirit of the other world. These masks are still worn by contemporary members of the Society of Faces in dances that are intended to cure people and drive disease from their . Iroquois. Masks. Seneca. New York.

including those of trees. The features may be distorted. others are brightly painted and have big ear-toear mouths. Although some have sober. Wooden masks. made and worn only by men. waterfalls. They are carved from living trees. staring eyes. (National Archives) homes. plants.84 / Arts and Crafts: Northeast A Seneca carver. unusual rocks. heavy wrinkles. Characteristics include strong. at work in the Tonowanda Community House during the twentieth century. Kidd Smith. dark colors and small mouths. represent many different spirits. and the traditional belief was that they . and horse-mane hair. and other special features of the landscape.

Quillwork was frequently used to decorate the surface. Cornhusk masks may be made and worn by men or women. Various features of the mask identify the spirit portrayed by it. Both quillwork and small stone beads were originally used to create designs and decorative bands on clothing. Beadwork. and horses. Splint basketry was also made in this area. The latter may have developed out of an earlier tradition of naturalistic representations. they gave many more opportunities for the ornamentation of clothing. After the introduction of European glass trade beads. baskets. which permits them to be shaped into square and round designs for containers.Arts and Crafts: Northeast / 85 embodied a living spirit. rolled. Both covered boxes and open baskets made use of this material. Bark was a favorite material for making boxes. a broken nose and wide crooked mouth represent a spirit called the “Great Defender” or the “Rim Dweller. There . this art medium went through a spectacular development. and elm bark was used by the Iroquois and other groups in the East. and it provides a good surface for drawing or incising. combined. the human body. and even canoes. Ribbons were introduced along with beads. Birchbark was used in the Great Lakes area. These barks are soft and pliable when peeled. Bark can be bent. but the glass beads permitted the introduction of the saturated hues of spring flowers and berries. bears. The original work was limited to the muted colors of autumn earth tones. and stitched. For example. Tobacco was tied into the hair for use by the spirit. and the mask was fed regularly. Carvings commonly represented hands. Bark Boxes and Baskets. and they represent the spirits of vegetation which work to heal people.” who was transformed from a malevolent spirit into one which helped people. Beads have been used to represent both the geometric designs found in earlier ceramic patterns and the floral motifs with which the eastern groups are identified. Wood carving was also used to make clubs and carved figures for knife handles and other uses.

Birchbark. and their art treats the themes of cosmology and origins. . Beads and Beadwork. 1998. Kitamat. The people of the Northwest Coast are identified by their art. Tlingit. New York: Henry N. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. Masks. Indigenous belts and trumplines decorated with quillwork later evolved into beaded and beribboned votive belts by which people expressed their devotion. See also: Baskets and Basketry. Lois Sherr. Nootka. The idea that there were European sources for the floral patterns is reinforced by the fact that they were commonly used on shoulderstrap bags. New York: Oxford University Press. adapted from European military pouches. Haisla. Haida. and the monumentality of the totem poles. and on European-style deerskin coats. Native North American Art. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. They are the outstanding wood carvers of North America. and shamanistic power. Kwakiutl. masks. social status and prestige. Abrams. 1999. Both sculpture and painting are characterized by strong colors and shapes. but other floral patterns incorporated later may have referred to local medicinal plants. Janet Catherine. Tsimshian Significance: The people of the Northwest Coast have one of the most recognizable art styles of the world and produced the most important monumental art of the indigenous North American groups. Makah. Quillwork. Dubin. Bella Coola. Ronald J. especially painted house facades. Nitinat. Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast Tribes affected: Bella Bella.86 / Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast were also European models for the floral motifs which may have been the ecclesiastical attire of priests.

frog. The vertical series of figures making up the pole traces the family to the time the lineage was founded in the mythic past. eagle. and wolf. forming a vertical cosmic axis. mountain lion. In . The carver of a totem pole was expected to be a relative of the man honored. which served as the door for the house. The pole became a public proclamation of ancestry and the rights to positions of prestige along with their benefits. The house itself was the cosmos in a microcosm. obligations. Totem poles stand in front of houses as a statement of the sacred history of the family. The authorship of a pole was assigned to the one who conceptualized it. and supernatural characteristics. The totem poles were carved and erected as memorials to men of chiefly status who had died. and going in and out of the house represented death and rebirth from the lineage totem. and they were carved lying on the ground. and sometimes a large entrance hole was cut into it. with the hearth being the navel of the world. and the smoke hole was the connection between the earth and the heavenly world. crests are inherited by the children in each generation. the house posts were the supports of the earth and sky.Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast / 87 Totem Poles. The opening was frequently portrayed as the mouth or the vagina of the animal lineage head of the family. Each family may possess more than one crest. If the man chosen to be the carver did not have the required skill. The facades of chiefly houses could be painted with the images of mythical animals who were the head of the lineage. Multiple crests may be represented on a pole. The poles were as much as 60 feet tall. but similar poles were carved earlier as the crest poles of houses. In the nineteenth century and earlier. and they were mnemonic devices to record the heritage of the family. as well as the image of the spirit as a heraldic crest for the family. House Facades and Crest Poles. the crest poles of houses were carved. The origin story usually tells about the original ancestor encountering a spirit who gave him and his descendants a special power. he could conceptualize the piece and name a skilled carver to execute it. The totem pole seems only to have developed during the nineteenth century. and common ones include the bear.

Masks may represent supernatural animal spirits. Carved wooden hats and war helmets were traditionally important. and the myths reconfirm the fundamental principles of the cosmos.88 / Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast some instances the door hole represented the hole of creation through which the original ancestor passed to enter this world. The shaman’s quest for spiritual powers is also a common theme of mask-myth performances. Some have movable parts. ceremonies. these hats sometimes had movable parts. many are painted with strong primary colors. or important people. Masks and the accompanying costumes create a figure who was an actor in a myth. costumes. drums. and they represent the animal of the family crest. and masks that characterized ritual. The rattles are especially striking because of their elaborate and complex carving. In the ephemeral other world of the masks. and some are essentially variations on the idea of the masks. and rattles. Conical clan hats were also important. The basic figure shown in the rattle was frequently a water bird. shamans. but they represented ancestors or other effigy beings who could give strength to the warrior. These family crest hats are among the most dramatic pieces of Northwest Coast . The shamanic regalia included special masks. and the shaman is shown on its back with other animals. Another version interpreted it as the hole through which the original shaman passed back and forth to the other world to learn the sacred knowledge. Like masks. Like the motifs of the totem poles. songs and dances are also inherited with the mask to dramatize the myth. Masks and Hats. masks belong to families and were originally given to the founding ancestor because of a victory over an adversary. Masks have been the most common art form among the peoples of the Northwest Coast. The tongue of a goat or a frog may become a bridge through which the shaman transforms the power of that animal into his own. Masks represent the shamanic power of transformation from the earthly present to the mythic past or to the supernatural world. the heroic exploits of the original people are acted out. War helmets have not been made since the nineteenth century. In addition to being carved.

and Jill L. Masks. 1982. edited by Edwin L. 1979. New York: Hudson Hills Press. Shearar. Crooked Beak of Heaven: Masks and Other Ceremonial Art in the Pacific Northwest. C. Simon Fraser University. ed. Roy L. Seattle: University of Washington Press. New York: Oxford University Press. Sculpture.Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast / 89 art. 1998. Portrait Masks from the Northwest Coast of North America. “The Dancing Headdress Frontlet: Aesthetic Context on the Northwest Coast. North American Indian Art. ed. Cheryl. masks. Bill. Vol.. 1986. During historical periods woven tunics frequently included the family crest motifs. Northwest Coast. similar to the totem poles. Burnaby. 7 in Handbook of North American Indians. Wade. and polychrome painting. Peter T. B.. and Symbols. Beings. 1990. and their twined work with grasses and other fibers were as fine as woven cloth. Paints and Painting. Understanding Northwest Coast Art: A Guide to Crests. J. Weaving. Totem Poles. Janet Catherine. and hats. Domestic Crafts. Furst. possessing abalone-shell inlays. See also: Chilkat Blankets. stylized bodies. . _______. Furst. Carlson. Ronald J. and the carving of wooden household utensils were also common crafts. H. Spindle whorls for spinning the thread were elaborately carved in wood. Washington.C. Indian Art Traditions of the Northwest Coast.: Archaeology Press. Holm. basketry.: Smithsonian Institution Press. New York: Rizzoli International. D. 1982. Women were accomplished basket makers. Wayne. Native North American Art. Seattle: University of Washington Press.” In The Arts of the North American Indian: Native Traditions in Evolution. King. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. 2000.C. 1972. London: Thames & Hudson. Suttles.

Tonkawa. Omaha. Plains art is most known for the beadwork on clothing and other personal items and the earlier work with porcupine quills. or paint.” which led to a new style of beadwork that covered entire surfaces. Blackfoot. folding bag which was capable of withstanding arrows and lances. By the early nineteenth century. among other items. Atsina. Ponca. These narrated calendrical histories . The arts had supernatural relationships with the spirit world. Narrative Art. Ghost Dance shirts and dresses also demonstrate the close relationship between art and the spiritual world. Arikara. and resulted in geometric designs or highly stylized figures. The elongated shape of the quill was used to decorate medallions. shirts. beautifying the skin of a slain animal was thought to please its spirit and avert retaliation. crosses. Missouri. the tipi.90 / Arts and Crafts: Plains Arts and Crafts: Plains Tribes affected: Arapaho. Cheyenne. especially on robes and tipis. and parfleches were frequently painted. Narrative paintings were done by men on skins. Hidatsa. Dresses. and most were decorated with geometric designs by women using quills. Assiniboine. and cradleboards. Wichita Significance: The beadwork and headdresses of the Plains are a dramatic statement of personal aesthetics. and lightning. the United States flag. The parfleche was a thick-skinned. Mandan. Comanche. boxes. Clothing. Iowa. The arts and crafts of the Plains tribes were small in scale and highly transportable because of the largely nomadic Plains existence. Caddo. Kiowa. Pawnee. colored beads of Venetian glass had been introduced by the Europeans as trade items. Osage. beads. for example. and bags were made of skins. Beadwork portrayed such things as floral patterns. Cree. Sioux. Crow. moccasins. Clothing and Bags. and they are the primary association with Native American art for many people. and by midcentury they had been replaced by even smaller “seed beads.

Instead of the horses. Each man carved his own private ceremonial pipe. Tribal gatherings were also portrayed in narrative detail. it was left to the imagination of the viewer to complete the story. and important battles. wagons. The pipe was the single most important art object made by the Plains groups. describing features of the landscape. mythological events. and sometimes one would be made as a . Pipes as Miniature Sculpture. In its place. Ledgerbook art typically narrates the experience of Native Americans with the European American world. the ledger paintings portray forts. important tribal gatherings. narrate the personal bravery and skill of a specific warrior. The most famous collection of ledger art comes from the seventy-two warriors from five Southern Plains tribes who were sent to Fort Marion in Florida after their surrender in 1875. as well as raids and hunts. The calendar drawings have mnemonic value for remembering the major events that occurred in a tribe or band over a number of years. This happened in part because the personal exploits narrated by the men in battle and hunting no longer happened and in part because the skins were no longer available. and tribal paraphernalia. and hunts. ledgerbook painting was developed among the Southern Plains tribes. trains. and these were usually painted by the same warrior on his personal buffalo robe or on his tipi cover. The winter camps were the fixed points between which yearly events were remembered. men adapted to painting on cloth. and buffalo of the skin paintings. tipis. and even towns. clothing. Vision paintings were frequently done on shields or tipis. As the independent lifestyle of the Plains people came to an end and the people were settled around forts.Arts and Crafts: Plains / 91 (called wintercounts). The describing of personal visions and mythological events was done with less narrative detail. and it explored the relationship between humans and the sacred in the earth and sky. including the concept of the universe. He would usually portray the most important moment of his triumph. among the Northern Plains tribes. personal visions. raids. the art of skin painting was lost. Battle scenes. placing of tipis.

They were usually plain bowls but could include complex carvings of animals or humans. (U. which indicates the significance of pipes. The stems were also elaborately carved and could be two feet long or more. Since the power of the pipe was activated when the stem and bowl were united. The holiest pipes were common property and were considered to be especially powerful. Department of the Interior Indian Arts and Crafts Board) . and stems with figurative carvings of animals and guardian spirits. which was considered to be blood colored and therefore to represent life. Alice Littleman.92 / Arts and Crafts: Plains special gift for another person. they were usually separated when stored. a member of the Kiowa tribe. Stems were carved in a number of imaginative designs. The bowls were usually carved from reddish pipestone. Pipe bags show some of the most important Plains beadwork and quillwork.S. mazeway puzzle stems. sometimes they were of greater importance than the bowl itself. displaying Plains beadwork and skin sewing. including spiral stems.

Art of the American Indian Frontier. 1986.. Sacred Circles: Two Thousand Years of North American Indian Art. Janet Catherine. The Arts of the North American Indian: Native Traditions in Evolution. perhaps as a statement of peace. Wade. and rival the quality of the women’s beadwork. Craft and skill were definitive of women’s work. Edwin L. Dress and Adornment. 1999. . Headdresses. Ronald J. New York: Oxford University Press. Furst. See also: Beads and Beadwork. New York: Rizzoli International. Furst. Abrams. 1992. and Jill L. and it does not emphasize the individuality of the piece.. Lois Sherr. ed. Ralph T. Kansas City. with occasional painting. Edited by John C. Craft seems to be less important in the narrative art. New York: Hudson Hills Press. Dubin. D. New York: Henry N. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. which is done with lines that are rigid and awkward. and they used the geometric signs that communicated the important concepts of nature and the supernatural. David W. Penny.Arts and Crafts: Plains / 93 Gender and Art. Quillwork.: Nelson Gallery Foundation. 1977. North American Indian Art. Mo. In contrast. 1979. Native North American Art. Indian Art in Pipestone: George Catlin’s Portfolio in the British Museum. Men’s pipe carvings are carefully crafted.C. Coe. however. Ewers. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. George. 1982. Catlin. men’s narrative art is individualistic and boasts of personal exploits. 1998. The women’s art uses collective designs.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Seattle: University of Washington Press. Peter T. Many incorporated the United States flag into their beadwork during the late 1800’s. Washington. Women beautified clothes and other items of domestic use with geometric designs in their media of bead and quillwork.

Klikitat. and they were usually carried vertically. Umatilla. After that they were sometimes referred to as cornhusk bags. Contact with European groups occurred later here than in most other areas. Shuswap. Their work reflects the influences from neighboring culture areas and demonstrates the diffusion and acculturation of arts and crafts traditions across culture lines among Native Americans. Along with Navajo blankets and rugs. They were . Some large versions of the bag are as much as 36 inches long. and many of them achieved personal visions of aesthetic excellence in geometric and color composition. The women makers of these bags are known for their weaving skill. Nez Perce. Woven Bags. and wood carving of excellent quality. These bags are known for their geometric designs and skillful color patterns.94 / Arts and Crafts: Plateau Arts and Crafts: Plateau Tribes affected: Cayuse. They were made in varying sizes. basketry. and they mentioned the woven bags made by the Nez Perce. Plateau people have also made blankets but never with the same sophistication with which they weave bags. The Plateau bag is the most distinctive art and craft medium of this culture area. yarn was also incorporated. beadwork. Wasco. later. Yakima Significance: The arts and crafts of the Plateau effectively preserved traditional design styles and techniques longer than most other Native American culture areas. and this fact permitted a greater preservation of traditional arts and crafts. ranging from 8 by 8 inches to 18 by 22 inches. The people of the Plateau have produced bags. After corn was introduced into the area in the early nineteenth century. The first European Americans to arrive in the area were Meriwether Lewis and William Clark in 1805. Walla Walla. The twined or woven bags are made with the beige background of hemp but then decorated with bear grass and cattails dyed with vegetable colors. Wishram. Lillooet. corn husks were used for the bags. Chilcotin. these bags represent the finest designs in North American weaving.

The ability to make organic. animals. The designs were traditionally geometric. especially the floral designs of the Victorian period. Baskets and Basketry. and humans reflected European American influences. and they were sometimes combined to form star. A technique of decoration known as “imbrication” is distinctive to the Plateau area. figurative shapes was the sign of a skillful weaver. Triangles and diamond shapes were especially popular. . geometric forms continued to be important into the twentieth century. Smaller designs were incorporated within or around the larger main design. as discussed above. Imbrication is a process of creating a second decorative layer on top of the coil-made basket by stitching it into the surface of the basket. Since weaving lends itself more to the representation of geometric shapes than to reproducing organic ones. Mats were also made by some groups and were traditionally used to cover the walls of tipis. Coiling was used to make more rigid basket containers. The introduction of figurative designs including plants.Arts and Crafts: Plateau / 95 originally used for carrying food that had been collected. Both coiling and twining were used to make basketry items. chevron. butterfly. with the front side being more elaborate than the back. which added complexity and visual interest. The imbricated layer has a continuous surface not interrupted by the dominant coil lines of the coil-made basket. but figurative motifs were introduced in the late nineteenth century. Twining was used to make soft fiber objects such as hats and bags. Bag designs also emphasize the play between positive and negative spaces so that the viewer must shift his or her vision between the two. cross. After horses arrived in the region. or arrow designs. The bag was continuously woven in the round. it can be designed purely for aesthetic purposes. Long straight lines were frequently serrated. In the twentieth century they became decorative handbags carried by women. they were used as saddlebags. also creating more visual interest. ranging from small bowls to large storage baskets. Since the decorative layer has no important structural problems to solve.

Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. Native North American Art.: Nelson Gallery Foundation. including bridles. Feder. The handles of scoops and spoons were carved with animal and human figures. flag. Originally beads were added to fringes. Ralph T. Abrams. shin straps. but later overall beading was used for shirts. cuffs. and small bowls were carved of wood and horn. baskets. scoops. Small wooden bowls included figures carved in relief on the surfaces as well as decorative patterns of parallel or serrated lines. and other accessories. Beading was also used to cover coiled baskets. Beading was used for horse trappings. and horse trappings. Kansas City. Human figures carved of wood represented ancestral spirits or beings. Similar to the Northern Plains people. reflecting influences from the neighboring Northwest Coast peoples. Mo. eagles. American Indian Art.96 / Arts and Crafts: Plateau Beads and Beading. The bead designs were geometric during the nineteenth century. Janet Catherine. The handles of wood-carving tools were themselves elaborately carved. belts. diamonds. stirrup covers. 1965. Norman.S. Ronald J. but figurative motifs became increasingly important in the twentieth century. The Plateau bead workers used triangles. grave marker totems. . Carving. Occasionally figures were carved in three dimensions on the sides of bowls. squares. and the figurative patterns incorporate floral motifs. and saddle bags. mane covers. headbands. and shaman’s wands included anthropomorphic forms. and the U. both men and women of the Plateau used buckskin clothing decorated with beadwork. 1977. and represents an influence from the Plains tribes to the east. Sacred Circles: Two Thousand Years of North American Indian Art. among other things. Coe. Beading was done on clothes. bags. New York: Harry N. 1998. New York: Oxford University Press. and crosses to create geometric designs. Figures. among many other patterns.

1992. Englewood Cliffs.Arts and Crafts: Southeast / 97 Kehoe. Chickasaw. Kansas City. North American Indians: A Comprehensive Account. patchwork. The artists of the Southeast tribes are the heirs to one of the richest artistic traditions in North America. Gallery of Art. but much of it has disappeared over the last few centuries because of acculturation and the dislocation of tribes. Belts and Bags. and Choctaw women. Mobile. Natchez. Apalachee. Sculpture. Beads and Beadwork. and sewing. baskets. taking advantage of the creative possibilities of small seed beads. baskets. Arts and Crafts: Southeast Tribes affected: Alabama. See also: Baskets and Basketry. carving. Chitimacha. Cherokee. Alice B. David W. 2d ed. During the historic period. Guale. Powhatan. Yamasee. copper sheets cut like mythical animals. Natalie. Yazoo. carving. The Plateau Bag: A Tradition in Native American Weaving. and painted ceramics were made in the period before contact with Europeans. 1992. excellent stonecarved sculptures. Kans. Yuchi Significance: The Indians of the Southeast are especially known for baskets. Cherokee. Creek.: Johnson County Community College. Elaborate earthen mounds. Creek. these tribes have been known for their work in belts and bags. These women were exceptional colorists and ex- . and ribbon work. Seattle: University of Washington Press. Seminole. Catawba.: Prentice Hall. made sashes and shoulder bags that were well known for their elaborate flowing designs. Anadarko. beaded sashes and bags. 1994.J. Choctaw. This early art incorporated motifs that suggested contact with the complex civilizations of Mexico. Art of the American Indian Frontier. Linn. Weaving. Penney. N. Tuskegee.

which produces a flexible basket of considerable strength. Covered baskets were made as containers for storage and protection. In some designs the lines seem to meander. similar to the rows of diamonds that Choctaws sew onto the hems of dresses and onto the decorative bands of shirts. All of these designs were also used by prehistoric groups in the region. and they made shoulder bags with beaded decoration. The altering of colors between the warp and the weft gives ample opportunity for the creation of patterns and decoration. and the beaded designs on belts and bags frequently use it. Southeastern basketry is especially known for the use of the split and plaited cane technique. Baskets.98 / Arts and Crafts: Southeast ploited the many colors made available with glass beads. and open baskets were made for gathering and carrying food products. and they competed with those of the Great Lakes area for aesthetic and technical excellence. The patterns were bold and asymmetrical and the designs seem more individually expressive than the patterned formality of designs of the Northeast. A gathering basket made by various tribes in the region has a square base which changes into a round . such as ceramics. used especially by the Choctaws but also by Creeks and Seminoles. consisting of a spiral or circle at each end with a line uniting them diagonally. Shoulder bags were made from wool or velvet. The cross in a circle design surrounded by emanating sun rays was also used in beadwork. The double-ended scroll is a characteristic design from the Southeast tribes. following their own will and resulting in amorphous “figures” that give a sense of elegant playfulness distinctive to these pieces. Creek sashes line up ordered rows of diamonds embroidered in seed beads. backed with a cotton lining and embroidered with seed beads in designs of flowing lines that suggest floral patterns but are in reality abstract. These were some of the finest bags produced in North America. Another common design pattern is the diamond. and both this design and the scroll pattern were used in other media. It is a linear design 8 to 10 inches long and 3 to 4 inches wide. They fashioned complex sashes with beads worked into the designs.

1999. Sewing. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. following long Eastern Woodlands traditions. . 1998. Baskets and Basketry.Arts and Crafts: Southeast / 99 shape for the top half of the basket. Sculpture. Janet Catherine. and they made stylized figures in wood and pipestone. New York: Oxford University Press. Ronald J. New York: Henry N. Patchwork dresses and shirts and elaborate ribbonwork decoration are also associated with the work of women in tribes of the Southeast. and angular spirals. Common design motifs include the diamond. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. The Seminoles are most known for this type of patchwork. It is known for fitting well to the back. Neighboring groups such as the Choctaws have adopted a similar practice of sewing diamond patch designs on dresses and shirts to give them tribal identity. Carving. Dress and Adornment. Abrams. Lois Sherr. which was borrowed from European patchwork quilting. Effigy pipes. were carved until the nineteenth century. Native North American Art. The patching together of hundreds of small pieces of colored cloth has been appropriated to form an aesthetic which is particular to this area and is now considered traditional. Ribbons have also been used in a similar way to create the patterns. crosses. Beads and Beadwork. chevron or zigzag lines. See also: Applique and Ribbonwork. Other pipes were carved in geometric designs. making it easier to carry loads. Men’s craft consisted of carving. representing bears and other animals from the region. Dubin.

Pueblo (including Hopi. and open-air firing. The prehistoric groups developed pottery. usually iron oxide red. Zuñi) Significance: The arts and crafts of the Southwest are a thriving and coherent representation of Native American art that has continuity with its prehistoric cultural roots. Navajo. slip painting. Although they originally practiced basketry. Although each type was originally made for functional purposes. Women are the traditional makers of pottery. having entered the area only six hundred to eight hundred years ago. Eastern Pueblos. silversmithing from the Spanish. The most common types of pots are water jars. Southwest Native American art can be traced back to prehistoric groups that lived in the area. resulting in complex symmetries. The pottery tradi- . in modern times they are made primarily for artistic purposes. and they were most affected by the Spanish. The designs frequently play back and forth between positive and negative fields. Border lines are usually drawn as a frame to define the area to be decorated. but they also make jewelry. and the contemporary Pueblo groups have continued the designs and techniques inherited in those media. dough bowls. and woven goods.100 / Arts and Crafts: Southwest Arts and Crafts: Southwest Tribes affected: Apache. and they are usually subdivided into smaller and smaller units. They have had commercial success with arts and crafts. The Eastern Pueblos have the richest pottery tradition. The Navajos and Apaches have a different history. but men may paint it and fire it. weaving. they acquired weaving from the Pueblo people and. Pueblo designs may use geometric forms or stylized figures of animals. and storage pots. The Eastern Pueblos live on or near the Rio Grande River near Santa Fe. later. The pots are elaborately painted. or black colors. white. Pueblo pottery is made with the prehistoric techniques of coil building. and jewelry making. baskets. birds. or plants. basketry.

especially Santa Clara. New Mexico. Santa Clara Pueblo is famous for both blackware and redware pottery. Rain serpents and the bear paw are popular designs. (National Archives) . and San Ildefonso.Arts and Crafts: Southwest / 101 tion from this area is divided into a number of styles. and it is well known for the deep carving of designs in the surface of pots. making pottery during the early 1900’s. redware. and polychrome ware. San Juan. Blackware pottery was traditionally made in the Pueblos north and west of Santa Fe. Polychrome pottery is most associated with the pueblos located to the south and west of Santa Fe. most notably Zia Native Americans in Santa Clara Pueblo. where the tradition was made famous by María and Julián Martínez. including blackware.

and other stones.102 / Arts and Crafts: Southwest and Acoma. frogs. and they do stone inlay jewelry. mountain lions. and geometric forms. Although weaving and basketry were traditionally important. Hopi pottery is made primarily on the First Mesa by HopiTewa descendants. Western Pueblos. They also set turquoise and other fine stones in silver. The Hopi also do basketry and weaving. sometimes in complex patterns called clusterwork. These fetishes depict bears. sometimes including stones. animal figures (especially deer). and it is now particularly known for the storyteller figure. and Zuñi pottery is distinguished by the motif of the deer with a red heart-line going from the mouth into the torso and the rosette design. foxes. Surface designs are geometric and now largely follow the designs of the Sikytki revival pottery. and they are used to teach children about the supernatural. The Hopi make jewelry with overlay designs in silver. The kachinas incorporate rain and cloud symbols and represent the hope for well-being and plenty. Cochiti is the only pueblo to make figurative pieces. which are carved. The Western Pueblos are most known for jewelry making. The colors are typically red and/or black on a white background. while the Hopis focus primarily on silver work. The Zuñi and the Hopi were more isolated than the Eastern Pueblos and continued many of their traditions until the twentieth century. The Zuñis do lapidary work and silversmithing. The Zuñis are famous for carving fetishes in stone which are sometimes made into necklaces of turquoise. and dressed. however. and it is noted for the flat. Border lines frame the painted areas of the pots. birds. painted. and owls among other animals. they have largely disappeared among these pueblos. and it characteristically includes strings of turquoise for necklaces and other pieces made of mosaics of turquoise. These Pueblos make polychrome ware. coral. for making kachina dolls. The most traditional jewelry of the Southwest is made by people of the Eastern Pueblos. . and within those borders designs may include floral patterns. particularly Santo Domingo. They are best known. broad shape of its pots.

Janet Catherine. Occasionally. Linda B. Ill. The wide range of Apache baskets includes trays. 1988. Wade. Although the Eastern and Western Pueblos do weaving. There are complex patterns of repetition and contrasts of positive-negative fields. 1990. Ronald J. Sculpture. Southwestern Indian Baskets: Their History and Their Makers. Dubin. Whiteford. carrying baskets. New York: Henry N. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. New York: Oxford University Press. Kachinas.: Publications International. crosses. Eaton. and Ceramics on the Hopi Third Mesa. the weaving incorporated designs from sand paintings. Santa Fe. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. New York: Hudson Hills Press. Native American Art of the Southwest.. The designs are primarily geometric and include stepped frets.. especially the squash blossom necklace. Furst. Lincolnwood. Lois Sherr. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.Arts and Crafts: Southwest / 103 Navajos and Apaches. Peter T. Wyckoff. Edwin L. Abrams. Silverworking. N. and pitch-sealed water bottles. The Navajo are also famous for turquoise and silver jewelry. Religion. 1986. A number of regional styles exist throughout the Navajo area. Weaving. ed. North American Indian Art. the Navajos have most excelled in this media. Andrew Hunter. 1993. The designs include geometric and highly stylized figures. See also: Baskets and Basketry. The Arts of the North American Indian: Native Traditions in Evolution. . which have special ritual and healing significance. and butterflies. Pottery. New York: Rizzoli International. Lydia L. Furst. 1998. Designs and Factions: Politics.Mex: School of American Research Press. Native North American Art. 1982. 1999. and Jill L.

Slave. Dogrib. For example. and it was in wide use at the time of the earliest contact with the Europeans. beadwork. crosses. and Sekani) occupied the western Subarctic and were influenced by the material culture of the neighboring Northwest Coast groups as well as the Aleuts and the Eskimos (Inuits). Ingalik. Sekani. Han. Tanaina. the side of a box could be covered with various parallel bands of quills and the top with concentric circles. and clothing. which produced different textures. Tutchone. Tahltan. Neskapi. and they were sewn to the surfaces. Porcupine quillwork was particularly well developed among the eastern groups. Ojibwa. Tahltan. birchbark baskets and boxes. The sides and lids of boxes were frequently covered with overall decoration. and the double-ended swirl. Designs were made by plaiting the quills in patterns that may have developed out of basketry techniques. this work did not exist in quantity. step design. cross-hatching. Ottawa. Ingalik. Yellowknife Significance: Subarctic artisans were especially known for their quillwork and birchbark baskets. Women used these techniques to decorate the surfaces of birchbark boxes. Tutchone. The arts and crafts of the Subarctic Indians included quillwork. Hare. Tsetsaut. moccasins. Carrier. bags. The artists varied the density of the plaiting of the quills to make tightly packed patterns or openweave patterns. . chevrons. but because of the sparse population and the demands of a hunting and gathering life. Quillwork and Embroidery. Most of the arts and crafts from this area are known to be from the Algonquianspeaking tribes (Cree and Ojibwa) who occupied the eastern area and were influenced by the arts of the Northeast and Plains culture areas. Cree. decorate bands (such as wampum belts). Han. crossbars. Designs were primarily geometric and included diamonds. and wood carving.104 / Arts and Crafts: Subarctic Arts and Crafts: Subarctic Tribes affected: Beaver. Tanaina. Athapaskan-speaking tribes (Beaver. parallel lines. Beothuk.

although there were no figures. but stylized representations of mythological beings were also used. floral designs were increasingly used. The quillwork and embroidery from this area is known for its beauty of line and fine stitching. The Ojibwa (or Chippewa) and the Ottawa developed a rich tradition of decorating shoulder bags. Beads and Bags. Birchbark. and in some cases fringe flaps became narrow bands of pure geometric design. and they incorporated floral patterns. Especially complex versions of these items were called “friendship bags. Fringe was frequently added to bags. Eventually. also called bandoleer bags. and sewing it with spruce root. Since birchbark was . and floral and geometric designs were sometimes incorporated into the same bag. The designs on coats tended to be bold and clearly visible from some distance. intricate. geometric designs were adapted to represent floral-like patterns. and it sometimes took on the compositional look of Plains hide paintings. which reached the knees and were decorated with quills and paint. The Cree copied European-style officers’ coats in buckskin. The decorative bands and epaulets for coats were similarly more intimate in scale. but the designs on moccasins were smaller.” and they were worn by men as a demonstration of prestige. Made by peeling birchbark. and into the twentieth century women were still doing silk embroidery. Elaborate designs were placed along the bottom edge and the front borders of the coat. folding it into the form desired. Later versions were beaded and made of cloth. In the nineteenth century. Early buckskin versions were commonly decorated in geometric patterns with quills.Arts and Crafts: Subarctic / 105 Quillwork clothing decoration was also geometric. embroidery and beads replaced quillwork on clothing. Birchbark was used to make most containers for normal domestic use. and tightly finished. these containers were used as gathering and storage baskets. During this period. Three or four bands of design were frequently used. Moose-hair embroidery was common in earlier periods.

it was even used to make canoes and houses. and pictographs. to reveal the brown layer beneath. Human and animal figures were carved. Animal and plant figures from the area were normally shown on birchbark. moon. Some Subarctic groups did wood carvings of small objects. Abrams. and many built structures for observing or measuring the movement of the sun and stars. and both were highly stylized. showing stylized images from the natural worlds. Woodwork. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. . Lois Sherr. and in keeping with the quillwork tradition. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. Quillwork. references to the sun. 1999. which was white. 1998. Native North American Art. Astronomy Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The ancient people of the Americas observed the heavens carefully. similar to those of the Northeast culture area. such as knife handles and spoons. New York: Oxford University Press. Beads and Beadwork. Early Native American knowledge of the heavens ranged from the complex Mayan calendars to more simple markings of the solstices. Birchbark designs could be made by scraping the outside layer of the bark.106 / Astronomy both pliable and strong. New York: Henry N. It was because of this material’s adaptability that these tribes did not make pottery or many baskets. Janet Catherine. these figures were highly stylized. Ronald J. Dubin. geometric signs. See also: Baskets and Basketry. Simple sgraffito drawings were also done occasionally on wooden surfaces. Throughout North America. Birchbark.

Alberta. and Ursa Minor (Draco). These three stars rise a month apart during the summer.c. or codices. who lived in the river valleys and plains of Nebraska. The Dresden Codex records the revolution of Venus. the Popol Vuh. Archaeologists have nicknamed the reconstructed site Woodhenge. in the hieroglyphic Mayan language are almanacs. Guatemalan “daykeepers” still use the original astronomical system for divination. Hopewellian and Mississippian mounds are often in the shapes of animals or stepped temples. in Majorville. Rigel. The Bighorn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming has cairns that correspond to paths of Aldebaran. In the northern plains of Canada and the United States. and planets occur in creation accounts and other cultural practices. The four extant books. The prehistoric wheels are spoked circles outlined by stones. the Mayan calendar influenced civilizations from 100 b. The oldest medicine wheel. most of which are on the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains. where 120 earthen mounds formed a large village. About fifty medicine wheels are known to exist. In Central America. Missouri. correspond to the stars in the Big Dipper. while a few mark summer stars. and Sirius. In the Midwest. dates to 4. At Cahokia. prehistoric mounds in the Mississippi and Ohio river valleys also reflect astronomical understanding. medicine wheels attest an ancient knowledge of astronomy. after Stonehenge. but the Marching Bear mounds in McGregor. up to 60 yards in diameter. a circle of cedar posts marked sunrise solstices and the equinox.Astronomy / 107 stars.e. Stars had sacred meanings to the Skidi Pawnee. Many medicine wheels mark sunrise points of equinoxes and solstices. the Big Dipper. and it has a central cairn made of 50 tons of stones. Mayans observed the solar year as well as lunar cycles and the movements of stars. Iowa. The Mayan creation account. to the time of the Spanish Conquest (15191697).500 years before the present. The twin heroes of the Mayan creation story are associated with the sun and moon as well as with Venus. includes references to the Pleiades. This band arranged their .

Slender First One (in Orion). the language spoken by the Aztecs of sixteenth century central Mexico. Star charts on cave roofs had ceremonial importance. A stone house at Hovenweep. They arranged the posts of their earthen lodges in the same pattern. including First Big One (Scorpio). A painted hide at the Field Museum in Chicago records the Milky Way and many Pawnee constellations. Rabbit Tracks (near Canis Major). Boulder. Stars were important to the nomadic Navajos. Colo. so each home repeated the cosmic arrangement. The term “atlatl. has ports through which sunlight enters during the solstices and equinox. Miller. Marsha C. Boulder. Revolving Female (part of Ursa Minor).: Pruett. He placed constellations in the sky. Originating from Old World prototypes . 1997. and the Pleiades. See also: Mathematics. Dorcas S. Medicine Wheels. Stars Above.” applied to many versions of the implement. Utah.. evening star. 2000. Denise Low Sources for Further Study Bol.: Roberts Rinehart. Colo. Synonymous terms include spear thrower and dart thrower. Mounds and Moundbuilders. Their creation account describes how Black God made stars from crystals. ed. Revolving Male (Ursa Major). and morning star. Mayan Civilization. Stars of the First People: Native American Star Myths and Constellations. Atlatl Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The atlatl was an ancient and widespread hunting and warfare weapon throughout the Americas.108 / Atlatl villages in the pattern of the North Star. is derived from Nahuatl. Earth Below: American Indians and Nature. Ancient Anasazi sites in the Southwest still show the yearly cycle of the sun.

and Peru. Atlatls appear frequently in pre-Columbian paintings and in ceramics and relief sculpture from the United States. The atlatl was a straight or slightly curved wooden stick averaging 24 inches in length. Atlatl imagery held great symbolic importance. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Different versions included loops for finger holes. Weapons. Maya and central Mexican artists frequently depicted ruling elites proudly displaying atlatls as signs of military and social status. . Moche atlatls were elaborately decorated with painted and carved designs. called banner stones. Native American Weapons.Atlatl / 109 and brought to the New World by the earliest paleolithic inhabitants. the Maya area. Hunting and Gathering. atlatl depictions are common in rock art. the atlatl weights. and actual atlatls were frequently included in Anasazi burials. central and western Mexico. except in central Mexico. In South America. Lances and Spears. where the Aztecs still used it along with other weapons in the sixteenth century. it was gradually replaced by the bow and arrow as the preferred hunting weapon throughout the Americas by 1100 c. One end was notched and wrapped with hide for a handle. Colin F. and the dart was hurled overhand in slingshot fashion. See also: Banner Stones. were frequently carved in the form of animals from brightly colored stone. 2001. Small stones were sometimes attached to the atlatl as weights and balances to increase efficiency.e. James D. While the user gripped the handle. Projectile Points. Farmer Source for Further Study Taylor. In the Eastern Woodlands. particularly for warrior cults and hunting societies. In the American Southwest.. and the opposite end bore a hook or barb. significantly increasing its range and power. the feathered end of a long dart or spear was mounted against the barb.

Clashes with the city of Culhuacán forced the Mexica to take refuge in a marshy area of the lake. but found them useful as mercenaries. A widespread commercial network linked Tenochtitlán with the Maya to the south and extended as far north as what is now the southwestern United States. Mexica rulers married into the royal families of Culhuacán and Azcapotzalco. however.110 / Aztec Empire Aztec Empire Significance: The greatest flowering of Mesoamerican culture. the Mexica wandered southward into the valley of central Mexico. the Aztecs . They eventually reached Lake Texcoco and encountered peoples whose culture was more advanced. Along the way. As the city grew. Acamapichtli. Early Aztec society in Tenochtitlán seems to have been egalitarian. and conquest. intimidation. the Aztecs dominated central Mexico until the Aztec Empire fell victim to Hernán Cortés and his band of Spanish conquistadores and indigenous allies in 1519-1521. these sedentary peoples despised the Mexica as primitive barbarians. Through strategic alliances. especially the Teotihuacán and Tula cultures. the calpulli lost importance. Aztec civilization evolved from the legacy of earlier Mesoamerican groups. based on clans (calpulli) that controlled access to agricultural land. who ruled from 1372 to 1391. more accurately. According to their religious myths. a militaristic civilization that stretched from Pacific to Atlantic. Legend records that the Nahuatl-speaking Aztecs (or. where they founded Tenochtitlán. the Culhua Mexica) founded the city of Tenochtitlán in 1325 on a small island in Lake Texcoco (the site of modern Mexico City) and a century later emerged as the last great imperial power of indigenous Mesoamerica. Huitzilopochtli’s priests began the rite of tearing palpitating hearts from the chests of sacrificial victims. guided by their tribal god. In fact. Huitzilopochtli. The Mexica chose their first supreme ruler (tlatoani). Until the early fifteenth century. and nobles (pipiltin) dominated military leadership and monopolized access to the calmecac (a school where priests and pictorial writers were trained). Class divisions emerged.

Area of the Aztec Empire G UL P A C I F I C O C E A N F OF CA [MEXICO] N G U L F O F LI FO IA M E X I C O R Teotihuacán Tenochtitlán AZTEC Monte Alban Mitla MAYA ZAPOTEC . as noble estates proliferated and conquered peoples were incorporated into Aztec society.Aztec Empire / 111 were subject to Azcapotzalco. clans no longer possessed enough land to meet their needs. providing it with drinking water and constructing chinampas (“floating gardens”) to help feed the city. most Mexica were peasants (macehualtin). After this victory. subordinating their two allies. Expansion thus created a gulf between the elite and the commoners. Around 1428. under the leadership of Itzcóatl. As lands around the lake fell to Aztec power. Meanwhile. the state distributed them to the pipiltin and the most distinguished warriors. Aztecs burned the recorded myths and history of the conquered peoples and imposed an official Aztec version of the past. they joined with the cities of Texcoco and Tlacopan and defeated Azcapotzalco. who shared the clan’s communal lands. Dependent agricultural laborers (mayeques) and slaves became more prevalent. Earlier. the Aztecs embarked on their own imperial quest. which had a small empire around Lake Texcoco. they expanded Tenochtitlán. however. On Itzcóatl’s orders. As the Aztec population grew.

From infancy. At times. Society accorded great honors and rewards to those who distinguished themselves on the battlefield by capturing valiant enemy warriors. Some cities and villages succumbed to Aztec intimidation. Each calpulli had its young men’s house (telpochcalli). Girls were raised to be mothers. cannibalism derived from a protein-deficient diet). Merchants (pochteca) carried out a far-flung trade but also served as spies and intelligence gatherers. some had to be conquered through military force. The Aztecs’ cosmogony was also Mesoamerican. population pressure demanded expansion. served the military cause. boys received the physical markings and the training essential to warriors. Environmental explanations have been given for Aztec militarism and human sacrifice (for example. the tamemes (carriers). The Aztecs allowed the conquered to retain their lands and political leaders.112 / Aztec Empire The Aztec Empire stretched from the northern deserts to the strait of Tehuantepec and from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. Only the Tarascans of Michoacán and the Tlaxcalans of Puebla escaped domination. Human sacrifice was widespread in Mesoamerica. Imperial armies did not occupy conquered territories but exacted harsh vengeance on rebellious cities. All men in Tenochtitlán were expected to be warriors. to bear the next generation of warriors. It held that the earth passed through cycles of creation and destruction. although not to the extreme practiced by the Mexica. Humanity thus lived in a world doomed to disaster that . where warriors taught the military arts. they may have purposely provoked hostilities with nonsubject peoples. others sought to become subordinate allies. Even the lowliest members of society. The Aztec Empire was a hegemonic one. as long as they obeyed imperial decrees and paid tribute. Other social groups supported these military endeavors. A woman who died in childbirth had an afterlife status similar to the warrior who perished in battle or on the sacrificial slab. transporting food and other supplies to the field of battle. Priests marched at the head of the army. but religious ideology played a critical role. Public humiliation awaited those who showed cowardice on the battlefield.

because commoners gained little material benefit from the conquests. Wars brought captives to sacrifice. It mattered little whether one nourished the gods through self-sacrifice or as the captive victim. wondering if the strangers were Quetzalcóatl returning. Aztec militarism and religion became increasingly intertwined. Moctezuma II claimed to be the incarnation of Huitzilopochtli. Hernán Cortés acquired important indigenous allies by playing upon their hatred of the Aztecs. Tenochtitlán had grown to 150. 1520. the Mexica staged mock battles (“flowery wars”) with rival cities so that both sides could take captives to sacrifice. Without human blood.5 million living around Lake Texcoco. The Mexica continued to worship other Mesoamerican deities. the Aztecs killed at least twenty thousand captives to appease Huitzilopochtli at the dedication of the enlarged Great Temple. Aztec power was at its peak. Moctezuma II proved surprisingly ill-suited to deal with the crisis provoked by the Spaniards’ arrival in 1519. as had long been prophesied. When Moctezuma (or Montezuma) II became tlatoani in 1502. and the invaders captured the last tlatoani.Aztec Empire / 113 could be forestalled only by nourishing the gods with human blood. with perhaps 1. whereupon they took him hostage. and Tezcatlilpoca. but they raised the cult of Huitzilopochtli to an imperial obsession. creating the ultimate marriage of Aztec militarism and religion.000 inhabitants. Spanish weapons and horses were superior to Aztec missiles and obsidian-edged swords. Fatalism pervaded Aztec life: One’s destiny was determined at birth. Not only priests but also all people provided blood through ritual self-laceration. the sun might not rise and preserve humanity. Tlaloc. . in bloody rituals. Moctezuma II allowed the Spaniards to enter Tenochtitlán. Social tensions were increasing. the Spaniards and their allies returned in 1521. By the mid-1400’s. as he tried to escape. To enhance his power. More the meditative priest than the frenzied warrior. Their siege destroyed most of the city. In 1487. Driven from Tenochtitlán in a bloody rout in June. such as Quetzalcóatl. The warlike Cuitlahuac replaced him as tlatoani but perished from smallpox a few months later. He died while in their hands in 1520. he vacillated. Cuauhtémoc.

Inga. Clendinnen. Aztec civilization produced a vibrant commerce.114 / Aztec Empire The Aztec legacy has provoked controversy. The Spaniards compared the splendors of Tenochtitlán to those of Venice. The Conquest of New Spain. and conquistador Bernal Díaz del Castillo reported that it “seemed like an enchanted vision from the tale of Amadis. Rinehart and Winston. New York: Holt.” Rarely has a culture provoked such contradictory images. religion. 1991. 1963. Brown Sources for Further Study Berdan. Díaz del Castillo. A brief overview of Aztec society. Michael D. Rival indigenous peoples hated the Mexicas’ bloody imperialism. The famous narrative by one of Cortés’ men. An exhaustive introduction on Mexico’s early history and peoples. an elaborate belief system. Yet the Spanish invasion brought a demographic holocaust caused by Old World diseases (the empire’s population probably declined by 90 percent) and a new oppressive colonialism. Interprets the meaning of the Great Temple in Aztec life. The Great Temple of Tenochtitlan: Center and Periphery in the Aztec World. Ross. A sensitive interpretation of Aztec religion and society as a context for understanding the Aztec’s reaction to the Spanish invasion. New York: Thames & Hudson. Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs.. 5th ed. Hassig. 2002. The Aztecs of Central Mexico: An Imperial Society. M. New York: Cambridge University Press. Berkeley: University of California Press. and politics. Aztecs: An Interpretation. and their human sacrifices and cannibalism horrified the Spaniards. David Carrasco. Aztec Warfare: Imperial Expansion and Political Control. Frances E. Bernal. Broda. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. 1982. Kendall W. and exquisite poetry. London: Penguin Books. Cohen. Translated by J. and Rex Koontz. Excessively . 1987. 1988. Johanna. emphasizing religion’s role as a catalyst for Aztec militarism and human sacrifice. Coe. and Eduardo Matos Moctezuma.

flora. Smith. Toltec Significance: The “ball game. The Mayan center of Chichén Itzá had seven courts. General History of the Things of New Spain: The Florentine Codex. as well as an analysis of the demise of the Aztec empire are also discussed in this informative work. Michael Ernest. 13 vols. Dibble. politics.: Blackwell. and science. 2003. government. religion. Originating with the Olmecs (“rubber people”) of Veracruz.” or tlachtli. including the largest in Mexico—480 by 120 feet.e. Malden. but provides useful insights regarding the logistics of expansion. society. Ethnographic compilation about the religion. Quetzalcóatl. The heavy ball . Santa Fe: School of American Research. O. Mass.-1200 c.. Olmec. Clans. Pochteca.e. Bernardino de. 1950-1982. and the elaborate courts in which it was played constitute one of the most distinctive cultural phenomena of Mesoamerican cultures. as reported by indigenous sixteenth century informants. political. the ball game was played in every major center as far north as modern Arizona and south to Honduras from 500 b. An analysis of the cultural. The I-shaped ball court was enclosed by high vertical or sloping walls on which spectators sat to watch players attempting to knock a solid rubber ball into the vertical stone ring in the center. Maya. Ball Game and Courts Tribes affected: Aztec.c. The Aztecs. a rare event which immediately determined the winner. Translated by Arthur J. and social customs of the Aztec people.Ball Game and Courts / 115 downplays religious ideology’s role in Aztec warfare. Anderson and Charles E. and fauna of pre-Hispanic Mexico. 2d ed. Sahagún. The Aztec approach to economics. See also: Ball Game and Courts. Mathematics.

Huemac got his jade and feathers. injuries. and even slaves. demanding jade and feathers. elbows. last ruler of the Toltecs. the rain god. Tlachtli was probably a fierce game. and even death. but the people starved because the corn would not grow. Ritual games had even more serious results: death to the losers or. and a thick leather belt around their hips. In spite of its violence. Axayacatl lost. players from the ruling class made huge bets of their valuable clothing. in some cases. At the Mayan center of Copán. the court represented earth. the winners. winners and spectators could claim garments and adornments of their opponents. The game had social. When Huemac won. mythological. chief deities were sky gods who constantly fought a battle between polarities of light and darkness. knee pads. In a culture preoccupied with death. Also. and hips—so players wore protective gloves. and religious significance. and Tlaloc. Drought and famine were supposedly the result of a legendary ball game between Huemac. Among the Aztecs. seem to have been fairly common. the game was played with great enthusiasm. Games were used symbolically to explain natural events. Mythological and religious meanings of the ball game were revealed during ritual play. one could begin the game a rich man and end it a pauper. The sky was their sacred tlachtli. prized feathers. telling Huemac that leaves of corn were precious green feathers and that green corn was more valuable than jade. who played against the lord of Xochimilco. In their recreational games. Tlaloc offered corn as the prize. and the ball was the sun or moon. gold. according to the story of Mexican emperor Axayacatl. political. so feather capes and gold jewelry were often confiscated.116 / Ball Game and Courts could not be touched with the hands or feet—only knees. The next day he sent his soldiers to the palace to . betting his marketplace against this lord’s elaborate garden. priests divined the future from results of ritual games. this ultimate sacrifice was the highest tribute one could pay. helmets. Tlaloc gave them. but Huemac refused it. and a star was the ball. day and night. Victory was sometimes fleeting. With such passion for gambling.

Believing that their beauty had some meaning other than the technological. about three-fourths of an inch in diameter. Games and Contests. Early archaeologists in eastern North America discovered a class of ground and polished stone artifacts that were unknown among historic American Indians. designed to assist an individual in casting a spear with great power. they often were found in graves. archaeologists invented the term “banner stone” to reflect their belief that they had been mounted on short handles and held as emblems of office by chiefs. Mayan Civilization. These “banner stones” varied widely in shape but shared several characteristics. They usually were made of visually appealing stone such as the banded slate of Hamilton County. and 700 c. Banner Stones Tribes affected: Prehistoric tribes of the Eastern Woodlands Significance: Banner stones were part of the technology for casting spears.e.c. Gale M. banner stones were always symmetrical and had a single hole passing through their length. Barber .Banner Stones / 117 honor the winning lord with presents. It then became obvious that they were spear-thrower (“atlatl”) weights. though their beauty led early archaeologists to imagine them as emblems of chiefly office. Averaging about 3 inches wide and 3 inches long. That interpretation was abandoned in the twentieth century. Russell J. Sometimes found elsewhere.e. Ohio. One gift was a garland of flowers which contained a rope. which was carefully ground and polished to a high luster. Thompson See also: Aztec Empire. when preserved wooden parts associated with banner stones were discovered. Their primary period of use was between 1000 b. The soldiers placed it around Xochimilco’s neck and strangled him. Olmec Civilization.

coiling involves wrapping fibers into coils and stitching them together. Early Native American people made baskets for thousands of years before ceramics were developed. and in some areas it was also an important art form. 2000. G. She then wraps the coil in on itself to form a spiral which is . C. Basketry techniques were used primarily to make containers. Twining and plaiting are related early techniques. while coiling is a later development. but they were also used for making other objects. What is known of basketry today comes primarily from the last two hundred years. and it is a craft that is considered a woman’s activity by most groups. 2d ed. and many of the eastern traditions had been lost or significantly acculturated by the late 1700’s. In contrast. Techniques. See also: Atlatl. a basketmaker gathers a group of fibers. while plaiting is a simple process of passing a warp and weft alternately over and under each other. Lances and Spears. the basketry of the West is more widely known than that of the eastern tribes. probably grass stems. and wraps them with another long grass stem or yucca fiber. Basketmaking is one of the most characteristic crafts of Native American groups. Arrowheads and Stone Artifacts: A Practical Guide for the Amateur Archaeologist. To do coiling. Boulder. Baskets and Basketry Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Basketry was one of the most important utilitarian crafts throughout native North America. Twining is a process similar to weaving in which warp and weft strands are interwoven in various patterns. Some early pottery seems to have been shaped around baskets and then fired. Colo.118 / Baskets and Basketry Sources for Further Study Yeager. Among the historic tribes. ranging from hair brushes to clothes and canoe-like boats.: Pruett.

(National Archives) . Groups of coils can be stacked one on top of the other. Since the fibers that form the coils are wrapped. and so on until the basket is formed. a wider range of materials can be adapted to coiling than is the case with twining. and this may be the reason for its popularity.Baskets and Basketry / 119 stitched together. and sometimes two are bunched side by Examples of Apache basketry from the late 1800’s. another bunch of fibers is added and wrapped to lengthen the coil.

even splints of cream. The Cherokee were well known for baskets made of fine. this variation in technique is frequently associated with style differences. (National Archives) side as they are stitched. red. and others worked with birchbark. and Chitimacha of the Southeast to make plaited baskets of wood splints. Eastern Woodlands. a Hopi woman weaving a basket at the beginning of the twentieth century. The Micmac. Montaignais.120 / Baskets and Basketry Known for their basketry skills. Cree. and these baskets were frequently decorated with porcupine quills. Split-cane techniques were used by the Cherokee. and the basketry of this area was especially affected by the easy availability of wooden materials. and black colors that were . and this technique was borrowed by other tribes. Birchbark was popular for making basket-boxes among groups that lived across the northern sections of the United States in which the tree grew. Twining and plaiting were frequently used basket techniques in the East. Choctaw.

closed-neck water bottles. so that a small opening or “door” is left. Basketry in this region was largely utilitarian. Paiute. and vase-shaped baskets. Havasupai. but the most distinctive form is a large pot-shaped basket which may be 30 inches high and almost as broad in diameter. and Tohono O’odham (Papago). Although the Navajo have not been active in basketmaking since the nineteenth century. The basket forms include the tray and open bowl shapes. Designs are usually geometric or represent stylized figures. Along with more standard shapes. plaiting. San Juan Paiute. which is a band of deep red lined with black triangles around the inside surface of a tray. Havasupai. zig-zags. star or cross. birds.Baskets and Basketry / 121 plaited to form interesting visual patterns. The most complex designs have been those of the Pima. Pima. bowl-like upper half that was easy to carry as a burden basket. butterflies. and animal figures. deep bowl shapes. conical burden baskets. the Cherokee made an unusual shape in which a square base was transformed into a round. whirlwind. and coiling are all common basketmaking techniques in the Southwest. and they use a complex layering of positive and negative images created by black and beige patterns. and it was used for a wide variety of purposes. Southwest. Recurring design motifs include petal designs. Traditional Apache baskets include elegant petal and zig-zag designs on open trays. but the latter is used most frequently. Twining. The Navajo had stopped making baskets by the end of the nineteenth century and now buy baskets made in their own designs from the Paiute. they are famous for the wedding basket design. Great Basin and Plateau. and Hopi. Hualapai. squash blossom. The most successful basketmakers in this region have been the Tohono O’odham. agriculturally marginal regions—the Apache. the Hopi are known for basketry. The band is incomplete. The best basketmakers of the Southwest have been the nomadic peoples living in arid. Large . Although the Pueblo peoples are basically pottery makers and produce little basketry.

roots. Santa Fe. Southwestern Indian Baskets: Their History and Their Makers. Sacred Circles: Two Thousand Years of North American Indian Art. 1990. Washo. the latter sometimes resulted in baskets of fine woven quality.122 / Baskets and Basketry burden baskets were made to be carried on the back for seeds. See also: Arts and Crafts: California. 1998. Pacific Coast. Native North Americans: An Ethnohistorical Approach. housing. and boats were also made using basketry techniques. They made trays. but they were not equal to the complexity of their carved art. Daniel L. Coe. Furst. Tulare. Furst. Feder. Norman.. Arts and Crafts: Plateau. Andrew Hunter. Native North American Art.. Whiteford. Ronald J. and Jill L. Arts and Crafts: Southwest. Kansas City. Boxberger. Carrying bags were made by twining from grasses and other fibers. Dubuque. and other gathered foodstuffs. Arts and Crafts: Great Basin. 1988.Mex. New York: Rizzoli International. Winnowing trays and toasting trays were used in the preparation of food. Arts and Crafts: Northeast.: School of American Research Press. 1977. Iowa: Kendall/Hunt. New York: Harry N. N. Clothing. ed. and Karok. 1982. and vase forms and adorned special baskets with elaborate feather designs. 1965. The people of the Northwest Coast also made good baskets. New York: Oxford University Press. Arts and Crafts: Southeast. .: Nelson Gallery Foundation. Some of the finest basketry in North America was produced in California by the Pomo. Duncan Sources for Further Study Berlo. deep bowls. covered baskets. Peter T. American Indian Art. Janet Catherine. Ralph T. Mo. Baskets were made by both coiling and twining. North American Indian Art. Abrams.

dark blue. Beadwork was a popular decorative technique before the arrival of the Europeans. Although glass beads were traded with Native Americans during the eighteenth century. Today beads and beadwork normally refer to the glass beads of European origin. was made of Venetian glass. hoofs. belts. bags. they could be slightly irregular in size and shape. These beads were one-eighth inch in diameter. In the 1840’s and 1850’s they were used to make bands of decoration similar to those made with pony beads. teeth. These were used to make necklaces. too. and beads were traditionally made of shell. The imported glass beads were preferred because of their color and reflectiveness. since each one had to be shaped by hand and then hand drilled. Quillwork. They were used to make bands of decoration for clothing. It was half the size of the earlier beads and permitted making more delicate designs. stone. and beige. pendants. sky blue. . light red. fringes. dark red. was used in a similar way. cradles. Historical Background. and moccasins. and beaded artifacts using this type of bead represent the oldest examples of beadwork in collections today. The production of traditional beads was difficult and slow. This bead was referred to as the “pony bead” because it was brought by traders on pony pack teams. a related decorative technique. and ornaments on clothing. it. little is known about beadwork from that time. About 1840 the smaller “seed bead” that is used today became available. and they came in white. About 1800 a largesized bead made in Venice became available. bone. and seeds. Since these beads were partly made by hand.Beads and Beadwork / 123 Beads and Beadwork Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Beadwork is one of the most distinctive decorative techniques used among Native Americans for clothing and other objects of personal and ritual use.

Japanese beads entered the market.124 / Beads and Beadwork By 1860 beads were more commonly available. horse trappings. Culture Areas. By 1870 translucent beads had become available. and a wide variety of colors and sizes were available. (National Archives) . The beadwork A Havasupai girl wearing a beaded necklace. and by the mid-1880’s silver. and ceremonial objects.and gold-colored beads were traded. French and British manufacturers also entered the trade. During this period Czechoslovakian (Bohemian) glass beads were introduced. and their smaller size permitted the introduction of a new all-over pattern of beadwork. In the twentieth century the production of beadwork became much more commercialized. The French fur traders introduced trade beads to the tribes of the Northeast Woodlands in the seventeenth century. as did inexpensive Japanese and Chinese reproductions of Native American designs. Beadwork has been done in most culture areas. they are darker and more bluish. bags. Indians beaded clothing. among other things.

person. the spot stitch and the lazy stitch. Others may have been copied from print designs on manufactured cloth or the designs of vestments of priests. The spot. beading tends to be limited to small-scale work. Designs. Great Basin. In these latter three areas. In finely sewn work . Kickapoo) and Chippewa groups of the western Great Lakes region. however. There is a division between the northern Plains style. The fact that the designs were given names has led many students of design to assume they also had symbolic significance. some made with thousands of beads. and buffalo track. that a given design motif may have been used with a decorative intent by some beadworkers and with symbolic intent by others. or attached to fringes. and Plateau is usually done by tribes that have had contact with the Plains groups and have borrowed designs from them. eagle. turtle. and the bolder. buffalo. woven to form a beaded band independent of the backing. wolves. more individualized Southern Plains style. such as eye. centipede. It seems.Beads and Beadwork / 125 that was to become distinctive of this area displayed the foliate patterns of the Algonquian (Potawatomi. Two basic embroidery stitches are used. Beadwork in the Southwest. butterfly. or overlay. Sauk and Fox. Beads may be embroidered onto a cloth or skin backing. The geometric motifs of the Plains have names that refer to the natural world. Both geometric and floral designs are given names by the people who use them. The beadwork of the southeastern tribes (especially Creek and Seminole) is related to the floral patterns of the Northeast but is less ordered and symmetrical than that of the north. detailed patterns. and within each culture there is a repertoire of recognized design elements and full design patterns. Some foliate designs of the western Great Lakes region seem to have represented local flora. Techniques. perhaps some used for medicinal purposes. stitch means that a beaded thread is attached to the backing by a second thread sewn in an over-and-under stitching pattern. Plains beadwork has the most complex. which tends to be conservative.

1979. with five or six beads added to the thread between each stitch. In contrast.: Nelson Gallery Foundation. and it is used more by the Western Sioux. Carrie. but it requires a weaving frame. Algonquian. The warp.. and the weft with beads is woven into it. 1999. armbands. Bead weaving is used to make headbands. Art of the American Indian Frontier. In this stitching pattern. Abrams. Colo. Beatty. Quillwork. 1982. and Kiowa.” American Indian Art Magazine 2. and some northern Plains groups. . David W. legbands. Boulder. Furst. third. This is especially used with floral designs and curving lines among the Chippewa. Penney. North American Indian Art. the lazy stitch is used more for overall designs that include straight lines and geometric patterns. floral designs must be stylized to adapt to it. Crow. Lois Sherr. “The Origins of Great Lakes Beaded Bandolier Bags. Kansas City. or belts that do not have backing material. See also: Arts and Crafts: Northeast. Band weaving is easier and faster than the stitching techniques. Sacred Circles: Two Thousand Years of North American Indian Art.126 / Beads and Beadwork the overlapping stitch which holds the beaded thread to the backing may come every second. Arapaho. Seattle: University of Washington Press. This technique lends itself best to straight-line geometric shapes. Dubin. 3 (1986): 32-43. New York: Rizzoli International. Peter T. Andrew Hunter. Ralph T. Ronald J. or base threads. 1977. Lyford. are wrapped onto the frame. Quill and Beadwork of the Western Sioux. 1992. Dress and Adornment. the thread that carries the beads is itself stitched into the backing. Whiteford. New York: Henry N. Furst. Arts and Crafts: Plains. or fourth bead. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. Edited by Willard W. no. Mo. and Jill L.: Johnson. Cheyenne. Duncan Sources for Further Study Coe.

a small species not used in modern commerce. Central America. it was the only bean in most of North America.c. Most tribes ate beans boiled and mashed. and North America. Lima beans (Phaseolus lunatus) were domesticated separately in Peru (3300 b. While fava beans and a few other bean species were domesticated in the Old World. squash. and many other varieties. Corn. Beans were important for the nutrition of Indian agriculturalists. navy. including pinto. in Mexico and was the most commonly used bean in most parts of the Americas. Common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris) are highly variable. kidney. Tepary beans (Phaseolus acutifolius). While diffusing to North America separately.c.Beans / 127 Beans Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Beans were a significant source of nutrition for agricultural tribes in Mesoamerica. and corn were grown together virtually everywhere that crops were cultivated. Four major species were domesticated and used by Indians in pre-Columbian times. black. either with or without presoaking.) and were used there and in Mexico. providing protein and lysine. in Mexico and used in the American Southwest and western Mexico. Food Preparation and Cooking.c. were domesticated by 3000 b. Subsistence.e. Peru.e. and the American Southwest. beans could be stored for a full year and reconstituted by boiling. This bean was domesticated by 5000 b.e. beans. Russell J. the primary starchy staple. .e.e. Barber See also: Agriculture. Squash. or mixed with corn and other ingredients as succotash.c. added to soups. a critical amino acid lacking in maize.) and Central America (200 c. and spread to Peru. Shucked and dried. Runner beans (Phaseolus coccineus) were domesticated in Mexico by 200 b. most beans are American.

rules prescribing the behavior and goals for each of the sexes were a sociocultural universal among native North American peoples. However. From early childhood. imitation. so that by the time they reached adulthood most willingly accepted them as major parts of their social identities.128 / Berdache Berdache Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: An anthropological term denoting the third gender status. which many tribes attributed to individuals who behaved and dressed like members of the opposite sex. and formal training those statuses and roles that their communities deemed proper for the respective genders. weaving a belt. both A Zuñi man from the late 1800’s dressed as a woman. (National Archives) . Although varying widely in their content and elaboration. Indian boys and girls learned through observation.

Anthropologists and ethnohistorians have commonly employed the term “berdache” (taken from the Persian word bardaj and variably translated as “kept boy” or “male prostitute”) as a cross-cultural category for males leading such lives. third-gender. have reported that a number of American Indians and anthropologists consider the term “berdache” demeaning and have suggested that the term “two-spirit persons” be used in its place. transgender and otherwise Native Americans who have had to leave their reservations or other communities because of the effects of homophobia. numerous tribes instead ascribed them a third-gender status. Rather than deeming the latter as deviants or misfits. lesbian. there exists no parallel classification for transgender females. assuming modes of behavior and dress generally associated with the opposite sex. In accord with this spiritual understanding.” Such an idealization. it is important to note that because of the gender bias that long characterized anthropological studies. They also critique the tendency of some current scholarship to romanticize supposedly “positively sanctioned Pan-Indian gender or sexual categories. their assumed spiritual prowess sometimes rendered third gender persons objects of suspicion and fear. does “not fit the reality of experiences faced by many contemporary gay.Berdache / 129 ethnohistorical literature and tribal oral traditions provide ample evidence that individuals within many Indian societies veered away from typified gender patterns. they state. Wesley Thomas.” Harvey Markowitz . In many ways the pejorative roots and meanings of the word “berdache” render its application to many Indian communities problematic. In a collection on Indian gay and lesbian issues. editors Sue Ellen Jacobs. and Sabine Lang. In this regard. On the other hand. such individuals were often considered to possess extraordinary sacred power that could be directed toward socially beneficial ends. frequently attributing their nature and proclivities to spiritual causes.

Societies: Non-kin-based. and Spirituality. Because they were so light in weight. They were so ideal for use in northern waters that they were adopted by the French fur traders for use throughout Canada. sheets of birchbark. Walter. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. from roofing material to the covering of canoes. Indeed. comprising the keel and the ribs. 1997. Gender Relations and Roles. and Sabine Lang. 1986. Birchbark Tribes affected: Tribes throughout the Northeast and Great Lakes areas Significance: Birchbark served a wide variety of purposes for the northeastern and boreal Indians. The canoes were made by first fashioning a framework of cedar. in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions. over this framework. though it took some skill to navigate them. Boston: Beacon Press. a single person could carry one over a portage. Williams. The Spirit and the Flesh: Sexual Diversity in American Indian Culture. is one of the most common images people throughout the world have of American Indians. Birchbark canoes were highly maneuverable. . Two-Spirit People: Native American Gender Identity. stripped from the trees in sevenfoot-long sheets. Pitch from evergreens was used to caulk the seams to make the canoe watertight. The image of figures gliding silently along a river in a birchbark canoe. as depicted in thousands of stories and films. Sue Ellen. See also: Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. birchbark canoes were widely used both for personal travel and for transporting goods. Wesley Thomas.130 / Birchbark Sources for Further Study Jacobs. Sexuality. were stretched tight and bound together with cordage made from the inner bark of the basswood tree.

A personal fan could be made by attaching a stick. It is. along with elm bark. Transportation Modes. however. The range of the paper birch extends from the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Bear Lake in western Canada. The Iroquois were in the habit of steeping birchbark in boiling water to make a popular drink with medicinal qualities. sometimes these tubs were buried in underground pits to protect the contents from freezing. It was also used to make floats for fishnets. Birchbark could be fashioned into a kind of whistle that served as a moose caller. drinking cups were also made of birchbark. The Indians of the northern Great Lakes region used birchbark to make fans. .Birchbark / 131 Birchbark was also used to cover the tipis of the Algonquian tribes. birchbark was used. as a handle. to a piece of birchbark. The fact that the Indians could make such great use of birchbark says much about their environmental management. Birchbark containers were used by many tribes as tubs to hold dried food to be set aside for use during the winter. Tipi. Longhouse. The contents were heated by dropping hot stones into the mixture. for the roofing material. Birchbark was used by northeastern Indians to make a wide variety of containers. The Indians of Maine used small birchbark pouches to carry tobacco. Among the tribes that constructed longhouses. In order to ensure a steady supply of birchbark. These were used to winnow the wild rice they harvested from the swamps. able to tolerate soils that have modest nutritional capabilities. Four basic framing poles were connected together. the Indians would have needed to clear areas and burn the brush. and additional “leaner” poles were positioned around them. cooking pots were made of birchbark. The whole was covered with sheets of birchbark. for the birch is a shade-intolerant tree and will only grow in the open sunlight. Feathers were attached to the sheets of bark to stir the air. Before pottery. Gordon See also: Boats and Watercraft. Nancy M.

To prepare Black Drink.132 / Black Drink Black Drink Tribes affected: Southeast tribes Significance: Black Drink was the main ceremonial beverage of Southeastern Indian tribes. made them hospitable. Mielke See also: Mississippian Culture. friends would consume Black Drink for eight successive mornings. and served as “symbolic social cement. The roasted leaves and twigs were then boiled in water until the liquid was dark brown.” referring to its purity and medicinal properties. It was also a diuretic and brought on profuse sweating. . Black Drink was a ritual beverage consumed by many Southeast tribes before and during important occasions such as certain council meetings. Inland tribes traded for the holly plants and transplanted them. the holly plant was dried and roasted in earthen pots to a parched brown. combined the holly with other medicinal herbs. Consuming the drink purified men of any pollution. If an important man in the tribe died. Some tribes. but Indians called it “White Drink. with one cup containing as much caffeine as eighteen to twenty-four cups of coffee. for example the Seminole. It then was strained and generally consumed hot and fresh. Black Drink was a stimulant. David N. The Chickasaw would place a little Black Drink into their ceremonial fire to provide social purification for all present. A practice of the Timucuans was to consume large quantities and after about fifteen minutes cross their hands on their chests and vomit six to eight feet. It was called “Black Drink” by the Europeans because of its color.” Black Drink was made of holly leaves and twigs gathered along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.

The Sioux called these hills Paha Sapa (Black Hills) because they were so heavily wooded with dark pine that from a distance they looked black. The thunder-being proclaimed that the Black Hills were the heart of the earth and that the Sioux would come back some day and live there.Black Hills / 133 Black Hills Tribes affected: Lakota and Teton Sioux Significance: The Black Hills have had both economic and spiritual significance to the Sioux. the Black Hills were holy.S. The Black Hills were reached in the late 1700’s by the Sioux chief Standing Bull and his followers as the Sioux migrated westward. The Black Hills acquired a special significance to the western Sioux and were perhaps the most loved area in the Sioux domain. The Sioux had expelled the Kiowa from the area by 1814 and extended this border further west in the next few years. and 4. They provided a panoramic view of the vast prairie of buffalo grass below. They provided water and abundant food. The steep canyons provided protection from the severe winter weather. The hills themselves were heavily wooded with dark pine and contained abundant animal and plant life as well as numerous springs and small lakes. two-legged animals raced four-legged animals to see who would dominate the earth. and medicinal plants for healing.000 feet high. the U. They were the site of vision quests and the home of Wakan Tanka. Congress took the Black Hills with no compensation in 1877. The hills were seen as a reclining female figure whose breasts provided life-giving forces and to whom the Teton went as a young child would go to its mother. they form a remote ridge of limestone and granite 110 miles long. lodgepoles for tipis. Spiritually. Formed in the Pleistocene era. the Great Spirit. 40 miles wide. White encroachment into Sioux territory led to war in the mid- . violating an earlier treaty. The Black Hills are located in southwestern South Dakota along the Wyoming and Nebraska borders. According to legend.

feasting. led the government to try to purchase or lease them. such as Senator Bill Bradley’s land return legislation in 1985. of which the Black Hills formed a part. have not succeeded. The Bladder Festival. In 1911 the Sioux began what was to become a protracted legal process to regain the Black Hills. and ritual performances of songs and dances. was perhaps the most elaborate and most important of the traditional Yupik religious festivals. which took the Black Hills without compensation. which occurred at the winter solstice. the annual festival consisted of gift giving. This violation of the 1868 treaty was upheld in the 1903 Supreme Court decision Lone Wolf v. however. the Bladder Festival not only expressed the cosmology of the Yupik but also reiterated the social and economic relationships between people and between humans and animals. The pressures of white settlement and the discovery of gold in the Black Hills. The festival lasted five or six days. In 1980 the Supreme Court affirmed a 1979 Court of Claims ruling that the Sioux were entitled to $106 million in compensation for the taking of the Black Hills. Bladder Festival Tribes affected: Yupik (Eskimo) Significance: As the major religious event of the traditional Yupik.134 / Bladder Festival nineteenth century. In 1877 Congress ratified the Manypenny Agreement. Called Nakaciuq. Various attempts to have the Black Hills returned to the Sioux. meaning “something done with bladders” in the Yupik language. depending upon the community. The Treaty of Fort Laramie in 1868 ended this war and created the permanent Great Sioux reservation. Laurence Miller See also: Land Claims. In . The Sioux refused. It culminated with the return to the sea of the bladders of all the seals and walruses harvested in the previous year. Hitchcock.

or Inua. and buckets were carved. Once on the ice. Each of the bladders was inflated. the Yupik believed that the game animals whose souls were well treated by humans would willingly give themselves up again to those humans. or qasgiq. and the public honoring of the animal at celebrations such as the Bladder Festival. the Yupik believed that future hunting success depended upon a hunter’s respectful attitude toward the caught game. The themes of renewal and regeneration were pervasive throughout the festival. everyone in the village—men. decorated. along with the human hosts.Bladder Festival / 135 this respect. This was done in order to release the Inua and return it to the sea. the Bladder Festival symbolized the close of one subsistence cycle and the start of the next. the Inuas of previously harvested animals must be returned to the sea. Like other Arctic peoples. were entertained with songs and dances. that resided in its bladder. each hunter removed the bladders of the animals he had killed through the smoke hole in the roof of the qasgiq and carried them to the ice. and displayed in the qasgiq. and new clothes were sewn. Good treatment was evidenced by the observance of hunting rituals. The Bladder Festival also provided an opportunity for hunters within a community to compare their abilities as providers. women. In the months and weeks leading up to the Bladder Festival. he speared the bladders to deflate them and dropped them into a hole in the ocean ice. At the conclusion of the festivities. and children—participated. It was last celebrated in the early part of the twentieth century. ladles. Although most of the festival occurred in and around the men’s house. and they. which was the primary site of the festival. Furthermore. Since each man . Most important was the recognition that human livelihoods were dependent upon maintaining respectful relationships with the natural and supernatural worlds. These Inuas were finite in number and in order for future seals and other sea mammals to be caught. The Yupik believed that each animal possessed a soul. was cleaned and purified. The semi-subterranean men’s house. new bowls. the careful and aesthetic use of the animal’s pelt. new songs were composed. Ritual meals were served to the inflated bladders.

Thus. the Bladder Festival provided opportunities for the reaffirmation of. The use of the trade blanket as payment for treaties between the U. manufacturers (one of which was Pendleton) that produced only trade blankets. or the reordering of. bringing more competition among manufacturers and a greater variety of colors and designs. The finely woven. and the trade blanket became a profit-making commodity. By the end of the twentieth century.136 / Blankets displayed all the bladders of the sea mammals he had harvested that year. The earliest known use of European and English commercially made blankets in North America was in the fur trade with American Indians in the late seventeenth century. government and Native Americans. . The market for trade blankets continued to expand with the opening of the West by the railroads. About the same time.S. each person’s hunting success became common knowledge. government and Native Americans began in 1776.S. Religion. double-faced blankets were used by Indians as clothing that provided both warmth and a means of expression. By the 1820’s.S. Blankets Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indian trade blankets were manufactured by non-Indians and used as a commodity in trade dealings between the U. Stern See also: Dances and Dancing. status among hunters. Pamela R. there were five major U. Small manufacturers of blankets were established in the United States by the early 1800’s. trade stations were being established across the country for the nonprofit exchange of goods between the government and the Indians. At the beginning of the twentieth century. however. Gifts and Gift Giving. private businesses had replaced the government-controlled trade. Pendleton was the only company still in business producing “trade” blankets.

They were thrown over the shoulder. belted at the waist. Blankets conveyed different moods. . they were also used as highly valued gifts. woven on looms such as this. Design elements include motifs such as the cross. or worn as a hooded robe. blue. They replaced the use of robes made of animal hides by the Plains Indians and the hand-woven blankets of the Navajo. and saddle blankets. The blankets also were a measure of wealth or status and could be used as statements of tribal unity or individual identity. These include the striped. and framed designs. banded. depending on the style in which they were worn. and black were the predominant colors and were often woven into intricate design patterns. covers for the bed. had become valuable trade and sale items by the late nineteenth centur y. Bright earth tones plus white. Blankets were also used as infant and child carriers. overall. and nine-element designs used in chief’s blankets. wrapped around the waist. swastika. There were six general categories for design in trade blankets.Blankets / 137 Navajo blankets and rugs. as well as center point.

with James H. Barry. clouds. Weaving. Boarding and Residential Schools Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Boarding schools for Indian youth were established by Europeans in the early days of contact. They became known as “Indian blankets” long ago because American Indians made them a distinct part of their lives and cultures. Trade. Some designs were believed to express stories and myths and were made for Indians by using Indian symbols and colors. and banding that formed geometric patterns symbolizing mountains. and these institutions resulted in negative consequences for Indian families. birds. Trade blankets continue to be highly valued by Indians and non-Indians. 2002. Canada closed all such facilities in 1988. Early Period. See also: Chilkat Blankets. zig-zag.138 / Boarding and Residential Schools arrow. both as collectibles and as usable blankets. ed. Dress and Adornment. Navajo Saddle Blankets: Textiles to Ride in the American West. Collins and Gary Diamond. 2002. Indian boarding continued to operate in the United States. Friedman. stars. Boston: Bullfinch Press. Many of the earliest treaties negotiated between Indian tribes and European nations during the colonial era con- . Van Noord Sources for Further Study Coulter. In 2003. disconnection from education. Santa Fe: Museum of New Mexico Press. Diane C. and the four cardinal directions. paths. Chasing Rainbows: Collecting American Indian Trade and Camp Blankets. The object of the Indian boarding schools was to separate Indian children from their parents in order to impart Euro-American values and culture. Lane. and for some people psychological problems.

industrial schools. admitted students up to fourteen years old. Government-Sponsored Schools. Congress appropriated funds to religious groups to establish schools. In Canada. squabbling among Protestants and Catholics led to repeal of the Civilization Fund in 1873. located off reservations. Early schools were run by churches that favored the boarding system because in separating Indian children from their families such institutions were able to extinguish tribal knowledge and languages and imprint children with Christian values. and emphasis was on vocational education. and the fed- . because it was believed that they would be the most efficient means to accomplish assimilation. numerous schools. As a result. However. Boarding schools were favored in the United States and Canada. Students in these schools were taught basic skills in reading.S. served students between eight and fourteen years old. through treaty provisions. writing. both boarding and day schools. The industrial schools sought to prepare students for life off the reserves. and in 1819 Congress increased the appropriation with passage of the Indian Civilization Fund Act. The government deemed it more economical to develop and fund existing missionary schools than develop its own infrastructure.Boarding and Residential Schools / 139 tained provisions for education. In Canada there were two types of residential schools: Boarding schools. so the government contracted for educational services with the Anglican and Catholic Churches. the government also was obliged. Indian children from Georgia and Florida were placed in Jesuit schools in Cuba. located on reservations. from the earliest days. As early as 1568. and vocational education was a mainstay of the curriculum. the European (later Canadian and American) goal was to use the schools as tools to assimilate Indian youth. In 1802 the U. Through this education system. to develop schools for the education of Indian youth. In the United States. native people expected to retain their own languages and traditions as well as to learn Euro-American ways. and mathematics. were established by various denominations for the education of Indian youth.

whether sponsored by the United States government. Schools in both Canada and the United States mandated Englishonly and emphasized the acquisition of basic skills in reading. the first federally operated boarding school. Religious schools continued. was intended to strip Indian children of their language and culture and change them into mainstream Americans. Carlisle Indian School. religious organizations. along with industrial training. At many schools students spent more time working than A group of Sioux boys arriving at the Carlisle Indian School in 1879. and arithmetic. or in partnership. (National Archives) .140 / Boarding and Residential Schools eral government assumed a more direct role in operating Indian schools. opened in 1879 with the goal of transforming the Indian into a patriotic American citizen. writing. but federal officials were convinced that they could develop schools and more efficiently accomplish assimilation. Indian education. Many of these schools were supported by the manual labor of their students. The federal government continued to endorse removal of children from their homes as the quickest way to achieve assimilation.

However. Many students attempted to run away from the schools. After unfavorable publicity. inefficient. and children were sent to public schools or day schools located on their reservations. school reforms ended with the Great Depression and World War II. After World War II federal policies in Canada and the United States again sought to dissolve the trust relationship with tribes. the U. Poor health was a continuous problem in boarding schools. they were arrested if they refused. government reopened many off-reservation boarding schools. both governments insisted on greater balance between basic skills and industrial education. Canadian residential schools came under attack in the early 1900’s. children could be committed to boarding schools and kept until age eighteen. in Canada. Similarly. Indian youth were told they were not to return to their reserves. concerns surfaced about how to best accomplish assimilation so the government revised the Indian Act in 1951 and integrated Indian children into public schools. In the 1950’s. . Many boarding schools closed. Ultimately this became an issue in both Canada and the United States. because they were expensive. the government assumed more responsibility in running the schools.S. In response. as a way to accomplish assimilation once and for all. and on authority of the Indian agent. and though parents often protested sending their children to the schools. In the United States the Meriam Report (1928). assimilation continued as the goal of Indian education in Canada and the United States. school reforms were instituted. Nonetheless. was published. It labeled boarding schools as harmful institutions for children and condemned many aspects of Indian education. Conditions in the school were difficult for the children. Reforms to Hasten Assimilation. Often these children were boarded in government facilities. Once they had completed their education. and discipline was harsh. and rife with health and physical and sexual abuse problems. a scathing critique of federal Indian programs.Boarding and Residential Schools / 141 learning basic skills. and as a result. In 1927 compulsory attendance was strengthened.

They Called It Prairie Light: The Story of Chilocco Indian School. Carole A. Brenda. Away from Home: American Indian Boarding School Experiences. Santa Fe: Museum of New Mexico Press. and they asserted their rights to manage the education of their children. Education: Post-contact. David Wallace. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. In Canada and the United States a series of education acts permitted tribes to direct education and to enfold tribal languages and cultures into the curriculum. K. Lawrence: University of Kansas Press. Lomawaima. Boarding School Seasons: American Indian Families. Boarding schools. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. The goal is no longer to assimilate but to educate and instill a sense of pride and selfworth in the students. Tsianina. 1900-1940. Archuleta. Child. Many boarding schools in the United States closed during the 1970’s and 1980’s. Missions and Missionaries. and those that remain open provide specialized services such as foster care and developmental education to small numbers of youth. Margaret. and histories are vital parts of the curriculum in these schools. 1998. 2000. Education for Extinction: American Indians and the Boarding School Experience. American and Canadian Indians lobbied intensely to close boarding schools and put education in the hands of native people. . Basil. 1988. 2000. In the 1960’s and 1970’s tribes began to insist that the school system for Indian children had to change. once considered by both countries the optimal way to educate Indian children. Education: Pre-contact. Barrett Sources for Further Study Adams.142 / Boarding and Residential Schools Indian-Controlled Schools. Tribal Colleges. The last federal residential school closed in Canada in 1988. Tribal languages. 1994. have given way to innovative tribally controlled schools that underscore selfdetermination and sovereignty. Indian School Days. cultures. Johnston. See also: Children. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. ed.

which they felled by building a fire at each tree’s base. They then hollowed out the log with a stone axe and sometimes added planks along the sides or fastened two canoes together. birchbark canoes. constructed canoes for fishing and coastal voyages out of large red cedar trees. The Tlingit. Christopher Columbus first recorded the word canáoa. narrow boats with pointed ends that are propelled by paddling. and kayaks. Canoes. with spars made from sturdy branches for more stability in rough waters.Boats and Watercraft / 143 Boats and Watercraft Tribes affected: Widespread but not pantribal Significance: Many native peoples used watercraft for hunting and transportation. which was used by natives in the West Indies to describe their dugout boats. Native American watercraft generally fall into three basic types: dugout canoes. for example. side by side. who lived in the area of present-day southeastern Alaska along the Pacific coast. Because of their heavy weight and the difficulty of overland transport. The word “canoe” is a general term that refers to many different types of light. Smaller canoes for two or three per- Nootka dugout canoe Algonquian birchbark canoe Inuit kayak . dugout canoes were primarily used by more stationary tribes or by those who fished or navigated on the oceans and thus needed a very strong craft.

and explorers in North America all used birchbark canoes. measures 63 feet long. Finally. the seams were made watertight with sap from spruce trees. hickory. Often such canoes were built for limited use and then simply abandoned as they became waterlogged and heavy. yet light enough to be carried over land. Indian birchbark canoes varied in length from 15 to almost 100 feet for canoes built to carry warriors. which made them particularly useful for exploration and trade and for hunting and trapping in smaller rivers. The birchbark canoe was first used by the Algonquin Indians in what is now the northeastern United States and Canada. spruce. and 5 feet deep. A dugout canoe on display in New York City’s Museum of Natural History from Queen Charlotte’s Island. and the adoption of the bark canoe by European explorers is in large part responsible for the rapid exploration and development of the continent. 3 inches wide. 8 feet. were master canoe makers. then thick. chestnut. oak. Canada. basswood. The Ojibwa (Chippewa). or tulip wood were common. it was cut from a single log. but barks other than birch absorbed water quickly. dugout canoes made from pine. fur traders. off the coast of British Columbia. The frame was fortified with cedar ribs. or chestnut when birch was unavailable. where birch trees were plentiful.144 / Boats and Watercraft sons were fashioned from cottonwood logs and used for river travel and fishing. It took one man ten or twelve days to make a dugout canoe by lighting a small fire in the center of the log and then chopping out the charred wood with an axe. They would first outline the craft’s shape by driving wood stakes into the ground. and the bark was sewn with strings made from spruce roots. The larger oceangoing canoes could carry as many as sixty people and measured up to 45 feet in length. Dugout canoes were heavy but sturdy. Along the eastern coast of the United States. The early French missionaries. Other tribes substituted bark from elm. once one of the largest tribes north of Mexico. and predominated in areas where birchbark was scarce. . pliable sheets of birchbark were placed inside and fastened to wooden gunwales (the upper edge of the canoe). They were extremely buoyant and sturdy.

Since they were completely waterproof and highly maneuverable. They were first used as hunting boats for walrus and seals by the Eskimos of Greenland and later also used by Alaskan Eskimos. Kayaks were commonly built for one occupant but could be designed for two or three. kayaks could be launched in rough surf and navigated through ice-infested ocean waters that would quickly swamp an open boat. Some scholars suggest that the design of the birchbark canoes used by tribes in the more southerly areas of North America was adapted from the kayak. which is perhaps the most seaworthy watercraft ever built.Boats and Watercraft / 145 Eskimos often used umiaks to carry families and supplies. . saplings. a capsized kayak could be righted by a skillful person without taking in any water by rolling full circle. over which sealskin was tightly stretched and made waterproof by rubbing it with animal fat. Most were about the size of a small canoe and were made from a frame of driftwood. Propelled by a double-bladed paddle. Since the paddler sat low in the center. One of the most significant achievements of the Eskimos (Inuits) was the invention of the kayak. (National Archives) Kayaks and Umiaks. or whalebone. which the Eskimos made watertight by lacing their clothing over the rim of the hole. The kayak is completely covered except for a hole in which the paddler sits. kayaks were also useful in rivers with swift waters and rapids.

John. Giroux. Raymond Frey Sources for Further Study Adney. The Eskimos: Their Environment and Folkways. McPhee. Most Eskimos today have replaced their kayaks with wood or aluminum boats. See also: Birchbark. Mountain View. 1955. This Land Was Theirs: A Study of North American Indians.” as it was most often piloted by the women in the group. Edwin Tappan. he would hurl a wooden spear attached to the boat by a line coiled in a tray on the deck. The Bark Canoes and Skin Boats of North America.146 / Boats and Watercraft When pursuing seal or walrus.: U. the hunter would lean forward. The umiak was used for carrying families and supplies and was propelled by both paddles and oars—the only known instance of the use of oars by Native Americans before the coming of the Europeans. 5th ed. 1975. New York: Farrar.: Yale University Press. among the other native peoples of the American continents. The Eskimos also used a larger. Transportation Modes. aluminum. D. Edward Moffat. New Haven. The modern descendants of Native American canoes and kayaks are made from wood. D.C. Government Printing Office.” which is Eskimo for “woman’s boat. only the Mayas of the Yucatán Peninsula and the natives of the coast of Peru were known to have used sails before the Europeans arrived. open boat covered with animal skins called a “umiak. Straus. Chapelle. and their sails and paddles with outboard gasoline motors. Calif. canvas. 1932. and Howard I. 1996. As he drew close. Weyer. Conn. or fiberglass.: Mayfield. Some of the Eskimo boats may also have been powered by sails. Washington.S. 1964. . recreation. or competition.C.: Author. concealed behind a small sail-like blind attached to the bow. and are used for sport. Oswalt. Washington. National Geographic on Indians of the Americas. Wendell H. National Geographic Society. The Survival of the Bark Canoe.

in which masks made from gourds are often garishly painted with hideous designs. The Booger Dance originated among Eastern Mountain Cherokee as a way to portray European invaders as awkward. ridiculous. . even obscene dramatic elements. the Booger Dance is then determined to be the means of relief. Performed by four to ten men and sometimes two to four women. lewd. Schiffman See also: Dances and Dancing. and menacing. The dance then evolved during the nineteenth century to deal with the appearance of whites. it incorporates profane. Should divination devices conclude that an illness was caused by “boogers” (bogeymen).” equivalent to “bogey” (ghost).Booger Dance / 147 Booger Dance Tribe affected: Cherokee Significance: The Booger Dance is a major symbolic feature of Cherokee night dances. Early forms of the Booger Dance were limited to winter performances. It is a masked dance. is used by English-speaking Cherokee for any ghost or frightful animal. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact. The term “booger. The dance is preceded by a ritual of divination. lewd. Glenn J. The dance is not an independent rite but is a major symbolic feature of Cherokee night dances. The dance is conducted to “scare away” the spirit causing the sickness. The dance dramatizes hostility and disdain for white culture by mocking elements that cause cultural decay and defeat. as killing frost and bitter cold were associated with ghosts.

the sinew was commonly attached in the form of many strands of a slender cable laced to the back of the bow so that its tension could be adjusted to suit the archer. The design and scale of bows. Arrows were predominantly of wood. The making of bows and arrows involved highly valued knowledge and skills. and was rich in symbolism. An alternative bow type utilized sinew lashings to reinforce the bow but lacked the sinew backing. arrows. as did the materials utilized. and most of Mexico. Arrows. The materials from which archery tackle was made were often important in trade. Archery was also essential in warfare. Bracers were often simple hide straps. Archery was universal in native North America. Most common was a selfbow (a bow made of a single piece of wood with no laminating materials) of springy wood tapering toward both ends and sometimes narrowed at the grip. where it existed. or gut. In the north and west. antler. which was vital to procuring the food supply in all parts of the continent. or bone were reinforced with sinew. wooden bows and generally shorter bows of horn. but reed. Bowstrings were made of sinew. and quivers varied regionally. hide. Arrows. bows were longer in the east. but other types were known as well. In the Arctic. as were the finished products.148 / Bows. Both bows and arrows were made in proportion to the archer’s body. and Quivers Bows. Elsewhere the sinew was applied directly to the back of the bow with glue and sometimes with lashings as well. and Quivers Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The bow and arrow was the most important missile weapon used by North American Indians. the formulae used varied with the size of tackle desired. This bow type seems to be virtually the only one definitely recorded for the eastern United States. Bows were of several types. plant fiber cordage. southeastern Canada. In general. The bow and arrow was of tremendous importance in hunting.or cane-shafted arrows with wooden foreshafts into which points might be set . and the bow and arrow was by far the most important missile weapon complex in use.

. Points and fletching were attached with lashings of sinew and sometimes with pitch or glue. the left arrow is wooden with an iron point. and Quivers / 149 were common in the western and southern United States and southward. antler. hardwood. animal skin quiver. In the north and west. and arrows.Bows. the right is a cane arrow tipped with stone. Arrow points were of many types and were made of bone. and other materials as well as stone. Arrows. a common quiver type was a fur bag that sheltered Southern Paiute (Great Basin) hardwood bow. Quivers were generally narrow bags of animal skin that could be conveniently slung over the shoulder for ease in carrying.

Tim. Baker. Accessories. New York: St. Boys commonly practiced archery from early childhood and began hunting small game while still very young. New York: St.C. M. Native American Bows. et al. The Traditional Boyer’s Bible. Arrows. New York: Lyons Press with Bois d’Arc Press. Michael G. Native archery is said to have been deadly at a distance of fifty yards. New York: The Lyons Press. 2d ed. Weapons. The bow and arrow was the constant companion of men of all ages. Encyclopedia of Native American Bows. David. Martin’s Press. Tools. such as sinew and arrow points or a fire drill. 1999. American Indian Archery. were often carried in the quiver or in bags attached to it. 1980. Columbia: Missouri Archaeological Society. and Quivers both the bow and its arrows from the weather. Hunting and Gathering. Weapons: An International Encyclopedia from 5000 B. Martin’s Press. and Quivers. 1996. ed. Laubin. Arrows. Other quivers were simply arrow cases. Hamilton. Davis Sources for Further Study Allely. The form employed in shooting varied both between and within tribes. 1994. Leo.D.150 / Bows. to 2000 A. 1980. Native Time: An Historical Time Line of Native America. Harding. See also: Atlatl. . and Jim Hamm. Lances and Spears. Steve. III. Francis. Volume 3. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Projectile Points. T. Warfare and Conflict. In the central United States and neighboring regions a separate case for the bow was sometimes attached to the quiver. Reginald. 1982.

They were also a constant pictorial reminder of the collective ideals of bravery and fortitude which underscored Plains Indian life. particularly deeds connected with warfare. According to tradition.Bragskins / 151 Bragskins Tribes affected: Plains tribes Significance: Bragskins are a particular type of pictograph or “picture writing” kept by Plains Indian warriors and painted onto elk hides. men represented themselves on their bragskins by drawing the lance. they were conscious historic records which were seen by the people on a daily basis. these autobiographical accounts preserved the record of the life of the people. Taken as a whole. They were known as bragskins because a man preserved and recorded his individual exploits and attainments on the battlefield. headdress. or some other feature to represent their warrior society. tipi covers and liners. which was highly individualized. The drawings usually consisted of only a few strokes—characters and objects were represented by drawing the single striking feature or characteristic of a person or object. Men swore that the events depicted on their bragskins were absolutely true and correct as presented. each man was the center of his . and sometimes men’s shirts. Typically bragskins were made up of a series of pictures which gave the full action of a single event in illustrative style. their importance lay in communicating facts to their people. Truthfulness and accuracy were insisted upon or a man would be exposed in public as a liar. pictographic accounts utilized certain conventions. So that they could be read easily by all members of their tribe. or they would depict the image painted on their shield. and he would bring great dishonor on his family and relations. The primary intent of a bragskin was to develop and preserve a personal narrative of accomplishments. Bragskins were more than mere decoration and artistic skill was a minor consideration. Usually. all deeds of bravery or achievement depicted on the bragskins had to have been witnessed by at least two other men who also swore to their veracity. In this way. buffalo robes.

in Lakota bragskins the Cheyenne were indicated by drawing hash marks across the arm. Buffalo Tribes affected: Plains tribes Significance: Until the nineteenth century. While some estimates of the historic bison population have ranged as high as one hundred million. by the 1870’s. forcing Plains tribes to submit to the reservation system. Recitation of war stories was an important way to transmit and model the virtues of fortitude and bravery to young boys and to the tribe in general. Each tribe had conventional ways of representing other tribes. the Lakota drew Crow men with a knot or bunch of hair at the front of their heads. Warfare and Conflict. Barrett See also: Petroglyphs. For example. also called the bison. the combination of the fur trade and white hide hunters had nearly exterminated the herds. Carole A. the American buffalo. Bragskins provided a permanent record of these individual accomplishments in battle and reinforced the warrior ethic among the people. From the end of the last Ice Age until the late nineteenth century. because this represented that tribe’s distinctive hairstyle. the society members would take out their bragskins and publicly recount their deeds and exploits in warfare. increasingly accurate assessments of the carrying capacity of the grass- . because in sign language the Lakota represented the Cheyenne by running the fingers horizontally across the lower arm. and everyone in camp knew how to read their meaning. Wintercounts. Symbolism in Art. Plains tribes subsisted largely on the buffalo (or bison). Pictographs. Shields. At certain times of the year each men’s warrior society would sponsor a feast for tribal members. In another instance. and at those times.152 / Buffalo own story and easily identifiable on his own bragskin. was the dominant species in the Great Plains.

Russell.000. Source: Data are from Thornton. Mandan.000 14. Comanche.000 10. Apache of Oklahoma (Kiowa-Apache).Buffalo / 153 lands have suggested that the historic bison population in the Great Plains was not more than thirty million.000. equestrian buffalo hunters.000 0 1850 1855 1860 1865 1870 1875 1880 1885 1890 Note: In the twentieth century the buffalo population began to rebound from its 1895 low of about 800. when the Buffalo Depletion from 1850-1895 20. and Pawnee—maintained their gardens in the river valleys of the Plains while adapting from pedestrian to equestrian buffalo hunting.000.000 20.000 16. Following the diffusion of horses into the Great Plains in the first half of the eighteenth century. Others—among them the Arikara.000 12. in 1983 it was estimated at 50.091 800 .000. Assiniboine. Cheyenne. Kiowa. 1987).000.000.000.000. Native Americans hunted bison on foot for thousands of years by surrounding a herd until the animals were within range of bows or by setting a fire to stampede a herd over a bluff.000.000 6. Blackfeet Confederacy. We Shall Live Again: The 1870 and 1890 Ghost Dance Movements as Demographic Revitalization (New York: Cambridge University Press.000 15.000 14.000. a number of tribes—among them the Arapaho. 1986). and Sioux—became almost exclusively nomadic.000 4.000 20.000 1.000.000. Hidatsa. They assembled as a tribe only during the summer.000 2.000. American Indian Holocaust and Survival: A Population History Since 1492 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press.000. The nomadic tribes adapted their social organization to the habits of the bison.000 1.000. 1895 395. Atsina. Russell.000 18.000 8. Thornton.

During the rest of the year they were divided into bands. By the 1840’s. The hide hunters were extraordinarily destructive: In the early years of the slaughter. Seeing the White Buffalo.000 buffalo robes each year to European American fur traders along the Missouri River. Indian hunting of the buffalo accelerated during the nineteenth century. Boulder. and Wyoming. Isenberg Sources for Further Study Ewers. Foreword by William T. Montana. Subsistence. By 1889. where they destroyed the remaining herds by 1883. Colo. the hide hunters moved to the north. reflecting the actions of the herds. Plains Indian History and Culture: Essays on Continuity and Change. Indian commercial hunting had markedly reduced the number of bison in the eastern Great Plains. having largely extirpated the bison from the southern Great Plains. Colorado. Horses. In the late 1870’s.000 and 200.154 / Buffalo bison were congregated for the rutting season. 1997. the Plains Indians were providing between 150. In response to the fur trade. 1997. the Plains Indians were reduced to extreme poverty and had little alternative to the reservation system. Once the herds were destroyed. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. there were about a thousand of the animals remaining in remote areas of the Texas panhandle. As many as two thousand buffalo hunters armed with large-caliber Sharps or Winchester rifles blanketed the southern Great Plains in the early 1870’s. . Hides and Hidework. Hagan. Pemmican. Robert B. White Buffalo Society. John Canfield. every hide shipped to market probably represented five dead bison. White hide hunters delivered the final blow to the herds in the 1870’s and early 1880’s.: Johnson Books. See also: Buffalo Dance. By the 1850’s. Pickering. which divided to search for winter forage. Andrew C.

The Mandan. The dancers carried buffalo hide shields and long lances. a hunting people of the northern Great Plains. wore buffalo head masks with eye and nose holes. They had buffalo tails tied around their knees and danced until they fell to the ground from exhaustion. Then they were dragged away by other members of the tribe and symbolically skinned and butchered. Here he was taught the dance. S. A special society.Buffalo Dance / 155 Buffalo Dance Tribe affected: Mandan Significance: The Buffalo Dance and ceremony were meant to ensure an adequate supply of buffalo for the hunt. and he brought it back to his people. (E. the Bull Dancers. performed the Buffalo Dance before the yearly hunt to ensure success. the dance originated when a white buffalo took a shaman to the home of the “buffalo people” in the sky. Curtis/American Museum of Natural History) . As part of the dance cere- A Buffalo Dance performed at Hano. According to Mandan tradition.

with buffalo herds restored to a few areas of the Great Plains. gain possessions. while personal bundles were often small enough to carry in one hand. Women in the White Buffalo Calf Society then lure buffalo to the camp by putting on buffalo robes and dancing wildly. White Buffalo Society. or tribe. Sacred mony. though mostly for the benefit of tourists. The dancers then eat the mush. Tischauser See also: Buffalo. (Although the use of sacred bundles is treated as historical here to emphasize their great importance in many traditional American Indian cultures.) . was the dance performed again. the performers say a prayer to the gods thanking them for all they have provided and asking for their help in living as the gods wish. they are used in ceremonies to assure the well-being of an individual. Sacred bundles were believed to have supernatural power to cure the sick. Dances and Dancing. Leslie V. Sacred Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Sacred bundles contain objects that represent the power or medicine of their owner. As the dance ends. clan. assembled under the guidance of spirit beings. so there was no longer a reason to perform the dance.156 / Bundles. Bundles. win the affections of another. or even assure long life for an individual or a whole tribe. it is important to note that many practices involving sacred bundles still occur today. Only in the 1930’s. some tribal bundles were large enough to hold hundreds of items. Buffalo dancing had stopped by 1900—the buffalo were gone. White reservation officials had already banned buffalo dancing because of its “pagan” nature. get revenge on an enemy. Mandan women prepare two large kettles of corn meal mush—which buffaloes like very much—and set them out at the edge of the village. Wrapped in the hide of a deer or the whole skin of an otter.

A powerful bundle could be duplicated for one or two others with permission of the spirits. Bundles represented an important link with the past and supernatural beings and could be opened only under prescribed circumstances to benefit the person or the tribe. or received in exchange for horses. but the great tribal bundles were secluded from everyday view. or anything of special meaning could become part of the bundle. Tobacco. purchased. In some tribes a bundle could be inherited through the father’s lineage. such as a song. or the telling of a particular incident. A relationship was established and directions were given for the spiritual path of the seeker.Bundles. Because of their magical quality they were surrounded with taboos. Traditionally. a dance. A large medicine-pipe bundle belonging to a member of the Blackfoot tribe. contained a decorated pipe stem along with a tobacco cutting board . One went out alone for several days and fasted and prayed until the guardian spirit was encountered. Some personal bundles were displayed in the owner’s lodge or hung outside the tipi. Objects in a sacred bundle filled a definite purpose. Personal Bundles. The primary item in a medicine bundle symbolized the guardian spirit. Upon return from the quest. Unless the bundle. Often a song was given by the spirits as part of the seeker’s medicine. captured during a battle. for example. In this way others received some of the power that was available as long as requirements were met for keeping the bundle. fur. feathers. stones. Something of the vision experience. The owner could remake a bundle that was lost or taken in a fight. objects were gathered for the medicine bundle as symbols of the experience. a painting on a shield. a personal bundle was acquired through a vision quest. An item representing the guardian spirit was usually worn to assure ongoing contact. it belonged to the owner until death. was willingly given to someone. either spiritual or practical. Sacred / 157 Sacred bundles required special care. with its power. They were considered to be “alive” with supernatural power. was shared with the tribe.

when the bundle was being transferred to a new leader. Other ceremonial tools were a rattle. The summer Green Corn Dance was a time of cleansing and renewal for the Seminole of Florida and Oklahoma. a bag of pine needles. a wooden bowl for food. squirrel. Just before dawn on the fourth day.158 / Bundles. the sacred bundle was blessed and opened. Animal spirits were represented by an elk hide. muskrat. a rawhide bag of roots for making smudge (sacred incense). were sometimes displayed at ceremonies. The Kiowas had a small stone image resembling a man that was shown to the people only once a year at the Sun Dance. but they were opened only on special occasions. a horse whip. and a stone turtle. and the Evening Star bundle was assembled under the direction of that highly revered star guardian.” The people believed that the tribe’s well-being depended on the proper care and protection of those bundles because the items within them symbolized life itself. For the Pawnee of the Plains. and tongs for placing coals on the smudge. the pipe bundle could be opened on four occasions: when the first thunder was heard in the spring. Sacred and pipe stokers. In some Plains tribes bundles were used to “keep the world together. fetus of a deer. In Blackfoot tradition. they danced and recited oral history to honor their mystical origin. A Cheyenne bundle contained the four Medicine Arrows. the stars were important in sacred traditions. Meeting at sacred places in woods and near creeks. when tobacco in the bundle was renewed. and an Arapaho bundle held a special flat pipe. Personal items included necklaces. and a painted buffalo robe. mink. and owl. mountain-goat headdress. an ear of corn. A sacred song was also given by the spirits and was sung any time the bundle was displayed. The Fox of the Great Lakes had forty sacred bundle groups in eleven major categories. and when the pipe was used in keeping a vow. skin of a loon (used as a tobacco pouch). and skins of prairie dog. eagle-wing feather. such as the Blackfoot Sacred Pipe bundle or the Pawnee Evening Star bundle. bearskin. Tribal Bundles. a thong lariat. head of a crane. Nearly . The great tribal bundles.

1937. Thompson Sources for Further Study Beck. Ariz. The Seminole believed that this renewal of the sacred bundle assured that the people would not die and the tribe would not disappear.Bundles. Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. or not ready to know about it”. Ruth Murray. See also: Calumets and Pipe Bags. The Spiritual Legacy of the American Indian.” Gale M. Joseph Epes. Sources of Life. Tsaile. respect. Garbarino. Red Man’s America: A History of Indians in the United States. the. N. “I wouldn’t want to go near those medicine bundles if I didn’t know how to act. The power within sacred bundles was regarded with wonder. Underhill.: Navajo Community College Press. Deluxe illustrated ed. Sacred. Visions and Vision Quests. 1982. Redesigned ed. as one individual put it. The Story of the American Indian. Peggy V. another said. Sacred / 159 seven hundred items wrapped in buckskin or white cloth contained sacred knowledge and medicine for the health of the tribe.: Garden City Publishing. The sacred practitioners who worked with this secret and often dangerous knowledge learned by experimenting with natural forces after much ritual preparation. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Guardian Spirits. Religion. The Sacred: Ways of Knowledge. “the power might come back at me if I exposed myself to it when I was not prepared. Radin. 1992. Paul. and Nia Francisco. and sometimes fear. Green Corn Dance. Anna Lee Walters. 1976. Brown. Garden City. Medicine Bundles. An untrained person would resist contact with this potent knowledge because. Boston: Little. 1953. Brown.. Native American Heritage. Merwyn S. .Y. New York: Crossroad.

Widely used . The Spanish subsequently used the term to designate leaders with varying degrees of authority. namely the peace leader of the community. refers to pipes with long wooden stems and detachable clay or stone bowls. Calumets and Pipe Bags Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The calumet (sacred pipe) was the most widely used ceremonial object among North American Indians. the term has been adopted only by the Eastern Pueblo tribes along the Rio Grande of New Mexico. Calumet. In the Caribbean. and it has been a central symbol of modern Pan-Indian movements. Russell J. and appointing and training one’s successor. representing the pueblo in dealings with outsiders. Among North American Indians. The modern cacique serves as a representative of the pueblo as a whole and is said to have the duty of “looking after the people. the Spanish encountered Arawak Indians who applied the term “cacique” to their chiefs. The degree of power wielded by a cacique varies with that cacique’s personality. it refers to the male religious-secular leader of a community. from the French for reed pipe.” This entails presiding at various religious ceremonies. allocating certain rights to agricultural fields.160 / Cacique Cacique Tribes affected: Tribes of Spanish America Significance: Originally a term applied to Caribbean tribal chiefs. There. The Puebloan cacique is probably an outgrowth of a native office. to whom it designates a religious-secular office. Barber See also: Political Organization and Leadership. whose title and duties were modified by the Spanish. “cacique” was adopted by the Eastern Pueblo peoples.

or during a time of hardship.Calumets and Pipe Bags / 161 for both personal and ceremonial purposes. symbolizing the merger of earth and sky. although L shapes and inverted-T shapes were also common. Charles Louis Kammer III Source for Further Study Steinmetz. . Some pipes were so powerful that only certain sacred persons could smoke them. In most ceremonies. and sweatlodges and pipe ceremonies have become central symbols in pan-Indian movements such as the American Indian Movement (AIM). or to make peace (the peace pipe). See also: Bundles. 1998. Red pipestone was prized material for bowls. before the hunt. the lit pipe was offered to the six directions (north. The long wooden stems were usually decorated with feathers or ornaments. south. male and female. Syracuse. The Sacred Pipe: An Archetypal Theology. Smoking the pipe was understood to link those present and the spirit beings in a cosmic harmony. After a period of decline. to bind together confederacies. Most tribal groups have myths similar to a myth of the Lakota Sioux in which a sacred being. Ceremonial pipes were understood to have a special power and were kept in bags (bundles) tended by specially trained women and men. Religion. calumet refers to only the sacred pipes. and down) and then passed in the direction of the sun to all those gathered. east. N. west. before war. The bowls were often carved in the images of animals or persons. The pipe serves as an ongoing means of communication with the spirit beings. The bowl and stem were joined only for ritual use.: Syracuse University Press. Paul B. and many of the carvers were men with disabilities who could not participate in war. Archaeological evidence shows extensive use throughout North America that may date back four thousand years. Pipestone Quarries.Y. The decorations revealed when the pipe was to be used: for healing. pipe carving has been revived. Sacred. brings the pipe at the time of the creation of the people. such as White Buffalo Woman. up.

if the typical . This genre of literature served to warn erring Christians of the dangers in straying from a religious life. however. cultural outsiders became insiders who were later able to write about their experiences. and by the nineteenth century hundreds of pamphlets and anthologies were available. They provide informative vignettes of Native American life. In this way. Commended by Her. The commercial success of the earlier captivity accounts resulted in further publications. Indians served as the stereotype of extreme waywardness. and this agenda seriously affects some of the data reported. There is a risk. Together with the Faithfulness of His Promises Displayed: Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restauration of Mrs. since in many cases captives were adopted into families and learned the languages and aboriginal cultures. A prime example is an early captivity narrative published by a minister’s wife under the title The Soveraignty and Goodness of God. Mary Rowlandson.162 / Captivity and Captivity Narratives Captivity and Captivity Narratives Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Captivity narratives provide cultural data concerning Native Americans and early contacts with Europeans. and thus they did not always relish their enforced observation of another culture. In addition. in relying too directly on these captivity accounts for objective information on Native Americans. and Dealings with Her (1682). Many of the captives were taken during hostile interactions between the Europeans and the indigenous peoples. It may be found in Charles Lincoln’s Narratives of the Indian Wars (1675-1699) (1913). Captivity narratives are accounts written by Europeans who were captured by Native Americans. captivity narratives were often published for the purpose of providing moral guidance to the masses (and were generally sensationalized for entertainment value). although these narratives were often biased and many of them perpetuated stereotypes of Indians. to All That Desire to Know the Lord’s Doing to. Many of these were written by women or featured a female heroine.

these men attempted. The Navajo ceremonial system is composed of rites. generally the purity of the protagonist allowed her to overcome the dangerous ordeal and to return unscathed to her former lifestyle. Pauline Turner. 1999. Strong. Boulder. chants. Based on Navajo creation myths that explain their understanding of the reciprocity of the natural and supernatural worlds. with difficulty. Captivating Others: The Politics and Poetics of Colonial American Captivity Narratives. using a combination of singing. James D. published by the Smithsonian Institution. Occasionally. Susan J. Jr. Those with a male hero often had the man being seduced by the freedom of the wilderness and its native inhabitants to become one with his aboriginal hosts. as in Edwin James’s John Tanner’s Narrative of His Captivity Among the Ottawa and Ojibwa Indians (1830). See also: Adoption.: Westview Press.Chantways / 163 plot is to be believed. religious rituals requiring from two to nine days and nights are conducted that are both curative and preventative. Wurtzburg Sources for Further Study Hartman.’s “White Conceptions of Indians” in volume 4 of the Handbook of North American Indians. to return to their former societies. Chantways Tribe affected: Navajo Significance: “Chantways” is the term used to refer to the Navajo ceremonial healing system based on creation myths. Providence Tales and the Birth of American Literature. Colo. sand painting. 1999. and sacred objects. prayer. Warfare and Conflict. . Berkhoffer. Torture. and rituals for restoring balance and harmony to life. Captive Selves. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. A history of captivity narratives appears in Robert F. entitled History of Indian-White Relations (1988). Slavery.

Chantways. evil spirits and sorcery. absorbing evil or imparting good. and psychological restoration. it is believed that people become ill as a result of disharmony in the world caused by such things as bad dreams. These seven are . For those who are suffering. are organized into ceremonial categories or complexes based on the interrelatedness of procedure and myth. to identify the patient with them. and used immediately. When the painting is completed it is inspected. In this system. Of twenty-four known complexes. Sand paintings are a type of ritual altar on the floor of the hogan. The symbols and images used in sand painting are irresistible for the supernaturals.164 / Chantways Belief. and other misfortune. so called because of the singing and shaking of rattles during the ceremonials. they are compelled to come to their likenesses in the painting. Sand paintings are freehand drawings which serve three main purposes: to attract “the supernaturals”. Completed sand paintings obligate the Holy People to come and infuse the sand painting with their power. Because of the sacred and powerful nature of this exchange. Navajos adhere to a rule of moderation in living to avoid sickness. emotional. The Navajo believe that the universe is interrelated. A painting can take from thirty minutes to ten or more hours to complete. All of creation is maintained by a delicate balance of natural and supernatural elements that results in a state of harmony and well being. excesses in activities. The natural and supernatural operate in a system of mutual interchange in order to achieve this ideal state of health. the sacred ceremony centering on the sand painting is the means to physical. and to serve as a medium of exchange. Sand Paintings. sanctified. injury. about half are well known. often with several apprentice assistants working on it. and they are the center of activity and power in the Chantways ceremonials. and the hoarding of property. Practice. The average painting takes about four hours. with seven of these performed often. complete and accurate sand paintings are always used only in a ritual context.

Navajo Windway. Many singers learn only a few ceremonials. Holy People are supernaturals composed of two groups. or Lifeway. called Holyway. The other group is called the “Yei”. Participants include the singer and his assistants. Mountainway. Flintway. emergencies. childbirth. One is represented by mythological figures such as Sun. a diagnostician. and the supernaturals. and the consecration of a new home. to attract good. Every ceremonial ends with a Blessingway rite. respectively. they are obligated to come and infuse the sand paintings with their power and restore health and harmony to the patient. If the Holy People are pleased. each of which involves songs. but extreme care is taken to protect them from contacting and absorbing any evil spirits. the Yei are led by Talking God and Calling God (who participate in the Nightway chant wearing masks). They are used to treat such ailments as respiratory disease. Services are performed when needed. Trained singers possess the knowledge of the ritual and have undergone a long apprenticeship. Men are usually the singers. Nightway. Holyway uses the greatest variety of sand paintings and is performed at such events as marriage. nervousness. Changing Woman. The ceremony is held in the family or relative’s home. family members. Evilway to drive away evil. sand paintings. and good and Enemyway rites. Women are allowed to participate. or hogan. prayers. and heart and lung trouble. which has been ritually consecrated. and the correct ritual procedure. sacred objects. Pregnant women are not allowed to participate. They are regulated by one of three rituals. and Chiricahua Windway. Rites included in these rituals are Blessingway rites to ensure peace. harmony. The singing must be complete and correct to attract the Holy People.Chantways / 165 called Shootingway. Monster Slayer and Born-forWater. head ailments. used to exorcise evil spirits or ghosts from outside the Navajo tribe. the patient. Handtremblingway. A diagnostician determines what has caused the patient’s illness or trouble and which Chant- . plant medicine. arthritis. and their twin children. for injuries.

Black Mustache. 1979. Meditations with the Navajo: Prayers. Princeton. Navaho Symbols of Healing. Parezo.: Bear & Co.J. Religious Specialists. Donald. Gerald. Southwest Indian Drypainting. however. may be left on the floor of the hogan to become part of the home’s floor.: School of American Research Press. Rochester. Vt. and Stories of Healing and Harmony. . Diane C. Santa Fe. See also: Hand Tremblers. Flagstaff: Museum of Northern Arizona Press. N. the individual then sits almost naked facing east on a specific part of the painting determined by the singer to relate most directly to the patient’s trouble. 1983. Religion. Sandner. Leland C. Van Noord Sources for Further Study Circle. Nancy J. Navajo Sandpainting. N. Hausman. 2 vols. Sacred Narratives.166 / Chantways way is needed to effect the cure. continuing to impart their good. After the patient leaves. Vt.. Gladys A. 2d ed. Reichard. Sand Painting. they continue to preserve this method of bringing harmony to their world. 1991.: Princeton University Press. Wyman. The patient is touched by the singer and his medicine bundle and is sprinkled with sand from appropriate parts of the sand painting. 1950. The patient is prepared for the ritual by being cleansed physically and spiritually. and prayer sticks are placed where the supernaturals will see them and be compelled to come. Rochester.: Healing Arts Press. Navaho Religion: A Study of Symbolism. In spite of the availability of modern medicine to today’s Navajo. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. Blessingway paintings. Waterway. and the sand from the sand painting is deposited at a distance from the hogan. The sand painting is made. Songs. 2001. Recorded by Berard Haile. the painting is erased in the order in which it was made. The Chantway system is unique to the Navajo and reflects a holistic approach to health and healing. 1983.Mex.

A framework of saplings is lashed together. and poles are laid on top of them to support the roof. is well suited to a wet climate. The roof is then thatched with Chickee . a dwelling on poles or stilts. It consists of a platform built on top of four or more posts. Choctaw. Seminole. These are reinforced by cross members. The posts are made of trimmed saplings sunk into the earth. and planks are lashed to the beams with braided cords to create a platform that serves as the floor. Chickasaw. Timucua. Beams are cut and laid on top of the posts.Chickee / 167 Chickee Tribes affected: Calusa. The chickee is a type of dwelling that was used in the wetter areas of the Southeast culture area. Chitimacha Significance: The chickee.

Woven mats are sometimes used in place of walls. Similar types of dwellings were built by indigenous peoples throughout the Americas who live in wet environments.168 / Children fronds of palm or grasses. were an integral part of the community. They are arranged in layers that shed water. . Families could thus be self-sustaining for long periods of time during the wet seasons. but they could also be isolated. their elders. Simpson See also: Architecture: Southeast. Michael W. and tribal customs. mats are also used to cover the floor. Children born into traditional American Indian societies represented part of the never-ending chain of life. The sometimes dangerous nature of Indian life increased the importance of children and made high birthrates common. and their births were greeted with community pride. Chickees were often built in groups of several. Considered a gift from sacred forces. Children Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indian children. Often a dugout canoe or other water conveyance was tied to the stilts upon which the dwelling sat to serve as transportation when waters are high. reared with love and gentle guidance to respect nature. the residents could use the chickee as a fishing platform. The chickee was well suited to subtropical environments where seasonal flooding of rivers or marshy lands is common. as the southeastern climate is usually warm and moist. children entered the physical world under the guidance and protection of a spiritual guide. The walls are open. and a child’s name reflected the qualities of that guide (an adult name would frequently be taken at puberty or when a major accomplishment was noted). During floods.

Therefore. Infants were often nursed up to the age of four. babies represented a potential danger to the tribe: Crying children might reveal the tribe’s position to enemies. For most Indian children.Children / 169 Paiute children playing “wolf and deer” during the late 1800’s in Northern Arizona. These rigid carriers could be fastened to the mother’s back. and in . or attached to horse packs. stuck upright in the ground. (National Archives) Early Years. the first year of life was spent strapped to a cradleboard. children frequently remained naked until four or five years of age. Children flourished in a world surrounded by love and gentle care. Strong extended-family ties brought loving guidance and stability into the child’s life. children were allowed to discover their world freely. Toilet training was not stressed. Although welcomed and cherished. it became a common practice among some tribes (as among the Cheyenne and Sioux) to pinch babies’ nostrils to quiet them. helping to create a strong bond between mother and child. Once out of the cradleboard.

Both sexes grew up around religious and social forms of music. Indian children were taught the beauties of nature and a deep respect for their elders. Children were born by the good graces of the spirit world. strength. which would prepare children for their future tribal roles. children were directed from an early age to take only what they absolutely needed from Mother Earth. Under the direction of their mothers. while girls learned chants and lullabies. In addition. such as the Algonquian peoples. so even small children contributed by picking berries. and tanning hides. Preparing for Puberty. Discipline among the Indian people was based on respect. Tribal society could not tolerate unproductive members. Boys began to learn the drum music associated with tribal ceremonies. caring for smaller children. Many tribes feared that this . learning tribal history and myths. Children were the key to the future.170 / Children some cases. painting. Since survival was directly related to what was available and useful from their surroundings. and physical punishment was rare. Around the age of five. competitive sports taught the boys vital warrior qualities such as self-sufficiency. Many hours were spent with their elders. Mothers passed down their talents in beadworking. Young girls erected miniature tipis and learned through imitating their mothers’ daily routine. endurance. Adults encouraged this education. Art was also an important element of this stage of childhood. hunting small game. After the introduction of the horse into Indian cultures. and assisting their families in chores. children were occasionally naked until age ten. such as preparing food. young boys learned to ride early in life. children began to learn the practical knowledge needed for adult life. and accuracy in the hunt. and elders sought to instill in them the tribe’s ancient traditions. Discipline. especially grandparents. Children were also taught the ceremonial dances of their tribe. Tending small gardens also helped eastern Indian girls learn to grow crops. and weaving.

(National Archives) . Storytelling and legends were frequently used Cherokee boy and girl in traditional costume on a North Carolina reservation. who interceded on the parents’ behalf.Children / 171 form of discipline would cause children’s souls to depart from their body and thus harm their personality and health. some children faced harsh treatment. discipline typically consisted of verbal reprimands designed to teach a lesson. scarring from hot stones. however. Instead. or public lashings for severe offenses. including beatings. Even with a societal preference for avoiding corporal punishment. The responsibility of disciplining children was often undertaken by other family members or tribal elders.

Gill. Santa Barbara. The Sun Dance People. Revivals. Modern Indian Children. Richard. Knopf. 1972. tribe members had to find new means to pass their culture on to the next generation.172 / Children to shape the character of young minds and to teach the difference between good and evil. Rev. 1992. Chicanos. 4. For example. children spent less time in nature and more time in school. frightened. Driver. Indians: Children of Crisis. while the Hopi related tales of the Soyoko (a “boogeyman” type of figure) to persuade children to follow a moral code. Reservation life threatened the existence of American Indian culture. Sam D. had to be taught through planned events instead of everyday activities. these dressed-up tribesmen warned. ed. Many tribes found it hard to maintain their ancient traditions while living in an increasingly modern world. or. constricted way of life and facing the loss of their freedom. Robert. have created new awareness of tribal traditions and customs. Indians of North America. New York: Alfred A. The skills and values emphasized during the pre-reservation period. however. Some parents used disguised tribesmen to educate children about expected behavior. Harold E. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Brown. 1961. Erdoes. even whipped disobedient children. as game was scarce on the reservations. Dictionary of Native American Mythology. such as self-sufficiency. in rare cases. Jennifer Davis Sources for Further Study Coles. many tribes lost touch with their heritage. The art of hunting became increasingly difficult to teach. Calif. 1969. 1977. As a result. Often representing supernatural spirits. Boston: Little. Forced into an unfamiliar. Tribal elders encouraged children to carry on the ancient rituals (sometimes with revisions) and to maintain the tribal bloodline.: ABC-Clio. . Eskimos. the Apache told of Mountain Spirits that dictated proper behavior. Vol.

New York: Holmes & Meier. green. yellow. whales. Indians of the Plains. New York: McGraw-Hill. 1954. crafted of cedar bark and mountain goat wool. Toys. The Chilkat Tlingit were a Northwest Indian tribe. See also: Education: Post-contact. Children of the Western Plains: The NineteenthCentury Experience. Puberty and Initiation Rites. Marilyn Irvin. Lowie. _______. White. bears. The fringe. Chilkat chieftains commissioned the finest weavers their clan could afford to prepare ceremonial robes. Gender Relations and Roles. Weavers applied twining techniques used in basketry to craft technically intricate blankets. The accumulation and display of wealth was an important aspect of their tribal life. Some of the most popular designs included ravens.Chilkat Blankets / 173 Holt. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. 2003. and blue with native dyestuff. The robes were worn and displayed to symbolize the wealth and status of the owner. 2001. and later commercial yarn. was a very important aspect of the robe. black. 1979. and wolves. Weavers decorated the robes with long fringe sewn onto the bottom and sides. Goat wool. Hand Games. When . Chicago: Ivan R. Missions and Missionaries. Education: Pre-contact. Robert H. was dyed white. Dee. The robes were illustrated with depictions of animals and objects that represented the chief’s crests. drums. Names and Naming. Indian Orphanages. Jon Manchip. Everyday Life of the North American Indian. Chilkat Blankets Tribes affected: Tribes of the Northwest Significance: Chilkat blankets represent some of the finest and most visually impressive handwoven Indian artifacts. Games and Contests.

However. continued to produce blankets. one is a member of one’s mother’s clan. only one Chilkat robe weaver. in a patrilineal society. Clans often have distinctive symbols.174 / Clans chieftains danced. interest among collectors has been renewed. the term “clan” has a different connotation: two or more lineages closely related through a common traditional bond. Blankets. Clans may also hold property and perform specific rituals. clans sometimes own property. clan membership provides an individual with social identity and regulates marriage choices. is distinguished . in which the precise genealogical links among members are unknown. Weaving. A clan. they lifted and swung their robes so that the fringe swung freely and created an impressive effect. Leslie Stricker See also: Arts and Crafts: Northwest Coast. and the number of weavers has increased. By the 1980’s. In a matrilineal society. Colloquially. a clan is a unilineal descent group: a group of people who trace relationship to one another through either the mother’s line (matrilineal) or the father’s line (patrilineal) but not both. Among members of American Indian tribes with clans. however. Clans are unilineal descent groups into which a person is born. “clan” often connotes a clique of kin who avoid contact with outsiders. In nearly all societies with clans. Thus. Definitions. perform ceremonies. Clans Tribes affected: Widespread but not pantribal Significance: In societies with these unilineal descent groups. and control political offices. the clans function to regulate marriage. and for anthropologists working with such tribes. Jennie Thlunaut. usually belief in a common ancestor. one is a member of one’s father’s clan.

The core of the group is a unilineal descent group. and Western Apache) had matrilineal clans. For example. Moreover. The Crow. most anthropologists have abandoned Murdock’s definition of clan. by matrilineal descent. when a Navajo says that her “clan” is “Edgewater. There cannot.Clans / 175 from a lineage. Distribution. define a clan as a “compromise kin group” that combines principles of descent and residence. Today. no clans. following the work of George Murdock in the 1940’s. . and Eastern Subarctic cultures. Arctic. Navajo. Groups with bilateral descent systems (in which descent is traced equally through both parents) have no lineages and. be clans without lineages. but the clan also includes the in-marrying spouses of descent group members. Many agricultural peoples of the East (such as Iroquoians and the Creek) and some in the Southwest (Western Pueblos. Among the primary exceptions to this generalization are some Northwest Coast cultures and adjacent Athapaskan peoples of the Subarctic. Each Tlingit clan had a symbol (“crest” or “totem”) and unique mythic traditions. or Fox) and the adjacent Subarctic Ojibwa. Hunting and gathering societies usually lack clans. and in the Southwest among Yumans and Pimans.” she means that she is related. to all “Edgewater” people regardless of where they reside. There can be lineages without clans. in which each individual can trace descent from a known common ancestor. Plains. which had matrilineal clans. Plateau. Patrilineal clans were found mainly in two areas of North America: among Prairie farming tribes (such as the Omaha and Mesquakie. close linguistic relatives of the Hidatsa. this is the case in most of aboriginal California and among the Bering Sea Eskimo. as did the Mandan and Hidatsa of the Missouri River. most Indians from groups with unilineal descent groups use the term to refer to the descent group rather than to the residential group. Bilateral descent commonly occurs in Great Basin. retained matrilineal clans when they shifted from agricultural pursuits to bison hunting on the Great Plains. however. hence. however. Some anthropologists.

while many patrilineal systems (as with the Omaha) prohibit marriage into the mother’s clan. perform rituals. Such rules tend to increase the number of families which are allied by marriage. with her brother or maternal uncle. Clans as Corporate Groups. A Navajo is “born into” his mother’s clan and is “born for” his father’s clan. to linked clans (phratry mates).176 / Clans Clans and Marriage. These two are stewards of clan property and agents of the clan considered as a corporation. Sets of clans are linked into one of eight or nine groups (“phratries”). The Hopi also have more than fifty matrilineal clans grouped into nine phratries. The Navajo clan system illustrates the operation of marriage rules.” She lives in the clan house and. Many matrilineal societies (Hopi. Because members of the same clan consider themselves to be closely related. thereby increasing the network of kinship relations throughout the society. Bear clan. but Hopi clans are also corporate groups which hold land. marriage to a member of the same clan would be considered incestuous. for example) prohibit marriage into the father’s clan. own houses and sacred property. more generally. The most common clan function involves marriage rules. clans have functions in addition to marriage regulation. A Navajo cannot marry someone in either of these two clans or phratries. Each Hopi clan has its own migration legend. especially clan exogamy (the requirement that one marry a person of a different clan). Notions of kinship are extended to members of these two clans and. For example. acknowledged as the . Beyond marriage rules and the idioms of kinship and hospitality. There are more than fifty matrilineal clans. Various additional restrictions based on clan relationships may also exist. Navajo clans have few functions. The eldest competent female of a clan’s highest ranking lineage is the “clan mother. and maintain clan symbols. however. Hopi clan-related marriage rules and hospitality are similar to those of the Navajo. The sequence of the arrival of the clans in Hopi country is a rough measure of the prestige of the clans. In many tribes. manages clan property.

have ceremonial property and political functions. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Each Winnebago clan is associated with an animal that serves as a clan symbol or clan totem. For example. Introduction by Elisabeth Tooker. eds. Indians of North America. North American Indian Anthropology: Essays on Society and Culture. while Bear clan has disciplinary functions. 1963. Eric Henderson Sources for Further Study Barnes. Eggan. Murdock. 1955. 1984. Driver. ed. Robert H. Indians of the Northwest Coast. Reprint.” The Omaha conform less well to clan totem symbolism. Raymond J. Fred. Two Crows Denies It: A History of Controversy in Omaha Sociology. The Winnebago Tribe. 1949. 1967. The Siouan-speaking Winnebago and Omaha have twelve and ten patrilineal exogamous clans. According to ethnologist Paul Radin. Reprint. Radin. George Peter. 1923. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Social Structure. individual Winnebagos conceive of the relationship to the clan animal as one “of descent from an animal transformed at the origin of the present human race into human beings. Social Organization of the Western Pueblos. Drucker.. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. N. A reprint of part of the 37th Annual . Reprint. Lewis Henry. DeMallie. Garden City. 1969. Winnebago village chiefs are Thunderbird clan. New York: Macmillan.: Natural History Press. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 2d rev. 1950.Clans / 177 first to arrive.Y. Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity of the Human Family. Some Omaha clans are named after animals. Morgan. 1970. Harold E. Paul. respectively. others take their names from human attributes or natural phenomena such as lightning. 1994. Winnebago and Omaha clans. and Alfonso Ortiz. 1997. should provide the village chief and the leader of the important Soyal ceremony. like those of the Hopi. Philip.

New York: Holt. Chaco Culture National Historical Park (New Mexico). Hovenweep (Colorado and Utah). as at Bandelier (Colorado). Manual for Kinship Analysis. Navajo. the Anasazi originally lived in pueblos of circular pit houses constructed in communal clusters. Schusky. some of these dwellings were built in the . Smithsonian Institution. Ernest L. have been found over a wide area of the Colorado plateau.. Aztec Empire. between 1100 and 1300. Zuñi) Significance: Cliff dwellings identified with the Southwest’s Anasazi culture were constructed between 500 C.178 / Cliff Dwellings Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology. 1923. as at Capitol Reef (Utah). Kinship and Social Organization.e. Cliff Dwellings Tribes affected: Anasazi. and Utah meet. and distinguished by its versatile and beautifully crafted basketwork. Rinehart and Winston. From as early as 500 c. Tonto (Arizona). and Square Tower House. Marriage and Divorce. The remains of these dwellings. 1972. Gila Cliff Dwellings (New Mexico). the ruins of nearly all cliff dwellings have been incorporated either into National Historical Parks. Colorado. The largest and best-preserved (or restored) of these ruins include Betatakin. Montezuma Castle (Arizona). Cliff Palace. Western Pueblo tribes (Hopi. Oak Tree House. Incest Taboo. where the boundaries of Arizona.E. Today. and the climax of what archaeologists define as the Pueblo III period. and Mesa Verde (Colorado). Spruce Tree House. Navajo (Arizona). See also: Adoption. A culture based on settled agriculture combined with supplemental hunting and gathering. Fire Temple. New Mexico. but the most notable sites are found in the Four Corners area. Societies: Non-kin-based. 2d ed. and Walnut Canyon (Arizona). some remarkably intact. or into National Monuments. Canyon de Chelly (Arizona).

In time. some of them three stories high. and wood. There is only informed speculation about why the cliff dwellings were abandoned during the 1300’s. Colorado. and the Mormon settlement of Utah. Built of stone. beginning with . particularly in the Four Corners area. storage rooms. mud. retaining the sunken portions as kivas—sacred rooms for men. Early Anasazi housing was represented by pit houses lined with stone slabs and with wooden roofs and entrances through the roof or passageways. the discovery of gold in California. drew attention to previous occupants of the region. housed scores of people—more than two hundred in Mesa Verde’s Cliff Palace— and included courtyards. the construction of these structures was carried above ground. cliff dwellings. built by the Anasazi civilization circa 1100. and kivas. (Museum of New Mexico) numerous cliff overhangs and caves common to the Colorado plateau. The “opening” of the Southwest by white Americans. with their terraced apartments. facilitated in the nineteenth century by the Gadsden Purchase. In these regards they continued the essentials of older pueblo architectural traditions.Cliff Dwellings / 179 Restored ruins of Cliff Palace in Mesa Verde.

Architecture: Southwest. While there is great variation in costuming. as are the Sioux heyoka. Pueblo. These studies were expanded by Richard Wetherill. Subsequent archaeological interest was stimulated by the explorations of John Wesley Powell and early archaeological work by Cosmos and Victor Mindeleff in the early 1890’s.180 / Clowns Lieutenant James Simpson’s descriptions of the cliff dwellings and other ruins in Canyon de Chelly and Chaco Canyon. who receive their power from the Thunderbeings. Sioux Significance: Through their behavior. ranging from the famous mud-head clowns of the Hopi and Zuñi to the black-andwhite-striped clowns of the Koshare and Apache. Gustav Nordensjold. and (most important for preservation of the cliff dwellings) Jesse Walter Fewkes. the clown figure usually has unusual beginnings. clowns reinforce a sense of order and the need for personal responsibility. clowns are more often associated with water and water rituals. written while he was fighting the Navajos in 1849. Iatiku. Often. Clowns engage in various forms of outrageous behavior. Pueblo. Seminole. Clifton K. Clowns are an important part of Indian mythology and ritual. they can also serve as powerful healers. Clowns Tribes affected: Pantribal but especially the Apache. Navajo. . one must be selected to be a clown and receive years of training in one of the clown societies. While sometimes associated in mythology with the sun. Adolph Bandelier. As in the Keresan story of the clown being created from the epidermal waste of the creator. Kivas. In most tribes. Yearley See also: Anasazi Civilization. clowns perform similar functions in all tribal groups. Most creation stories include the creation of a clown figure.

they show the danger of human vices such as greed. Charles Louis Kammer III See also: Humor. like the Apache Crazy Dancers. Clown figures often figure prominently in cartoons in contemporary tribal newspapers. they show that chaos develops when rules are not maintained. Like the koshare. cavorting naked. They remind the healers and tribal leaders that. By making them look foolish. Watersprinkler.Clowns / 181 like the Contrary Society of the Cheyenne. drinking urine. and good health. one of the tribe’s most important healing rituals. mimicking their behavior. Finally. The Navajo clown. clowns demystify their power. despite their special gifts. Societies: Non-kin-based. they are especially important in bringing rain and performing cleansing rituals. . they are often powerful healers as well. a good harvest. there have been women clowns in the Pacific Northwest. they are only human. and tribal leaders. They may also. Most important. clowns serve to keep the powerful in check through their mimicking. they reinforce the need for personal responsibility. Also common is scatological behavior such as eating dirt or excrement. they are viewed as very powerful. recent decades have seen a recovery and revival of the clown tradition and activities. Although clowns are humorous figures. Tricksters. and simulating sexual acts in public. clowns will do everything backward—walk backward. Additionally. By doing things backward and by violating rules. Like many other aspects of Indian culture. ride a horse backward. Their participation in ceremonies helps to assure fertility. follow behind ceremonial dancers. is an important figure in the Night Chant ceremony. they are trying to teach important lessons to the tribe. healers. through their humor. they do have a more serious purpose. Through humor. gluttony. While part of the clown’s intent is to entertain and generate laughter. Husk Face Society. Because of their association with water. and tribal order. and wear winter clothing in the summertime. tribal rules. and sexual promiscuity. While the clowns are usually men. who are part of the Acoma Medicine Society.

they describe events of historical. Pre-Hispanic cultures in Mexico did not use a phonetic alphabet (in which each written symbol represents a sound). in a phonetic alphabet borrowed from the Spanish. a number of codices were produced by Hispanicized Aztecs which describe the pre-Hispanic culture. while there are no surviving pre-Hispanic Aztec codices. Following the Spanish conquest. Aztec and Mixtec codices were made of either deerskin or agave paper. who commissioned them. Maya. Literacy was not widespread. this new writing was largely confined to place names and personal names. Surviving codices range in length from 4 to 24 feet. they used a logographic writing system in which each symbol represented a word or concept. Only three preHispanic Mayan codices still survive. however. The content of codices varied greatly. and Mixtecs of Mexico produced written literature called codices (the singular form is “codex”). Codices were folded accordion-fashion and were read from right to left. and Mixtec cultures. ritual. Mixtec Significance: Codices were the books of the pre-Hispanic Aztec. Maya. Logographic writing systems are often called pictographic or hieroglyphic. The pre-Hispanic cultures of the Aztecs. who produced them. some Aztec codex authors began to write their native language. and codices were probably read only by a specialized class of scribes. Many described the histo- . or occasionally a syllable. Individual pages range from 4 to 8 inches in width and from 8 to 10 inches in height. or calendrical significance. Rather. several of these texts also survive. the Maya made theirs from paper made from tree bark covered with a thin layer of lime. most codices were destroyed by the Spanish in the sixteenth century. Mayas. and the upper classes.182 / Codices Codices Tribes affected: Aztec. Nahuatl. Someone reading a codex would begin with the logographs pictured in the upper right corner of a page and would then move down one column of figures and up the next. Following the Spanish conquest.

Some codices describe rituals and mythology. Corn. Aztec. Corn Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: North American corn was first domesticated in Mexico. or teaching devices. and Mixtec codices were destroyed by the Spanish priesthood in order to undermine the pre-Hispanic religions and to encourage the conversion of the Indians to Christianity. As an example. is currently grown worldwide. the expansion of his realm through conquest and strategic marriages. following his capture in battle. while others outline calendrical or astronomical events.e. readers had to provide many details of a narrative from their own memories. or maize (Zea mays). Mayan. stories. domesticated maize was cultivated from the Canadian Great Lakes region to Argentina. and the birth of his children. When the Europeans arrived in the Americas. ranging from sea level to high in the Andes and other mountains. Some codices apparently served as primers. but the crop is indigenous to the Western Hemisphere. Rather. Only after European contact was maize propagated beyond the American continents. to his death by sacrifice at age fifty-two. for the children of nobility or scribes. . they provided the main outline of their content. and etiquette with which the children were to be familiar. Several varieties of corn were grown in different ecological zones in North and South America. The codex describes his rise to power. Mayan Civilization. the most famous surviving Mixtec codex tells the history of a chieftain named Eight-Deer from his birth in 1011 c. Codices were not comprehensive texts. Minderhout See also: Aztec Empire.Corn / 183 ries or genealogies of rulers or important nobility. David J. and by the seventeenth century it was a staple across much of the North American continent. these primers described rituals.

and other remains can be definitely identified as either “wild” or “domesticated. It was also formerly believed that maize domestication was a rapid process which had immediate cultural impact. These and other changes marked the process of domestication. the Plains. General theories concerning the speed of the development of . corn cobs became larger.184 / Corn European explorers described maize agriculture among the Aztecs. Maize probably first served merely to supplement local wild plant foods and only later became an important resource. Such was the case among the Mayas of Central America and the Iroquois of upstate New York. the Southeast. In many of these corn-growing areas. the new settlers recorded aboriginal oral traditions which emphasized the cultural importance of corn. and the Northeast. Studies concerning the prehistoric origin. at different times during the early contact period. For example. domestication. and use of corn rely upon archaeological investigations. Some maize cobs. and the Incas of Latin America and among North America Indians of the Southwest.” whereas other plant remains fit somewhere on a continuum in between. not all complex societies depended on corn for their subsistence. Gradual genetic changes among the maize plants accompanied these slow cultural adaptations. the Mayas. By the 1990’s it was recognized that corn was one of several species that were important for New World agriculturalists and that. archaeologists of the early 1900’s often overemphasized the importance of corn to prehistoric peoples. Archaeological Information. It is now apparent that the process of maize domestication took place over hundreds of years. Perhaps as a result of the contact-period accounts of the primacy of corn agriculture. the survival of European settlers depended on corn and other foods provided by the indigenous peoples of these regions. Indeed. and the number and size of the kernels increased. kernels. it was suggested that prehistoric cultures that possessed traits such as settled villages or impressive architecture (which indicated complicated social organization) depended for their subsistence primarily upon corn agriculture. in addition. Generally.

Harold E.. . 1957. Comparative Studies of North American Indians.Areas of Corn and Cotton Cultivation Archaeological evidence of corn Ethnographic evidence of corn Evidence of corn and cotton Source: After Driver. Massey. and William C.

Puebla. milling stones. and he anticipated good preservation of any botanical remains. leaves. kernels. growth. The Tehuacán sites date from approximately eleven thousand years ago to the time of the Spanish conquest. the preservation of botanical remains does not ensure that they will be carefully and scientifically excavated by professional archaeologists. MacNeish excavated the dry caves in the Tehuacán Valley because they would have provided shelter for ancient habitation. ancient use of hoes. and storage facilities may indicate a dependence on corn. For example. At some archaeological sites. Botanical remains are best preserved under stable environmental conditions which discourage rotting. Mexico. many plant remains left at sites by past peoples are not preserved in the archaeological record. MacNeish. such as pollen or phytoliths (tiny silica bodies within the plant) can also provide evidence for the presence of corn agriculture. or water inundation. Cobs often provide additional information (such as the corn variety). such as dry heat. domestication. site looting and destruction is a major problem throughout North and Central America. and cobs. They are also more likely to be preserved when burned to a carbonized state. In addition. researchers may rely on indirect evidence. which contributes to data concerning its origin. but archaeologists exercise caution in their inferences. corn agriculture is well documented by finds of maize plant remains. the strongest demonstration of ancient maize agriculture is the discovery of pieces of corn plants. cold. since these tools were also associated with other crops. such as stems. Unfortunately. and use. Corn Domestication. For these reasons. The Tehuacán archaeological-botanical project was directed by Richard S. Smaller plant remains. who devoted decades to the search for evidence of early corn domestication.186 / Corn New World agriculture are based on specific archaeological information concerning ancient subsistence. while at other locations lacking botanical data. such as the presence of agricultural implements. and . Archaeological sites that provide important evidence concerning the earliest domestication of corn have been found in the Tehuacán Valley. For this reason.

This corn variety was more productive than the earlier Chapalote. such as the Lower Mississippi.c. The earliest use of Maiz de Ocho in this region may date to 1000 b.Corn / 187 maize pollen and wild maize cobs were excavated from levels dated to about 7000-5000 b.c. composed 90 percent of the ancient diet from 4500 b.c.c.e. Stable carbon isotope tests of Tehuacán human skeletal remains demonstrated that a chemically distinct group of plants. The Southwest cultures farmed in harsh.e. in southern New Mexico. In the 1980’s. A second variety of corn (Maiz de Ocho. These people obtained corn (the Chapalote variety of Zea mays) and their knowledge of corn agriculture from people in northern Mexico. The seasonally occupied sites of the corn-growing Chochise may date to approximately 1200 b. It may have appeared in the southwestern United States by approximately three thousand years ago. onward. although this has not been definitively demonstrated. it seems that North American maize originated in central Mexico. By this time. which included maize.e. unpredictable climatic conditions with the use of highly developed agricultural techniques. also known as New England flint corn) was introduced later into the Southwest. corn was being grown in regions as diverse as southeast Colorado and upstate New York. ranging from planting strategies to the use of irrigation. Generally accepted Maiz de Ocho dates are considerably later.e.e. by 1300. and this variety diffused eastward across the continent.e.. results from bone chemistry analyses contributed to the archaeological understanding of the Tehuacán Valley. Maize agriculture on the Plains dates to approximately 800-900 c. . Botanists have argued that corn developed from a wild grass called teosinte. while for the Southeast there are a few dates as early as 200 c. not until as late as 1200.e. Based on the available evidence. Cultivated maize was dated to about 5000-3500 b. maize agriculture was vital to the Iroquoian economy. but this date is controversial.c. Agriculture did not provide a substantial contribution to the Southeast diet until 800-1000 and.. This early evidence of corn agriculture is also helpful for determining the ancestral grasses of Zea mays. Indeed. in some areas.

Jean Black. Richard I. MacNeish. Richard S. “Multiple Pathways to Farming in Precontact Eastern North-America. “A Summary of the Subsistence. which contribute nitrogen). Watson. Prehistoric Food Production in North America. and Austin Long. ed. Richard A. using fertilizers.. A healthy crop also requires some weeding and care of the developing plants.. Generally. vol. Byers. 1984. Creel. 4 (1986): 826-837. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Darrell. and these must be replenished through planting other crops (such as beans. and Mary C. and M. 1991. edited by Joan M.188 / Corn Despite its utility.. 1. England: Basil Blackwell. “The Development of Horticulture in the Eastern Woodlands of North America: Women’s Role. Wurtzburg Sources for Further Study Cohen.” In Engendering Archaeology: Women and Prehistory. George F. Maize growing rapidly exhausts the soil’s nitrogen stores. Paleopathology at the Origins of Agriculture. Hyde. Mark N. Gero and Margaret W. successful corn agriculture has distinct requirements. and a diet based only on corn is inadequate. Anthropological Papers 75. Conkey. “Temporal Trends Indicated by a Survey of Archaic and Woodland Plant Food Re- . Kennedy. 4 (December. and George E. no. Many groups ate beans as well.” In Prehistory of the Tehuacan Valley.” Journal of World Prehistory 4. Ford. Will. Fritz. essential for humans. New York: Academic Press. Yarnell. Austin: University of Texas Press. 2002. 1967. Susan J. Ann Arbor: Museum of Anthropology.” American Antiquity 51. eds. Corn lacks an amino acid (lysine).. Gayle J. Oxford. Armelagos. no. “Radiocarbon Dating of Corn. University of Michigan. which provided the missing lysine and resulted in a balanced. or allowing the soil to rest fallow. 1990): 387-435. healthy diet. corn plants need adequate moisture and approximately 120 frost-free days to mature. 1985. Patty Jo. and George J. Corn Among the Indians of the Upper Missouri. edited by Douglas S.

Creek. especially in Keres (a number of the Pueblo bands. and Uretsete served as the hotchin. Southwest). or internal chief. Cherokee. Naotsete served as the cacique.” Southeastern Archaeology 4. and elements of the earth. Corn Woman. and this transmission was often recounted in folktale and song. or Earth . Green Corn Dance. Food Preparation and Cooking. superseding various inferior domesticated plants. Chippewa. no. Corn Woman Tribes affected: Apache. Beans. one of whom married Naotsete. In this matrilineal cosmogony. As time progressed. her sister goddesses.c. Southeast. speak Keresan dialects) cosmogony. Chickasaw. and their issue became the Pueblo race. Iroquois Confederacy. Squash. including the Acoma Pueblo and Laguna Pueblo. it was logical that. Corn Woman should serve as a sort of mother goddess—source of life and a staple of their diet. Navajo. plants. See also: Agriculture. Subsistence. The Keres people believed that in the distant past. Ts’its’tsi’nako (Thought-Woman. Seminole Significance: Corn Woman is important in terms of cosmology and religious practices in tribal cultures where maize is the key food source (Northeast. Choctaw. and almost immediately became the preferred food plant in the region. The domestication of corn had moved north from Mexico to the Pueblo tribes of present-day New Mexico by 3500 b. 2 (1985): 93-106. Mother Corn Woman (Naiya Iyatiku).Corn Woman / 189 mains from Southeastern North America. Uretsete gave birth to twin boys. the war chief or outside chief. Pueblo. Most tribes believed that corn was a gift from the gods. or Creating-Through-Thinking Woman) chanted into life Naotsete and Uretsete. Uretsete became known as Corn Woman (Iyatiku). Naotsete and Uretsete carried baskets from which came all creatures. Therefore.e.

. Cotton spread northward through Central America and Mexico.c. All cotton in pre-Columbian America descended from that domesticated in coastal Peru sometime before 4. Barber See also: Hohokam Culture. People of the Hohokam archaeological tradition. Weaving. gods. Hako.e. they also used the seed for extracting its nutritious oil.000 b. South America Significance: Cotton. spread to the American Southwest and was cultivated by the historic Pima for fiber and food. Central America. Russell J. the Sonoran Desert tribe widely believed to be descended from the Hohokam. Richard Sax See also: Corn. Cotton requires a considerable amount of water for successful growing. a South American domesticate. and other items were woven. The Pima. bags.e.190 / Cotton Woman. Some folk myths place Mother Corn Woman as a guardian at the gate of the spirit world. centered in the Sonora Desert of Arizona and adjacent Mexico. and its cultivation probably was a spur to the development of the sophisticated irrigation developed by the Hohokam. Irrigation. finally entering North America in the Southwest. Corn Woman is considered to be the mother of all people. were growing irrigated cotton when the Spanish first encountered them in the seventeenth century. probably around 100 c. They used the fiber for spinning thread from which clothing. Cotton Tribes affected: Pima and tribes of Mexico. Mother Earth. were the first North Americans to use cotton. and animals. Cotton (Gossypium herbaceum) has a highly complex domestication history with independent domestications in both Africa and South America.

stripes painted on leggings or on one’s horse. Sioux Significance: In warrior cultures. Omaha. marked by symbolic dress such as wearing a feather. including Arapaho. More than one warrior could count coup on the same enemy. Charles Louis Kammer III See also: Dress and Adornment. Touching could be done either with the hand or a special stick (a coup stick). Kiowa. while third or fourth coup might earn only a buzzard feather. Military Societies. Crow. The term “counting coup” comes from the French word coup. Groups such as the Kiowa and Crow based tribal ranking and chief status on accumulated acts of bravery including acts of counting coup. a ceremonial striped stick was used. success was rewarded with both signs of honor and tribal status. Such markings distinguished among the levels of bravery. Feathers and Featherwork. bravery was the highest virtue. Blackfoot. counting coup was a way to prove bravery and merit by touching the enemy.” In warrior cultures. or. Warfare and Conflict. Among the Cheyenne. All acts of coup had to be witnessed. special face paint markings. Cheyenne. Iowa. but “first coup” had higher status than second. as among the Crow. A way to prove bravery was to touch (count coup) the enemy. meaning “to strike a blow. First coup might entitle the warrior to wear an eagle feather. Assiniboine.Coup Sticks and Counting / 191 Coup Sticks and Counting Tribes affected: Primarily Plains tribes. wearing a fox tail on the back of one’s moccasins. and second ranked higher than third. whether the enemy was living or dead. Acts of coup earned tribal designation. .

To some degree. Muskogean. the most commonly adopted one in the general literature. on the most important language groupings (Algonquian. matriarchal versus patriarchal systems. and spiritual expression. indeed. Each of these elements of Indian life was influenced by . type of shelter) as well as their main cultural patterns. Another mode of assigning culture areas draws on basic forms of technology—specifically on methods of producing household wares such as pottery and basketry. Such sociocultural factors include assignment of leadership. for example. Because Native American groupings have undergone a series of displacements from region to region. degrees of formalization of kinship ties. a situation which results in an equal amount of overlap in generalizations concerning original cultural traits. Persuasive arguments exist for groupings that place primary emphasis. essential social indicators of culture can be transferred over time and space. Such a comparison of Indian culture areas necessarily involves discussion of material and cultural questions shared by all human societies. and Shoshonean).192 / Culture Areas Culture Areas Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Ecological conditions determined tribal methods of material subsistence (food supply. their linguistic origins overlap. Siouan. making it difficult to draw boundaries between peoples of clearly distinct traditions. Caddoan. Considerations such as these make a division based on geographical/ecological factors the most manageable and. group organization. Tanoan. Among these cultural differences are food subsistence. and marriage patterns. No single method of assigning cultural boundaries between different groupings of Native Americans is fully adequate. Here again one encounters a phenomenon of cultural overlap because of patterns of borrowing between tribal groupings. lodging construction. however. Athapaskan. common artifacts.

Subarctic hunters relied extensively on trapping devices spread over a vast network. especially deep in the interior.Culture Areas / 193 the environmental conditions that existed in relatively distinct geographical zones. Eskimo populations that specialized in sea mammal hunting (especially the Aleuts) stayed in isolated in areas where access to prey was assured. while not one culture area. including living spirits in the form of animals or one’s deceased kin. Northwest Coast and Plateau. in good times.” when food-gathering tasks were temporarily suspended and groups from afar could share shelter. either with distant kin or friendly neighbors. gifts. helped celebrate nature’s bounty. Because the northern Arctic zone is frozen most of the year. Central Inuit hunters in the interior of Alaska and the MacKenzie Territory. The northern continental zone running from the Arctic north to British Columbia and eastward to Hudson Bay. according to the season. Like their Eskimo neighbors farther north. where kayak transportation was limited to a short summer season. Arctic and Subarctic. Subarctic Indians maintained a network of customs in common that. reached their prey (usually caribou and moose) on toboggans or snowshoes. partially because the climate was less . Religious traditions in these northern areas were usually based on a belief in spiritual forces coming both from the sky and the earth. which forms the interior landmass of northern Canada. Indians in these areas lived more easily off nature’s bounty. was characterized by a common practice: Natives survived primarily by hunting and fishing. and storytelling. Frequent displacement for subsistence meant that Subarctic tribes maintained semipermanent camps rather than substantial villages. Because of the limited density of animal populations. Limited food sources limited human population patterns as well. One tribal meeting was the “potlatch. Both Central Inuit and Athapaskan-speaking Dene peoples inhabited the less bountiful Subarctic zone.

Culture Areas of North America ARCTIC SUBARCTIC NORTHWEST COAST PLATEAU CALIFORNIA GREAT BASIN GREAT PLAINS NORTHEAST SOUTHEAST SOUTHWEST .

fishing.Culture Areas / 195 harsh. The Kwakiutl of the Wakashan showed their wealth through large houses of split logs. Such groups abandoned their traditional pit house structures for portable hide-covered tipis. . economic patterns. inhabited by tribes of two main linguistic groups: the Sahaptin (including Walla Walla and Nez Perce) and the Salish (Flathead and Wenatchi). freshwater salmon fishing could be combined with hunting. even between clans of similar tribal origin. acorn meal). limiting the scope of interaction. Miwok. When horses were introduced from the Great Basin Shoshones. Farther inland was the Plateau. in terms of both subsistence and displays of their good fortune. Frequent public potlatches to commemorate social advancement (such as passage rites for youths and marriages) were paid for by the wealthiest families to attain recognition. California. In this region. which broke down into the main Penutian and Hokan families (the former including Klamath-Modoc. In the northwest corner. facilitating seasonal hunting of deer and bears. some tribes moved seasonally over the mountains into Idaho to hunt bison. Abundant sealife near the coast of Washington and Oregon and easy hunting grounds inland made Northwest Indians such as the Wakashan and Chinook relatively wealthy. and Central Valley Yokut and Maidu. In this core zone. Their clothing and bodies were decorated with copper and ornate shell jewelry. and the absence of a coastal plain set off isolated (both linguistically and culturally) inhabitants from the fertile core of PenutianHokan groups around San Francisco Bay and in the much milder ecological zone of the Central Valley. based on hunting. Plateau river communication networks were less extensive than those of the Northwest. the latter including Washoe and Yana in the north and in the central eastern zone near Nevada). dense forests. The Western coast and inland area farther south were more diversified in language groupings. rugged topography. Three cultural zones corresponded primarily to ecological subregions. and the gathering of available vegetal food sources (including a universal staple.

Among the several Indian subgroupings in the Southwest are the Hopi. particularly between the Luiseños of present-day San Diego and Riverside counties (themselves of Shoshone stock) and Nevadan tribes. Southwest. a bark-thatched covering stretched around portable poles. some (mainly Pomos and Patwins) producing wares sufficiently tightly woven to serve as water containers. South of the Central Valley. as judged from the remains of their lodging and ceremonial sites (particularly the pueblos) and various artifacts. increasing aridity affected not only food-gathering conditions. Their life patterns. and Zuñi. Despite the ecological austerity of these vast expanses. nearly all Southwest Indians practiced some form of agriculture. although not identical. Central California tribes were highly skilled in basketweaving. Indian villages in the Southwest were constructed in the compact stone and adobe pueblo form.196 / Culture Areas tended to lend similarities to tribal social and cultural patterns. supplemented by seasonally available wild plant foods. Navajo. One similarity was the relative lack of formal institutional structures defining tribal organization and authority. including modes of dress) never attained levels that could be compared with tribes in the central region. or the wickiup. Chiefs tended to be heads of the most numerous family among a multitude of generally equal family subdivisions of each clan. but also in some shared cultural values that set the inland (less than the coastal) southern zone off from the relatively more developed Central Valley region. Characteristically. One of two main forms of lodging predominated: either the “house pit” scraped out of rolling knolls. Notable degrees of west-east interaction occurred. Most also developed technologically advanced cultures. exemplify the main lines of Southwest Indian culture. usually located on . basic technology (reflected in lodgings and artisanal production. Beyond California was the inland cultural area of the Southwest. These contacts were reflected not only in trade of goods. especially pottery and weaving.

Paiute. and the Southwest and Great Plains to the east. Such symbols. social. Indian cultures tended to be rather dispersed. In the area wedged between California and the Plateau to the west. The limited circumstances of dry farming often meant that plantations were located some distance from the pueblo. the pueblo was a microcosm for both political and religious life. each faction maintained a kiva. counted some dozen territorial bands) could be only periodic. on both the Colorado and Utah sides of the Rockies. the main activities of Indian life. When a particular “season” for representation of the pueblo’s ceremonial. from food gathering through marital. and political alliances. different responsibilities. This rather lower level of tribal cohesiveness relative to Plateau and Southwest Indians. or medicine men. Living in different sections of the village. all loyalty was due to the kiva of the designated faction. or administrative needs was recognized. political. or religiously designated meeting place for its elders. Areas of habitation remained highly dependent on the availability of water and vegetation to sustain limited village life. al- . Contacts between subtribal bands (the Ute. tended to be conducted in smaller bands.Culture Areas / 197 higher ground or on mesas for purposes of defense. Around this ultimate source of bounty for the members of each tight-knit pueblo community were arranged the symbols of life (seeds and their products). organized in societies. and ceremonial dance (kachina) groups. for example. Great Basin. Particularly among the Eastern Pueblos. plus other symbols of nature (especially rain) were incorporated into each pueblo’s ceremonial dances. and Shoshone). while others rested from their responsibilities. In addition to being a dwelling and defense unit. according to the season. Southwest Indian religion and ceremonies were frequently tied to the concept of an “earth mother navel” shrine located in a sacred place within each pueblo. from practical work tasks to ceremonial leadership. Although broad tribal groupings existed (including Ute. were traditionally divided between two fully cooperative factions.

among them the Sun Dance. Buffalo hunting affected not only food supply. the best known resulting in the reduction and forced relocation of the Pawnee people after multiple encounters with representatives of the Sioux Nation. The characteristic warring urge of such Plains nomads resulted in serious intertribal disputes. who were forced to trade their agricultural goods with the Lakota. It was among the Plains Indians that the most dramatic subsistence struggle was played out. Acquisition of the horse from the Spanish after about 1600 transformed the subsistence potential of the Plains. Pawnee. and Comanche. well before the French entered the upper Mississippi Valley. Plains. for example) were not that definitely drawn. which became the buffalo-hunting domains of competing Indian tribes. created a situation of Indian nomadism on the Plains. the Lakota were drawn into the Plains from the Eastern Prairie region after becoming expert horsemen. even lines between the tribes (Ute and Paiute. Among the Sioux. by tribes such as the Sioux. but also provided raw material for the organization of Plains tribes’ movable lodgings and the production of multiple lightweight artifacts. Pursuit of the great native herds of buffalo on horseback. The high degree of mobility of Plains Indians also contributed to another key cultural trait: their tendency to war with rivals over hunting access. Soon their nomadic way of life on the Plains allowed them to subjugate sedentary groupings such as the Arikara and Mandan. certain symbolic rites. beginning in the 1600’s. Cheyenne. The simplicity of the material culture of the Plains Indians was to some degree offset by the complexity of some of their social and . Some shared features of cultural existence within and between Great Basin tribes countered this general trend. provided a common cultural symbol in most regions.198 / Culture Areas lowed quarreling families from one band to “transfer” over to a band to which they were not tied by kinship. Although religious consciousness among Great Basin Indians never attained a high degree of ceremonial sophistication.

was the Heyoka. who defined qualification for entry into their “guild” and excluded inferior workmanship from being used in ritual ceremonies. ranging from tipi-building material to the famous birchbark canoes used to fish or to travel through the extensive river and stream systems of the region. the most notable being one reserved specifically for individuals presumed to have the power to cure diseases. among the women. social organization among the tribes of the Northeast bore two major characteristics. In the eastern third of the continent. In general. the paperlike bark of the birch tree. particularly among the Dakota peoples. physical endurance. either good or evil. Plantations for food tended to be scattered in the heavily wooded Northeast. served multiple purposes. In some Siouan tribes. Recognition was also given.Culture Areas / 199 cultural patterns. Lodgings might be limited to a single family (typically a tipi) or a grouping of families under the . with hunting and trapping at least as important in most tribal economies. ranging from warrior groups through “headmen” societies (elders who had distinguished themselves earlier as warriors or leaders). Although not specifically connected to Plains religious beliefs (frequently associated with Sun Dance ceremonies and related celebrations of thanks for bounty. Heyoka societies were evenly divided into specialized branches. paramount status being reserved for the hunter-head of closely related kin. Another product of the forest. Northeast and Southeast. a higher degree of sedentariness among various tribes prevailed. provided means for identifying individuals of importance emerging from each family or clan within the tribe. Another specialized subgrouping. A number of honorary societies. Groups that were known as hunters (such as the Micmacs of New Brunswick and Maine) lived as nuclear families. to highly skillful beadworkers. although this did not necessarily mean that agriculture was more developed. consisting of people who were recognized as possessing some form of supernatural or visionary power. Heyoka status implied the ability to communicate with spirits. and interclan alliances). such as the Omaha.

traits justify treating Southeast Indians as a largely homogeneous entity. A second characteristic of Northeast Woodlands Indian life revolved around political confederations involving several tribes. with higher elevations and differing vegetation patterns).” but other groups. an absence of leather footwear. characteristic nested twilled baskets. Even among key Southeast tribes. those inhabiting the so-called Piedmont (further inland. The best known of these was the Iroquois “Five Nations. and those living in the Appalachian woodlands. making distinctions. however. especially acorns. In most cases. and varied use of tobacco. ascription of chieftainship was determined by a hierarchy that also depended on hunting skills. nucleated villages.200 / Culture Areas single roof of an extended longhouse. be described as heavily wooded. gabled houses with mud wattle covering. like the Northeast. but culturally significant. including the Algonquins and Hurons. for example. the Indian cultures of this area were substantially different.” blanketed by conifers and scrub oaks). Choctaw. offering a combination of possibilities for hunting and agriculture. Some experts argue that there was less communality in cultural development in the Southeast. A series of lesser. between peoples who were clearly reliant on the ecology of the first “layer” of the broad coastal plain (called the “Flatwoods. parallel traditions (such as matrilineal kinship descent) could be offset by striking . rectangular. including modes of processing staple nuts. with their extensive hardwood forests. Cherokee. and the Iroquois. Some experts. however. Natchez. and matrilineal clan organization) between key Southeastern tribes such as the Creek. assign a southeastern origin to the Iroquois. found farther north. A substantial number of differences marked by cultural specialists. Although the Southeast region of the United States can. formed federations for mutual security against common enemies. suggest closer ties between coastal and inland dwellers in the Southeast (especially in linguistic links) than between Southeast Indians as a whole and any of their Northeast neighbors. noting communality in traits (such as a horticultural maize economy.

and Conditions of North American Indians.Culture Areas / 201 differences. Boulder. Plateau.C. N. 1992. eds. Colo.” “Land Ownership. and commoners. New York. including personal observations of Indian ceremonial practices and daily life. and so on.” Spencer. Attention is given to diverse patterns of local division of labor. Harold E. Like the Spencer and Jennings book (below).: Smithsonian Institution Press. Sturtevant. or “Great Sun” was chosen. George. this textbook is divided by geographical region.. A Cultural Geography of North American Indians. kinship. 1978-2001. Alice B. it contains useful summary texts within each chapter and a number of translations of original Indian texts. Robert. It also contains . 1969. The Smithsonian series contains volumes published on the Arctic. et al. Customs. Southwest. had a class system dividing tribal nobles (deemed descendants of the Sun). Some editions include extremely valuable illustrations. 2d ed. Kehoe. gen. Englewood Cliffs. Indians of North America. California. Thomas E. Northwest coast.: Prentice-Hall. 2d ed. Contains contributions by specialists dealing with several different geographical themes relating to culture. 2d ed. 1977. New York: Harper & Row.: Westview Press. Letters and Notes on the Manners. Handbook of North American Indians. for example. Less detailed on local conditions of life. William. Cannon Sources for Further Study Catlin. North American Indians: A Comprehensive Account. Plains. and Tyrel Moore. which have gained international fame. including “Spatial Awareness. and Northeast culture areas. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Washington. Great Basin. The Native Americans. ed.J.” “Exchange and Trade”) rather than geographical location. Jesse D. Ross. A very detailed text. 1841. from whom the chief. The Natchez tribe alone. Byron D. “Rank and Social Class. A widely cited textbook organized by subject area (for example. Subarctic. rites of passage. who could not even enter the presence of tribal aristocrats. A recognized classic. 1987.” and “Migration. Driver. D. Jennings.

and the land was much less densely populated than that of Europe. a celebration of birth. Dances and Dancing Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Among American Indians. See also: Anasazi Civilization. as more and more Indians have accepted white culture and religion. Mississippian Culture. When white explorers and settlers first came to North America. some of the significance of tribal ceremonies has been lost. The religious beliefs were like nothing the Europeans had ever encountered. death. Mogollon Civilization. The first Europeans in North America had no understanding of the native languages they encountered. Centuries later. The usual view of the “red man” was as a savage—inherently inferior to the settlers and po- . they found a wide variety of cultures. Olmec Civilization. Ohio Mound Builders. Nevertheless. or other rites of passage. Historical Background. The scholarship and coverage are both first rate. they were immediately impressed by the amount of dancing in which the native population engaged. all of them vastly different from the ones they had left behind. Aztec Empire. Language Families. When European explorers and settlers first encountered the native population of what would later become the United States. dancing still plays an important part in American Indian life. Zapotec Civilization. The American Indians had never developed a technological civilization. Mayan Civilization. or merely a performance for non-Indian tourists. dancing has always played a highly significant role in religious ceremonies and other celebrations. whether it represents a true continuation of the original tribal cultures. Hohokam Culture.202 / Dances and Dancing separate volumes on the history of Indian-White relations and languages.

By the late nineteenth century. the old rituals. many Indians who survived the early warfare became a part of white culture and accepted its religious beliefs (chiefly Christianity). but this had long become a thing of the past. Some of these dances are rarely performed nowadays. and Indians lived on reservations. In the process. while at the same time going to Christian churches. The result was a long series of wars. many Indians began to try to reclaim their ancient heritage. including dances. Dances. in which the Europeans were ultimately victorious.Dances and Dancing / 203 tentially dangerous. By the time Europeans were settling in the Americas. while others were forced to move west. generally under very harsh conditions. For some. Gradually. and it will be assumed that the dances still hold their original meaning to the participants. In the late twentieth century. it is very difficult to determine the significance of many tribal rituals as they exist today. many native cultures were destroyed altogether. the last of “Indian territory” had been conquered. It is very likely that the Europeans had once had a culture in which dancing and music were integral to religion. The two major activities of the Europeans were to conquer the natives and to try to bring to them the Christianity that was virtually universal in Europe at the time. speaking English as their primary language. As a result of all these factors. all the following rituals will be discussed in the present tense. Some Indians still retain their ancient beliefs and traditions despite centuries of domination. singing is still an important part of many Christian ceremonies and probably always will be. and even living in large cities. often moving beyond tribal lines and creating a pantribal movement that strove to preserve the Indian cultures from complete assimilation. how- . while others are making a resurgence as Indians try to regain their lost cultural identity. Religious Significance. Certain traditions suggested this past. are little more than a way of attracting tourists. Regardless of this confusion. Others may hold on to a tradition for the sake of tradition itself. their own traditions had changed greatly since their days as small tribal groups.

who live along the coast of Oregon and Washington. The Shaman Society is concerned with violent and dangerous supernatural spirits. The dancers are considered to be possessed by spirits. To them. rites of passage. during which various taboos are enforced and dancers are called only by ceremonial names. including dances. and different spirits must be appeased under different circumstances. People in the Dluwulaxa Society are possessed by spirits of the sky. had largely become stylized. The Kwakiutl have highly formalized dancing. the earth and all living creatures on it were possessed by spirits. The most prestigious dancer is a cannibal/dancer. The American Indians. and these spirits were understood. The Indians of the Pacific Northwest generally perform their dances singly. The Kwakiutl have three mutually exclusive dancing societies. The many Indian tribes in North America have different religious rituals. Conditions in different parts of the continent vary.” Initiation into one of these societies is highly ritualized. by a great number of elaborate dances and songs. The Nutlam are possessed by their mythical ancestors. and numbers are limited. fishing. with no deep religious or cultural significance. The Northwest Coast was never very heavily populated by Indians.204 / Dances and Dancing ever. The Northwest. however. and to some extent controlled. the wolves. had never developed such a differentiation between religious and social climates. Even seating arrangements at the festivities are based on dancing societies rather than on families and clans. and the dances can become highly frenzied and emotional. or Hamatsa. An excellent example of Northwest dancing involves the Kwakiutl. The dances are accompanied by drumming and chanting. and success in warfare. social affairs. Both men and women are involved. although different tribes respond to this in different ways. sometimes called “secret societies. The one aspect almost all of these people have in common is a close tie to the earth and the spirits that control it. rain. There were dances for hunting. and it was one of the last areas settled by European Ameri- .

and finally the United States government. The condition in the Southwest is quite different. The Southwest.Dances and Dancing / 205 Kwakiutl dancers performing during the early twentieth century. There is a large American Indian population in big cities such as Seattle. This is the area where the greatest number of Indian reservations exist today and where the greatest proportion of Indians still practice their original rites. Oregon. the Mexicans. where most of the land is mountainous and much is national park and national forest land. and deserts in which water is the most important consideration for survival. (American Museum of Natural History) cans. Climatic conditions vary widely. This area was highly populated by a variety of Indian tribes. There are mountain ranges. and Portland. the traditions also continue. coastal areas subject to regular flooding. Washington. Farther inland. . but few live on reservations. then taken over by the Spanish. There are still many Indians who follow tradition as much as possible in the Northwest.

these Indians were not opposed to accepting white people as a new tribe moving into the area. frustration. Hunting is never easy. The kachinas wear masks and dance for rain. and the social problems that accompany poverty. a fact which has had two directly opposite results in terms of the study of these cultures. The traditional cultures of the Southwest may be the hardest for white visitors to understand. The kachinas are considered to be the spirits of children. the great poverty in this area has led many to reenact ceremonies long extinct in order to please tourists. The southeastern tribes were among the first to be encountered by Europeans. and food is abundant. The dancers impersonating the kachinas “become” rain gods and invoke the spirits who will provide the parched land with muchneeded water. The Southeast. so the spirits must be evoked. When Sir Walter Raleigh and his men first set foot on the North Carolina coast.206 / Dances and Dancing It must be understood that most of the reservations were placed on land the white settlers did not want. There is great poverty. On the other hand. wars between Indians . these Indians are more closely in touch with their origins. and isolation are severe. because many reservations have made tourism a major economic factor. The southeastern United States is probably the most easily endured climate in North America. lost long ago in the wilderness and transformed into gods who live under a mystic lake. An interesting example of the dancing ceremonies in the Southwest is the kachina dances among the Zuñi of New Mexico. however. On one hand. There are certainly many Indians there who still believe in the traditional religions. While there are hurricanes and other natural disasters. Reservation Indians have both their own problems and their own advantages. and many tribal ceremonies were seen by the explorers in their original state. The Southwest is probably the best place in the United States to find Indian ceremonies in a state very close to what they were before white people appeared on the scene. on the other hand. and where the climate is harsh. for the most part the people live in a generally warm and hospitable climate.

sometimes for many hours at a stretch. the northeastern Iroquois were held together by a confederation of six tribes and an alliance with others. in general. when the wars did take place. In many cases. The Northeast. gourd. The British victory over the French in North America decimated the Algonquins. conditions could be extremely harsh. these ceremonies tended to be more social and political (and less religious) in nature than those of most North American Indians. but there are still many Iroquois in the area. or pebbles. with stretched deerhides for skin. with whom they were often at war. Their chief rivals among Indians were the Algonquins. flutes made of reed or cane. Masks are often worn. where animal masks are used. and good land was not as plentiful as it was in the south. The dances are often named after animals. On the other hand. and drums made of clay. with groups of dancers replacing other groups as they grow tired. . they began on the East Coast. there is little but historical evidence on which to draw. beans. Therefore. The Southeast Indians use rattles made from gourds and filled with peas. and others were forced to move from their home territory. Some cultures were entirely destroyed. These civilizations are by no means completely gone. especially in hunting ceremonies. Dancing seems to have had less significance here than it did elsewhere. The Indians of the Northeast also encountered Europeans very early. In fact. the Algonquins took the part of the French and the Iroquois that of the English. but the initial meetings were not nearly as friendly as they were farther south.Dances and Dancing / 207 and Europeans were a long way in the future. or wood. where Iroquois live in longhouses and still maintain many of their ancient traditions. some of the best early descriptions of Indian dances and other rituals date from this era. White settlers rarely saw Indian ceremonies. as accompaniments to their dances. In the Middle Atlantic and New England areas. There are Indian reservations in New York. during the French and Indian War. for example. Indians of the Southeast generally dance in large groups. In addition.

with feathers. because of its rather violent nature. young men are initiated into the tribe and become warriors by having their breasts cut by a medicine man and a thong sewn through the cuts.208 / Dances and Dancing As in most Indian cultures. many dances have animals as their subjects. women. the Sun Dance was one of the first Indian ceremonies to be banned by the U. fur. Dancing involves men. . a celebration of the cyclical nature of life. the Iroquois. Frenzied singing and dancing accompany the erection of the lodge. government. although its nature has changed somewhat. in large groups. however. beads. are celebrating the animals’ lives rather than worshiping their spirits. After this. Dance is an integral part of the religious rites of the Indians of the northern Plains. after which the ceremony continued in a somewhat curtailed fashion. In its original form. and children and is not as clearly structured as it is in the cultures previously described. Second. it was elaborately described by Indians in the twentieth century. Such ceremonies have been curtailed in modern society. Grave injury sometimes results. and are highly formalized. they cannot be as elaborate or involve as many people as the dances held outside by more southerly tribes. These are performed by both men and women. It is a ceremony formed around the building of a lodge. The Sun Dance is still practiced. was lifted in 1933. The young men dance and attempt to remove the thongs. Since Iroquois dances generally take place inside the longhouses. The Northern Plains. elaborate costumes are worn. and facial and body paint. Colorful. Finally. the Sun Dance is more than a dance. who saw it in its original form as children. and the mutilation has been replaced by symbolic sacrifice. The Sun Dance is of interest for several reasons. never completely successful. This ban. A dance of particular interest is the Sun Dance. but young men are not as prominently featured in it as they originally were. The Plains Indians are the Indians who have been stereotyped in westerns. First. it is still very much in practice.S.

1930. Marc Goldstein Sources for Further Study Bancroft-Hunt. The Southern Plains. Putnam’s Sons. and contemporary conditions. The southern Plains were the last area in the contiguous states to be taken formally from the Indians. New York: G. Barnes. A description of Indian rituals. until it was opened to white settlement in 1889. are strongly dominated by males. however. one may see others dressed in jeans and flannel shirts. some aspects of the modern world have changed the basic ceremonies. the American flag is raised. many tribes will participate. Today. Oklahoma has one of the largest proportions of Indian population in the United States. formalized dress is not required. The dances of the southern Plains groups are not very different from those of their northern neighbors in terms of symbolism and theme. was still considered Indian Territory. At the beginning of the Sun Dance ceremony. The most important way in which the two areas differ in their ceremonies is in the degree of formality and the exclusiveness of a dance or ceremony to a particular tribe. Julia M. among the dancers dressed in beads and feathers. In the southern Plains. A description of Northwest American Indian culture. for example. Norman. P.Dances and Dancing / 209 The people now called the Sioux. and thus the most traditional ceremonies can often be seen here. especially music . As elsewhere. Men have traditionally held the central place in dances. including a study of their history. Buttree. S. New York: A. Oklahoma. dances and pow-wows are as much social gatherings as religious rituals. and although the costumes can be as elaborate as they are in the north. Nearly anyone can get up and join in the festivities. The Rhythm of the Red Man. ceremonies. Often. actually a mixture of related tribes. One difference is a greater preponderance of war dances. 1979. as in most other aspects of life. People of the Totem. and there may be Christian as well as Sioux prayers said.

including memories of childhood.210 / Death and Mortuary Customs and dance. An illustrated guide to the dances of many American Indian tribes. Spencer.C. The Native Americans. Jesse D. Native American Dance: Ceremonies and Social Traditions. A compilation of articles by American Indians about their culture. dying. Bessie. Gourd Dance. Charles. and May G. Jennings. N. Robert F. There is a virtually uni- . Mineola. White Deerskin Dance. Heth. et al. and contemporary conditions. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Death and Mortuary Customs Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indians have a wide variety of religious traditions and thus a wide variety of practices regarding the disposition of the dead. New York: Harper & Row. Sun Dance. Among the many American Indian tribes studied by modern anthropologists. historical beginnings. D. New ed. Native American Dance Steps. 2003. Cry of the Thunderbird: The American Indian’s Own Story.. Music and Song. Evans. See also: Deer Dance. ed. A detailed study of the different dance forms of various Native American tribes. with descriptions of specific dances as well as general discussions of dance practices by region. Stomp Dance. Ghost Dance.: Dover Publications. Hamilton. Charlotte. and the disposition of dead bodies. An encyclopedic discussion of American Indian culture. Tobacco Society and Dance.: National Museum of the American Indian. 1992.Y. from prehistory to contemporary times. Washington. Evans. there is a great variety of practices concerning death. 1977. including step-by-step instructions for a great number of dances and rituals followed by a variety of tribal groups. Grass Dance. Pow-wows and Celebrations. Starwood Publishing. 1972.

. they are often feared. burial sites have been found in which only the bones of hands are buried. In many Indian cultures death is accepted stoically by individuals. In the southwestern United States. burial seems to have always been the most common way of disposing of dead bodies. Generally. In a few cases. (National Archives) versal belief in the existence of a spirit separate from the body which can exist when the body is dead. and some puzzling remains have been found. mass graves have been found. Since these spirits are considered capable of harming the living. Unfortunately. as well. though there is considerable evidence of cremation. but rituals are considered necessary to provide protection for the living. sometimes consisting merely of piles of heads or headless bodies. many Indian tribal traditions had become extinct before they could be studied by modern scholars.Death and Mortuary Customs / 211 A depiction of a Native American burial ground from the mid 1800’s. Traditional Practices.

the spirit can gain great knowledge of the afterworld and communicate with its ancestors. One of the most common is the belief that the spirit. . the realm of spirits was placed far from the living lands— in the sky. beyond the sunset. however. There are certain ideas. A few tribes. bodies have been left above the ground permanently. Because American Indians have never been a single culture. it was considered to be very close to the land of the living. usually on a hill far from the village. In the far north. which seem to be almost universal among North American Indians. Beliefs in an Afterlife. There are. involved feasts take place. with the spirits eating and drinking. including the Mesquakie (Fox) and some Eskimos. and dancing. many tribes had the custom of leaving bodies lying in state above ground for as long as a week. however. is separate from the body and can leave the body. including the Athapaskans and the Tlingit. with ceremonies not greatly different from those of Christians and Jews. On the West Coast. beliefs vary considerably. or over the seas. quite a number of exceptions. At death.212 / Death and Mortuary Customs In more recent times. a joyous gathering of tribe members where gifts are exchanged and long. Many tribes believe that the spirit actually leaves the body during sleep and is capable of wandering in the land of the dead. Indians have been known to bury their dead in coffins. under ground. this land was considered to be very much like the land of the living. The postulated location of the land of the dead also varies. after which the remains were buried or cremated. In some cases. however. Many tribes surrounded the body with possessions belonging to the deceased. among the Eskimos (Inuits). As a general rule. the separation is final. for example. such places were dreaded and avoided. which were buried with their former masters. Many northern tribes. Much more often. traditionally believed that the departing spirit needed a guide and killed dogs for the purpose. like the soul of Christian belief. During this time. begin ceremonies with mourning and wailing and then proceed to have a potlatch. hunting.

Native American Religions: An Introduction. Robert F. Oswalt. Rev.Death and Mortuary Customs / 213 The Current Situation. 7th ed. especially in the more remote areas of the Arctic and Subarctic. 1966. Ohio Mound Builders.: Fulcrum. Ceram. It is not unusual. Clark. 2001. Mounds and Moundbuilders. and John Tully Carmody. for example. 2d ed. 1993. Calif.: Mayfield. Rev. This Land Was Theirs: A Study of North American Indians. Wendell H. Jr. New York: Paulist Press. Deloria. New York: Harper & Row. the body is generally buried in a Christian ceremony presided over by a minister and conducted in English. . W. C. Rite of Consolation.: Doubleday. God Is Red: A Native View of Religion. 1971. Vine. at least in part. one traditional. et al.Y. Golden. Afterward. Translated by Richard Winston and Clara Winston. Indians of the United States. 2003. conducted in the native language. Colo. In addition. Many of the practices cited above are unacceptable in the modern world. The First American: A Study of North American Archaeology. for example. Leaving a decaying body outside for a week at a time. Religion. Wissler. the traditional potlatch is held. ed. is considered a clear health hazard. N. Mountain View. Jesse D. 1977. Marc Goldstein Sources for Further Study Carmody. Denise Lardner. Among the Athapaskans. See also: Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. for two death ceremonies to be held: one Christian. Spencer. Garden City. the majority of modern Indians have accepted Christianity. ed.. Jennings. Feast of the Dead. The Native American.

In the Deer Dance. In the Pueblo calendrical cycle. agricultural ceremonies are held in the summer. later the deer will feed the people. is performed in the winter months. the deer are enticed to the village with cornmeal and are fed. while curing. In Pueblo culture. Lynne Getz See also: Dances and Dancing. While the ceremony differs from pueblo to pueblo. Like all game animal dances. along with other game animal dances. reciprocity through gift-giving between humans and spirits is an inherent part of the dance. when household supplies are at their lowest and families feel the need for spiritual assistance in gathering food. The Deer Dance is performed to achieve harmony with the spirits of the deer to ensure daily survival. all social and religious life revolves around the theme of achieving harmony with the gods of nature to ensure the prosperity of agriculture and hunting. warfare. and hunting ceremonies occur in the winter. the Deer Dance is believed to cause an increase in the deer population and also to enhance the skills of those who hunt them. The Deer Dance.214 / Deer Dance Deer Dance Tribes affected: Pueblo tribes Significance: The Deer Dance was a winter ceremony called by hunters to ensure an increase in game and good luck in hunting. .

much of this cultural mosaic was extinguished by massive population declines after European contact. represented one of the most ethnically diverse regions in the world. Prehistoric Demographic Trends. some have said that migration may also have occurred as recently as three thousand years ago. The colonization of the Americas by Paleo-Indians (an anthropological term for the ancestors of Native Americans) was one of the greatest demographic events in global history. prior to the arrival of Europeans. however. Some scholars have suggested that the earliest migrations occurred as far back as fifty thousand years ago. Tragically.2 to 18 million people. Yet Native Americans survived this demographic and cultural onslaught to represent one of the fastest-growing segments of American society today.Demography / 215 Demography Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: After European contact. they encountered an estimated 1. They were the “original Americans. Native North America. most Native American nations experienced dramatic population losses.” descendants of people who journeyed to North America thousands of years before Europeans. Over the millennia. perhaps two hundred languages (of several distinct families). archaeological evidence suggests that some first Americans may have entered the . Native Americans evolved hundreds of unique cultural traditions with their own worldviews. Although many Native Americans reject the hypothesis that their ancestors immigrated from greater Eurasia. but today they represent one of the fastest-growing segments of American society. There has been considerable controversy regarding the dates for early migrations to North America. and a range of forms of governance. A more generally agreed-upon time frame for the migrations. ecological adaptations to every environmental situation. When Europeans arrived on the shores of North America. is between twenty-five thousand and twelve thousand years ago.

later.e. eventually colonizing the remainder of the Americas.216 / Demography Western Hemisphere during the many glacial periods that exposed Beringia. These hunter-gatherers and.c. developed a greater variety of lifeways. and cultural innovations. indicating that Native Americans had dispersed widely across the “New World’s” landscape. Native American demographic distribution and redistribution paralleled closely the glacial retreat north. the glacier largely prevented further immigration and colonization. There is firm evidence that by 9400 b. producing marked differences in population size. In any event. Others may have made the journey using boats. Archaeologists note that the Late Wisconsin glacier’s recession about fifteen thousand years ago allowed Native American people to migrate southward. it is likely that during this early colonization period. Prior to that time. the trend toward regional and climatic aridity that altered local resources.c. The above factors. How many “first Americans” entered the Americas is unknown. by 9000 b. the cultural traditions known as Archaic societies. Docu- . eventually made possible the colonization of every available area on the North American continent.e.. Paleopathological evidence indicates that prehistoric Native American populations faced a number of health risks. Despite hypotheses that argue for an accelerated population growth rate. these irregular waves of colonizers represented the last great global movement of people into unoccupied land—a migration hallmark in human history. the Bering Strait land bridge. with cyclical rates of growth and decline. allowing animals and humans access to both continents. These population fluctuations reflected a complex array of changing social. distribution. and ecological conditions as local populations adapted to regional conditions. What specific routes they took and how rapidly people dispersed across both continents are topics of considerable archaeological debate. and vital events. Beringia periodically linked Siberia with the Americas. In North America. the Native American population’s growth rates were slow to moderate. Native Americans had reached southern South America. following a maritime route or traveling down a coastal corridor. demographic.

Near present-day Alton. high population densities and size remained until the European encounter. Illinois. anemia. beans. The causes of the decline and social reorganization in some regions are open to debate. The European colonization of North America launched a series of catastrophic events for Native American populations.Demography / 217 mented cases of malnutrition. Native American societies experienced tre- . affected the demographic structure of regional populations. A cultural innovation that had significant demographic consequences was the invention and diffusion of agriculture. It is clear that in a number of regions. native North America demographically contained a variety of population sizes and densities. many Native American societies east of the Mississippi River. by 1300 c. Native Americans already had undergone a number of profound demographic events. in Mesoamerica.e. ranging from fewer than one person per 10 square miles in the Great Basin to the densely settled. Southeast. along the Mississippi River. trepanematoid infections. These areas may have supported from five to more than one hundred people per 10 square miles. resource-rich regions of the Pacific Northwest. and along the major waterways of the greater Midwest adopted agriculture. Although regional population concentrations arose across native North America. Demographically. By the time of European contact. As this cultural knowledge spread northward. maize. trachoma. Sometime before 3500 b.. At its height about 1100 c. accidents. and Southwest. in the Southwest. for example. These afflictions. and squash were domesticated. Northeast.e. Historical Demographic Trends. By the time Europeans arrived. was the urban center of Cahokia. Cahokia extended over 5 square miles and had a population of perhaps thirty thousand people. many areas containing high population densities began to decline. residing in sedentary villages or cities.c. coupled with periodic trauma. and degenerative conditions occurred in pre-Columbian North America. and warfare. agriculture promoted the development of larger populations.e. tuberculosis.

Europeans brought smallpox. Cherokee. and other infections that were foreign to Native American people. cholera.S. The colonization of the Spanish. and Muskogee lost between 15 and 50 percent of their population during the forced relocation. government acquired 115. Chickasaw. For their relocation efforts.9 percent.355. the accelerated death rates from the introduction of European diseases remain prominent. the ethnic diversity of indigenous societies residing east of the Mississippi River declined between 25 and 79 percent.” Within decades of European contact. for example. It has been estimated that ninety-three epidemics of Old World pathogens affected Native Americans since the sixteenth century. In 1830.218 / Demography mendous population declines. Other re- . forced migration and relocation. Furthermore. later. combined with warfare. English set in motion significant population changes. French. Old World diseases. the Choctaw. Native American populations declined. One Native American scholar called it the “American Indian Holocaust.400. genocide. Seminole. the estimated Native American population in 1685 was 199. forced migration. By 1790 their population was approximately 55. measles. Native American populations residing east of the Mississippi River declined to approximately 6 percent of their atcontact size. as distinct Native American nations were driven to extinction or forced to amalgamate with other Native American nations. Between 1500 and 1820. approximately 81. and the overall destruction of indigenous lifeways resulted in the demographic collapse of native North America. decreases in their fertility performance.767 acres of Indian lands and resources. Of all the factors that affected post-contact Native American societies.900—a decline of 71. the U. and. Between 1828 and 1838. the remaining Native Americans in the East were forcibly removed to west of the Mississippi River under President Andrew Jackson’s administration. In the southeastern region. Native American populations periodically experienced mortality increases. as well as a deterioration of their societal health status. and the introduction of alcohol.300 Native Americans were thus removed. Paralleling this demographic collapse.

After the 1837-1838 smallpox epidemic. boasted an estimated at-contact population of possibly 15. witnessed continued demographic upheaval. By about 1850. intermittent warfare with Europeans. western Native American populations had experienced introduced infectious diseases. their population collapsed to between 125 and 1. the increasing contact with non-Indians had other important demographic consequences.S. As the American population of European descent surpassed twenty-three million by 1850. occupying the available lands acquired from Native Americans. or other Native Americans promoted further those phenotypic and genotypic processes. The incorporation of Europeans. and an erosion of their resources. the European. Prior to that time. Some scholars suggest that depopulation and the following demographic recovery resulted in certain physical and genetic changes in those groups who survived. may have had significant implications for tribal survival and demographic recovery. for example. Native Americans have experienced an increased genetic exchange with European and African populations. or of all three ancestries. Since contact. and the federal government desired a link between the east and west coasts as a completion to its nationbuilding. Native Americans west of the Mississippi River began to experience directly the brunt of colonization and settlement. Western indigenous nations. the United States experienced a dramatic in- . culturally and biologically. In addition. The Mandan. Their population changes during those decades were affected by the dramatic social and economic changes in U. forcing them eventually to merge. The United States economy was industrializing. with the Arikara and Hidatsa. American society was becoming more urban. society. the estimated Native American population stood at 383. The rise of people with Native American-European or Native American-African ancestry.000. African Americans. and Latino populations grew.Demography / 219 moved Native American tribal nations suffered similar demographic losses. African American. As Native American populations declined.200 individuals. Aside from losing their land and resources.000. from 1850 through 1880.

2 percent of Native Americans resided in urban areas. these acute infections were replaced with chronic diseases on reservations. and intermittent measles and influenza outbreaks. After 1930. western lands and resources were needed. In an attempt to subdue the remaining indigenous populations and force them onto reservations. Native Americans began to experience a tremendous growth rate. As these afflictions reached epidemic proportions. from 1850 to 1880. the European population increased to 50.155. Native American populations grew because fertility increased. however. there were 306.220 / Demography flux of European immigrants. cultural oppression lessened. health and sanitation conditions improved. and the death rate fell. The 1890 U. the U. By the time Native Americans were relegated to reservations or rural communities in 1880. the Native American population between 1900 and 1920 remained rather static. as well as a rise in infant mortality. The continued demographic collapse of many Indian nations occurred under the guise of the nation’s rhetoric of Manifest Destiny.253 Native Americans in the continental United States. and overcrowding resulted in the appearance of tuberculosis. infant survivorship improved. government either negotiated a series of treaties or carried out military expeditions. poor nutrition. and social programs began to affect Native American demography positively. . trachoma. In 1920.S. only 6. This prompted the federal government to alienate Native Americans from their remaining lands. isolated from society.783. The indigenous population of the United States reached its nadir in 1890. In three decades. Although most infectious diseases experienced during the pre-reservation era began to diminish. Census recorded 248. and the continued destruction of their lifeways resulted in further population decline. disease.S. Most Native Americans continued to live on reservations or rural areas. The result was a young age-sex structure. To meet these economic and political demands.543 Native Americans surviving in the coterminous United States. The combined impact of war. With the passage of the Indian Reorganization Act (1934). Poor sanitation.

Finally. for example. adding significantly to the population.Demography / 221 The advent of World War II witnessed a migratory shift away from reservations and rural communities. after the transfer of the Indian Health Service from the Bureau of Indian Affairs in 1955. The outflow of Native American immigrants to urban centers initiated a demographic trend that continues to the present.500 people of Native American descent. there were 827. The out-migration of Native Americans was stimulated further by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. the federal government instituted a relocation program. In the mid1950’s. the Native American population has grown tremendously. especially infant and child health care.4 million of the total selfidentified population of 4. By 1970.000 reported an advanced degree. Second. First. Attracted by service in the armed forces and urban job prospects. As a result. an increase of 5 percent over the previous decade.1 percent increase.273 people who identified themselves as Native American. the Native American population suffers from social problems in which demography plays an important role. The Greater Los Angeles metropolitan area. with less than 300. Since the 1950’s. Native American fertility increased and mortality decreased.S. more Americans are identifying themselves as having Native American ancestry. In 1960. Native . Only 14 percent age twenty-five or over reported having earned at least a bachelor’s degree. Demographic Trends. Census witnessed a 71. for the first time since indigenous people have been recorded by the U. Native American health improved dramatically. there were 551. 75 percent in the same age group reported a high school diploma. many Native Americans migrated to major cities.S. Census Bureau.3 million (July 1. The program assisted Native Americans through job training and support services in being placed in urban centers. 2002) were under eighteen years of age. The reasons for this growth are complex and multifactorial. In 1990. The Native American population of the United States is young and growing: 1. the census recorded that more Native Americans resided in urban than in rural areas. had 87.000 age sixty-five or over. The 1980 U. A scant 125.636 Native Americans.

S.3 million in the United States alone.000 members.000—and indeed. and numerous other conditions exceed national averages.222 / Demography American health status lags behind that of the United States’ general population. Alaska claims the highest percentage of native people (19 percent). approximately three-quarters (3.1 million) claimed membership in a specific tribe. poverty continues to plague many Native American families and remains well above the national average. the majority of the American Indian population overall is concentrated in the West. remains high.5 percent of the total U. 2002. suicide. Apache. in both rural and urban areas. While some members of these tribes are enjoying employment in gaming and tourism industries and a significant improvement in socioeconomic status. The increase in this population over the preceding two-year period (from July 1. population. Muscogee (Creek). article in Indian Country Today. with nearly . although the number of Native American-owned businesses increased by 64 percent between 1982 and 1987 and the introduction of Indian gaming in 1988 made inroads into the socioeconomic problems of poverty.000 members were the Tlingit (the largest). followed by Oklahoma and New Mexico (both with 11 percent). with Cherokee easily the largest at nearly 700. and Lumbee—all claiming more than 50. Blackfeet. was 4.000 members. as reported in a December. Deaths by accidents.7 billion in total Indian gaming revenues. tuberculosis. Population Since 2000. Census Bureau estimated that the number of people who were American Indian and Alaska native or American Indian and Alaska native in combination with one or more other races. the U. Choctaw.000. Unemployment. Nonetheless. Eskimo and Yupik.4 percent. Native American people reside in every state in the union. Chippewa. only a few tribes have enjoyed a limited benefit from gaming: 22 tribal casinos account for 56 percent of the nearly $12. followed by Navajo. 2002. Of these. constituting 1.S. diabetes. violence. Alaskan tribes with more than 5. with the greatest concentration in California at 683. followed by the Athabascan. The number of American Indians living on reservations or other trust lands was more than 538. 2000) was 2. As of July 1.

Schoolcraft population estimate (1851-1857). 1930 362.273 1960 551.995 nificant population changes. Secretary of war estimate (1929).421* represent a higher percent1870 313. the Native Amertions. Native Ameri1810 — 2 471. 1890-1990” Americans was affected by changing definiindicates. including shifting blood-quantum criican population suffered a teria and interpretations of the term “Indian. .417* 1820 cans and Alaska Natives 3 312. 1990 1.380 Initially.Demography / 223 one-third of these residing on Navajo lands. devastating demographic 2.721* age of the country’s cultural 1880 306.273 hunter-gatherers flourished. Today. most four hundred years.000* 1840 percent of the United States 1850 400. Over 1950 377. their ancestors col1940 366. urban cenNotes: Dash (—) indicates unavailable information.014 undergone a number of sig1920 270. Office of Indian Affairs estimate (1943). The percentage of the American Indian population residing in urban areas was 66 percent. Beginning in 1880.732 Native Americans have 1910 291.427 onized a continent.000 and some societies constructed large.543* 1890 273. Cenas the table “Native Amerisus figures (1850-1880 figures are estimates).400 their population increased.420. collapse that lasted for al3.S. 1980 1.607 diversity. enumeration of Native can Population.959. Morse population estimate (1822).930* 1830 compose approximately 1 4 383.000* 1800 tions.764* population but continue to 1860 339. 4. mate. Figures from 1850 to 1990 are U. Asterisk (*) indicates a population estiters.” 1. 1900 266. these small groups of 1970 827. After European contact. The phenomenal growth rate among Native Americans exceeds the growth Native American Population for African Americans and 1800-1990 Americans of European deYear Population scent but not the increase in 1 the Latino or Asian popula600. the lowest of any ethnic or racial group in the United States.636 time.

American Holocaust.C. New York: Oxford University Press. A discussion of Native American population decline in relation to European conquest and colonization. Stannard. 1992.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Moose Sources for Further Study Boyd. Rotting Face: Smallpox and the American Indian. American Indian Population Recovery in the Twentieth Century. Washington. 1999. Shoemaker.224 / Demography In spite of the demographic and cultural disruptions. An examination of the cultural. updated by Christina J. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2001. Disease and Demography in the Americas. the twentieth century Native American population made a remarkable recovery. D. Gambling. R. economic. A comprehensive examination of the smallpox epidemic of 1837-1838 and its impact on the American Indian. Employment and Unemployment. 1992. G. All demographic indicators point to continued population growth into the future. An analysis of the role of infectious diseases on the size and structure of the Native American population. Relocation. A collection of articles assessing the health and demography of pre-contact and post-contact Native American populations. 1774-1874. John W. and social factors that have contributed to the growth of the Native American population. Campbell. . Ubelaker.. Robert T. Nancy. 1999. Idaho: Caxton Press. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. economic and social problems. Caldwell. See also: Disease and Intergroup Contact. Robertson. Gregory R. and Douglas H. Coming of the Spirit of Pestilence: Introduced Infectious Diseases and Population Decline Among Northwest Coast Indians. Verano. eds. as well as continued ill health. Urban Indians. David E.

Native American societies experienced rapid population declines. the estimated aboriginal population of native North America began to decline. Malnutrition. Epidemic episodes often resulted in a breakdown in the social system. The “new” pathogens therefore not only created a high degree of physiological stress but also engendered cultural stress. The epidemiological conquest of native North America accelerated after the early seventeenth century with English and French colonization along the Atlantic seaboard. Increased mortality among Native Americans as a result of introduced European diseases such as smallpox is not attributable to a lack of sufficient immunological response to infections in general but to the fact that Native Americans had no prior exposure to these pathogens. pre-contact native North America was not a disease-free paradise. 270. trepanematoid. Biological and archaeological evidence documents the fact that pre-contact Native American populations suffered from a number of afflictions.2 million to 18 million Native Americans who inhabited North America at the time of the arrival of Europeans.995 Native Americans remained after the epidemiological onslaught of European colonization. After the arrival of Europeans. circa 1520. The Spanish intrusion first into the Caribbean and then into the Southwest and Southeast. introduced by European explorers and settlers. and other degenerative. elevating mortality levels. .Disease and Intergroup Contact / 225 Disease and Intergroup Contact Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Within decades after contact with Europeans. a prominent factor in that decline was Old World infectious diseases. although the reasons for the demographic collapse of native North America are complex. launched a series of lethal epidemics that infected various Native American people. The dramatic population decline of indigenous people continued until the early twentieth century. and a variety of tuberculoid. anemia. They were the survivors of perhaps 1. Although European infectious diseases devastated many Native American societies. By 1920.

Gulf area Regions Affected 1602 1612 1633 1637 1639 Smallpox Bubonic plague Measles Scarlet fever Smallpox 1646 1647 1649 Smallpox Influenza Smallpox chronic. For four years. Whether smallpox reached pandemic proportions is debatable. therefore. which was unleashed in the Americas during the Spanish conquest. greatly affected the post-contact disease experience of Native American societies. Southwest Southwest North Atlantic states. Gulf area. 1520-1696 Date of Onset 1520 1531 1545 1559 1586 1592 Epidemic Smallpox Measles Bubonic plague Influenza Typhus Smallpox All regions Southwest Southwest South Atlantic states. Midwest east of Mississippi River. Southwest South Atlantic states. The general state of health. Old Northwest. South Atlantic states. Gulf area. Gulf area North Atlantic states. but in populations with no prior exposure. South Atlantic states. Great Lakes states. Southwest North Atlantic states North Atlantic states. the disease diffused across Central and North America. Old Northwest. South Atlantic states. No Old World pathogen was more lethal than smallpox. 1520-1524. Midwest east of Mississippi River Gulf area. in combination with ecological and cultural factors. South Atlantic states. Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries. The infected native populations experienced high death . mortality could be as high as 60 percent. and congenital conditions plagued indigenous populations.226 / Disease and Intergroup Contact North American Epidemics and Regions Affected. Great Lakes states. Southwest North Atlantic states North Atlantic states North Atlantic states.

F.000 people. Gulf area 1662 1665 Smallpox 1669 1674 1675 1677 1687 1692 Smallpox Smallpox Influenza Smallpox Smallpox Measles 1696 Smallpox. twenty-three European infectious diseases appeared in native North America. Their Number Became Thinned (Knoxville. influenza. Midwest east of Mississippi River South Atlantic states. Gulf area. Thornton. European populations grew and expanded geographically as declining indigenous populations relinquished their lands and resources. Midwest east of Mississippi River. Those Native Americans who resisted white encroachment were vanquished through genocidal warfare or reduced to mission life. Influenza Sources: Data are from Dobyns.Disease and Intergroup Contact Date of Onset 1655 1658 / 227 Epidemic Smallpox Measles. Old Northwest. Midwest east of Mississippi River North Atlantic states Gulf area. Smallpox. American Indian Holocaust and Survival: A Population History Since 1492 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Henry. measles. . southern Plains North Atlantic states North Atlantic states North Atlantic states North Atlantic states. Great Lakes states.000. and the bubonic plague affected Native American populations largely east of the Mississippi and in the Southwest. University of Tennessee Press. Great Lakes states.. rates. Great Lakes states. Old Northwest. Midwest east of Mississippi River South Atlantic states. 1987). but by 1524 the group was reduced to 361. Florida’s Timucua population may have once had 772. Throughout the 1500’s and into the next century. 1983). Old Northwest. Southwest North Atlantic states. diphtheria Smallpox Gulf area Regions Affected North Atlantic states. Great Lakes states. Old Northwest. Russell.

By contrast. Introduced European infectious diseases. By 1790.630.4 percent. (National Archives) .100 or 31.000 people. the estimated Native American population in 1685 was 199. Europeans and African Americans in the region increased their population to 1.400. reduced Native Americans to approximately 600.900—a decline of 71. By contrast. the population was reduced to approximately 55. Throughout the Atlantic coastal region and into the interior westward. the European population had reached an estimated 223. A patient with tuberculosis surrounded by netting in 1915. Although Europeans were not the demographic majority.9 percent. European expansion during the three first centuries of colonization produced a demographic collapse of Native American populations. combined with periodic genocidal warfare and the destruction of indigenous lifeways.228 / Disease and Intergroup Contact Eighteenth Century.000. for example. In sum. By the eighteenth century. the European population grew to more than 5 million. epidemics continued to pave the way for further colonization. In the southeastern region of North America. native populations were decimated through genocidal warfare and diseases.

Native Americans contracted measles and cholera every 22.9 years among some segment of the Native American population. The placement of Native Americans on reservations or in rural communities did not mark the end of epidemics. Native Americans now have to contend with another epidemic—the threat of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection—a disease that has made its presence felt in some Native American communities. violence. an anthropologist and authority on Native American historical demography. 2001. tuberculosis.Disease and Intergroup Contact / 229 Since the Nineteenth Century. During the nineteenth century. but the northern Plains region was hit especially hard. more epidemics occurred during the nineteenth century. with more frequency. accidents. Deaths from tuberculosis. R. Idaho: Caxton Press. Gregory R. Born to Die: Disease and New World Conquest. . suicide. Noble David. Only then did these infections give way to the twentieth century epidemics of influenza. type II diabetes mellitus. Caldwell. 1492-1650. Rotting Face: Smallpox and the American Indian. In addition. and trachoma—chronic conditions that would infect Native Americans until the 1950’s. The disease diffused across most of native North America. Smallpox continued to appear every 7. than during any other. G. One of the most devastating epidemics during this century was the 1837-1838 smallpox epidemic. It is estimated that seventeen thousand Native Americans on the northern Plains died before the epidemic subsided. Between the smallpox episodes. Robertson.” Many of these afflictions reach epidemic proportions in some Native American communities.5 years. Such acute infectious diseases continued to plague Native American communities into the early reservation period. 1998. and alcoholism exceed the national average. New York: Cambridge University Press. Acute infectious diseases have been replaced by “diseases of poverty. According to Henry Dobyns. twenty-four epidemics affected Native American populations. Campbell Sources for Further Study Cook.

Both breeds of dog were used primarily as hunting aids. starving animals with jutting jaws and protruding ribs (representing famine). Barber See also: Horses. and as pets everywhere. These dogs are depicted in ceramic sculptures in prehistoric shaft tombs. Some groups.230 / Dogs See also: Alcoholism. flushing game into the open or treeing it. though both were extremely variable in coloring and hair length. There is no evidence of selective breeding to keep breeds separate. and the latter was similar to a beagle. appearing either as plump animals (indicating bounty) or as gaunt. The first dogs in America were domesticated from wolves in Asia and were brought to the Americas some time between forty thousand and fifteen thousand years ago. Russell J. Demography. and companionship among all Indian groups. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact. and dogs with intermediate characteristics were common. There were two major breeds of dog in native North America. The former resembled a German shepherd in build. food. Dogs Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Dogs provided hunting assistance. one long-legged and the other short-legged. for pulling Inuit dogsleds. In Western Mexico. had annual feasts at which the eating of a dog was a central part of the activities. Missions and Missionaries. such as the Iroquois. Dogs occasionally were eaten throughout North America. especially in times of food shortage. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact. but it is unclear whether any tribes regularly trained dogs for hunting skills. Some dogs apparently were adept at forcing animals into the open by digging into their burrows. Dogs also were used for hauling travois in the Great Plains. and the modern chihuahua is descended from a dog bred particularly for eating. Suicide. especially in Colima. dogs were eaten more regularly. . Hunting and Gathering. Transportation Modes.

Among the Ojibwas. most of whom believed that dreaming represented a primary mechanism through which spirits communicated knowledge and their wishes to human beings.Dream Catchers / 231 Dream Catchers Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A traditional method employed by Ojibwas and other tribes to block bad dreams. (AP/Wide World Photos) . the dream catcher is made of a red willow hoop Image not available A fourth grader. dream catchers are now commonly used by practitioners of New Age spirituality. One manifestation of the significance attributed to dreams was the traditional use of dream catchers by many tribes of the Northeast and Plains. The interpretation of dreams was an important activity among American Indian peoples. inspects the craftsmanship of a dream catcher she made for a school project. Maysarah Syafarudin. who are often credited with originating the tradition.

One occasionally sees dream catchers being worn as pendants in early reservation period photographs of Indian men dressed in their best clothing.232 / Dream Catchers filled with a web of sinew (with a hole at its center) on which feathers and sometimes stones were hung. Phoenix: OBYX Press. 2000. Peoples. Paula A. In the late twentieth century. Encyclopedia of Native American Jewelry: A Guide to History. rings and other forms of jewelry. Variations of this interpretation sometimes include the idea that the lattice represents the web of life. Native American Indian Jewelry and Adornment from Prehistory to Present. and Terms. the production of dream catchers became a Pan-Indian phenomenon. dream catchers were suspended above the sleeping areas of infants in order that the good dreams contained in the night air would pass through their holes and fall onto the children while the bad dreams would become stuck in the webbing and be destroyed in the dawn’s light. Harvey Markowitz Sources for Further Study Baxter. . transforming and transvaluing it to coincide with this movement’s own assumptions concerning the nature and operation of spiritual power. See also: Feathers and Featherwork. Dubin. According to one popular version of their significance. 1999. This appropriation also engendered the fabrication of dream catcher earrings. Abrams. This development was the result of the rise of New Age spirituality. Lois. Kachinas. New York: Harry N. woven by Spider Woman. which appropriated the tradition.

made an insulated cocoonlike outfit designed for survival in the bitterest of Arctic winters. The decorative touch to the male Eskimo’s outfit was a carved ivory labret—a disk “buttoned” into his perforated lower lip. A woman would wear a basketlike hat to protect her forehead from the carrying strap of the basket slung over the back. and rank. American Indian clothing and decoration also often designated group affiliation. and parkas. It was the custom to use all parts of anything taken from its . Similar modes of dress were seen among other peoples in similar climates. Its trade value was twenty-five caribou skins. A ruff of wolverine fur on the hooded parka and eye coverings with narrow slits to protect against the sun’s glare on snow left no part of the body exposed to the elements.Dress and Adornment / 233 Dress and Adornment Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Designed for comfort. Occasionally they wore sandals and a short robe of rabbit skins. varied styles of dress emphasized the uniqueness of each group. social role. Virtually every substance in nature was used in the making of clothing or ornamentation. Drawings showed Inuit (Eskimo) people of the far north dressed in two-layered outfits of caribou skin. Materials used ranged from buffalo wool spun on a spindle to the inner bark of cedar trees woven into fabric. Sealskin mittens. one layer with fur turned out. moccasins. and utility. the other with fur against the body. Recorded in detail by skilled artists. all lined with fur. it often conveyed—and still conveys—a spiritual message to both wearer and observers. European accounts of early contact vividly describe the wide variety of clothing worn by the original people of North America. Between these extremes was a vast assortment of styles. In distinct contrast. only simple apronskirts and sandals woven of soft fibers. the men of the Plateau west of the Rockies were shown wearing the simplest of outfits—nothing. Women of nomadic Plateau cultures wore no shirts. protection.

Rabbit fur and deerskin were punched with an awl and laced together with thongs. pearl beads. and cultural activities of the people. when clothing was tailored. and intentions of the wearer. and other fibrous plants. ornate feather cloaks. The Hohokam. and fish were the main materials for clothing or adornment. ancient Eastern Woodland cultures. social. skins. a fibrous desert plant. Beads and quillwork added strength to skins or fabric for longer wear. bone masks. fashioned clothing from deerskin. Fabrics were woven of grasses. A warrior painting his body as he dressed for battle was visibly declaring his purpose and praying for a successful outcome. and Anasazi. and mica ornaments. adding leggings and moccasins to the men’s shirt and breechcloth. cotton. wove clothing and blankets from cotton. teeth. In later times. Hopewell people wore copper breastplates. Clothing and decorations carried meaning. tree bark. Plants were used for making natural dyes. and downy plants such as milkweed were used for insulation. Decoration could be functional as well as attractive. The early people of North America created clothing for comfort and utility. leaves. birds. animal fur. stone gorgets (armor for the throat). shells. bones. symbolizing the beliefs. People of the Adena and Hopewell cultures. Artful adornment created by each group of American Indians expressed both spiritual style and beauty. Meanings Conveyed by Clothing. Gorgets protected the vulnerable throat. Clothing evolved to suit the climate and the physical. Clothing of Ancient Peoples. and adorned themselves in turquoise jewelry. The Adena wore copper bracelets and rings. Mosses. feathers. Women’s aprons and sandals were made of yucca.234 / Dress and Adornment natural habitat. values. and feathers. Furs. A ceremonial feather cloak could serve as a sunshade or raincoat in a tropical climate. fringe helped wet buckskin to dry quickly by wicking moisture away from the body. and headdresses. ancient peoples in the Southwest. Mogollon. Women wore wraparound skirts and tunics of deerskin. . and claws of animals.

A Sioux man pictured in formal dance attire in 1899. or society.Dress and Adornment / 235 Dress and adornment could indicate membership in a particular group. to distinguish outsiders from those belonging to the group. this distinction could mean life or death. In battle. An outfit that indicated clan membership could guarantee food and shelter from other clan members for a traveler. making it possible. clan. Clothing often helped to identify social or familial bonds between people who had just met. even from a distance. (Library of Congress) .

For formal wear. The war shirt. Clothing could be packed and transported easily when the nomadic Plains people traveled. ermine tails. jingling bells. both to honor the warrior and to acquire some of his powerful medicine. which gave confidence and status to the wearer. the breechcloth was usually beaded or painted. The breechcloth. brush. eagle . scalps. was richly decorated with fringe. worn only for ceremony or battle. dark-green dyes. Men often wore tunic or poncho-style shirts with split sides. In early times animal skins were used. If snagged on brush or stone. was the everyday garment for the Native American man of the Plains. leaving the wearer free and the garment intact. a single panel of plain buckskin or cloth held in place with a thong belt. The ever-present fringe was handy for making repairs or using as cords. beads or quills. tools. insects. Among the northern Plains people.236 / Dress and Adornment Plains People. patiently made. The decorations recalled the swaying grasses of the Plains. the same designs were rendered later in trade cloth. In cold weather a decorated robe of buffalo hide or fur completed the outfit. Painted with symbols of power. The people’s mobility helped promote a common style among various Plains groups. Under the shirt a belt held up the leggings and carried weapons. When beaded and decorated. with finely beaded floral designs. similar to those worn by Woodlands men. and other medicine items. splashes of bright paint. Leggings of elk hide or deer hide were practical for walking or riding through the brush or for sitting on the ground. The southern Plains groups used rich. clothing and items of adornment for both men and women were carefully planned. Gifts of clothing were exchanged during large seasonal gatherings. finely decorated. and beads or elk teeth. Motion was expressed in swaying fringe. and germs. the fringe would break off. these shirts were believed to be protective for the wearer. and functional. A coating of bear grease protected his skin from cold. the war shirt could weigh as much as forty pounds—an acceptable burden because of its medicine power. Garments worn in successful battles were often copied. and a pipe bag. Crow men preferred a two-part apron.

the northern peoples—Mandan.Dress and Adornment / 237 Due to the warmer climate. Algonquian men of the temperate Northeast coastal area spent the summer months in breechcloth and mocca- . Other Regions. When the long northern winter brought a hiatus to war. In contrast. eagle bone whistles. and decorating garments. and Sioux—created ornate shirts with beads and quillwork. Blackfoot. and medicine bags for decoration. as worn by these Native Americans in the late nineteenth century. repairing. Crow. as in most warm climates throughout the continent. dress in western Arizona was often reduced to loincloths. In the Southeast. the usual outfit for men was breechcloth and moccasins. it provided time for tailoring. (National Archives) feathers.

and war paint was worn for ceremonies. Men shaved their heads except for a scalp lock. and robes. Shell hair ties and earrings completed the outfit. and the prized blue dye. Chilkat blankets originated with the coastal Tsimshian group and were worn by men and women in ceremonial dances. The artisans of the Southwest worked with sil- . turquoise stones. The ceremonial dress of the Zuñi woman was a rectangle of black hand-loomed cloth trimmed in dark blue. Women wore sliplike tailored dresses topped with cape-sleeves or the short poncho shirt. white. the bear claw necklace was highly prized by warriors. skirts. Leggings and moccasins completed the outfit. loose shirts. tied the strings around their waists and in their hair. and moccasins. In addition to the purple and white shell wampum in the eastern woodlands. yellow. then covered her shoulders with a white robe. wrapped a long woven sash around her waist. The valuable Chilkat blanket marked the high point of Northwest weaving art. and easily worked copper. Women dressed in wrapped deerskin skirts. Jewelry and Body Decoration. and during cooler weather wore skin pants or leggings. Dozens of shell necklaces covered a sleeveless shirt. In cooler weather skin shirts and moccasins were added. and wore them as necklaces and bracelets. They sewed strings of valuable sacred wampum to their deerskin shirts. Crowns and cloaks of turkey feathers and necklaces made of prized wampum—purple clam shells and white conch shells—made elegant outfits. men wore deerskin kilts and leggings topped with shoulder sashes of woven fiber. A wealthy Hupa woman of northern California wore a fringed skirt covered with a full apron of shells. The Tlingit people made this blanket of goat’s wool woven into a cedar bark core in boldly stylized images of clan animals using black. All peoples of North America used jewelry for decoration and nearly all to indicate status.238 / Dress and Adornment sins. The earliest jewelry was of shells. She tied it over her right shoulder. feathers. Elk teeth or cowrie shells adorned the shirts. Among the Iroquois of the Woodlands area.

earrings for men and women. worn straight or braided. more often for ceremonies.Dress and Adornment / 239 ver and turquoise to create distinctive jewelry—the Navajo “squash blossom” necklace and concha belt. Paint could also take the place of clothing in the summer. In some groups. to shaved head with only a small scalplock left on top. a middle part with two long braids for Jicarilla Apache. bones. cheek. braids woven with ribbons and wrapped around the head for Az- . legs. Various styles included: Subarctic (marks on the chin during girls’ puberty rites). the Hopi layered silver cutout bracelet. and back. and Natchez women (across the nose). Some Plains men wore as many as eight long braids. Men of the Subarctic tucked their long hair under a turban. or shells worn in the nose. There was great diversity even among the same people. individuality. In others this custom was reversed. and the Zuñi silver pins inlaid with stone and shell. with wrist bands and lines on the chest for some women). dyed thread or cactus spines. and rings. West Coast people (bands on chin. Tattooing was done with charcoal. especially for the highborn). Body piercing for adornment was common and included jewelry such as labrets in the lips. Hair Styles and Status. Teton women (lip and facial tattoos). Women’s hair styles included shoulder length with bangs for Western Apache. needles. Red. Face and body painting was done in most groups. sometimes for decoration. chest. women wore their hair long and men wore their hair short. Styles varied from hair that was never cut (sometimes touching the ground). side buns of the “squash blossom” style for Hopi maidens. High ranking men and women wore intricate designs that often completely covered the body. and burned shells. leaving a center strip from forehead to the nape of the neck. and white were favored colors. or forehead for men or women. Haida (crests on arms. Hair was a symbol of strength. Natchez men shaved one side of the head and wore their hair long on the other. and Creek men shaved the sides of their heads. black. and spirituality. Aztec commoners kept their long hair uncovered.

More than 440 illustrations. Washington. index. D. European contact influenced the clothing of almost every group. Effects of European Contact. and hair brought up and forward in bonnet shape (creating a natural sun visor) for Seminole women. The Aztecs defined four levels: commoner men and women wore their hair long and uncovered.C. several braids for Natchez women. Leather concho belts with silver disks and hard-soled sandals set a style eventually copied by Europeans. fur. maps of culture areas. especially Iroquois of the north and Seminole of the south. a topknot with ribbons for Creek. fabric type and color. Jules B. warriors had large feather headdresses. caribou and buffalo robes were replaced with woolen coats or the hooded “capote”—a cloak made from the colorful Hudson’s Bay Company trade blanket. and hides were replaced with wool and other red or blue fabrics richly decorated with beads or quillwork. and acknowledgments. In the North. tribal location supplement with keys to back-pocket maps. and adornment. Thompson Sources for Further Study Billard. 1974. hair and headdressings designated a person’s role or rank. Earlier garments of natural colored fiber. et al. Additions of ribbonwork and appliqué to basic styles were most elegantly done by East Coast people. . Zuñi men replaced their short cotton kilts with European-style loose white cotton shirts worn over white pants. Western Apache women adopted the European full skirt of bright calico topped with a belted hip-length blouse. In complex societies with various status levels. Gale M. poems and chants. More valuable materials and more ornate designs denoted higher status. chiefs wore leather headbands with multicolored tassels or gold and turquoise crowns..240 / Dress and Adornment tec commoners.: National Geographic Society. and the priestly wore elaborate outfits with headdresses representing gods and goddesses. Satin dresses took the place of coarse woven fiber outfits. The World of the American Indian. in style.

Quillwork. Mystic Warriors of the Plains. Ruth M. Written from the perspective of the first peoples of North America. Red Man’s America: A History of Indians in the United States. William. captions and detailed notes on photographs. 1953. clothing. social customs. Surveys origins. and anthropologists. Joseph Epes. Mails. Pleasantville. quotations from well-known traditional people of North America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Songs. The North American Indians: A Selection of Photographs by Edward S. gen. historic villages.: Reader’s Digest. buffalo and horse. and drawings. 1978-2001.Y. Washington. Maxwell. Shells and Shellwork. Hundreds of drawings by the author. James A. Underhill. paintings. including a diagram of the buffalo showing uses for every part of the animal. Images selected from thousands of photographs in the Curtis collection. et al. and they include considerable information on (and illustrations of) modes of dress. Comprehensive account of all culture areas.C.Y. See also: Applique and Ribbonwork. Sturtevant. 1972. . and social issues of early twentieth century. color photographs.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Headdresses. Feathers and Featherwork. Blankets. Handbook of North American Indians. descriptions of ceremonies. Features people of many groups west of the Mississippi River. cultural. Garden City. 1978. America’s Fascinating Indian Heritage. 1972. Moccasins..Dress and Adornment / 241 Brown. political. N.: Doubleday. and archaeological sites. Tattoos and Tattooing. New York: Aperture. D. Beads and Beadwork. religion. N. arts and crafts. with excellent examples of clothing and headdresses. War Bonnets. The scholarship and thoroughness of the Smithsonian volumes are exemplary. prehistory (including Mesoamerican). and mythology. Thomas E. material culture. list of museums. ed. historians. warriors’ regalia and weapons. An in-depth study of Plains people: social customs and religion. Curtis. history.

There are also large drums around which several people sit and play together. Most often drumming accompanies singing. Water drums are made from hollow logs and are partially The drumheads used by this early twentieth century Eskimo dance orchestra were made from whale stomachs. (National Archives) . they are also used in nonmusical tribal ceremonies and have served as a means of communication. The most common material for this type of drum is hollowed wood.242 / Drums Drums Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Drums and other percussion instruments are an almost universal part of Indian music. Drums come in a variety of types. Drums are used for a variety of purposes in almost every American Indian culture. but woven baskets and hollowed gourds are often used as well. The hand drum is carried by an individual and can be played while dancing. although the singers do not necessarily follow the rhythm of the drums.

are used. A sort of “Morse code” system was used. and later the Arikara erected villages along the Missouri River. Music and Song. One way of doing this is to paint the proper pictures on the body of the drum. Marc Goldstein See also: Dances and Dancing. Hidatsa. The water greatly increases resonance. As well as providing musical accompaniment. For some ceremonies. In the Dakotas. The Pawnee . Earthlodges appeared around 700 c. Since the signals produced were kept as secrets within a particular tribe. Elsewhere. drumming can be seen as a very secure form of communication. and it was different for every tribe. Much of American Indian singing has religious significance. Drumsticks are sometimes given much more significance than they have been accorded in European cultures. Earthlodges are circular dome-shaped structures roofed by earth and entered by a covered passageway. Apart from the more common types of drums. drums were used as a form of long-distance communication. and the possession of such sticks may be a sign of prestige. and such drums can be heard for miles. without any attached drum body. drumsticks are decorated according to their particular ceremonial meaning.. in some area poles or planks may also be beaten. and the proper gods and spirits must be evoked. stretched hides. Drums are often decorated elaborately.e.Earthlodge / 243 filled with water. Pow-wows and Celebrations. Earthlodge Tribes affected: Plains tribes Significance: Earthlodges were among the earliest forms of shelter devised by cultures living on the Plains. housing the earliest farm cultures on the Plains. Semi-nomadic villagers constructed earthlodges in three areas of the Plains. the Mandan.

244 / Earthlodge built earthlodge villages in the central Plains of Kansas and Nebraska. and often a horse corral. who provided much of the labor in building. In the Upper Missouri a bullboat was inverted over the Earthlodge . Four or more central posts—usually cottonwood—were set in the ground and were connected by cross beams. food platforms. To the northeast the Omaha. Oto. Earthlodges lasted from seven to ten years and were the property of the women. Inside arrangements included a sacred area. A slanted sidewall of smaller posts marked the circumference. a shingling of sod. All these people built their lodges in similar fashion. The average earthlodge was 11 to 13 feet in height and 40 to 50 feet in diameter. The fireplace was in the center of the earthlodge. The walls and roof were covered alternately with layers of willow branches. and Ponca also constructed earthlodges. platform beds along the wall. and an opening in the roof vented smoke. A wheel of roof rafters radiated from the central smoke hole and extended to the central posts. grass thatching. a fencelike wooden fire screen. storage (cache) pits. and a final coat of wet earth that dried like plaster.

1568-1870. . When the people went on large summer buffalo hunts they utilized tipis. The first school specifically founded for the education of Indian youth in the New World was established by the Jesuits in Havana. their primary residence was the earthlodge. Catholic and Protestant religious groups dominated non-Indian attempts to educate Indians. The history of Europeanized Indian education over four centuries tells a story of cultural genocide.” One of the earliest of these religious schools was founded by the Reverend John Eliot in 1631 in Roxbury. including long hair for men and short hair for women. Indians had to give up their old way of life completely. Carole A. He developed a plan to bring Indians together in small. As more and more European settlers entered that part of the Americas now known as the United States. Tipi. in 1568. Education: Post-contact Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Since 1568. and public school systems—have assumed responsibility for educating American Indians under policies that often have devastated tribal well-being. Massachusetts. however. education was seen as a way of assimilating young Native Americans into the dominant white culture. three major groups—Christian missionaries. Barrett See also: Architecture: Plains. In order to become accepted by the Puritans in these prayer towns.Education: Post-contact / 245 hole to shut out moisture and regulate downdrafts. the federal government. King James asked Anglican clergy to collect money for building “churches and schools for ye education of ye children of these Barbarians in Virginia. In 1617. self-governing “Indian prayer towns” where they could be instructed in Christian ethics and arts. Florida. For the next three hundred years. Missionary Activity and Paternalism.

which lasted until 1873. Manual labor schools had their beginnings during the period when the tribes were being moved out of the East and Northeast. offered religious. the United States entered into almost four hundred treaties. Greek. which established this fund. which allowed $15. This school. of which 120 had educational provisions. government was operating six manual labor . to provide financial support to religious groups and other interested individuals who were willing to live among and teach Indians. writing. which believed that it was a waste of effort to provide only academic training. when treaty making with the Indians ended. and practical instruction. By 1840. Kentucky. This Connecticut school concerned itself with the academic training of Indian youngsters and included reading.246 / Education: Post-contact Another example of colonial religious schools was Moor’s Charity School. the U. the Choctaw Academy. a Congregationalist minister. and equipment for educational purposes.000 per year “to promote civilization among the aborigines. academic. 1819. Six hours were spent daily in the classroom and six at work on farm and shop detail. and others that came later. From the first treaty in 1778 until 1871. and Latin in its curriculum. Usually these were located in Indian country or at a site convenient to several tribes and. The first manual labor school. Congress established a civilization fund. 1802. were agreeable to the Indians. The first specific appropriation by Congress for Indian education was the Act of March 30. The terms usually called for teachers. In 1819. material. also gave the president complete authority over Indian education and remained the basic authorization for the educational activities carried out by the government on behalf of Indian people.S. for that reason. The school operated until 1769 and enrolled as many as 150 Indian youth. was organized in 1837 by Colonel Richard Johnson in Scott County. English. founded in 1755 by Eleazar Wheelock. The Act of March 3. A common method of providing educational assistance during this period was by treaty stipulation. They also drew support from the government. arithmetic.” The money went mostly to missionary groups.

This school. Teachers were brought from the East to be in charge of advanced academic work.Education: Post-contact / 247 schools with eight hundred students and eighty-seven boarding schools with about twenty-nine hundred students. the Indian Bureau issued regulations that “all instruction must be in English” in both mission and government schools under threat of loss of government funding. the period of reservation settlement began and did not end until the 1930’s. The enrollment in that year was given as 1. In all cases.” followed the example of the Cherokees and Choctaws within a few years and established school systems. in 1841. an Anglican missionary. One of the most significant ways of undermining Indian culture was the government’s attempt to suppress native language. and they operated without federal supervision until 1906. had instituted common schools. and elocution. After the removal of these tribes to lands west of the Mississippi. reestablished their schools. Schools established on reservations were designed to devalue the traditional culture and religion of Indian people. in 1842. supported with funds obtained from the United States for land cessions. Creek. built and supported their own schools. operated until the end of the American Revolution.) The Cherokee system. algebra. (A number of states had not yet provided for a system of common schools in 1842.100. The Choctaws and Cherokees. the majority of their teachers had changed from easterneducated missionaries to locally trained teachers. The Choctaws had nine schools. the schools were tribally supported. In 1851. included twentyone elementary schools and two academies. with the help of missionaries and educators. and the course of study included music. In 1885. The Chickasaw. by 1852. when the tribal governments of these five tribes were destroyed by an act of Congress. also members of the “Five Civilized Tribes. of which seven experimented with teaching reading and writing to adults. and the Choctaws. Several Indian tribes. botany. astronomy. however. with one temporary suspension. Latin. the Cherokees. before their removal from their original homelands. The Mohawks did this as early as 1712 under the influence of the Reverend Thomas Barkley. and Seminole tribes. In 1880. some . Within ten years.

Grant.” At Carlisle. After studying conditions among some of the western tribes. tailoring. which enrolled children from the midwestern and western tribes. suggested that special materials be created for Indian children. twelve such boarding schools were established. Girls were taught domestic skills. Pratt. alarmed at the “gross injustices to both races [Indians and blacks]” which he had observed. Pennsylvania. This practice came to be called the Carlisle Outing. The families were paid fifty dollars a year to cover costs of clothing and health care. Forts no longer needed by the army were converted into boarding schools. They were taught skills which would later help them become employed in trades such as blacksmithing. believed that true equality could come to the Indians only if they learned to feel at home in the white world. believing that the only solution lay in “the civilization” of Indians into white culture. the boarding school system was launched when the Carlisle Indian School in Carlisle. It was assumed—rightly—that if children could be taken at a young enough age and moved far enough away from the influences of family and tribe. and farming. recognizing the small utility of standard educational training and methods.248 / Education: Post-contact teachers and administrators. they worked in exchange for their upkeep.” President Ulysses S. read. No special textbooks were developed. Little attention was paid to tribal differences in language and customs. safeguards of our Declaration and Constitution. . Between 1889 and 1892. In 1878. where they deserved both “the opportunities and . After completing school. was founded by General Richard Henry Pratt. students were placed with white families for three years. Government Control and Dependence. and write English and to assume the clothing and customs of white people. supported the move. . carpentry. however. until well into the twentieth century. . which Pratt proclaimed to be the “right arm” of the school. 1870-1923. the odds against their ever again becoming a part of their original environment were remote. students were required to speak. a congressional committee suggested that “boarding schools remote from Indian communities” would be most successful in solving the “Indian problem.

operating under the noblest of intentions. fear. Congress was appropriating more than a million dollars a year for Indian education. (National Archives) Children as young as five years old were sent to the boarding schools. About half the appropriations went to missionaries who were contracted to educate Indians. Pratt. the Republicans made a systematic effort to stop government funding of all missionary schools. and loneliness which these children faced upon being uprooted from everything familiar and known can only be imagined. By 1900 all direct funding to these schools was ended.Education: Post-contact / 249 Boys from the Carlisle Indian School pictured in their cadet uniforms circa 1880. By 1887. had unwittingly contributed to one of the saddest chapters in Indian history. Feuding between Protestants and Catholics. led the Protestants to support funding only governmentrun schools. Morgan. With the appointment in 1889 of General Thomas J. aggravated because the Catholics were much more successful in establishing schools. Tribes continued to receive a portion of the dollars which the federal government had previously provided the . however. a Baptist minister. as commissioner of Indian affairs. The shock.

Moves to Reform Indian Education.250 / Education: Post-contact churches for funding of the mission schools. one of the BIA’s leading critics. In 1924. a “Committee of One Hundred Citizens” was called together by the secretary of the interior to discuss how Indian education could be improved. nonacademic. As government schools lost ground. By 1912. These recommendations helped establish reservation day schools up to the sixth grade and reservation boarding schools up to the eighth grade. because of the staggering loss of land and the inefficiency of education. Some tribes maintained these schools in spite of the reduced resources. became commissioner of Indian affairs and immediately sought to implement the recommendations . most used the funds for other needs.736 students. the continued inability of boarding schools and English-only education to transform Indians into white people led to disillusionment and lowered expectations for Indian education. As the new century began. a government-sponsored study (the Meriam Report) claimed that the Bureau of Indian Affairs was providing poorquality services to Indians. Shortly after publication of the study. better trained personnel. The committee recommended better school facilities. In 1902. the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) was operating twenty-five boarding schools in fifteen states for 9. and high school and college scholarships. At the same time. The committee recommended that elementary children not be sent to BIA boarding schools at all. it particularly pointed to the shocking conditions found in boarding schools. 1924-1944. Indians were viewed in the same light as blacks at that time: as a permanent underclass for whom an inferior. the total Indian situation was growing progressively worse. In 1928. John Collier. Increasingly. there were more Indian children in public schools than in government schools. vocational education was appropriate and adequate. an increase in the number of Indian students in public schools. efforts to increase Indian enrollment in public day schools did not include examining the ability of these schools to meet Indian needs.

The Johnson-O’Malley Act (1934) allowed the federal government to pay states for educating Indians in public schools. failed to provide adequate services in any of these arenas. that Indian students lagged two to three years behind white students in school achievement. 1945-1970. six “termination” bills were passed. where. In 1968 the first tribally controlled college. was founded. that one-fourth of teachers of Indian students preferred not to teach them. that only 1 percent had Indian teachers. and that “Indian children more than any other minority group believed themselves to be ‘below average’ in intelligence. Robert J. education.Education: Post-contact / 251 of the Meriam Report. and in 1971 the Coalition of Indian Controlled School Boards was established. Another program aimed at “relocation” helped Indians move from reservations to cities. presumably. Navajo Community College. In the 1950’s. but many felt displaced and unhappy. and welfare up to the states. They were intended to end all federal involvement with the Indians. Conditions improved little as states. the National Indian Education Association had been formed. The Senate report on the plight of Indians led to the passage of the Indian Education Act in 1972. Indian children in cities showed improved academic achievement. for the most part. The Move Toward Self-Determination Since 1970. This act provided for special programs benefiting Indian children in reservation schools as well as those at- . leaving policy issues in health. under President Dwight Eisenhower. a report compiled by a Senate subcommittee on Indian education revealed that Indian school dropout rates were twice the national average. The Termination Era. Their recommendations called for greatly increased Indian participation in goal setting and in implementation of programs. During this same period. educational and employment opportunities were better. Havighurst of the University of Chicago directed a research project entitled the National Study of American Indian Education. Between 1967 and 1971. Indian educators had become increasingly active. by the end of the decade.” During this time. and.

A collection of writings and pictures compiled by the Citizens’ . from 130 to 102. Edgar S. The American Indian Magnet School at Mounds Park All-Nations School in the St.5 percent of all degrees conferred. and David W. During 1977. Some reservation schools reported a yearly teacher turnover rate of 90 percent. Doctorates earned by Indians between 1980 and 1990 actually dropped. Minnesota. The Office of Education. Forrest J. with fewer than 50 percent completing a high school education. Hearne.” Three centuries of national educational policy must take at least partial responsibility for the tragic decline of tribal cultures in the United States. New York: New American Library. assisted by Bette Blaisdell Sources for Further Study Cahn.. The amended version also encouraged the establishment of community-run schools and stressed culturally relevant and bilingual curricular materials. Paul. Gerrard. In 1990. recommended that tribal history. bachelor’s degrees earned by Indians comprised less than 0. In spite of efforts to improve educational opportunities for Indians. culture. High-school dropout rates for Indian students continue to be the highest for all minority groups. Indian students still struggle for visibility in the education market. and languages be emphasized. after a two-year study. 1975. to the position. but perhaps it will also take the lead in providing a vehicle for the land’s original citizens to assume their rightful place in American society.252 / Education: Post-contact tending urban public schools. using students’ own tongue as the language of instruction. It was amended in 1975 to require that Indian parents be involved in the planning of these programs. President Jimmy Carter created the new post of assistant secretary of the interior for Indian affairs and named a member of the Blackfoot tribe. In the 1990’s. Dorothy Engan-Barker. two urban public school districts with relatively large Indian populations began to experiment with schools that focus on Indian culture along with traditional academic curricula. Our Brother’s Keeper: The Indian in White America. public school system declared the goal of “placing education into culture instead of continuing the practice of placing culture into education.

including a discussion of those still operating in the 1960’s. includes first-person accounts by Indians from diverse tribes who shared common experiences regarding attempts by whites to “civilize” them. Indians and Other Americans: Two Ways of Life Meet. D. “Boarding Schools.Education: Post-contact / 253 Advocate Center in Washington. Alvin M. Harold. and D’Arcy McNickle. Edwin R. writing in opposition to the trend that sought to “integrate” the Indian. Indians of the Americas. a former U. Edited by Robert M. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Theodore. Indians of the Americas. 2d ed.Y. Fuchs. 1947.. focuses on customs. Richard H. chronicles the plight of American Indians and actions of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. 1972. New York: Collier Books. N. and South American tribes. Chronological account of the role of the federal government in the education of American Indians living within the territory of the United States as disclosed in the government’s official records. and Robert Havighurst. Norton. The author. Embree. New Ha- . Garden City.S. 1974. manners. Fischbacher. Josephy. Fey.” In To Live on This Earth. 1867-1904. writes about four centuries of Western European impact on American Indian cultures. 1970.: Doubleday. commissioner of Indian affairs. Utley. Embree. W. A collection of excerpts from speeches. New York: W. San Francisco: R & E Research Associates. 1934. ed. Pratt. Reprint. Central.. History of the European influence on the culture of the American Indian. Collier. Battlefield and Classroom: Four Decades with the American Indian. A Study of the Role of the Federal Government in the Education of the American Indian.C. studies. articles. Jr. and other documents providing a documentary history of the critical decade of the 1960’s. New York: Harper & Row. 1970. revived world interest in the unique lifestyles of North. 1999. John. Estelle. Rev. Summarizes events leading up to and including the establishment of Indian boarding schools. and mysteries of their religion. Red Power: The American Indian’s Fight for Freedom.

Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Missions and Missionaries. An examination of the daily life of Native American children who attended a BIA boarding school. Scott. a National Challenge. Committee on Labor and Public Welfare. See also: American Indian Studies. Instead. Education or socialization of the young is an important concern in all societies. 3d ed. D. The memoirs of General Richard Henry Pratt. Margaret Connell. Conn. 1999. Tribal Colleges. chronicling his work in the establishment of Indian boarding schools. Owing to the diversity across native cultures. Congress. The Rapid City Indian School. Szasz. Children. U. 1969. Washington.: Yale University Press. 1898-1933. education of the young was a shared function of families and communities. education did not occur in formal schools. both sex and age differences were observed. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. Indian Education: A National Tragedy. In general. An analysis of the history of edcuation and Native Americans. 1999. including American Indian societies in the pre-contact period.S.254 / Education: Pre-contact ven. With the exception of the “high cultures” of Peru and Mexico. includes photographs from the period. Senate. Riney. 1964.C. Education: Pre-contact Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Pre-contact education did not anticipate great changes in existing lifestyles and therefore centered on the maintenance and preservation of the tribe’s culture and way of life. however. .: Government Printing Office. Special Subcommittee on Indian Education. Education and the American Indian: The Road to Self-Determination Since 1928. the content of such education varied.

tanning. Among native peoples who subsisted by farming. pottery making. Older female relatives. played a part in this. Another major focus of education was the learning of attitudes and values appropriate to the culture. and sometimes a shaman and older male relatives. There were not only stories of the sacred. Among those peoples who subsisted by hunting and gathering. Discipline Strategies. with a girl’s first menses. These. In those native societies that had sodalities.Education: Pre-contact / 255 Learning Role Skills. while mothers and female relatives served as primary teachers of girls. prayers. A major device in instilling proper attitudes and values in children was storytelling. Instead. as well as through direct instruction. were differentiated according to gender. Among these same peoples. too. mothers and other older female relatives served as teachers of girls in gathering plant foods as well as processing and preparing both game and plant foods. Moral Education. American Indians were noted for their love and mild treatment of children. Similarly. children received much instruction from adults in learning such skills as weaving. The latter. fathers and male relatives served as primary teachers of boys. played a major part in moral education. children were most often teased and cajoled into proper behavior by their . and the decorative arts. often involving play activities. Discipline was generally marked by an absence of corporal punishment. In addition to role modeling. One focus of education was the learning of skills necessary for adult roles. and powers associated with them. and events but also stories of culture heroes. was generally marked with advice and instruction on the girl’s new status and responsibilities. Such skills were learned through imitation. in particular. tool making. traditions. initiates were instructed in the character requirements as well as in the songs. fathers and other older male relatives taught boys the skills of the hunter. direct instruction was involved. The advent of puberty. The storytellers were most often older members of the family or community who were highly regarded for their storytelling skills.

preparing hides. There were numerous chores to be done. When there was leisure. If the ritual was performed exactly as instructed. These villages were extremely independent and required great responsibility and self-discipline from their members. Another form of learning was storytelling. Since they were seasonally nomadic. was accomplished in a variety of forms. sometimes as small as an extended family. and this was taught to the younger females along with their domestic responsibilities. gathering roots and berries. the Dakota had no need for an extensive program beyond that of basic survival and limited arts and crafts. The young were gradually brought into these work roles. and the meaning was clearly explained. and arranging and preparing for social events. The Dakota were sustained by a highly efficient ecosystem that had a cyclical chain of events that not only provided subsistence but also brought meaning and identity. In some of the matrilineal societies. Cultural “frighteners” were also known but were not usually flagrantly used. or the passing on of knowledge. the women did magnificent quill work. then whenever the ritual was performed. Although education may have been simplified. A Dakota (Sioux) Example. harvesting wild rice. The young men were thus taught to respect living animals and not to allow them to depopulate. the Dakota lived in small villages. it was not practical to amass personal possessions and unnecessary items. it was not insignificant or trivial. making maple sugar. Consequently. they did not develop their craftsmanship as extensively as did more agrarian cultures. Among the social responsibilities were preparing for the hunt. . Being primarily a hunting and gathering people. Only the very young child had no responsibilities. Education.256 / Education: Pre-contact parents and elders. One of these was ritual. In the early years. much of the responsibility for discipline was taken on by the mother’s brother. Rituals were performed in order to recall events and certain natural laws. They regulated their hunting and trapping to maintain a balance of nature. learning was reinforced.

One could not easily claim a vision. One of the most important learning experiences for the Dakota youth was the vision quest. They would relate how their own foolishness had caused them much grief and misery in the past. The young person might not clearly understand the vision. the elders were teaching the young people the things they should avoid doing. .Education: Pre-contact / 257 Many stories and legends were passed down as soon as a young child could understand the spoken word. When asked for advice or direction. it was a monumental event. Once confirmed. 1979. the vision gave a young man (the vision quest was typically a male experience) direction and purpose. elders used stories and examples that would help youths make their own decisions. and stimulating anecdotes. but during his lifetime. Indians of North America.: Dakota Press. he would seek its meaning. There was also much to be learned through experience. Stories contained moral lessons. Ella C. accompanying the older women when they picked berries and gathered roots. During these sessions the elders presented their experiences through the years. Speaking of Indians. This left the avenue clear for the youths to pursue their own visions and goals armed with wisdom about what not to do. This allowed young people to accomplish on their own the things they felt they should pursue. humor. In talking about their mistakes. Young females would start their training even earlier. S. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Donna Hess and Elden Lawrence Sources for Further Study Deloria. Harold E. Probably the most important learning experiences for young Dakotas were the sessions with elders. because the vision had to be confirmed through a careful evaluation by the council of elders. 1961. When a vision was received. Driver. In this sense. Vermillion. The younger males would accompany the older men on hunts and be allowed to witness warfare from a distance.Dak. the Dakota did not limit creativity or initiative in educating their young.

and other forms are among the most distinguishing features of the Woodland culture of the midwestern United States. Oglala Women. See also: Children. The majority of mounds reported have eroded and indistinct shapes. Wissler. however. 1981. felines. Phillips. Ancient Drums. 1988. New York: McClure. Hodge. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press. Harriet J. 1971. and turtles. and geese. St. as well as eagles. Effigy Mounds Tribe affected: Oneota Significance: Low. Effigy mounds were constructed by mounding earth into large. Marla N. The Dakota or Sioux in Minnesota as They Were in 1834. Effigy mounds are . 1986. others clearly represent life forms. Englewood Cliffs. Indian Boyhood. buffalos.258 / Effigy Mounds Eastman.: Prentice Hall. Visions and Vision Quests. Menses and Menstruation. New York: Holt. New York: Quill. They occur mainly in groups with conical and linear mounds. These Were the Sioux. The First Americans: Then and Now. geometric forms. Charles A. wolves. Sandoz. Rinehart & Winston. 1902. Pond. swallows. Other Moccasins: Native American Cultural Adaptations. foxes. Only two or three have been reported in human form. 1982. Samuel W. Powers. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. earthen mounds in the shape of animals.J. New York: Hastings House. Elderly. Among the animals represented are bears. Hungry Wolf. Mari. N. New York: Oxford University Press. Gender Relations and Roles. Beverly. Reprint. 1961. Clark. The Ways of My Grandmothers. The American Indian. 1986. Kupferer. low shapes. William. New York: Dover. 1950. deer.

The effigies can be quite large. Winding along the top of a prominent ridge. the latter containing as many as thirty individuals. Many have been preserved in state parks. southeastern Minnesota. Iowa.e. dentate stamping. the position of the heart. and northern Illinois. such as the head. and tobacco pipes of various materials. the snake . The largest concentrations of effigy mounds are in southern Wisconsin. and punctuations. or (in bird effigies) between the head and tail.Effigy Mounds / 259 known primarily from southern Wisconsin. Unfortunately. northeastern Iowa. The largest and most famous effigy is the Great Serpent Mound in southern Ohio. is one location where these mounds have been preserved and restored. or the early Late Woodland period. in McGregor. the majority have been destroyed by plowing. however. At Mendota. Offerings included with the dead include pottery vessels. In general. There is also evidence. These burials are usually situated in key parts of the effigies. Effigy Mounds National Monument. Among the examples at this site are bird and bear effigies. copper. These suggest that the features are roughly contemporaneous with the late Hopewell culture of southern Ohio around 200-700 c. Artifacts found associated with burials in effigy mounds include late Middle Woodland pottery in the form of conical or round-bottomed containers decorated with techniques such as cord-marking. for a spread of Mississippian populations from the American Bottom in central Illinois to areas of northwestern Illinois and southern Wisconsin around 800-1000. The dates for effigy mound construction are not precisely known. it represents an undulating snake with a tightly coiled tail. the mounds are no more than 2 to 5 feet high. where many have been preserved in parks or other public areas. looting. Examples have been found to contain primary or secondary bundle burials. and construction activities. stone axes. Wisconsin. and many of the mounds may have been built around that time. as well as cremations. near Madison and in Sauk and Waukesha counties. one bird effigy was 6 feet tall and had a wingspan of 624 feet. The majority of these mounds appear to have been burial grounds. fingernail impressions.

Birthdays were only introduced on reservations one hundred years ago. Serpent Mounds. including coils.330 feet long. Its age is Early to Middle Woodland (circa 200 to 400). Elderly Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Native definitions of old age are predicated on tribal custom rather than chronological age. Older people remained active as long as they were able. although attitudes vary by tribe.260 / Elderly appears to be holding an oval object in its mouth. John Hoopes See also: Mounds and Moundbuilders. The exact number of older people among Native American populations has been difficult to determine. . Great Serpent Mound. the elderly are treated with respect. whereas reaching the age of sixty would be meaningless. grandparenting or physical disability would qualify a person as elderly. In most traditional Indian tribal cultures. in general. Traditional Views. The concept of aging is quite different in many native cultures from that of European American society. is 1. one’s chronological age is not an operative factor in defining who that person is. American Indians and Alaska Natives constitute less than 1 percent of all Americans sixty-five years of age and older. but the 2000 census data placed the number at that time at 138. there was no concept equivalent to the modern idea of retirement. and while birthdays are celebrated.439. did not contain burials. making it several hundred years earlier than the Wisconsin mounds. Among native people. unlike most effigy mounds. The mound. and perhaps another 25 percent live in rural areas. About 30 percent of the aged Indian population live on reservations. Ohio Mound Builders.

Indian tribes are permitted to define. the prestige associated with old age has persisted among Native Americans. based on their own criteria. Today. If capable of performing minimal. Contemporary Issues. American Indian elders are not wellserved by a definition of aging set by a chronological measure. Only at the extreme. Despite the trend in many native cultures toward a quick death once productivity was impossible. Disruptive changes have altered much about Indian life. elderly native people generally enjoyed high esteem because of their age and experience. were they either abandoned or likely to dispose of themselves. old people were treated with respect. At many of these institutions the children were made to feel inferior and were ridiculed when they spoke their language or showed respect for their Indian heritage. In some societies. when they became physically unable to care for themselves.Elderly / 261 Each tribal culture and society had different attitudes toward the elderly. under Title VI of the Older Americans Act. very often serving in tribal positions of leadership. on the whole. they were “rulers of the house” and simply died of old age. even symbolic labors. Studies by the National Council on American Indians indicate that American Indians living on reservations at age forty-five show the same age characteristics that other Americans do at sixty-five—a reminder that many racial and ethnic groups experience premature aging under the stress of harsh living conditions. At times they were assisted in this by family members. where they became too incapacitated to function. Because native people often measure age by productive capability and social role rather than by chronology. In other societies. Many Native American senior citizens were sent away to Indian boarding schools as children. treated with respect and honor. and Native American elders are still. the elderly “gave themselves back to the spirit world” by starvation or exposure to extremes of weather. separated forcibly from their families. Retirement has also be- . who will be considered an older Indian and therefore will be eligible to receive Title VI services.

262 / Elderly come more accepted. Lucy Ganje Sources for Further Study John. Many American Indian elders living in cities are deprived of social contact with each other and with younger members of their tribes. extended family households is greatly exaggerated in the context of an urban setting. New York: Garland. 1995. Age Through Ethnic Lenses. do maintain a tradition of communal sharing among family members and a sense of family responsibility for the care of the elderly. however. Md. city-living American Indians have not congregated in neighborhoods. Kinship and Social Organization. See also: Education: Pre-contact. Some studies also indicate that the popular image of older American Indians living in multigenerational. Laura Katz. 2001. Olson. it is not uncommon for elderly people to help support younger family members with their oldage benefits. Many elderly Indian people living in urban areas were part of a large American Indian federal relocation project following World War II. and because of high rates of unemployment among native people generally. Lanham. Social Integration of an Elderly Native American Population. .: Rowman & Littlefield. The fact that the elderly represent the repositories of traditional knowledge is widely recognized and is a major factor associated with their good treatment and high status. Unlike other ethnic groups. Randy A. This population has now reached retirement age and many have no intention of moving back to the reservation. Many native cultures.

and clothing for survival. who performed undesirable labor. Indians had extensive trading networks throughout Canada. In the pre-contact period. Tribal groups in the Mississippi River area. European migration to North America was primarily motivated by economic interests. Agricultural goods. employment and unemployment patterns in the twentieth century reflected the profound disruption of Indian life that occurred following contact. but little is known about how the labor systems were organized. Everyone worked for the common good. and tanned hides. shelter. In these societies. In these subsistence economies. manufactured items such as jewelry. pottery. The first phase of . Much of North America and Canada was inhabited by nomadic hunting and gathering societies and semisedentary agriculturalists. and Central and South America had highly specialized labor forces in which both men and women participated. Arrival of Europeans. and social position. division of labor was based primarily on gender and was less complex. These societies were organized hierarchically and sometimes incorporated slaves (captives from other tribes). Such cultures stressed sharing and egalitarianism as a way to ensure the well-being of the people. there was little opportunity for members to specialize in any one area. such as art or medicine. with most tribal members working toward the common goal of providing food. talent. the United States.Employment and Unemployment / 263 Employment and Unemployment Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Before contact with Europeans. and natural resources such as seashells were bartered or sold. and Central and South America. the southwestern United States. Division of labor was determined in part by gender. Labor was required to sustain this extensive trade network. the labor of American Indians served group or tribal purposes. Traditional Labor.

in turn. government to remove Indians from areas coveted by European Americans and resettle them on poor lands. The relative lack of demand for Indian labor. In return for their labor. those Indian people who obtained European trade goods would redistribute them among tribal members. guns. which required the incorporation of Indian labor. and it caused considerable change in the work patterns of tribal groups. The fur trade was an important source of labor for American Indians. and. thus maintaining the tribal ideal of generosity and sharing.S. knives. Indian labor during this period was still directed toward the good of the tribe. needles. Indians became a hindrance in this emerging economic system. women were required to tan more hides for trade. but the fur trade period ended as animal populations decreased and as European fashion changed. Guns and traps permitted more men to hunt and kill more game. During this period. Indians were paid with European trade goods—metal pots. but increasingly tribal welfare depended on sources outside the tribe. Indian men and women labored to supply processed hides and pelts for the fur trade. hunting and fishing were no longer possible on the restricted land base. caused the U.264 / Employment and Unemployment European-Indian relations revolved around the fur trade. and a variety of domestic goods. The reservation system afforded little opportunity for Indian people to provide adequately for their families and it is directly linked to contemporary reservation poverty. and traditional agricultural practices were not viable or were discouraged. . For the most part. The trade goods changed the work patterns of both Indian men and women. The decline in the fur trade coincides with the emergence of the United States and marks a period of change in the economic position of Indians. The European American population was rapidly increasing and there was an increased desire for land. coupled with the high demand for Indian land. Indians were no longer needed as laborers in the new economy. The early period of the fur trade is marked by relative equality among Europeans and native people. The reservation system was firmly in place by the late nineteenth century.

beadwork. and encourage farming and ranching opportunities on reservations. The Problem of Indian Administration. the Indian Reorganization Act was passed in 1934. particularly the Indian Division of the Civilian Conservation Corps. which employed and trained more than eighty-five thousand Indians in nine years. A 1928 study. .Employment and Unemployment / 265 During the early reservation period. During the same period. the Bureau of Indian Affairs organized a division to place Indians in off-reservation jobs. The 1930 census indicates that 80 percent of Indian men were working for wages. and in mines. most notably the General Allotment Act (1887). reduced the Indian land base and subdivided the land among many heirs so that productive use of reservation lands became nearly impossible. Federal Indian policy. The 1930’s. Partly in response to this study. This intended to enable tribes to consolidate severely checkerboarded reservation lands. so they were unable to sell their labor for wages off the reservations. mostly in agricultural jobs. commonly known as the Meriam Report. take out low-interest loans to establish economic ventures on reservations. or other small items. and off-reservation. Income from these sources was small. In the 1930’s. however. The Great Depression prevented any significant business development on reservations. baskets. federal Indian policy sought to address the problem of high unemployment and poor economic opportunity on the reservations. criticized federal Indian policy that intentionally removed Indian control over lands and resources and contributed to the widespread poverty and unemployment that characterized reservations. High Indian unemployment rates caused gradual loosening of federal policies of confinement to reservations. policemen. Indian women sometimes sold pottery. and by the early twentieth century Indians commonly worked in off-reservation jobs such as laborers on farms and ranches. Most of this work was unskilled. seasonal. and laborers. some Indian men worked for federal agents as freight haulers. Government policy largely confined Indian people to their reservations. a fair number of Indian people benefited through various New Deal programs.

After the war. As a result. and many reservations were distant from markets. Thousands of Indians joined the wage labor force during World War II (1939-1945). (Raymond P.266 / Employment and Unemployment Changes in the Mid-twentieth Century. many Indian people remained in urban centers. Reservations remained poor and unemployment high. Few jobs came to the reservations. Additionally. Indians were removed to urban areas where jobs could be found. They received job training and housing assis- Image not available An Ojibwa language professor at Bay Mills Community College. large-scale Indian urban migration continued after World War II and was encouraged by the federal policy of the 1950’s known as relocation. tribes had difficulty securing loans. Malace) . while those who returned to reservations began to focus on reservation economic development and employment. reservation laws made business investments difficult. however. off-reservation seasonal farming jobs became scarce with increasing technology. Through the relocation program. Many Indian men and women joined the armed services or moved to urban areas to work in war industries.

Success has been mixed. were seasonal or part-time. Few businesses locate on reservations. Many of the jobs held. tribal governments were strengthened and tribes began pursuing economic development initiatives independent of the federal government. Urban Indians experience higher employment rates and per capita incomes than reservation Indians. 60 percent of Indians sixteen years and older were in the labor force. location. By the 1980 census. more than half the Indian population resided in urban areas. forestry. and unemployment rates are in the 80 to 90 percent range on some reservations. as compared to the total population. They remain poor. Modern Labor Force Participation. either tribal or federal. Indians continue to move to cities because of poor economic opportunities on reservations. the largest single source of jobs is government. Concurrently. however. and a skilled labor force. however. On the majority of reservations. The federal government abandoned relocation programs in the late 1960’s and turned its attention to revitalizing reservation economies. or manufacturing. and 26 percent of American Indians were living below the poverty level. the median income of Indian workers was considerably less than that of the total population. . construction. coupled with federal Indian policy. primarily due to lack of resources. fishing. According to the 2000 census. capital. Fewer Indians. In 2000. The lack of any meaningful jobs on reservations. contributed to unprecedented Indian migration to urban areas from 1950 to 1980. were employed in managerial or professional specialty occupations.Employment and Unemployment / 267 tance. Despite many sincere efforts. with per capita income slightly ahead of urban African Americans and well behind urban whites. and unemployment rates more than double those of the urban white population. Census figures on labor force calculate only those who are employed or are actively seeking employment. and reservations still have high unemployment and poverty rates. there has been little economic investment or growth on reservations. A larger number of American Indians than the total population were employed in service jobs: farming.

Indian unemployment remains high. however. During the 1980’s.” is being explored by many tribes as both a source of income for the tribe and as a way to provide jobs. Female Indians are employed primarily in low-skilled. Tribal governments are increasingly asserting their sovereign status and distancing themselves from the federal government in hopes of creating viable economic institutions that will bring job opportunities to the reservations. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. 1990. but male Indian labor is largely confined to manual occupations. Indian participation in the labor force has increased as Indians have moved off reservations. and other factors. Ambler provides a historic analysis of problems. success was limited. The gaming operations have brought jobs to many reservations. compared to 69 percent of the white population. paternalistic gov- . weather. is the education deficit among Indians. Indian gaming. Tribal governments look to gaming as a way to strengthen reservation infrastructures and improve the lives of the people while they search for other means to address the dual need for Indian employment and real economic development on the reservations. Federal law continues to frustrate these efforts. Barrett Sources for Further Study Ambler. however. Carole A. some tribal governments managed to attract businesses and increase employment opportunities. sometimes referred to as “the new buffalo. Only 56 percent of American Indians graduate from high school. but these tend to be low-wage service positions such as cashiers and waitresses. but overall. even in urban settings. Breaking the Iron Bonds: Indian Control of Energy Development. Job opportunities on the reservations are scarce. More significant. The Indian population is young and lacks jobs experience. Marjane. nonmanual service jobs both on and off the reservation. Urban areas offer more job opportunities.268 / Employment and Unemployment American Indian labor force participation on reservations continues to be low because of a lack of economic opportunities. which are subject to fluctuation because of economic downturns.

Lawson. and Martha C. Examines what happened to the political and economic life of the Lakota people when the Indian Reorganization Act was implemented on two western reservations. 1982. Explores the devastating economic impact of dams along the Missouri River to Sioux reservations. The Impact of Occupational Dislocation: The American Indian Labor Force at the Close of the Twentieth Century. . Littlefield. Cornell. Michael. eds. Kasari. This broader view permits one to see clearly some of the reasons reservation economic development has been so bleak to this point and why it is so vital for the continuation of tribal governments. Alice. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Thomas. A collection of ten essays examines how wage labor was critical not only to Native American individuals. as a result. rather it takes a broad look at the complexity of Indian-white relations in the United States. 1992. 1988. but to community survival. In the 1950’s a series of dams upset reservation economies and caused long-lasting economic and cultural hardships. The Return of the Native: American Indian Political Resurgence. Cornell’s book does not focus directly on Indian economic issues. The reform agenda of the IRA was not really designed to transfer power to tribal governments.Employment and Unemployment / 269 ernment policy. 1996. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. Economics is a strand woven into this tapestry. Stephen. tribes continue to be hamstrung in attempts to develop economically or politically apart from the federal government. Biolsi. and exploitation which have prevented economic development on Indian lands. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. 1999. A study comparing how urban Indians and reservation Indians fare in the work force. Dammed Indians. Native Americans and Wage Labor: Ethnohistorical Perspectives. Knack. Organizing the Lakota: The Political Economy of the New Deal on the Pine Ridge and Rosebud Reservations. New York: Garland. New York: Oxford University Press. She focuses on the potential for energy development on reservations as a source of economic revitalization for tribes. Patricia.

Relocation. Around the world and throughout history. Urban Indians. Much of the analysis is still meaningful. It is based on experience. See also: Agriculture. et al. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. and intellectual inquiry. indigenous peoples have developed belief systems that shape their lifestyles to their natural environment in order to enhance their survival within it. and adaptations—the underlying philosophy of these cultures is a respect for the natural world and their place within it. this worldview is relatively distinct from other aspects of its ideology. Lewis. The distinction between worldview and religious influence. The ethnophilosophy. of any culture is a description of how that culture explains the structure and workings of the world in which it lives. beliefs. . It explores in depth the poor economic conditions on reservations in the 1920’s and the reasons for them. or worldview. Ethnophilosophy and Worldview Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Despite the diversity among indigenous American cultures—their environments. Myths are a link between philosophy and religion. Definitions. a behavioral guide that relies to some extent on emotional appeal. 1928. which might be defined as the description of a group or individual’s relationship with that world. One of these other aspects that is especially important is religion. observation. In many cultures. Such has been the case among the indigenous peoples of North America. Ranching.270 / Ethnophilosophy and Worldview Meriam. The Problem of Indian Administration. This seminal work appraises the failings of the federal government to give Indian people a true voice in their governance and destiny.

There are always sacred and unknowable “great mysteries. though perhaps reality in metaphor. and many rituals. It is not only foolish but also disrespectful to ask too much about the great mysteries. brotherhood with particular plants or animals. dreams and visions are welcomed. the necessity for maintaining balance in all aspects of life. there are several recurrent themes that appear across the spectrum of differences. It is wisdom. Although there are many different belief systems and rituals among the groups. These motifs appear repeatedly in art and decoration. Fasting and solitude are also common practices. by reverence for its infinite sanctity. the use of hallucinogens facilitates the vision experience. Spending a period of time in a sweatlodge is often part of the preparation. constant attention to these themes is an integral experience of daily life. Recurrent Themes. and the sanctity of the circle. even they are barred. even sought. There are rituals to prepare seekers for a vision experience. This blending has been both a strength and a weakness for the indigenous American peoples since Europeans came to their lands. Sometimes.” Their existence is recognized and appreciated as part of the bond that ties people to life. Wisdom is always a gift. immigrant culture. Reverent. is much less clear-cut in North American native cultures. In some cultures. dance. . most North American natives consider their lives to be constant expressions of their abiding respect for the natural world and their place in it. These are the acceptance of visions and dreams as legitimate realities. as sources of wisdom. Although shamans and members of secret religious societies might have more insight than the average tribe member into the ultimate and unknowable. As cultures and individuals.Ethnophilosophy and Worldview / 271 however. from too much direct inquiry: All that they are to know will be revealed to them. The extent to which these closely tied phenomena shape the daily lives and activities of indigenous peoples has been unrecognized or disregarded by the dominant. these experiences are spontaneous. In many Native American cultures. music. Whatever information is gained is considered reality. though.

Wolves. All life comes from and is dependent upon Mother Earth. Its message is shared with the tribe and may become part of the myth system for that tribe.272 / Ethnophilosophy and Worldview Usually during one of these dream or vision experiences some animal or mythical being communicates with the participant. which provided Northwest Coast Indians with material for their homes. Many believe that after death their spirits will return to their source within Mother Earth. the only way to regard Mother Earth is with gratitude and reverence. In many indigenous cultures. Animals. The earth as mother is a major theme both in myth and in daily life. Imagery from the dream or vision may be used later by their artists who make masks or who paint pottery. Plants. Although North American natives’ lives were particularly dependent on these living things. he apologizes to it first or explains to it the necessity for its death. certain plants and animals have always been accorded special status. It may be woven into the pattern of a blanket or basket or may become part of a costume worn during a ceremonial dance. Animals are sustained by the plants that the earth supports. squash. . fish. Corn. both living and nonliving. are revered in that region. Nonliving parts of the natural world were also valued. Because of Native Americans’ traditional reliance on the abundance of the land. Several groups believe that they emerged as a people from the earth. Cedar trees. boats. Buffalo. and Mother Earth. when a person needs to kill something to use it. Crops emerge from the earth and are nourished by her. caribou. they recognized the worth of all forms of life and took care not to harm them if possible. Therefore. and whales were common sources of game food. and containers for storage and cooking. beans. clothing. and snakes are important symbols of wisdom and strength. deer. Native Americans accept their place in the natural world as being a part of creation rather than being separate from it. Some believe that future generations are developing within the mother now and will emerge from the mother as long as humankind exists. and tobacco were traditional crops. They share equal status with other parts of creation. eagles. bears. rice.

and their subjects lived within strict caste systems. Personal lives must be kept in balance by respectful attitudes. The model for the United States’ government was influenced by the Iroquois’ Confederacy of Six Nations. which is one of the oldest continuously functioning systems of governance in the world. as well as the ocean. Political systems have varied widely among groups. They must treat with respect all that is taken from their surroundings. their governments involving representatives in voting councils. are considered sacred to those who live near them. some North American tribal leaders were monarchs. it is the responsibility of those currently living to take care of the site both physically. by not scarring or polluting it and spiritually. In pre-contact days. Native Americans see it as their responsibility not to disturb natural balances. Balance in the natural world and in individual lives is seen as crucial for survival. ethical behavior. Therefore. Even a plainlooking small stone can carry a prayer if it is handled reverently. certain gems and minerals have particular symbolic importance. caves. When a person is suffering because he or she is out of balance. Life in Balance. On a somewhat smaller scale. and avoidance of excess in order to maintain physical and mental health. In their relationship with the environment. These sites may be revered because the natives believe that their ancestors originated there or because their ancestors are buried there. Solid forms may be fashioned into amulets or may be used in rituals. clay and various pigments. Other groups enjoyed relative democracy. or rivers. are used for ceremonial body paint. It may be that the tribe believes that its future lies there— that the coming generations will need those places for their lives. They must not take more resources than they need for their survival or take more than the environment can bear to give.Ethnophilosophy and Worldview / 273 Certain mountains or rock formations. a healer or shaman may be able to help find the cause. Balance must also be maintained in relationships within their communities. for example. by regarding it with respect. The sufferer may not even remember a seemingly minor .

the Kaigini (Haida) of the Pacific coast. are the “Desert People. Whatever the cause. once the source of the problem is recognized. tribal membership offers spiritual as well as social identity. and the Maklaks (Klamath) of the mountainous California-Oregon border region.” and their Papago neighbors. in the shape of the sun and moon. Frequently a tribe is named for its location or for some trait of its community. in the cycle of the seasons. the healer or shaman performs ceremonies and offers advice to help the sufferer regain the balance necessary for good health.” Among them are the Dine (Navajo) of the American Southwest. While these motifs are prominent in nearly all indigenous cultures of North America. the Tohono O’odham. which means “River People.274 / Ethnophilosophy and Worldview transgression committed several years before. in the choreography of dances. The circular pattern is reiterated in the shape of many tribes’ houses. many of the ways in which they are honored might not seem obvious. the Pimas’ indigenous name is Akimel O’odham. they must take care not to break it by either carelessness or intentionally destructive behavior. or a child may be suffering because one of his or her parents unknowingly did something before the child was even conceived. A . and in the form of religious structures. For example. and in the nests of birds and the webs of spiders. and as seemingly insignificant as the proper way to move about in the home are all matters related to the philosophy of respect for the worlds among which the various American indigenous cultures live. and since the indigenous people live within it. Tribal Names and Traditions. as major as the education of its children.” Many tribes are known in their native tongues simply as “the People. All creation is bound by a sacred circle. Most tribes credit mythical figures or their ancestors with having provided tribal names. The circle expresses itself repeatedly throughout the natural world—in the rounded vault of the sky. in the hoops of games. Because of the sacred source for these names. the Nimipu (Nez Perce) of eastern Washington state. Factors as basic as the name by which a tribe knows itself and its environment.

Everything the children learn must be relevant to their lives. they come to understand the metaphors and realities that are the bridges connecting their people’s history. Indian children are given instruction in the proper way to behave and are introduced to their origins through stories and myths told by parents and relatives or by tribal storytellers.”) Certain tribal hunting techniques. Among some tribes. Children are taught not to cross between the fire and their elders so that they are not deprived of any heat or light. The oral tradition continues to be a sacred responsibility for both the teller and the listener. Kaigwu (Kiowa). Although it was customary for the hunters to apologize to the dying and dead. Children are discouraged from asking too many questions. Sentimentalization Versus Reality. or “Real People”. “First Men”. It is important to realize that one should not become carried away with oversentimentalizing the worldviews and practices of Native Americans. religion. the pattern of movement in the homes is always in a clockwise direction. Before they had horses to use in their hunting expeditions. “Beautiful People. attest the side of Indian life that sentimentalists do not consider. and social survival of the children individually and for the tribe as a whole. philosophy.” In every tribe. and traditions. with the European concept of the “noble savage. In some tribes. and Tsististas (Cheyenne). the number of . Instead. they are advised over the years to listen to stories several times. (This type of sentimentalizing was prominent in the eighteenth century. spiritual. Anishinabe (Chippewa). Participants in nearly all religious and political meetings gather in a circle. as well as some tribes’ capturing and selling of slaves and cruelty in warfare. the method that several tribes used to slay buffalo was to herd and stampede them into running off cliffs. it is vital for the physical. the way that the sun moves across the sky.Ethnophilosophy and Worldview / 275 few variations on this are Ani-yun-wiya (Cherokee). or “Main People”. As the children grow up in this oral tradition. even the way people move about within the group or inside their homes or religious structures is an expression of respect.

a large portion of the Chinook economy was the slave trading that they did up and down the coast. Most tribes that practiced human sacrifice used prisoners who had been captured in conflicts. Most cases of cannibalism involved using the victims’ hearts to gain the enemies’ valor and strength. Comanches took Spaniards as slaves. Human sacrifice and cannibalism were not unknown. cultural. The Kwakiutl. Taking slaves was a common practice for tribes in many parts of the continent. Sometimes non-natives were enslaved. Throughout their history with European immigrants. and many carcasses remained at the foot of the cliffs to become carrion. The Pawnee sacrificed captured females—or one of their own. The newcomers did not see themselves as being an integral part of their natural envi- . and spiritual—because of the ethnophilosophical differences between the two groups. When Europeans began arriving on the shores of North America. The potlatch. Immigrant Philosophy Conflict. or who would not make good wives. Often these slaves were captured from other tribes during raids for that purpose. In the Pacific Northwest. Those who were not suitable for slaves or sacrificial purposes. also used it as a political tool to humiliate their enemies and to gain power over them. Native Americans have suffered near annihilation—physical. if necessary—as part of a ritual to ensure an ample harvest. trading them for horses. they brought with them a philosophy that was radically different from that of the natives they encountered.276 / Ethnophilosophy and Worldview animals lost was in excess of what their tribes could use. were often tortured before they were killed. Several tribes in the Southeast captured other natives for the English and Spanish to use on their ships and in the Caribbean colonies. The Ute captured people for other tribes to use for slaves. for example. including African Americans taken by the Cherokee. the celebration among British Columbian and Pacific Northwest natives that has been seen as a symbol of generosity and a ceremony of sharing the host’s wealth among the guests. was not always an altruistic event.

Athapaskan/Apache. Introduction by the prime minister of Norway. Sources of Life. Highwater. 1993. simple language. Many photographs and maps. Many photographs. 1977. San Francisco: Mercury House. New York: Simon & Schuster.and postcontact attitudes among Cherokee.. Tsaile. a source of conflict that has been disastrous to Native American communities across the continent. compiled by a global newswire. Inter Press Service. Touch the Earth: A Self-Portrait of Indian Existence. The essential difference in worldview was. Lawrence. Peggy V. The Primal Mind. They saw themselves as separated from it by their level of civilization—by how far they believed they had risen above the brutality and unpredictability of the natural world and by how well they had managed to exploit its resources. Joy Sources for Further Study Beck.: Navajo Community College Press. Marcella T. includes suggested readings. comp. 1981. Interesting non-American editorial perspectives. Insightful and visually beautiful.. Native Americans’ quotations from the last three hundred years. The Sacred: Ways of Knowledge. French. Psychological Change and the American Indian: An Ethnohistorical Analysis. Focuses on educational policies with discussion of pre. T. Extensive bibliography and film lists. New York: Garland. Jamake.Ethnophilosophy and Worldview / 277 ronment. Academic. C. 1987. Extensive bibliography. theoretical approach. and continues to be. Essays by the world’s indigenous peoples. and Anna L. . Well organized and well documented. participants in it who had to obey its laws. Walters. McLuhan. Well documented. The author’s views are based on academic studies and on life experience in both Blackfeet (Blood) and non-native cultures. and Plains Sioux. New York: Harper & Row. Discusses several North American cultures while concentrating on southwestern peoples. Story Earth: Native Voices on the Environment. comp. Philosophy in elegant. including American Indians. Ariz. 1971.

1988. Religious Specialists. social life. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press. and customs of the Beaver Indians in British Columbia. Oreg. Wisdomkeepers: Meetings with Native American Spiritual Elders. Well documented. Hillsboro. and Harvey Arden. The introduction includes academic discussion of sources and functions of myths in general and of their value to Native Americans specifically. past and present. Wall.278 / Ethnophilosophy and Worldview Nerburn.: New World Library. 1988. Wisdom of the Elders: Honoring Sacred Native Visions of Nature. 1992. Calif. Suzuki. Native American Wisdom. Mother Earth. Steve. A broadranging anthology. eds. and Peter Knudtson. . Christopher. Vecsey. See also: Children. Sacred Narratives. Scholarly but readable. including North America. Romanticized non-native assumptions are examined. and Louise Mengelkoch. Some photographs and a long reference list. Moving text and photographs. theologians. David. Sweatlodges and Sweatbaths. Not an academic work but informative and insightful. Imagine Ourselves Richly: Mythic Narratives of North American Indians. New York: Crossroad. Ridington. 1991. Oral Literatures. Anthropological study of the philosophy. New York: Bantam Books. discussing ways that philosophical concepts are expressed in daily life. Trail to Heaven: Knowledge and Narrative in a Northern Native Community. Long quotations from interviews with several American Indians. Short quotes from numerous Native Americans. Robin. San Rafael. and social scientists. Visions and Vision Quests.: Beyond Words. Religion. Kent. Several epigraphs by scientists from many disciplines. 1990. Views of indigenous peoples from around the world.

certain tribal members don special masks which they believe give them the power to cure disease. The False Face Ceremony refers both to the rite performed by members of the False Face Society during the Midwinter Ceremony and to individual healing practices during which members of the society control sickness with the power of the spirit in the mask and the blowing or rubbing of ashes on the patient’s body. bent noses. recognizing that Shagodyoweh-gowah (one of the names for the Great False Face) has tremendous power. The mouths vary. Tricksters. The original “Great False Face” comes from an origin story and is depicted as a hunchback with a bent nose. although tricksters occur in Iroquois legends with many names and manifestations. Midwinter Ceremony. Glenn J. and feed him cornmeal mush. The False Face Society uses wooden masks with deepset eyes. His name links him to the legend of the test of moving a mountain. the society comes to the longhouse to enable people to fulfill particular dreams or to renew dreams during a ritual called the Doorkeeper’s Dance. or Creator. without which he would lose his balance. arched eyebrows. Shagodyoweh-gowah agrees that if humans will make portrait masks of him. The Great False Face is the great trickster figure. and wrinkles. Schiffman See also: Masks. in which he engaged with Hawenio.False Face Ceremony / 279 False Face Ceremony Tribes affected: Iroquois tribes Significance: During the False Face Ceremony. but they are most often “O”-shaped or spoon-shaped (a horizontal figure-eight shape). make tobacco offerings. call him “grandfather” or “great one” (gowa). tells the Great False Face that his job is to rid the earth of disease. . His movement is mimicked during the Doorkeeper’s Dance. At midwinter. Shagodyoweh-gowah travels the world using a great white pine as a cane. large. Often spiny protrusions are carved on the mask. he will give the humans the power to cure disease by blowing hot ashes. Hawenio.

When the Northeastern Indian nations broke up and moved west or north. which was burned. Feasts. They removed the flesh. The inside was lined with beaver robes. bark. and wrapped the remains in beaver robes. Family members exhumed the bodies and prepared them for the ceremony. At the site. a large pit was dug. it became increasingly difficult to gather tribes for a Feast of the Dead.280 / Feast of the Dead Feast of the Dead Tribes affected: Algonquian. In turn. tribal councils gathered and announced the date and location for a Feast of the Dead. Every few years. which was covered with mats. reestablish friendships. The Mohawk and Seneca tribes continued to practice a variation of the ceremony into the twentieth century. Religion. Leslie Stricker See also: Death and Mortuary Customs. The bones of the dead and the goods that had been buried with them were suspended from a platform. Iroquois Significance: The Feast of the Dead provided an outlet for mourning the dead and promoted tribal unity. . The Feast of the Dead was a Native American religious ceremony that provided several villages a chance to gather together. and logs. it was also practiced by Huron and Iroquois nations. each family threw their deceased and grave goods into the pit. The bodies of the dead were disinterred from their temporary burial sites to be reburied in a common grave. Each village then traveled to the placed selected by the councils. and collectively mourn their dead. Though the Feast of the Dead is frequently referred to as an Algonquin ceremony. Huron.

Native Americans. Feasts accompanying the meetings of secular societies usually were sponsored by a person or persons who were seeking membership in the society or by the person at whose . Unlike European and Asian feasts. Family feasts were sponsored by the family as a communal unit. a success in diplomacy or war. their assistance would be repaid later when they were sponsoring feasts and needed assistance. feasts that were part of a sacred ceremony were more formalized in their structure and might include fixed prayers or practices. Some feasts formed part of seasonal sacred ceremonies. while secular feasts usually had greater flexibility. American Indian feasts tended not to be elaborate affairs.Feasts / 281 Feasts Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indians traditionally celebrated special occasions with special meals. although a head of the household usually was conceived as the sponsor. and still others commemorated family events. The sponsor was expected to provide food for a feast. in common with most peoples around the world. In general. or the completion of a house. such as the visit of a dignitary. there were certain common features. Regardless of the type of feast. celebrated special occasions with communal meals. but some of the matrilineal tribes considered a woman to head the family. and kin often would be called upon to assist. the naming of a child. generally rendered as “feasts” in English. While the meals often included ingredients and dishes that might appear at any meal. and she would serve as sponsor. feasts as part of sacred ceremonies usually included specified dishes and practices. while the more secular feasts followed less rigid guidelines of expected behavior and courtesy. feasts usually featured choice ingredients and a wider diversity of foods than other meals. others accompanied meetings of secular voluntary societies. In many tribes. Common Features. this would be a man. and they were presented with the same implements that would be used in everyday eating.

Ceremonies serving similar purposes were conducted by Pueblo agriculturalists at harvest time. Many feasts were part of the ceremonies surrounding the beginning of the season when an important food became available. Feasts accompanying sacred ceremonies would be sponsored by the tribe as a whole or by its chief as its representative. would be presented to the chief. . except those menstruating. Details of manners varied from tribe to tribe. chief. Among the Nootka of the Northwest Coast. ensuring that future generations of salmon would be plentiful and well-formed. The sponsor had to take special care that no foods were included that would be taboo for any of the diners. Under certain conditions. and this staple was recognized as critical to survival. This ceremony included social dances.282 / Feasts house the meeting was to be held. salmon captured during their fall spawning runs were dried for use throughout the year. and a feast centered on the new corn. Agriculturalists also held feasts within harvest festivals. Many Eastern tribes. regardless of who caught them. the forgiving of transgressions. particularly if a feast was to honor a prominent person. The first catch of salmon. but the male head of household. the sponsor and his immediate kin might abstain from eating during the feast. such as the Cherokee. often called the Green Corn Dance. who would sprinkle them with goose down while greeting the fish with a formalized welcome. the rekindling of fire. This thanksgiving offering to the gods was performed in silence. at the time of the earliest corn harvest. Bones and innards from this feast would be returned to the water. food was prepared by female members of the sponsoring group and was then ladled out by them from a communal pot onto each diner’s bowl or plate. or religious leader usually would signal the beginning of the feast by lifting up a bit of the food. held a four. sometimes presenting it to the four cardinal points. appointing another guest to do the serving. Women. Small family feasts usually would be served by the female head of household. and everyone (except menstruating women) would partake of the food. would be designated to prepare the salmon. Typically.or eight-day ceremony. then dropping it to the ground or into the fire. for example.

the feast was held after four days. especially in the Plains. Major ceremonies lasted eight days. while the Iroquois waited ten days. while minor ceremonies lasted only four days. and participants would travel to that village. were characterized by a feast following the other activities. enjoying the food that was given them by placing it on the ground or passing it through the fire. This was accompanied by a feast in the evening. Many tribes maintained that a feast should be held in honor of a recently deceased person at a fixed number of days after that person’s death. and women and others not permitted to participate in the sacred kiva rituals were welcomed at the feasts. some groups waited several months. dressed them in the best of clothes. reverently stripped the remaining flesh from the bones. when the dead were conceived to return for the feast. For most of the Plains tribes. The feasts that were part of these ceremonies served the practical purpose of feeding visitors and others whose ritual obligations kept them from regular eating arrangements. Sometimes food was brought ready-cooked to the meet- . for example. depending on the tribe and the society.Feasts / 283 Memorial Feasts. given the number of ceremonies per year. held the Feast of the Dead in autumn. The Huron. and laid them to their final rest in a communal burial pit. such as the myriad religious ceremonies held by the Hopi. These feasts typically were family-sponsored. Societies. The Inuit and most Northwest Coast tribes also held communal feasts for their dead in the winter. at which time they disinterred their dead from the previous year. Other feasts were part of calendric festivals. These feasts followed different protocols. Other tribes held special memorial feasts for all the dead of the tribe at a certain date or season. Other sacred ceremonies focused on the dead. sponsored by the entire community and dedicated to the well-being and memory of the dead. fully one-quarter of the year could be taken up with ceremonies. To share the burden of sponsorship. different villages would sponsor different ceremonies each year. and Guests. These feasts were viewed as a secular part of the overall ceremonies. Calendric Festivals. The meetings of volunteer societies.

Time and again. in other cases it was prepared during or after the meeting. Second. or family. Unlike feasts held with ceremonies or institutional activities. This meal was sumptuous. they were flexible. universally were impressed by Indian hospitality. described dozens of feasts at which nearly starving Indians marshaled their scant resources to honor him. As described in native and European books. since these were the ones that early European writers were most likely to have witnessed and recorded. an additional type of feast also existed: the royal feast. The Royal Feast. Two common threads. often involving extravagant numbers of dishes unavailable to commoners and served only to the Aztec emperor. so that he would not be seen in the act of eating. permitting the sponsoring family to adjust according to circumstances. He would sample the vari- . Instead. to be shared by members of the tribe. The emperor ate alone. kept warm. they seldom had a rigorous. Feasts north of Mexico were communal affairs. a voluntary society. the early sixteenth century Spanish traveler who entered North America through Florida and left it through the Southwest and West Mexico. since only members were expected to attend and a herald notified them individually. even those inclined to disparage Indian culture. First. separated even from his retainers (servants) by a gilded door. one that had been shared by thousands of Indian visitors before the coming of the Europeans. each person brought his or her own bowl. however. Europeans. the arrival of a significant visitor was celebrated with a feast of the best foods available. and ladled out to members. the emperor would have up to three hundred different dishes prepared for his dinner. Alvár Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca. Among the best-known early Indian feasts are those honoring guests. united these feasts.284 / Feasts ing. prescribed structure. Other writers echoed this experience. Feasts held by families to commemorate special events were the most variable. and they were served from a communal pot or pots. there was no public invitation. Farther south. in Mexico. accounts noted that even in times of famine or personal tragedy.

drawing on the Florentine Codex and other primary sources. of the Northwest Coast tribes. Barber Sources for Further Study Beck. Anchorage: Alaska Northwest Books. Benitez. these feasts permitted those experiencing bad years to share in the good fortune of those with abundant food. 1993. Bilingual in Spanish and English. over a lifetime. feasts gave people an opportunity to demonstrate their common bond. Leftovers were eaten by guards. Other ceremonies unite the spirits and the people in the sharing of food. They filled the bellies of those involved. This type of feast. aggrandizing a single individual and setting that person apart from others. bond the dead with the living members of the tribe. Potlatch: Native Ceremony and Myth on the Northwest Coast. de Pre-Hispanic Cooking—Cocina Prehispánica. For many ceremonies. In addition. Emphasizes the cultural context of feasting. An excellent distillation of information on Aztec foodways. since food sharing is a universal human symbol of oneness. Feasts served many functions in traditional Native America. every community would experience good years and bad years. which was significant in terms of ceremonies at which large numbers of visitors were present. A very readable book treating major ceremonies. passing one or another on to a retainer on the other side of the screen. as a special favor. Ceremonies for the dead. 1974. in other ceremonies. at which the living eat the food and the dead share symbolically. the entire community or tribe feasts together and demonstrates its commonality. Mary Giraudo. was entirely alien to Indian practices north of Mexico. including feasts. where feasts were an act of community. In a broader sense. Ana M. but the principle is the same.Feasts / 285 ous dishes. it is only a voluntary society of perhaps only a single family. and the generosity of one year would be repaid subsequently. Mexico City: Ediciones Euroamericanas. Functions. . Russell J.

N. Bulletin of the Smithsonian Institution. this monograph summarizes food. 1973. Iroquois Foods and Food Preparation. Bureau of American Ethnology 137. This classic and massive work contains detailed descriptions of the tribes of the Southeast. Food Preparation and Cooking. and related subjects for the Iroquois tribes in great detail. Little detail on feasts as such. . Reprint. and Richard de Rochemont. 1976.: Doubleday. 1965. Eating in America: A History. 1977. Music. The most widely available of American Indian cookbooks. A widely available compilation of several ceremonies from different tribes. Swanton. New York: Viking Press. and Asia. John R. including considerable information on feasts and food. Includes some extended quotations from early accounts describing feasts. Potlatch. Waugh. economic. and Jean Anderson. Ottawa: National Museums of Canada. New York: William Morrow. Mich. Grosse Point. 1916. Frederick W. food preparation. Jamake. 1969. Africa. Green Corn Dance. National Museum of Man. Ritual of the Wind: North American Indian Ceremonies. 2001. Washington. and Brian Hayden. Memoir of the Canada Department of Mines. Kimball.Y. and Power. The Indians of the Southeastern United States.: Smithsonian Institution Press. which are divided by culture area. Root. Waverly. Feasts: Archaeological and Ethnographic Perspectives on Food. Politics.: Scholarly Press. eds.C. Michael. Yeffe. Geological Survey 86 (Anthropological Series 12). D. See also: Feast of the Dead. The introduction provides a historic (though somewhat romantic) context for the recipes. feasts. A compilation of fifteen essays examines the cultural. The Art of American Indian Cooking. and Dance. devoting four chapters to Native American foods and cooking. and political significance of feasts from such places as the Americas. but information of the ceremony of which they are part. Garden City.286 / Feasts Dietler. A general history of food and cooking in North America. Perhaps the best work of its kind. Highwater.

the prayer stick. A split feather served as a medal of honor. The feathers on the shaft might be painted red when war was planned. Although not believed to possess inherent power. Among the items of spiritual significance that were decorated with feathers were the calumet. Another way to acquire eagle feathers required a hunter to conceal himself in a covered pit near a baited noose and overpower the snared eagle attracted to the food. Among the Dakota Sioux. third.Feathers and Featherwork / 287 Feathers and Featherwork Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Indian tribes used feathers for decorative and symbolic purposes. each of these exploit feathers had a particular meaning depending on how it was shaped or painted. indicating the warrior had been wounded in battle.” A white feather with a black tip was preferred. Feathers obtained from native birds were an important natural material used by North American Indians for both decorative and symbolic purposes. Feathers would also be obtained through trade. By far the most valued and significant feathers used were those of the eagle. or fourth in counting coup on an enemy. This was a courageous act. The calumet shaft was often heavily decorated with feathers and even the skins and heads of birds. if the feather was cut off at the top it meant that the enemy’s throat had been cut. Indians preferred the feathers of the less common golden eagle found in the western mountains. and the wand. and birds were sometimes raised from eaglets and then plucked at maturity. Eagle feathers were especially important in constructing war bonnets and as “exploit feathers. If the edges were cut. or peace pipe. feathers could be used to represent spiritual powers and actual achievements of the wearers. as the eagle was taken alive. A red spot painted on top represented the killing of an enemy. Eagle feathers were also considered best for feathering arrows. . he may have been fifth. The number of notches in a feather indicated if a warrior had been second.

. quail.288 / Feathers and Featherwork Image not available Feathers served a symbolic as well as decorative function in the ceremonial dress of Native Americans. were believed to bring good luck if hung within the lodge. Feathers of the roadrunner. meadowlark. duck. hawk. and blackbird. called “Medicine Bird” by the Plains tribes. Some California tribes were reputed to have used the scalps of certain small birds as a form of currency. chaparral cock (or roadrunner). Roadrunner feathers were also fashioned into whistles for use in the Medicine Dance. (Unicorn Stock Photos) Other bird species used for various purposes included the wild turkey. woodpecker. bluejay.

War Bonnets. crane. the Migratory Bird Treaty. Fire and Firemaking Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Fire was the Indian’s most versatile tool. and other treaties with nations such as Mexico followed. sometimes topped by a single eagle feather. Both feathers and skins of birds were used. Although allowances were made for American Indians. Elaborate feather robes were constructed by eastern tribes. Elaborate figures or patterns were often created in these feather robes. Dress and Adornment. Heavy depredations by American and European fashion designers in the late nineteenth century threatened many native bird species. also aimed at protecting birds from extensive predation. and altered the environment. provided the focal point for religious ceremonies. and also by some tribes in the west. Patricia Masserman See also: Beads and Beadwork. In 1916. Other tribes made caps of overlapping circles of small feathers. Sometimes feathers of small birds were prepared and used for decoration in the same manner as porcupine quills. it cooked food. and by the early twentieth century. The origins of human use of fire go so far back in prehistoric time that no one can say exactly when it began. the skins sometimes being cut into strips and interwoven to form the garment. and heron feathers to fashion their headdresses. laws such as the Lacey Act of 1900 were passed to protect native birds. Headdresses. Quillwork. It seems probable that .Fire and Firemaking / 289 Woodland Indians of the eastern United States used turkey. this has sometimes caused difficulty for those who wished to continue to use certain feathers for decorative and symbolic purposes. was signed between the United States and Great Britain (for Canada).

and corn that were central to the Indian diet. A “drill”—a stick that is rotated rapidly with the hands with one end set in one of the pits of the hearth—was used. Fire made it possible to cook the meat that Indians obtained by hunting wild animals. The drill-stick shed fine material onto the hearth. shaved or rubbed to act as tinder. The Indians of Alaska used stones to generate sparks. Fire was also central to the religion of many tribes. was placed on the ground and held firmly in place by the knees of the fire maker. Much more widespread. Keeping a fire going was a religious duty. The Indians are known to have used several methods of making fire. Tribal deliberations took place around the council fire. Fire was a cleansing and purifying agent. in the fashion of the flint stone. the bow was moved back and forth.290 / Fire and Firemaking when the ancestors of the North American Indians crossed the land bridge between Siberia and Alaska they brought fire with them. they burned the vegetation. Rapid rotation of the drill could also be produced by looping a string around it and tying both ends to a bow. When they cleared a plot of land of trees to create a field in which to plant crops. and the friction generated by rapid movement produced enough heat to make the material on the hearth smolder. Religious ceremonies nearly always took place around a fire. fire was the tool that Indians used to shape the natural environment to meet their needs. he or she had already prepared some very dry vegetable material. with pits in it. however. they put out the old fires and started a new one. Fire made it possible to keep warm in the colder months that all Indians experienced. Most important of all. In so doing they not only dis- . It made it possible to bake the pottery that was so widely used for containers. Fire was essential for cooking the beans. it made it possible to bake foods and to boil water. squash. A hearth of wood. it could then be blown into life and the tinder touched to it. when the Indians wanted to mark the end of a cycle. was firemaking by wood friction. The possession of fire made many Indian practices possible. it made it possible to brew a variety of drinks.

thrown. gorges (double-pointed spikes on lines. the birch is the most widely known of these. widely noted by the first Europeans to come to America. such as the Hopi. Without fire. Fish and Fishing Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Fish were a dietary mainstay in northern and northwestern North America and a significant part of the diet in most other regions of the continent. Fire. It was common practice. Gordon Source for Further Study Boyd. leisters (spears with grabbing hooks alongside their points). Nancy M.Fish and Fishing / 291 posed of unwanted plant material but also added lime and potash to the soil to make it more fruitful. fish traps. In . many of the cultural practices commonly associated with American Indian societies would have been impossible. Hooks. or dipped. It served another purpose: It drove game animals into groups so they could more easily be hunted. and nets. 1999. Fish were captured by an impressive array of technology. gorges. Nets were set. See also: Food Preparation and Cooking. Robert. harpoons. Religion. and the Land in the Pacific Northwest. weirs (fencelike fish traps) sometimes incorporated set nets. Many of the trees that are associated with Indians of the forest grow only in areas that have been burned over. ed. for whom fish are taboo. This was done to eliminate underbrush and make it easier to move about in the woods. Indians. including hooks and lines. for the Indians to burn the woods each year. all Indians utilized fish for food. Corvallis: Oregon State University Press. and traps sometimes were baited. With the exception of a few tribes. but pitch pines also grow best in burned-over areas. bows and arrows. swallowed by fish).

Shellfish were collected by different methods. All these techniques were widespread in North America. vegetable poisons were thrown into pools to bring stunned or killed fish to the surface. Men most frequently did the fishing. though women often collected fish after they had been poisoned. Lob- This Yurok fisherman was photographed in 1923 by Edward S. Curtis. When spawning fish were dense. Most mollusks were collected by hand or by digging.292 / Fish and Fishing some places. they might be clubbed out of the water or simply grabbed with the hands. work that usually was considered to be like plant gathering and was done by women. (Library of Congress) .

including the olachen. and California. Whales and Whaling. . In this culture area. and maximum advantage of their abundance can be taken only if their flesh can be preserved. Barber See also: Hunting and Gathering. Although shell heaps left from such gathering sometimes are extensive. in New York’s Hudson Valley. Fish were important to tribes of the Atlantic coast. but they did not assume the importance they did in the aforementioned areas. and other crustaceans usually were captured in nets or traps by men. when mammals were less available. Placing fish on racks over low fires dries the meat and impregnates it with chemicals from the smoke. Weirs and Traps. few tribes relied on shellfish heavily. a fatty fish used for candles. crabs.e. and fish can be preserved for several months by this method. The degree of reliance on finfish varied around North America. Tribes of the northern forests of Canada used large quantities of lake fish seasonally. the interior woodlands. These chemicals flavor the meat and inhibit the growth of microorganisms.c. Fish were relatively unimportant in the Plains and the arid Southwest and West. the salmon run was a critical annual event surrounded by religious and social ritual to ensure success. The Inuit of the Arctic also used a considerable amount of fish.Fish and Fishing / 293 sters. this can be accomplished by freezing. where salmon runs provided vast quantities of food that was preserved for use through the year. Russell J. Less intensive river and ocean fishing secured a variety of other fish. Such drying-smoking racks are known archaeologically from as early as 6000 b. but elsewhere the technology must be more complicated. The greatest reliance was in the Pacific Northwest. though sea mammals provided the greater part of their diet. In the far north. Most fish come together in great numbers during seasonal spawning. Salmon. There is no evidence that any Indian tribe used salt to preserve fish or other meat.

and ceramic. western Mexico. were commonly depicted as flute players. Though flutes were widespread throughout the Americas. rattles. in many cases literally manifesting the “voice” of the spirits. and shamanic power. were played during male initiation ceremonies. The flute and similar wind instruments such as pan-pipes and ocarinas were commonly revered by shamans and curers as sacred instruments for contacting the spirit world. called queñas. usually by shamans and participants in ceremonies. and South America. reed flutes up to 6 feet in length. and the American Southwest. including wood. The central character in this cult is a figure identified by modern Hopi as “Kokopelli.294 / Flutes Flutes Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Flutes were played in many American Indian cultures. ceramics. and they were probably derived from Old World paleolithic prototypes.” a mythological hump-backed figure. Major cults centered on the playing of flutes arose in several locales throughout the Americas and flute players are commonly depicted in paintings. bone. and jewelry from South America. A particularly strong version of a flute cult appeared in the American Southwest around 500 c. Masked representations of Kokopelli appear in modern . sometimes depicted as an insect or ithyphallic male and commonly recognizable by his playing of the flute. Flute players figure prominently in several Native American myths and legends. Flutes could be constructed of any appropriate material. the majority of archaeological specimens have been recovered from preserved deposits in the western and southwestern United States.e. In South America. Mexico. deception. reed. Most versions were simple hollow tubes with four or five finger holes to control pitch. the Aztec god of darkness. and hand drums are the oldest and most widespread musical instruments in the New World. such as Tezcatlipoca. Flutes. and several preColumbian deities.

While ceramic pots could be exposed to fire. The masonry bread oven of the Pueblos was introduced by the Spanish. Food Preparation and Cooking Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Cooking techniques among indigenous North American peoples varied according to whether a tribe was mobile or sedentary and whether it used pottery. Wood typically was burned in an open fire. Tribes who made only the latter had to heat liquids in them by adding hot stones. Flat rocks could be used as griddles. never obtaining more than a low simmer. forming a slow-cooking earth oven (aboveground ovens were not used anywhere). especially if they lived in an area with limited fuel. technology. the rest were transformed through techniques constrained by the available ingredients. and a seasonal dance called the Flute Ceremony is specifically devoted to the playing and honoring of large wooden flutes. The greatest constraints surrounded heat for cooking. the fire was made in a pit and covered with dirt. These factors meant that the more mobile tribes. most of whom made little or no pottery. such as animal livers and berries. While a few. Sometimes. commonly were eaten raw. were quite limited in their cooking techniques. Flute playing was traditionally restricted to male shamans and ceremonial participants. especially in the East.Food Preparation and Cooking / 295 Hopi ceremonials. Much of North America had plentiful wood supplies. Music and Song. skin and bark vessels would burn up. Farmer See also: Dances and Dancing. James D. The . though parts of the arid West and the Arctic were deficient. with food or cooking vessels suspended over it or buried in its coals. and energy sources. Most foods in traditional North American Indian cuisines were eaten cooked.

often mixed with greens. or whatever was available. The Wampanoag. for example. for example. berries. Sedentary tribes usually made pottery. ate primarily stews and gruels. and they could exploit full boiling. prepared most of their food by simmering ground seeds and tubers.296 / Food Preparation and Cooking A northern Plains woman preparing a meal in the nineteenth century by blending traditional techniques with European American customs. (Library of Congress) Washoe. based on cornmeal with various additions. meat. Biscuits . Other foods were wrapped in leaves and roasted in the coals.

then ladled into individual serving bowls. while vegetables usually were roasted in the coals. Fire and Firemaking. Indeed. Without refrigeration. eating large chunks of meat was unusual. Sautéing is quick and conserves fuel. and roasting. Meat often was roasted on racks above a fire. using it for sautéing and seasoning. Corn. Pemmican. The Pueblo peoples had no cotton from which to extract oil.Food Preparation and Cooking / 297 were made on rock griddles. the Pima developed sautéing as an adjunct to boiling. was widely used in the East. and drying was most commonly used. Buffalo. the most common meals. Feasts. These and other social conventions made eating an event with cultural. Subsistence. as will most animal fats. but they developed other fuel-saving practices. The Pima grew cotton and extracted oil from its seeds. Salt. and fat. but it requires a fat that will not burn easily. Stews and soups. Every tribe had distinctive rules surrounding cooking and eating. a tasty mixture of dried meat. Fish and meat require a smoky fire to produce a nonperishable product. as well as nutritional. while others were relished. Some foodstuffs. Desert agriculturalists of the Southwest had a special problem: dense populations with limited fuel. and the resultant taste became a flavoring for other dishes. berries. dry easily and well. such as beans and corn. Many tribes offered a prayer before eating. cooked almost immediately. Some dishes. significance. storing food became a major challenge. . Certain foods might be eaten politely only with the hands. like paper-thin piki bread. Pemmican. Russell J. Barber See also: Agriculture. baking. while others required the use of spoons or leaf scoops. Some foods were taboo. and most tribes used meats to complement the plant seasonings collected and cultivated. and dumplings were made from leafwrapped dough. There. Hunting and Gathering. while others pose greater difficulties. were cooked in large pots for an entire extended family.

commercial gambling became a major source of income on Indian reservations across the United States. but it has brought controversy culminating in firefights and death to others. (National Archives) . The arrival of gaming has brought dividends to some native peoples. Four Paiute Indians playing a gambling game in southwestern Nevada during the late nineteenth century. While many Native American cultures practiced forms of gambling as a form of sport (such as the Iroquois peachstone game). there was no prior large-scale experience with gambling as a commercial enterprise. During the late twentieth century.298 / Gambling Gambling Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Gambling facilities have brought needed income to some native peoples. but some tribe members protest its presence on reservations.

schools. hospitals. the Congressional Research Service estimated that more than one hundred Indian tribes participated in some form of gambling.S. which officially legalized gambling on reservations. described the fertile ground gambling enterprises had found in Indian country: . By the fall of 1988. The provisions of the law were two-edged: They required tribes to negotiate with states on types and rules of gaming.000. Marion Blank Horn. principal deputy solicitor of the Department of the Interior. Cabazon Band.S. 1987). Butterworth. Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. not subject to state regulations. Department of the Interior. Indian tribal governments. between seventy-five and eighty of the federally recognized Indian tribes in the United States were conducting some sort of organized game of chance. gaming was sanctioned as a legitimate method of tribal economic development. most important. when the Seminoles became the first Indian tribe to enter the bingo industry. According to the U. By 1991. state’s law. while bingo stakes in surrounding areas under state jurisdiction were sometimes limited to one hundred dollars. In October of 1988. When challenged. and gaming revenues began to subsidize reservation infrastructure. For the first time. jobs. The act also established the National Indian Gaming Commission to oversee gaming activities. roads—and. By early 1985. California v. which grossed about $255 million a year. The history of reservation gambling begins in 1979. saw a means of increasing their revenues by offering bingo games with prize money greater than that allowed by the U. 150 native reservations recognized by non-Indian governmental bodies had some form of gambling. gross revenue from such operations passed $1 billion that year. the tribes sued in federal court and won (Seminole Tribe v. but they also guaranteed that ownership of gaming facilities and their revenues would belong to the tribes. Individual prizes in some reservation bingo games were reported to be as high as $100. 1979. As state-run lotteries became legal and proliferated throughout the United States.Gambling / 299 Development of Gambling.

. California. prompting the violent destruction of the same blockades by gambling supporters in late April. Regis in upstate New York. The reasons for growth in gambling on Indian land are readily apparent. no restrictions by the states on days or hours of operations. no costs for licenses or compliance with state requirements. including cocaine. the area became a crossroads for the illicit smuggling of drugs. As many as seven casinos had opened illegally along the reservation’s main highway. The Indian tribal governments see an opportunity for income that can make a substantial improvement in the tribe’s [economic] conditions. and tax-free liquor and cigarettes. These advantages include no state-imposed limits on the size of pots or prizes. it brought violence to the Akwesasne Mohawks of St. Tension escalated after early protests against gambling in the late 1980’s (including the vandalizing of one casino and the burning of another) were met by brutal attempts by gambling supporters to repress this resistance. Residents blockaded the reservation to keep the casinos’ customers out. While gambling brought benefits to some Native American communities.300 / Gambling Casino Morongo in Cabazon. Death at Akwesasne. and no state taxes on gambling operations. The lack of any state regulation results in a competitive advantage over gambling regulated by the states.

California. In addition to monthly dividends. in 2002 two-thirds of the American public supported Indian gaming. gambling was providing a small galaxy of material benefits for some formerly impoverished native peoples. 1990. and outside police presence continued for years afterward. drive-by shootings. The tribe had taken out health insurance policies for everyone on the reservation and established day care for children of working parents. The IGRA divides gaming into three classes: social or cultural forms (Class I). and full college scholarships. Intervention of several police agencies from the United States and Canada followed the two deaths. guaranteed jobs (if they were unemployed). a suburb of San Diego. Since that time. while 450 other players stared into video slot machines inside the tipi-shaped Little Six Casino. and voters—such as California’s electorate. violence had spiraled into brutal beatings of antigambling activists. Indian gaming is highly regulated and not solely under the jurisdiction of tribal governments. which approved Proposition 105 in 1998—have shown support for Indian gaming. members became eligible for homes (if they lacked them). By the early 1990’s. Indian tribal casinos and other gaming centers have proliferated. blackjack players crowded forty-one tables. According to the National Indian Gaming Association. each member of the tribe was getting monthly dividend checks averaging two thousand dollars as shareholders in the casino. By 1991. By that time. Benefits. A half-hour’s drive from Minnesota’s Twin Cities. bingo and other nonbanking card games lawful within the states as a whole (Class II). operated by the 103 members of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux. . The largest casino to open by mid-1991 was the three-million-dollar Sycuan Gaming Center on the Sycuan Indian Reservation near El Cajon. Regulation and Ongoing Controversy.Gambling / 301 1990. and night-long firefights that culminated in two Mohawk deaths during the early morning of May 1. despite continued state challenges. and all other gaming. Because of the provisions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA).

Bibliography.. the Bureau of Indian Affairs. updated by Christina J. Calif.: Johnson Books. including the Internal Revenue Service. and litigation by large non-Indian gaming interests as well as states. A collection of essays by participants in the North American Conference on the Status of Indian Gaming with different perspectives.” Bruce E. with state-of-the-art casinos across the nation that attract patrons from surrounding areas and beyond. 1995. history. ed.302 / Gambling including casino games (Class III). “gaming has replaced the buffalo as the mechanism used by American Indian people for survival. and at least for those tribes with large interests the industry has spawned some improvement in the socioeconomic status of tribal members and reservation infrastructure. Eadington. A collection of articles covering all perspectives. 1998. The National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) is the primary advocate and defender of Indian gaming. Johansen. national agencies. . and Archaeology in North America. of which there are nearly two hundred. In addition. Boulder. which continues to provoke controversy. Nevertheless. Reno: University of Nevada. San Diego. and the Justice Department. Indian casinos became subject to Title 31 of the Bank Secrecy Act. Indian Gaming and the Law. Gabriel. Indian gaming continues to thrive. the Federal Bureau of Investigation. ed. Starting in 1996. Colo. from investigative reports to a letter to 60 Minutes. Kathryn. Appendices include the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and transcripts from the Cabazon case.: Greenhaven Press. 1996. History. Charles P. list of gambling organizations. Gambler Way: Indian Gaming in Mythology. The latter two classes are subject to regulation by the tribal gaming commissions (TGCs). Covers traditional Indian gaming in myth. Class III gaming is subject to compacts between TGCs and state regulatory agencies. William. Today Indian gaming is big business. all have roles in the regulation of Indian gaming. According to the NIGA’s Web site. opposition. Moose Sources for Further Study Cozic. Gambling.

Games and Contests Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Games reflected the importance of athleticism to most Indian tribes. and war. 1985. and Wendy Parnell. Tourism. 1999. American Indians traditionally participated in a variety of games and contests. the Department of the Interior’s gaming guidelines. related federal statutes and regulations. Sr. the Bank Secrecy Act. D. Indian Gaming Handbook. Jerome L. See also: Games and Contests.. Conn. while men tested themselves in preparation for hunting and warfare. Established federal standards and regulations for the conduct of gaming activities. Westport. Both men and women found entertainment in playing games. and helped develop skills for work. taxes on wagering. notes. Government Printing Office. U.: Begin and Garvey.C. National Indian Gaming Commission regulations. Washington. hunting. Ambrose I. . Congress. Internal Revenue Service publications.Games and Contests / 303 and modern times. Bibliography. including games of chance. 1995. Gambling on Indian Reservations and Lands. eds. developing their skills and endurance. Children tended to mimic adult activities to ready themselves for work and war. An overview and compendium of the law surrounding Indian gaming: the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. Los Angeles: Levine and Associations.S. Levine. index.: U. Bibliography. Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs. Covers the historical development of California’s Cabazon band of Mission Indians and the landmark case that established the beginning of Indian gaming.S. and more. including politics and current issues. provided entertainment. Return of the Buffalo. Lane.

and participation was more important than winning. Different tribes had various forms of foot races. in- . running. there was more total participation. Fielders would try to catch the ball and then throw it at the batter. Various forms of kickball were played. produce rain. Games also had a religious aspect. spreading a blanket like a trampoline and throwing participants as high as fifteen or twenty feet in the air. even though betting on outcomes was universally common. swings. the Pueblo Indians celebrated the tercentennial of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680 by reenacting the part played by the runners who spread the word of the rebellion. and kickball races. Inca runners ran thousands of miles. kayaks. in contrast to the more individualistic sports of pre-contact Europeans. According to Stewart Culin. Various forms of races were held to develop the endurance of runners. shooting arrows. and they developed canoes. In 1980. soccer. kicking sticks or balls. Pueblo Indians would get up at dawn and run to their cornfields located miles away. In pre-Columbian America. who did an extensive study of Indian games. and their history and rules were often bound up in the traditional beliefs of the tribes. and fertilize crops Races and Ball Games. toboggans. Inuits also did a blanket toss. ice hockey. sleds. These games tested the strength. stamina. even by Inuits (Eskimos). Unlike the spectator sports of today. including shuttle relay races.304 / Games and Contests Athletic games involved wrestling. they were played to drive away sickness. hunters literally ran down deer and other game. Football games were played across the continent. and courage required for survival in the Americas. kick-stick. and many other activities. snowshoes. and football. uniting their empire. throwing spears. Many Native American games involved teams playing against each other. who would try to dodge out of the way. stilts. Plains tribes played a form of dodge ball in which the batter tossed and batted a rawhide ball. Pre-Columbian Native Americans played forms of field hockey. and rubber balls. while communication within and among tribes took place using swift couriers.

A player carried the double ball or threw it with a hooked stick. ball games were used to earn hunting privileges. and each team had supporters that dressed similarly and sang as the game was played to give their players power and to confound the opposing team. . As many as seven hundred players on one team would try to move the ball toward one or another of the goalposts. now known as lacrosse. Crow Indians played the stick game with teams. Gambling games were popular. corncob targets were knocked down with wooden balls. Games could be very rough and could last several days—scores could run into the hundreds. In the Southwest. The Iroquois called kabocca the “little brother of war. Other tribes would place an object in one of several moccasins. Another Cherokee game involved rolling or sliding a disk-shaped stone while contestants simultaneously threw poles to land where they guessed the stone would stop. Gambling Games. Doubleball was a variation of shinny that used two baseball-sized balls that were tied together with a half-foot leather strap. Various forms of bowling were practiced.Games and Contests / 305 cluding what was known in the 1980’s as hackeysack. Stick games that involved guessing which hand held a hidden marker were widespread. using sticks with cup-shaped ends to catch and throw the ball. but the field version was played mainly by women. The Menominee would shake dice-like objects in a bowl and then throw them out. either at circular targets drawn on the ground or through rolling hoops. The Choctaw played a game called kabocca with a wooden ball about the size of a golf ball. or to determine who were the best warriors. Shinny is a form of hockey that was played throughout North America. to settle disputes. Crow Indians still practice an arrow-throwing game involving throwing arrows at a circular target drawn on the ground. In the Southeast. Some tribes played games involving throwing or shooting arrows.” This game. The ice version was played by both sexes. The Cherokee pitched stones at clay pins. with the object of correctly guessing the moccasin hiding the object. which were as much as a mile apart. was uniquely American.

According to an Associated Press poll in 1950. He won the gold medal for the pentathlon and decathlon in the 1912 Olympics and went on to play professional football and baseball.” Northwest Coast children played games such as fish trap. and in the process he beat the United States Olympic record of Louis Tewanima (Hopi). at the of Olympic-class Indian athCarlisle Indian School circa 1919. Girls would put up miniature dwellings and play “house.” while boys hunted small game to feed their “families. he was considered the greatest athlete of the half-century. Jon Reyhner . Billy Mills (Sioux) won the gold medal for the tenthousand-meter race at the 1964 Olympics.306 / Games and Contests Children’s Games. who had won the silver medal in the same event in 1912. (National Archives) letes. An American Indian Athletic Hall of Fame was established in 1972 at Haskell Indian Junior College to honor Indian athletes. and there have been a number Jim Thorpe. a form of tag in which the “fishers” simulated a net while the “fish” tried to avoid getting caught. in the twentieth century Indians have participated in nonIndian athletic events. in a football uniform. Famous Athletes. Children participated in a variety of games. The greatest Indian athlete was Jim Thorpe (Sauk and Fox). While usually any recognition given outstanding Indian athletes was fleeting at best.

” In Teaching American Indian Students. N. shinny. intended to teach children how to play the games. Allan. Comprehensive history and description of Indian games along with short biographies of Indian sports figures.Games and Contests / 307 Sources for Further Study Anderson. Oxendine. A biography of one of the most famous athletes of the twentieth century. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Hand Games. Peter. Describes a variety of Indian games appropriate for schools. In addition. edited by Jon Reyhner. Lacrosse. 1975. Grueninger. American Indian Sports Heritage. The Jim Thorpe Story: America’s Greatest Athlete. discusses the history and accomplishments of Indian runners. Joseph B. It includes detailed drawings of the various implements used in the games. 1951. this is the most extensive study of Indian games available. Madelyn Klein. Champaign. dice games. and Paulette Macfarlan.Mex.: Ancient City Press. New York: Franklin Watts. Stewart. North American Indian Games. 1992. 1988. “Physical Education. New York: Julian Messner. 1987. 1958. Games of the North American Indians. with Henry Gilfond. New York: Dover. New York: Dover. . Ill. Handbook of American Indian Games. See also: Ball Game and Courts. and guessing games to Native Americans. Nabokov. 2000. Santa Fe. Indian Running: Native American History and Tradition. Schoor. An examination of the orgins and significance of games such as lacrosse. Culin. Children. Describes the races held as part of the tercentennial commemoration of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. Gambling. Robert W. Macfarlan. Gene. Illustrated by Paulette Macfarlan. First published in the twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology (1902-1903). Describes various Indian games.: Human Kinetics Books.

The creation of gender is an active process that may involve more than simply two-gender categories and that may vary through time among different cultures.” in Cheryl Claassen’s Exploring Gender Through Archaeology.308 / Gender Relations and Roles Gender Relations and Roles Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Gender roles are culturally defined entities that serve to structure social organization. 1991). 1992) explains: “Dominant groups dominate discourse. Subordinated groups whose discourse differs from the dominant mode may not be heard. Engendering Native Americans. typically pot- . Indian societies were marked by variation in the types of gender categories present and in their manifestation over time. Generally. Even those accounts of Native Americans which incorporate gender commonly only include male roles. which involve both men and women. Gender is typically regarded as a cultural or social construction. in contrast to the biologically defined sexual division between male and female.” Typical of androcentric (male-oriented) writing is Claude Lévi-Strauss’s statement: “The entire village left the next day in about 30 canoes. Accounts of American Indian prehistory manifest similar problems. leaving us alone with the women and children in the abandoned houses” (remarked upon in Alison Wylie’s “Gender Theory and the Archaeological Record. prehistories demonstrate cultural differences through archaeological studies of material culture. Gero and Margaret W.” in Joan M. Conkey’s Engendering Archaeology. it is a tale of interactions among sexless cultures rather than among gendered individuals. The implication is that women and children are unimportant and do not contribute to village society. that is. Much of our understanding of North American Indians and their history and prehistory is “degendered”. for as Alice Kehoe (“The Muted Class. Such male-centered research creates obvious problems for an adequate understanding of human interactions and behavior.

only two gender roles are found in other cultures. gender arrangements are unchanging through time. or the energy they expend. American Indians. The unifying theme underlying gender research is a theoretical outlook which views gender relationships as the fundamental structural component to social organization.” in Dale Walde and Noreen D. Since the 1970’s. gender relationships among Native American societies correspond directly to those found among European groups. For some American Indian groups. but more intensely during the 1980’s and 1990’s. such as women.” Such reconstructions of the past may demonstrate differences in manufacturing styles among groups but generally do not advance understanding of the interactions among the men and women who composed these groups. Native American studies. Some of this feminist-inspired research has a political component and is explicitly directed toward the empowerment of certain groups. and other fields which typically ignored gender among Indians. feminist studies have had an impact on the fields of anthropology. The point is. and gay populations. women’s activities are defined in accordance to their reproductive capabilities. Typical androcentric studies concerning Native Americans generally include such erroneous assumptions as the following: Gender roles and relationships are irrelevant for the understanding of other cultures. and women are passive and their work is of little value (whereas men are active and their work is socially important). Elizabeth Graham (“Women and Gender in Maya Prehistory.Gender Relations and Roles / 309 tery or stone tools. archaeology. much as the “manland” relationship was typically seen as fundamental to cultural . these broad generalizations are often applied to Native Americans with little attempt to verify their truth. history. Willows’ The Archaeology of Gender. sexless beings defined mainly in terms of the space in which they move. a few of these assumptions may be correct. and tools are dropped here and there by faceless. 1991) succinctly explains: “Pots and lithics [stone tools] seem to move of their own accord across ancient landscapes. however. Not all is politically motivated. while for others they may be completely inaccurate. and not all is even concerned with women.

and the development of theories to explain the identified gender relationships. gender research concerning American Indians includes three types of study: the investigation of women’s behavior and history. Early twentieth century Cahuilla woman carrying berries or nuts she has gathered. (Library of Congress) . Generally. Gender studies also may stress social diversity by emphasizing the presence of multiple “voices” or “narratives” within a group. the identification of more than two gender categories and their activities and history.310 / Gender Relations and Roles ecology.

women as gatherers and horticulturalists. Among some cultures. An undervaluing of female roles ap- . or other members of the group. however. and crop domestication. In fact. mother’s brother and family. Studies of famous women represent attempts to balance a maledominated history by showing the contributions of important women. Studies have demonstrated that this anthropologically undervalued occupation can generate a large proportion of the household’s daily diet. Based on the ethnographic data concerning women as gatherers and horticulturalists (practicing nonmechanized farming).Gender Relations and Roles / 311 Investigation of Women’s Behavior and History. and other scholars who have worked with Native Americans or Native American concerns. do not remain consistently close to their home or camp. passive behavior. studies of prehistoric North American Indians assume that the women gathered plants and that the men hunted animals. among them studies of famous women. Generally. varying strategies of child care are possible. Hunting by males was regarded in the literature as an innovative and active event. nor do these women always take their children with them on excursions. Previously. whether working as a cooperative group or on their own. researchers have written biographies of well-known Indian women and of women anthropologists. Other assumptions concerning women’s collecting behavior have been similarly corrected. and women in the colonial period. it had sometimes been assumed that male hunting contributed the major portion of the diet. plants. it had been assumed that women’s biological functions (the bearing and rearing of children) limited their ability to roam far from home to obtain plants or raw materials. Increased attention directed toward women’s roles has focused research on their gathering activities. whereas gathering was depicted as routine. archaeologists. other women. fathers. siblings. This aspect of gender research includes many types of research. and children may be looked after by other mothers (who can nurse the infant). based primarily on data from male-focused ethnographies. once women have given birth. Previously. Toward this goal. there is an obvious linkage between women. gathering women. women as tool-makers.

In addition to studies concerning women’s contributions to household subsistence. In the past. where women would congregate to carry out their work. Joan M.” in Engendering Archaeology) suggests that based on two assumptions—that “females comprised approximately half of all prehistoric populations” and that “these women carried out production activities at prehistoric sites”—then surely “women can be expected to be most visible and active in precisely the contexts that archaeologists are most likely to excavate: on house floors. or denied. termed “projectile points” by archaeologists). and food-preparing tools (such as knives).312 / Gender Relations and Roles pears to explain why descriptions of the development of horticulture commonly involve a process whereby “plants virtually domesticate themselves. Kennedy in “The Development of Horticulture.” rendering human (likely women’s) actions or abilities unnecessary (according to Patty Jo Watson and Mary C. some researchers have examined women’s tool-manufacturing abilities. and in village sites.” in Gero and Conkey’s Engendering Archaeology). elaborate stone pieces which display complex flaking patterns.” In addition to the fact that women’s roles as stone-tool users or . Of less interest are skinning. which demonstrate whether the items were used for piercing (point) or slicing (knife) functions. Archaeologists and members of the public are commonly interested in aesthetically appealing. researchers have not conducted edge-wear analyses (microscopic examinations of stone tool edges). these items are typically identified as male hunting tools (such as arrowheads or spear points.” The role of women in tool manufacturing was commonly ignored. however. Gero (“Genderlithics: Women’s Roles in Stone Tool Production. or on what material these actions were performed. scraping. In most cases. archaeologists and ethnographers typically emphasized “man the toolmaker. at base camps. the projectile-point identification is applied in excavated contexts ranging from open woodlands to domestic campsites. downplayed. Typically. despite the fact that open areas might be more likely locations for points. while campsites are the more likely locations for knives and scraping implements. usually associated with women.

Anthropologists often indicate whether women or men are the “potters” among the society studied. Even in cases for which historic documents exist. but in many cases. decorating. this category is meaningless for traditional kinship-oriented groups. trade (Hidatsa and Mandan). much as men earlier “appeared” with the use of stone tools. and Tlingit). through the gathering of clay. Scholars and Native Americans have worked to demonstrate women’s participation in areas in which their influence is commonly denied. and Pawnee). and warfare (Cheyenne. Ojibwa. For example. shown in accompanying illustrations. and Kiowa-Apache). Crow. fire-tending. sixteenth century writings describing the involvement of Aztec women in weaving and cooking may not mention other roles. fuel. then the actual shaping of the clay may not be the most important part of the process. These include prestigious wealth-generating occupations (among Hopi.or understated. A high proportion of the research concerning women’s roles in American Indian societies has been directed toward the demonstration of changes which occurred with the encroachment of the European social and mercantile system. and so on. discussions of North American prehistory assume that Indian women were the prehistoric potters if the historically documented communities had women potters. Iroquois. although this role may be the only one which is recorded by the investigator. Cree. their roles in ceramic production may also be over. Despite dissatisfaction with such simplistically applied assumptions. Generally.Gender Relations and Roles / 313 manufacturers typically vanish in archaeological reconstructions. many studies have concentrated on how changing trading priorities may . For example. such as healing or marketing. water. it must be admitted that the identification of prehistoric gender-correlated activities is not an easy process. It has been ironically remarked by anthropologists with an interest in gender that women suddenly “appear” in the archaeologies of regions with the advent of ceramic manufacturing. If the entire household participates in ceramic manufacturing. observers may provide only a partial account of events. religion (among Blackfoot.

Patricia C. In this manner. there was increased pressure for a man to create relationships with more women who could treat the animal skins. and Northeast (such as Ojibwa and Cree) cultures suggests that the European fur trade added value to the traditional production of prepared skins. Relatively recent emphasis on the understanding of diversity has led to a greater study and recognition of gender transformations among American Indians. Research on Plains (such as Lakota Sioux). There is abundant literature discussing the berdaches (typically defined as males who dress and behave as women) in the historic period. Descriptions of American Indians have often ignored common culturally accepted changes in gender typical of many Native American groups. indicates that as many as 113 American Indian groups recognized transformative gender statuses and that among these. as described in “From Illusion to Illumination: Anthropological Studies of American Indian Women. Other effects of Indian-European contact have also been investigated. have examined the influence of missionization on traditional gender roles.” in Sandra Morgen’s Gender and Anthropology (1989). Within many Native American cultures. a hunter (typically a man during the contact period for these groups) could obtain an infinite number of skins. Albers’ research. Theoretically. This could be achieved through polygynous unions (marriage to more than one wife). but each skin had to be prepared (typically. They were found across North America and have been identified during the historic . Identification of More than Two Gender Categories. As pelts increased in value. rather than being the producers and organizers of their own economic enterprises. Several studies. It has been suggested that this situation probably resulted in decreased power for the women of these groups.314 / Gender Relations and Roles have affected gender relationships. the women’s occupation at that time and place) before it could be exchanged with Europeans. berdaches constituted a culturally accepted component of society. male transvestism (biologically male individuals who took on the cultural roles typical of women) predominated. women became producers within a system controlled by men. for example.

Research has confirmed the expectation that gender varies culturally and that many Indian groups had roles for female gender transformers. In some cases.Gender Relations and Roles / 315 period in the Arctic (Aleut. and each of these has (or had) varying roles and social status. possibly Tuscarora and Winnebago). girls were often dressed as boys if the parents had desired a son or if they wished the child to take on the name and characteristics of a deceased male. individuals determined their own genders. while among other groups. For example. among the historic period Inuit. Theoretical works generally focus on the discussion of two gender categories—heterosexual men and hetero- . and not on those of outside groups). Salinan. Illinois. the Southwest (Karankawa and Navajo). Tolowa. Studies of berdaches from the 1970’s onward have instead tended to discuss transformative behavior within its specific social context and to include women gender transformers (women behaving as men) in addition to identifying other gender categories. Theories to Explain Gender. Navajo. the Great Basin (Eastern Shoshone. Piegan. Traditionally. parents or other adults could change the gender of a child. or were. Kawaiisu. Miami. the Subarctic (Hare and Ingalik). specifically as an example of how notions of normal and abnormal behavior are culturally defined within individual societies. and Paiute). various gender categories within different cultural groups. California (Chumash. Cherokee. There are. Canadian Blackfoot. the Northeast (Delaware. the Great Plains (Lakota Sioux). and Yokuts). anthropologists discussed the berdache phenomenon in the context of cultural relativism (the concept that cultures must be evaluated based on their own values. Cheyenne. Pacific Inuit. Kutenai. Among them were the Atsina (or Gros Ventres). Lakota Sioux. Ottawa. American Indian studies have concentrated more on the identification and description of different gender categories than on the explanation of these categories’ creation or function. and Quebec Inuit). and Tlingit. and the Southeast (Timucua and Natchez). Baffinland Inuit. Wiyot.

it is related to their influence on the heredity of their offspring through matrilineal descent patterns. Marital rights are also examined as an indicator of the relative freedom of women and men. it is also related to their control over basic resources (such as homes or land) and to the yields from these resources (such as crops). using the variables of occupation or marital relationship. women had greater status than in societies where women contributed less to the daily diet. Among some societies (as among Blackfoot. independent women. or to their homes. Hopi. the European trading . Societies having all these attributes (Hopi society. It has been suggested that in cases where women contributed noticeably to the household’s subsistence (as among the Hopi and Iroquois). women played an active role in the selection of a spouse and were able to divorce their husbands. Additionally. Activities do provide a strong indication of the demarcated gender role within the society (traditionally discussed under “divisions of labor”). Among some groups. Broadly. such behavior was interpreted as a change in gender. In other cases. Improvement in women’s social status generally is correlated with a number of factors. it seems that women have more freedom in marital matters when descent is traced through the women’s line (matrilineal descent). In some cases. It is related to their economic contribution (such as their ability to contribute to the daily diet). such as among the horticultural Iroquois. whereas among other groups. for example) tend to be marked by the presence of powerful. Many of the societies with socially valued women also granted women claims to the resources they generated. to the land.316 / Gender Relations and Roles sexual women—and often examine their relative status and power through time (typically precolonial versus colonial). such as with the nomadic buffalo-hunting groups of the Plains. although there are always exceptions. the European mercantile system seemed to decrease the status of women. and Ojibwa). individuals could adopt the behavior of the opposite sex without changing their gender. Colonization resulted in many changes in the relationships between Indian women and men. Iroquois.

Lillian A. An examination of gender equality in four areas: domestic. as Albers notes. Allen. . Susan J. since women were eliminated from the cooperative buffalo hunts and. both in fur trading and in raiding. 2003. A Necessary Balance: Gender and Power Among Indians of the Columbia Plateau. It is now recognized that anthropological descriptions which fail to take gender into account are incomplete at best. New perspectives on gender have had a profound impact on the understanding of society and culture in general and of Native Americans in particular. often misleading. and religious.Gender Relations and Roles / 317 system may have advanced the status of women. corn) in the fields surrounding their villages. with a new preface. meant that women assumed greater control of village organization and resources. With the arrival of Europeans. Gunn’s Laguna Pueblo and Sioux heritage influences her essays concerning Native American women. Boston: Beacon Press. Comprehensive index. they ventured farther afield in search of furbearing animals. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. These extended absences from villages. and sometimes completely inaccurate. Iroquois men became fur traders. economic. The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions. Wurtzburg Sources for Further Study Ackerman. the means of wealth accumulation and prestige were increasingly in the hands of men. including gay women. Paula Gunn. “became workers in a highly specialized production process over which men had ultimate control.” The most important result of gender research is that it has increased awareness of the variation among Native American populations. During the later prehistoric and early historic period. and as prey became scarcer in the vicinity of their settlements. Iroquois women controlled horticultural production (most importantly. For nomadic Plains groups. this male involvement in buffalo hunting (for hides and meat) did not translate into increased female status. political. Reprint. no illustrations. As a result. 1992.

318 / Gender Relations and Roles _______.: Prehistory Press. 1984. 1991. Spider Woman’s Granddaughters: Traditional Tales and Contemporary Writing by Native American Women. St. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Conkey. Engendering Archaeology: Women and Prehistory. 1989. Good theoretical introduction.C. 1992... Bataille. ed. Biographical data concerning women anthropologists. An anthology of articles focusing on the synthesis of research and teaching methods. New York: Fawcett Columbine. No comprehensive index. Women Anthropologists: Selected Biographies. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Janet D. Anthology of fictional and traditional prose. Comprehensive index and useful bibliography. maps. drawings. Cheryl.: WEEA. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press. Index. Joan M. Contains useful review of research concerning American Indian women by Patricia C. and Margaret W. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. Exploring Gender Through Archaeology: Selected Papers from the 1991 Boone Conference. Madison. and photographs. Newton. 1993. Spector. Comprehensive index. Gero. Claassen. et al. ed. Anthology of articles by specialists. Sandra. Morgen. Ute. 1989. Gretchen M. American Indian Women: Telling Their Lives. no illustrations. No index. What This Awl Means: Feminist Archaeology at a Wahpeton Dakota Village. most dealing with North America. eds. including lesson plans and film suggestions. Essays concerning Native American autobiography. Washington. D. Gender and Anthropology: Critical Reviews for Research and Teaching.. 1989. Anthology of papers by archaeologists providing research on gender issues. charts. many of whom wrote about Native Americans.: American Anthropological Association. ed. Bowker. Albers. An innovative archaeologist’s search for evidence . Mass. and Kathleen Mullen Sands. Ardy. eds. Sisters in the Blood: The Education of Women in Native America. Wis. Gacs. 1993. Brief authors’ biographies and suggestions for further reading. Informative analyses based on interviews with 991 northern Plains women.

massive fires.Ghost Dance / 319 and understanding of Dakota women. Education: Pre-contact. 1991. eds. illustrations and photographs. Calgary. The Archaeology of Gender: Proceedings of the Twenty-second Annual Chacmool Conference. Ghost Dance Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The Ghost Dance was one of many religious rituals and movements that arose in the wake of European contact in response to permanent changes in traditional lifeways for native peoples. Selection of papers. The Ghost Dance began in 1890 as a result of the visions of a Paiute Indian from Nevada called Wovoka. charts. Wovoka began delivering a series of prophetic messages that described a future which would restore Native Americans to their life as it had been before contact with the European American settlers and would drive away or destroy the settlers on Native American traditional lands. maps. Menses and Menstruation. Such movements usually involve someone describing bizarre or frightening visions of a catastrophic change in world events. Willows. Crisis Movements. Dale. Children. Index. As a result of his visions. See also: Berdache. Walde. most of which concern prehistory or history of Native Americans. Canada: University of Calgary Archaeological Association. Women. These crises can be natural (earthquakes. Puberty and Initiation Rites. The Ghost Dance movement is usually described by scholars as an “apocalyptic” or “prophetic”-type movement (borrowing descriptive terms from the study of biblical history). and Noreen D. Marriage and Divorce. No index. and these movements are often found among populations who are experiencing severe crisis. volcanoes) but are more typically as- .

the movement and its widespread popularity are usually attributed to the disastrous disruption of the traditional life of the indigenous populations of North America that came in the wake of European settlement beginning in the sixteenth century. “The Ghost Dance Religion and the Sioux Outbreak of 1890. and the old ways were seen as a “golden age” to which many people wished to return. Mooney. Although the Ghost Dance movement became widespread in 1889-1890. as a white government official. was disrupted forever. The United States government’s interest in the Ghost Dance movement was a direct result of the fact that the message of . White encroachment had disastrous effects on the native peoples in the West in the nineteenth century.” published in 1896.320 / Ghost Dance sociated with political/military conquest by a foreign people who seem strange and overwhelmingly powerful. as he himself described it.and third-person contacts. Wovoka had begun having his revelatory visions and experiences in 1887. had to interview sources and interpret his reports as best he could. and one must suspect that reports collected by Mooney would have been delivered in a more conciliatory tone than discussions among Native Americans themselves. The major difficulty with this procedure is that the Ghost Dance movement was typically hostile toward white settlers’ presence. The classic source is James Mooney’s government-supported study. Wovoka’s most influential and serious supernatural experience was. since virtually all existing reports are second. Also known as John (Jack) Wilson. with its familiar routines. This study was conducted within memory of the events described. Ghost Dance as a Crisis Movement. The precise content of the visions of Wovoka and the teachings and implications which he derived from these visions are difficult to describe with confidence. In the case of the Ghost Dance of 1890. The old way of life. 1889. Such a description clearly fits the experience of Native American tribes who found their lifestyle severely disrupted by the newly arrived settlers. a visit to the spirit world on the occasion of the total eclipse of the sun on January 1.

the necessity and importance of the . a member of the Coast Salish tribe whose own prophetic experiences led to the founding of the Indian Shaker Church.Ghost Dance / 321 A depiction of the Arapaho Ghost Dance circa 1900. The movement was deeply implicated in the historic massacre of Chief Big Foot’s band at Wounded Knee in Pine Ridge. were such basic ideas as the resurrection of tribal members who had died. (National Archives) Wovoka had a very rapid impact that quickly crossed tribal lines. South Dakota. It was also influential on related movements. the restoration of game animals. Included among the visions of Wovoka. it took a relatively militant turn among the Lakota (Sioux) who were active in the movement. and through these messengers the movement spread widely among the Sioux. and related by him to his followers and representatives of other tribes. Representatives from many other tribes were sent to hear of Wovoka’s revelations. The Ghost Dance was interpreted in different ways in different tribal contexts. and the Northern Arapaho. a flood which would destroy only the white settlers. the Northern Cheyenne. such as that based on the visionary experiences of John Slocum. Wovoka’s Visions.

the creation and wearing of distinctive “ghost shirts.” which identified adherents to the movement and were used in the performance of the ritual dancing itself. Roots of the Ghost Dance. such as the Ghost Dance of 1870 (which also occurred among the Paiutes. Attempts to trace a prehistory of the Ghost Dance of 1890. and possibly influenced by. at least among the Sioux. however. for example. depending on the views and experiences of the tribes appropriating the basic message of Wovoka. It is certainly possible that ideas varied. An interesting summary of the Ghost Dance movement that emphasizes the important role of Wovoka himself is provided by Thomas Overholt. Overholt also suggests that the Ghost Dance of 1890 was preceded by. the motif of the destruction of whites was muted. did have some contact with missionaries. Of these major ideas. and a time that is coming which would be free of suffering and disease. Related developments of the Ghost Dance movement were certain ethical precepts and.322 / Ghost Dance performance of a dance ritual (the Ghost Dance itself). In Indian descriptions of the Ghost Dance precepts to white researchers such as Mooney. as well as the performance of the dance itself. as reported by Mooney. who compares Wovoka with certain prophets of the Bible such as Jeremiah. the initial fervor of the Ghost Dance and Wo- . initiated by a visionary named Wodziwob) and the Southern Okanagan Prophet Dance around 1800. and many interviewees stressed that the visions of Wovoka actually taught a peaceful coexistence with the white settlers. Yet it is also true that such visionary movements were not uncommon among western American tribes from the beginning of the nineteenth century. As predicted dates for the cosmic events described by Wovoka came and passed. must also reckon with the very high probability of some influence from the Old Testament biblical prophets through early contact with European missionary teachers. the primary focus seemed to be on the ideas of resurrection and the restoration of important elements of the old ways. Wovoka himself. similar visionary/apocalyptic movements.

Paul. Magic and the Millennium. 1965. “The Ghost Dance Religion and the Sioux Outbreak of 1890.Gifts and Gift Giving / 323 voka’s teachings in general began to dissipate. 1896.C. Among some tribes. New York: Harper & Row. They used this gift . Indians presented gifts to make and sustain alliances and to demonstrate continued control to the colonial powers. 1973. Wilson. Edited by Don Lynch. however. Overholt. Wovoka and the Ghost Dance. D. 1997. In short. Daniel L. and other interactions demanded the distribution of various gifts among the parties. trade. Hittman. Channels of Prophecy: The Social Dynamics of Prophetic Activity. Michael. See also: Dances and Dancing. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Los Angeles: Westernlore Press. Visions and Vision Quests. Treaties. 1957. Expanded ed.” In Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology. Bryan R. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. the focus shifted from apocalyptic expectations of events to a longer-term stress on daily ethics. Gift giving was a central feature of exchange customs common to North American Indians. Minneapolis: Fortress Press. 1989.: Government Printing Office. Gifts and Gift Giving Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Gift exchange was an essential mode of strategic interaction with other tribes and with the colonial powers. Thomas. Vol 14. Reprint. Mooney. Smith-Christopher Sources for Further Study Bailey. the movement became partially institutionalized. Wovoka: The Indian Messiah. which is not uncommon for religious groups whose roots lie in visionary experiences. Washington. James. These presents symbolized the social bonds between the participants.

For example. This resulted in much destruction of their culture. stories. rum. animals. and to create an economic order based on the redistribution of wealth. commodities such as manufactured goods.324 / Gifts and Gift Giving giving to symbolize. European gift giving served to create kinship ties to important chiefs and to signify respect for Indians. however. textiles. and to foster trade. Native Americans were drawn away from gift exchanges and toward commercial exchanges. and clothing. to buy service from Indian leaders. to foster an egalitarian social order. subsistence hunting was replaced with the near extinction of species because of the commercial desire for certain pelts in the fur trade. The European powers were forced to comply with a gift-giving political economy in order to obtain commercial advantages. Among these items were artifacts such as looms. After European contact. In addition. and other products were introduced into the giftexchange economy. The Europeans first participated reluctantly in gift exchange to receive commercial advantage. Other functions of gift giving were to establish an identity. There were many varieties of items in the gift-exchange economy. food. and medicines were also offered as gifts. In addition. They presented gifts to guarantee loyalty from tribes and chiefs. Trade. baskets. skins. Gift giving was supplanted by European-style commerce. to provide a basis for genuine friendships. to maintain peaceful interactions. to counter influence from rival colonial governments. brandy. shells. William H. Over time. This commercial activity also countered the community-forming function of gift exchange by bringing Indians into conflict through commercial competition. . Potlatch. Presents were also given to create and alter social relationships. or healing ceremonies. leather goods. rituals could produce presents of songs. and equalize human relationships. sustain. Gift giving had always been in conflict with commercial economic activity. Plants. Green See also: Money.

Before the Spanish conquest of Mexico in the sixteenth century. Aztec goldworkers used gold nuggets or dust.Gold and Goldworking / 325 Gold and Goldworking Tribe affected: Aztec Significance: Using a variety of techniques. using a blowpipe to quicken the flame. Goldworking was a highly valued skill among the Aztecs. Coldhammering of gold nuggets or ingots into sheets eventually makes the gold springy and unworkable. there were many categories of artisans. ornaments.” Aztec goldworkers had their own patron god. Xipe Totec. the Toltec culture was working gold around 900 c. Aztec drawings show goldworkers using blowpipes.e. The . In the Aztec language. the word for gold was teocuitlatl. Aztec goldworkers produced jewelry. and implements of great beauty. for example. within these divisions. but pre-Columbian smiths learned that heating the beaten gold returns its malleability. The first pre-Columbian Mexican goldwork involved shaping nuggets by grinding and hammering them. appear to have been the result of trade rather than local manufacture. Aztec goldsmiths produced gold jewelry and implements of extraordinary beauty. Archaeological evidence suggests that goldworking was introduced from South America into Central America and Mexico relatively late. anyone guilty of stealing gold was flayed alive to propitiate this deity. or so-called virgin gold. with goldsmiths being divided into those who hammered or beat gold and those who cast it in molds. the occasional gold pieces found in Mayan sites. there is no evidence for the smelting of gold ore in pre-Columbian cultures. Later it was discovered that gold dust and grains could be formed into ingots of workable size by fusing them. depending on the kind of work they produced. Gold was used by the Aztecs as a means of tallying tribute obligations. It was a specialized task at the time of the Spanish conquest. Nahuatl. for their artistry. or “excrement of the gods. gold also had religious connotations. Goldworking was not widespread in the preColumbian cultures of Mexico.

and after cooling the mold is broken apart. much of which they melted down into ingots or reformed into Spanish coins. Aztec goldworkers learned to solder intricate pieces together using gold alloyed with copper or silver. In this technique. Ariz. a goldworker first makes a wax model of the desired piece. along with extensive inventories of golden objects seized by the conquerors. Turquoise. In addition. See also: Aztec Empire. Detailed descriptions of Aztec goldworking are contained in Spanish historical records. The Spanish were astonished by the volume and value of Aztec gold. Dress and Adornment. Paula A. 2000. however. Ornaments. which is then covered with clay. and it was widely used in Mesoamerica to produce not only gold but also various alloys of copper. Phoenix. and Terms. the wax form is covered with powdered charcoal so that it will release smoothly from the clay mold.326 / Gold and Goldworking process of alternately hammering and heating gold is called annealing. no goldworking shop has been discovered or excavated. No archaeological evidence has yet been able to date precisely the emergence of the various skills in pre-Columbian goldworking. David J. Silverworking. People. Molten gold is then poured into a vent. Metalwork. Aztec goldworkers also used the “lost-wax” method of working with gold. Vents are left in the clay to allow the wax to drain from the mold when it is heated. with Allison Bird-Romero.: Oryx Press. . The lost-wax technique allows for the production of intricate and finely wrought gold jewelry or ornamentation. Similarly. Minderhout Source for Further Study Baxter. Yet enough goldwork remains intact from the pre-Columbian and early contact period to testify to the great skill of Aztec goldworkers. Encyclopedia of Native American Jewelry: A Guide to History.

a Gourd Dance Society formed and shook red-painted gourds covered with representations of skunkberry bushes while dancing the dance of the red wolf. who taught him to dance to a beautiful tune accompanied by a gourd rattle. seeking his people’s encampment. and in celebration of the victory and the return of the lost comrade. and the Gourd Dance became part of a four-day festival until it was banned by reservation authorities in 1890. In 1838. Skunkberry bushes full of red berries covered the battleground. In 1955. Music and Song. . Tischauser See also: Dances and Dancing. The wolf told him to take the song back to his people and teach them the dance.Gourd Dance / 327 Gourd Dance Tribe affected: Kiowa Significance: Part of a four-day ceremony honoring a Kiowa victory in a major battle. a drummer. Only males performed the dance. Leslie V. a whip man to keep the dancers moving. Drums. Then he heard music coming from a red wolf. the Kiowa defeated the Arapaho and other enemies in a major battle along the Missouri River in Montana. and a director who set the pace. A warrior who became lost after the victory wandered around for days. which featured the dancers. The warrior returned. the Kiowa brought back the dance as part of a newly established Gourd Day celebration taking place on the Fourth of July. Skunkberries were a symbol of endurance and bravery.

the Grass Dance is a part of the dance competition at pow-wows along the summer circuit in the United States. Grass Dance societies typically have a number of officers: a leader. drummers. Menominee. Assiniboine. Drums.328 / Grass Dance Grass Dance Tribes affected: Arapaho. Kansa. which confers on participants the power to heal burns. The Grass Dance is regarded not only as a competitive event but also as a celebratory occasion. Music and Song. Hidatsa. The Grass Dance is a men’s competitive dance. Ponca Significance: The Grass Dance is a men’s competitive dance believed to give the participants the power to heal burns. Blackfeet. and stomping. Crow.” The Pawnee man Crow Feather was given this ceremony of fire-handling and dancing. During the dance there is a considerable amount of athletic jumping. It may have originated with the Pawnee dance known as the iruska. Arikara. Gros Ventre. bending. Dancers perform either individually or in pairs. . In modern times. J. Grass dancers wear grass tied to their costumes. Iowa. and singers. food servers. The Grass Dance has developed a large repertory of drumming and singing sequences. Ojibwa. Pawnee. whip bearers. Powwows and Celebrations. Omaha. Arant See also: Dances and Dancing. There are music groups among some tribes that specialize in Grass Dance songs. Iruska means “the fire inside of all things. Lakota. T. a pipe keeper.

Grass House

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Grass House
Tribes affected: Primarily California, Great Basin, and Southwest tribes Significance: The grass house was constructed by covering a pole framework with layers of grass that formed both the walls and roof. There were basically two types of grass house: the conical beehive and the larger, elongated house, which could accommodate several extended families. In wet areas, grass houses were essentially dwellings set on exposed bearing poles several meters off the ground, with a ladder entrance. The beehive structure was formed by running straight or bowed poles to a vertical support center

A nineteenth century Bannock family pictured outside their grass tent. (National Archives)

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Green Corn Dance

pole or simply by tying the slanted poles together at the apex. The longhouse was also constructed with vertical and horizontal poles. The grass covering was applied in one of several ways. Most commonly, long grass was bunched, with the top third folded over a horizontal cane or thin wood pole, and tied with grass to the longer outside length; grass was added until the course was completed. The next course would overlap or shingle the lower row, providing, when finished, effective water-shedding. This layering continued to the long, longitudinal ridge pole, where the opposing topmost rows were tied together. Some grass house coverings were better secured by stitching external horizontal willow or cane rods to the internal frame. Because of accumulated smoke residue and general deterioration, grass houses would be rethatched every three to five years, using the original frame. John Alan Ross See also: Architecture: California; Architecture: Great Basin; Architecture: Southwest; Wickiup.

Green Corn Dance
Tribes affected: Cherokee, Creek (Muskogee), Seminole, others in the Southeast Significance: This was the principal dance performed in the most important harvest ceremony of the southeastern tribes. Dance is a central component of Native American ceremonial life. Nowhere is this more evident than in the Eastern Woodland Green Corn Rite. Ritual dance is an important feature of this ceremony, which takes place in July or August at the final corn harvest. The Green Corn Dance is a necessary part of the planting of the corn. Great spiritual benefit is believed to derive from the performance, which occurs in the newly cleaned and sanctified town square. The square contains the sacred fire, which binds the community to their deceased and to their deity. Into the newly kindled fire, such items as new corn, tea leaves, meat, and medicine are offered.

Green Corn Dance

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As it is presently performed in the Southeast, the dance has four stages, each of which is divided into various movements. Music includes the sounds of stone-filled gourd rattles as well as singing. Men and women, in their finest attire, dance separately but simultaneously around a high pole adorned with green boughs that provide shade for the musicians seated on benches below. First the men begin to dance. A leader followed by a column of ten to twenty men carrying guns circles counterclockwise in an area a few hundred yards from the town square. The leader sings and plays a rattle while the other men shoot their guns at various times. The first man in the column shoots first, then the second, and so on until the last man, who shoots twice. By shaking his rattle, the leader thus directs the shots. The rifle shots are supposedly symbolic of the sound of thunder. This men’s part of the dance takes place in the morning. At about noon participants break to eat food that the women have provided. The women dance in a single line and side by side in the main square. They are directed by a woman leader who uses leg rattles to keep time. This second stage of the dance performance symbolizes the fertilization of corn. Men come to the central square and combine with the women’s column, led by the men’s dance leader. All the men and women then commence to circle counterclockwise. After this portion of the dance, the whole community takes part in a feast. In the evening, the third stage of the dance begins. The men and the women are again separate, as in the beginning. The men carry guns and circle counterclockwise around the women. This movement continues until the sun sets. The fourth stage is done the next night, accompanied by animal sacrifices. At the conclusion of the Green Corn Ceremony, the individual, the family, the clan, and the nation are all renewed for another year. William H. Green See also: Corn; Corn Woman; Dances and Dancing; Mississippian Culture; Music and Song.

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Grooming
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Though grooming and personal adornment were universally valued by American Indian peoples, the specific ways these were practiced varied from tribe to tribe. Bodily grooming and adornment performed a number of significant functions for individuals and groups throughout Native North America. Gender-specific norms related to personal appearance for both everyday life and special occasions existed in all Indian communities. Such norms prescribed methods by which men and women could make themselves attractive or could call attention to their special ranks and achievements. Tattoos and Body Painting. Among the most widespread of such grooming techniques were body painting and tattooing. The colors and designs associated with each of these practices were quite often used to symbolize an individual’s attainment of a specific status or accomplishment that was valued by his or her fellow community members. Thus, for example, among the Lakotas or Teton Sioux, the right side of the face of the lead akicitapi, or camp marshal, was marked with four stripes of black paint. In many tribes, face and body painting was an important element in rites of passage, including girls’ and boys’ puberty rituals and funeral ceremonies. Aside from marking social status, numerous Indian communities also used facial and body painting as a means of warding off evil spirits believed to cause illnesses during their curing ceremonies. Thus, for example, Siberian Inuits would paint the faces of sick persons with stripes of red ochre during their healing practices. Perhaps the most extensive use of body painting was practiced by the now extinct Boethuk tribe of the Northeast coast who colored their entire bodies, hair, clothing and equipment with a mixture of red ochre and grease. It is thought that the term “Red Indian” was first applied to the members of this tribe for that reason.

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The men and women of the Plateau’s Thompson tribe also painted and tattooed themselves on a daily basis with a similar combination of fat and pigment. Tattoos were used extensively by Indians of the Northwest Coast, including decorating their arms, legs, and chests with family crests. It was common for the women of Indian tribes from northern California to the northern Northwest Coast decorated their chins with tattoos. Body Piercing. Body piercing served similar functions among many tribes as those already mentioned in connection with painting and tattooing. The Seminoles, like many other tribes, bored their earlobes in order to wear rings and bobs. Numerous Inuit peoples practiced the custom of perforating parts of their faces in order to insert labrets and pins. In many cases, these practices were

A Hopi woman arranges the hair of an unmarried girl into an appropriate style. (National Archives)

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A woman attends to the hair of this Hopi man. (National Archives)

performed in association with a rite of passage. For example, two puberty ceremonies among the Mackenzie Delta Inuits involved piercing the cheeks and earlobes as preparation for labrets. Hair Styling. Manners of dressing and wearing hair were also important among most tribes. Such customs differed markedly from one group to another. For instance, whereas St. Lawrence Inuit males generally shaved their scalps, leaving only an encircling circumference of hair, men belonging to southern Tiwa groups reversed this pattern so that the unshaven scalp hair resembled a skullcap. Women’s hair displayed similar variations in style, sometimes braided, sometimes tied in a top knot, or worn in whorls over the ears, as was typical of many southwestern Indian groups. Occasionally younger and older women of the same tribe would wear their hair differently. Thus, for example, Hopi girls sported the distinctive whorl style, but after marriage they generally wore their hair in braids. Modes of tending and wearing one’s hair many times held religious and social significance. The Western Apaches and the Kio-

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was, for instance, held ceremonies to mark the first cutting of a child’s hair. Among many Plains Indians, individuals cut their hair as part of ritual cycles connected with mourning. Hair styling and care involved the use of tonics, most commonly made of grease or marrow. The Lenni Lanape, or Delawares, also employed sap for this purpose. Many tribes utilized combs made of various materials, including wood and porcupine tail, as part of their styling and grooming regime. The use of tweezers to remove unwanted facial hair was also found among many Indian groups. Impact of Assimilation. From the late eighteenth through early twentieth centuries, Native American modes of bodily grooming, hair styling, and hair care underwent drastic changes due to the influence of federal assimilation policy and missionary work. As part of the so-called civilization and Christianization regime followed in both government and religious boarding schools, schoolmasters and matrons routinely cut and styled the hair of their young charges according to white fashion. Students were also expected to adopt western standards of personal grooming and adornment as signs of their cultural progress. With the revitalization of tribal values during the last few decades, however, some individuals have attempted to return to the traditional grooming and hair care practices of their tribes, especially during ritual or social celebrations. The influence of Hollywood and the media has also led to a stereotyped, “Pan-Indian” version of these practices, patterned after that of Plains Indians. Harvey Markowitz Source for Further Study Dubin, Lois Sherr. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. New York: Henry N. Abrams, 1999. See also: Dress and Adornment; Gender Relations and Roles; Rites of Passage; Tattoos and Tattooing.

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Guardian Spirits
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: According to a belief held by many American Indian cultures, an individual may obtain contact with the supernatural world by seeking a guardian spirit to serve as a personal guide and protector. For many American Indians, the concept of a guardian spirit was most commonly associated with the natural world through the visible representation of animals or birds, such as the bear, wolf, or eagle. The particular association of a guardian spirit with a certain animal was the result of either ancestral ties (most typical of the Northwest Indians), the personal vision quest (common among Plains Indian tribes), inheritance (more typical of the Indians of the Southwest and Mexico), or, least often, transference or purchase. In the Northwest the guardian spirit of the clan is represented in the totem. The clan members obtain protection from the clan totem at the puberty ceremony. The totem can also become a guardian spirit offering personal as well as communal protection. Totem poles depict the guardian spirit of the ancestral father and other figures from the natural and supernatural world. Guardian spirits may also be obtained through a vision quest ritual in which the individual seeks a vision of the guardian spirit in a secluded place. At its appearance, the guardian spirit gives the individual some kind of special capacity and a medicine bundle to be used in hunting rituals. The vision quest is usually preceded by fasting, a sweatlodge experience and bathing, and a preparatory ascetic style of living. The spirit generally appears as an animal, but not in form and shape identical to a natural animal. An individual may cause the guardian spirit to depart if any taboos are violated, and not everyone who seeks a guardian spirit through the vision quest receives one. The vision quest is still practiced today, although not for hunting purposes in the way it was practiced prior to European contact. Guardian spirits had the most significance among the hunting tribes because they helped in providing game during the hunt. It

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was taboo to eat the animal represented by the guardian spirit. Agricultural tribes of the Southwest and Mexico relied more on a variety of spirits for assistance in regard to fertility cycles and typically did not seek a personal guardian spirit, believing that one had already been received at birth. Boys more often than girls sought a guardian spirit, and obtaining a guardian spirit was often done as a puberty rite directly relating to future hunting success. An American Indian’s relationship to his or her guardian spirit is personal and intimate, expressed physically by wearing the fur, claws, or feathers of the spirit and symbolically by incorporating the animal’s name into his or her own. The shaman or medicine man was often believed to be able to change into his guardian spirit. Diane C. Van Noord See also: Bundles, Sacred; Puberty and Initiation Rites; Religion; Religious Specialists; Shields; Totems; Visions and Vision Quests.

Guns
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Guns obtained from Europeans altered patterns of intertribal warfare and Indian-white warfare as well as traditional native economies. The introduction of guns by European traders and settlers powerfully reshaped American Indian patterns of warfare, intertribal politics, and economic life. Early seventeenth century muskets had a much greater effective range than traditional bows, and they inflicted more lethal wounds. Warriors armed with bows were easily defeated by smaller numbers of Europeans armed with guns. As Indians along the Atlantic coast learned of the effectiveness of the unfamiliar weapons in war and in hunting, they eagerly traded furs, the native commodity Europeans chiefly sought, to obtain them.

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After their introduction by Europeans, guns were widely used by Native Americans as illustrated by this Paiute Indian in the late nineteenth century. (National Archives)

Tribes situated along the coast became middlemen in the exchange of European goods for furs from tribes in the interior. As tribes trapped out the beaver or other animals in their own territories, they made war on less well-armed neighbors to take possession of their hunting grounds, so that guns and the accompanying fur trade created an entirely new and more deadly source of intertribal warfare. The mid-seventeenth century destruction of the Huron Confederacy by the better-armed Iroquois is the bestknown example. The trade in furs and skins for guns and other Eu-

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ropean goods disrupted the traditional subsistence economies of Indian peoples, making them dependent on the Europeans, but no one could risk ignoring the new weapons. Guns spread steadily into the interior, reaching the Great Plains in the early nineteenth century. Armed with guns, Indians became a far greater military threat to Europeans. Bert M. Mutersbaugh Source for Further Study Taylor, Colin F. Native American Weapons. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2001. See also: Bows, Arrows, and Quivers; Warfare and Conflict; Weapons.

Hako
Tribes affected: Plains tribes, especially Pawnee Significance: The hako ceremony symbolizes the transferral of life forces from generation to generation. The word hako, which means “pipe” in the Wichita language, has been applied to a number of Indian ceremonies that center on the use of feather-ornamented hollow shafts of wood. In some general but not fully accurate descriptions, hako is deemed to be synonymous with the easily recognized calumet, or pipe ceremony, popularly associated with the “peace pipe.” In the early twentieth century writings of American ethnologist Alice C. Fletcher, however, who is still recognized as the first authority on hako, the much broader cultural symbolism suggested by the Pawnee term hakkwpirus, or “beating [in association with] a breathing mouth of wood,” is apparent. Early Observations. Feather-decorated pipe ceremonies that could be considered prototypes of what Fletcher and her associ-

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ates studied under the general label of hako were first observed, but not fully understood, in the last quarter of the seventeenth century by the French Jesuit Jacques Marquette among the Illinois tribes. Similar traditions appeared in ceremonies practiced by Algonquian and Siouan peoples. Very little was known about the specialized symbolic content of hako, however, until Fletcher carried out and published, in 1906, what remains the most extensive fieldwork on the subject. The ceremonies she described reflected the traditions of Plains Indians in particular. Fletcher must have encountered a high degree of secrecy among the Omahas, where she first observed hako ceremonies during the 1880’s. After failing over a number of years in her efforts to learn the meaning behind the Omaha ceremonies, she turned to the Pawnees, where a Chawi tribal holy man, Tahirussawichi, gave her essential explanations and some ceremonial texts. The latter were eventually translated with the assistance of her main Pawnee assistant, James Murie. Meanings of the Ceremony. Before considering the hako ceremony itself, a description of the central “breathing mouth of wood” and accompanying ritual objects is essential. Usually the wood used (two pieces) consisted of stems three or four feet in length with burned-out piths to allow the passage of breath. One stem was painted blue to represent the sky. A long red groove symbolizing life stood for the path that would be symbolized in several phases of the ceremony. Ceremonial wood was always decorated with feathers on the forward tip to “carry” communications associated with hako. As in more general Indian belief systems, the brown eagle in particular is believed to have the power to soar to the domain of higher powers in the sky. Other forces were represented in the attachment of the breast, neck, and mandibles of a duck to the downward (earthward-pointing) end of the hollowed stem. The duck symbolized daily familiarity with all elements affecting life: land, water, and sky. A second white eagle-feathered stem, called Rahaktakaru (to contrast it with Rahakatittu, the “breathing mouth of wood with dark moving feathers”), was painted

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green for the earth. Its position in the hako ceremony was always different from its brown-feathered counterpart. The unconsecrated nature of the white eagle, and thus Rahaktakaru’s association with the male father, warrior, and defender, kept it separate from two other symbolic elements of hako, namely the mother and the children. The former, the giver of fruit and abundance, was represented by an ear of white corn (atira, or mother breathing forth life), with a blue-painted tip (the sky, dwelling place of the powers) from which four blue-painted strips, or “paths,” allowed powers to descend to join the red (life) grooves of the Rahakatittu. Unlike many Indian ceremonies, hako was not associated with a particular seasonal activity, such as planting, harvesting or hunting. As a ceremony celebrating life, it could occur at any time when signs of life were stirring, either in mating (spring), nesting (summer), or flocking (fall), but not during winter dormancy. In a hako ceremony there is always a symbolic position reserved for participants representing the “parents” and a second reserved for the “children.” The latter are traditionally from a group that is distinct from the host, or parent group. This element underlines the universality of the union of otherwise distinct groups in that all benefit from the cycle of life. Journey of Mother Corn. Hako ceremonies symbolize a journey taken by Mother Corn leading from the place of origin in the group or tribe of the fathers to a destination in the group or tribe of the children. The importance of the “breathing mouth of wood” bearing the power of the brown eagle feathers is that it allows Mother Corn to attain the blue-domed abode of the powers before redescending to the ceremonial lodge. When the journey is concluded, Mother Corn will seek out the son, who is considered the paramount representative of the children. Successful conclusion of Mother Corn’s passage symbolizes assurance of safe passage of life’s bounty from one generation to another. The songs accompanying the ceremony describe various stages in the arrival and reception of Mother Corn in the village and then in the lodge of the son. After a song proclaiming her arrival, the

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tribe’s chief stands at the doorway to the ceremonial lodge holding Mother Corn. He is flanked by the Ku’rahus (spiritual “headman”) and his assistant, holding the brown eagle-feathered stem and the white eagle-feathered stem, respectively. As the son receives the bounty represented by Mother Corn, the central power image is the stem bearing the brown eagle feathers. Fletcher’s 1906 description of the meaning of the stem’s power is poignant: “Kawas [the brown eagle] has the right to make the nest and seek help from Tira’wa [the heavens] for the children.” A following stanza describes kawas’s flight inside the receiving lodge itself, the flapping of its sacred feathers driving out evil influences before a nest is made. Overall the ceremony is intended to ask for the gift of children and sustenance for the next generation, as well as for a firm bond between the parent and child. It also can symbolize the wish for peace and prosperity between those bearing the sacred objects and those who receive them. Hence, hako is associated with a ceremony of peace between tribes, one representing the fathers, the other the children. It is important to note that, although there is always a point in the hako ceremony for the offering of smoke to Tira’wa, and therefore the use of a ceremonial calumet, this aspect is not as important as the “true” symbol of the pipe in the ceremony, which is tied to the two “breathing mouths of wood” bearing the eagle feathers. Byron D. Cannon Sources for Further Study Driver, Harold E. Indians of North America. 2d ed., rev. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1969. A general guide that can be used to compare forms of symbolism that place Hako in a broader cultural context. Fletcher, Alice C. The Hako: A Pawnee Ceremony. Twenty-second Annual Report to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. Washington, D.C.: Bureau of American Ethnology, 1904. This original work remains the most extensive description of Hako. _______. “A Pawnee Ritual Used When Changing a Man’s Name.”

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American Anthropologist, n.s. 1 (1899): 82-97. Shows ways in which Hako symbolism extends to other realms. Murie, James. The Ceremonies of the Pawnee. Smithsonian Institution Contributions to Anthropology 27. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1979. General coverage, by Fletcher’s primary assistant, of rituals that occur among the same tribes that practiced the “model” hako ceremony. See also: Calumets and Pipe Bags; Corn Woman; Feathers and Featherwork.

Hamatsa
Tribes affected: Kwakiutl Significance: The Hamatsa, or Cannibal Dance, is intended to inspire fear and awe in the audience. The Hamatsa, a dance performed by the Kwakiutl of British Columbia, Canada, is used primarily to induct novice shamans into the Hamatsa Society. Their membership in this society assures them of higher status as community healers. The Hamatsa dance is also occasionally performed at ceremonial potlatches. The Hamatsa or “cannibal,” is the central figure of the dance. Before each performance, a fire is lit in a large ceremonial plank house. After the fire has burned down to coals and the proper mood has been established, the dance begins. Through repetitive arm gestures, shuffling of the feet from side to side, exaggerated and contorted facial expressions, and manipulations of the eyes, the Hamatsa dancer attempts to instill a sense of fear and awe in the audience. The skill of a Hamatsa dancer is measured by the reactions of people in the audience. If they seem uneasy and spellbound, the dance is considered successful. The dance roughly follows the story of a “wild” or “unkept” cannibal who lives in the forest and occasionally comes near villages to devour unsuspecting children. It is interesting to note that

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although most Kwakiutl dances require the use of masks, they are not typically employed by Hamatsa dancers because so much of the effect of the dance relies on the improvisational use of facial contortions. To embellish the role of a wildman, the dancer’s face must be visible. Researchers who have worked with the Kwakiutl have speculated about the underlying functions of the dance. Some have suggested that it reaffirms a basic symbolic separation between things that are well-ordered, such as village life, and things that represent disorder, such as the forest. Thus, the Hamatsa theme might reinforce cultural values for village and societal togetherness, and at the same time point to what can happen if those values are neglected. Michael Findlay See also: Dances and Dancing; Potlatch.

Hand Games
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Hand games were an important source of entertainment; they were used by shamans to dramatize their magic and by storytellers to illustrate important events. Native Americans played a wide variety of hand games, primarily for entertainment and for developing and displaying skill and dexterity. Hand games were frequently the basis of different games of chance and even gambling, and both genders and all ages participated. Children were encouraged in hand games at an early age, to help them develop hand-eye coordination. The more common hand games were jackstraws, stick games, basket dice, tops, ball juggling, four stick, tip cat, hidden ball/object, pebble games, ring and pin, shell game, whirling game with hemp, dice games, and cat’s cradle. Shamans used special hand games that involved legerdemain (sleight of hand), to demonstrate the user’s religious power during

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Hand games served as the basis for gambling games such as kose-kaw-nuch. (Library of Congress)

curing rituals or prophesying. Skilled shamans could make game objects “speak” using ventriloquism, implying that the game had its own power or spirit. These special hand game objects were “fed” and sung to by their owners. Elders and skilled storytellers employed certain hand games to illustrate or dramatize events in creation stories or mythological accounts. Gifted hand game players frequently acquired status, and during winter confinement they would be called upon for entertainment. John Alan Ross See also: Children; Games and Contests.

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Hand Tremblers
Tribes affected: Navajo Significance: Hand trembling is a distinctive cultural practice among the Navajo, an expression of the Navajo view of the world as ruled by harmonious balance. Hand trembling is one of the most common techniques for divination, or obtaining knowledge by ceremony, used among the Navajo, also known as the Diné. The two other widely used techniques are stargazing and listening. In stargazing, the diviner uses quartz crystals to interpret flashes of light or images outdoors in order to obtain information about an illness or some other problem. A listener finds the cause of a problem by hearing and interpreting some meaningful sound, such as that of thunder, after a ritual. Stargazers and listeners tend to be men, while hand trembling is reported to be more common among women. Researchers of Navajo culture and religion have suggested that both stargazing and listening have declined over the years, while the use of hand trembling has increased. Hand trembling is thought to have been borrowed by the Navajo from the Apache after 1860. Its usual uses are to diagnose illnesses, to identify witches, and to find lost objects or lost children. While the knowledge obtained from stargazing and listening is said to come from the dangerous Coyote spirit, hand tremblers get their information from the spirit of the Gila Monster. Traditional Navajo believe that the Gila Monster sees everything that happens and watches the actions of every person, so that it is able to tell where a child has strayed, what taboo a person has violated to bring on an illness, or what witch has cursed a sufferer. Hand trembling is usually signaled by the uncontrollable shaking or trembling of the right arm. After someone shows signs of hand trembling, a ceremony must be performed to enable the individual to bring on the state at will. Without the ceremony, there is a danger that the trembling will become a disease. When an object is missing, the one who has lost it will sit or

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kneel in front of the hand trembler, who will shake the hand before the seeker. For an illness, the ceremony involves sprinkling pollen over the sufferer, singing four special songs, and presenting gifts to the Gila Monster, who takes possession of the hand trembler. The answer to the question about the location of the lost object or about the nature of the sickness comes either from interpreting the motions of the shaking hand or from a direct revelation to the trembler by the Gila Monster. The hand trembler does not cure illnesses, but prescribes the ceremony and the song needed for a cure. This generally involves sitting or lying on a sand painting while a singer performs the needed ritual. The diagnosis by hand trembling and the healing ritual are based on the Navajo idea that the world is ruled by harmony. If something goes wrong, it is a result of a disruption of harmony by someone’s unintentional actions or by the intentional selfishness of a witch. Ceremonies help to re-establish a harmonious balance. Carl L. Bankston III Sources for Further Study Goodman, James. The Navajo Atlas: Environments, Resources, People and History of the Diné Bikeyah. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1982. Hill, W. W. “The Handtrembling Ceremony of the Navaho.” El Palacio 38 (1935): 56-68. Levy, Jerrold E., Raymond Neutra, and Dennis Parker. Hand Trembling, Frenzy Witchcraft, and Moth Madness: A Study of Navajo Seizure Disorders. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1987. See also: Chantways; Medicine and Modes of Curing: Postcontact; Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact; Music and Song; Religion; Sand Painting.

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Headdresses
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A symbol of tribal or clan affiliation and of connection to specific spiritual powers, the headdress indicated the status and wealth of the wearer and suggested the response appropriate from others. Headdresses were worn as the spirits guided or as honors were bestowed. Everyday head coverings were artfully made, but practical. For ceremonial headdresses, however, there were no limits. All available materials were used: fur, fabric, leather, wood, metal, and bone. Decorations and adornments included feathers, beads, quills, stones, shells, and various metals. The simplest headdress was a single eagle feather, a symbol of status among the Plains people. The brave became a warrior after his first killing of an enemy and was permitted to wear the feather. The familiar fillet headband of fabric, fur, or leather was often beaded or quilled. It also took the form of braids of sweetgrass or crowns of cottonwood leaves or sage. Eastern Woodlands. A bear claw on a headband held power for dancers; others might dance in a whole bearskin, head and all. The ceremonial crowns of Algonquian men had dozens of turkey feathers fastened only at the quill-tips so that they were kept in motion as the wearer moved. The Seneca used a deerskin cap lined with woven willow twigs for protection in battle. For ceremonies a silver headband was worn with a large bunch of feathers on top. In the Ojibwa Midewiwin (Grand Medicine Society), a headband with upright eagle feathers was used in healing rites. Southeast. Fur or deerskin headdresses trimmed with heron feathers were favored in the Southeast. At the Green Corn Ceremony the Creek chief wore a duckskin headdress. Warriors and chiefs had wampum or quill-decorated fillets with crane or heron feathers fastened at center front. The Hopewell shaman performed a burial ceremony in a hood made of a human skull trimmed with

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deer hide fringe and human hair tassels. Shamans-in-training often had a stuffed owl perched on their heads. Plains. The ceremonial war bonnet of the Plains chiefs had a beaded headband, ermine tails, many eagle feathers slanted back, and more eagle feathers forming a trailer. At times one or two eagle feathers designated warriors or chiefs, such as Sitting Bull and Red Cloud, who had also earned the right to wear the full war bonnet. The majestic buffalo horn headdress had a cap of buffalo fur, beaded headband, ermine tails, buffalo horns, and a trailer of eagle feathers. Four Bears, a Mandan chief, had a buffalo-horn and eaglefeather bonnet. A red wooden knife fastened through the cap indicated that he had killed with such a weapon. Men of the Hidatsa Dog Society wore a headdress with a huge spray of magpie feathers, a fan of large upright turkey feathers at the back of the head, and one eagle plume at the crown. Cheyenne and Oto men wore wide headbands of fur decorated with feathers, beaded medallions, or small mirrors. Some Crow warriors perched a full stuffed crow at the back of their heads. The Pawnee warrior made a striking image with his partly shaved head painted red and topped with a red roach of deer tail hairs and an upright eagle feather. Sometimes on the Plains a full grizzly bearskin was used with the bear’s head as a helmet or with the snout upright. Southwest. Apache men wore braids of yucca fibers or a folded bandanna. The mountain spirits (Gans) danced in black hoods with turquoise or shell ornaments. Red scarves covered their faces. They wore long horns of yucca or a two-foot-high wooden slat frame, decorated with powerful symbols. Women in the Corn Dance wore the spectacular “tablita,” a large, brightly painted wooden headdress, while men danced with a bunch of small reddyed feathers on top of their heads. The Pueblo Deer Dance headdress was made of spruce boughs and deer antlers trimmed with feathers. Hopi men tied their headbands of red cloth, leaving the ends hanging down. For ceremo-

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nies, the Snake priest wore a large spray of feathers. In the Southwest Yaqui Deer Dance, the headdress was an actual deer head with red scarves wrapped around its antlers. It was tied upright on the dancer’s head over a white scarf. California. The woodpecker’s bright red feathers were prized by the Hupa. Their men’s Jumping Dance headdress had more than fifty red woodpecker scalps on a white fur band. The Pomo

An important part of Native American dress was the headdress—often very elaborate in style. (Library of Congress)

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used orange and black flicker feathers to decorate similar headbands. An elder in the Hupa Jumping Dance had a crown of sea lion teeth. The finely woven basket hat of Hupa women was decorated with painted images. The California Kuksu cult dancers wore enormous headdresses of feathers and long willow sticks. A trailer of yellow woodpecker feathers swayed as they danced. Northwest. The young Northwest Coast bride proclaimed her family’s wealth with a headdress of thousands of slender dentalium shells, glass beads, and Chinese coins, so long it touched the ground. Kwakiutl people wove basket hats with wide brims and conical tops, trimmed with copper and disk-shaped shells. The Nootka conical hat was waterproof, woven of spruce roots, and painted with stylized animal images. A headdress of long upright feathers was the symbol of power for the Nootka female shaman. Impressive Haida dance headdresses featured the clan animal crest of carved wood trimmed with ermine tails, feathers, and sea lion whiskers. The Kwakiutl dance crest was surrounded by swansdown and feathers and topped with long splints of whalebone. Tlingit people carved a full-head battle helmet of wood. Their shaman’s spirit mask worn on the forehead held a small carved wood face trimmed with feathers and white down. The Tlingit chief’s woven hat had a tall cone with rings declaring the number of potlatches he had sponsored. Arctic. The Aleut men of northwestern Alaska used long whiskers of the sea lion, beads, and paint to decorate their extendedvisor caps made of steamed and shaped wood. Aleut women’s headbands were beaded with a stylized floral pattern. Post-contact Influence on Headdresses. Styles and new fabrics from Europe and England led to changes in clothing and headdresses. To replace his deerskin cap, Cherokee chief Sequoyah adopted the silk turban. Seminole leader Osceola topped his turban with three ostrich plumes. When Shawnee warrior Tecumseh

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joined the British as a general during the War of 1812, his uniform included a red cap with an eagle feather. The famous Apache Geronimo wore the rolled scarf headband. After his surrender to General Miles in 1886, he was photographed wearing a widebrimmed European hat. When a delegation of Osage leaders visited Washington, D.C., President Thomas Jefferson presented them with dark blue U.S. military tunics and top hats trimmed with red and white ostrich feathers. These became traditional wedding outfits for the Osage bride and groom. Never overshadowed by European styles, the distinctive Plains headdress has been, rather stereotypically, the one considered American Indian. In 1990, the United States Postal Service issued a set of commemorative stamps featuring several eagle-feather war bonnets. Gale M. Thompson Sources for Further Study Billard, Jules B., et al. The World of the American Indian. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 1974. Brown, Joseph Epes. The North American Indians: A Selection of Photographs by Edward S. Curtis. New York: Aperture, 1972. Dubin, Lois Sherr. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. New York: Henry N. Abrams, 1999. Gattuso, John, et al. Insight Guide: Native America. Reprint. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1993. Mails, Thomas E. Mystic Warriors of the Plains. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1972. Sturtevant, William, gen. ed. Handbook of North American Indians. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1978-2001. See also: Beads and Beadwork; Dress and Adornment; Feathers and Featherwork; Masks; Pow-wows and Celebrations; Quillwork; War Bonnets.

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Hides and Hidework
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Hide was used by virtually all native groups for a variety of utilitarian purposes. Hide, either tanned or untanned (rawhide), was used by nearly all Native American groups for clothing, hats, burden cases, pouches, shields, masks, snowshoes, moccasins, strapping, hafting of wood and stone tools, stone-boiling, slings, quivers, rattles, weapons, saddles, shelters, fishing floats, survival food, kayak and umiak coverings, and a variety of other utilitarian articles. Though land mammal hide was most commonly used, there were instances of bird, reptile, and even salmon skin being utilized for various purposes. Hide tanning was laborious and sometimes labor intensive, particularly in the late summer or early fall when land mammal hides were prime. Consequently, a high division of labor existed for procuring and processing hides. Usually men were responsible for acquiring hides through hunting, trapping or snares, and, depending upon circumstances, skinning was accomplished by either gender. Once the animal’s skin was removed (usually intact), women were responsible for processing the hide. In fact, a woman could gain considerable status through her proficiency with hides, particularly if the hide was to be decorated with porcupine quills, shells, feathers, or teeth. A hide, if not to be used as rawhide, was processed in one of two ways: fur dressing, in which the hair was left on the hide, or complete hair removal. Fur dressing was a less complete method of tanning because the hide was not split, and limitations were imposed while tanning so as not to loosen the hair, which meant the hide frequently stiffened when wet. This type of tanning method was usually for clothing. Tanning a hide required basically four major steps. Regardless of the method of tanning, the skin was first washed and pounded with a stone maul to remove blood, fat, and excess flesh. The

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pounding broke down and softened the grain of fibers, making the hide more adherent to the tanning chemicals. Next the hide was dehaired, a process which varied among Native American groups. One procedure was to bury the stretched hide in hardwood ashes several inches underground for several days. Another procedure for hair removal was to “sweat” the hide in controlled conditions of humidity or warmth. Some groups would soak the hide in urine to facilitate hair removal. The next process was “beaming,” which removed any remaining hair, subcutaneous fat, and blood. The hide was pegged with wooden stakes or horn to the ground, or stretched onto a nearly vertical frame, or placed sectionally over a smooth log. The beaming was done with either a large mammal rib, scapula, or tibiae to which was hafted a flat, dull, ovid stone. Scraping stones were frequently lunette-shaped to prevent piercing the hide, and often were not hafted, but handheld. Further washing of the hide completed this difficult process. Ideally, the hide was then soft and flexible, ready for tanning. Among Native Americans there were essentially four methods of tanning, ones that required using either brains, urine, oil, or vegetables. Brain tanning, the most common method, required the brains of the animal to be kneaded into both sides of the pegged or loose hide. Any residue was later scraped away. The brains contained fat and an emulsifier. They were often mixed with animal liver, then kneaded with lichens to form small pads that were stored for future use. Sometimes this method of tanning was supplemented with washes from various deciduous tree barks, which actually was a combination of vegetable and brain tanning. Urine tanning was common in the Arctic region; it required submersion and manipulation of the hide in human urine, sometimes stored in ice troughs. Both urine- and brain-tanned hides become stiff when dry after being wet, and to maintain suppleness, hides were smoked with punk wood in small tipi-like structures. Oil tanning, though restricted in use, was a method that required working the animal’s fat and oil into the hide. In the Arctic and Subarctic, reindeer liver could supplement oil tanning. Vegetable

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tanning was accomplished with solutions from deciduous tree barks that contain tannin, such as oak, chestnut, and sumac trees. This procedure commonly required enclosing the hide in a bag containing the tanning solution until tanning was complete. Oils were sometimes used in addition to the tannic acids. John Alan Ross Source for Further Study Dubin, Lois Sherr. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. New York: Henry N. Abrams, 1999. See also: Buffalo; Hunting and Gathering; Tanning.

Hogan
Tribe affected: Navajo Significance: Hogans are unique housing structures suited to the pastoral lifeways of the Navajo. The typical Navajo hogan is a large, comfortable, one-family dwelling place. The usual construction method starts with four support poles, which may represent the four sacred directions or the four sacred mountains that anchor the Navajo universe. The entryway, facing east, represents the union of sun and earth, as in Navajo creation myths. Around the foundation supports, a sixsided structure is built of logs, which are laid against lateral braces and then chinked with clay and rock. The roof curves in to form a low dome with a smoke hole in the center. The smoke hole and an entrance, covered with a blanket or sheepskin in winter, are the only openings. The hogan is ideally suited to the high mesas of the Southwest with their dry winds and temperature extremes. From snowy winters to hot dry summers, the log and clay exterior of the hogan provides efficient insulation, while its rounded shape conserves heat in winter. The roomy hogan may also provide a temporary home

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to newborn lambs or pups, as well as a living space for their owners. Often, a brush shelter is built near the hogan. This allows for outdoor cooking and dining during the summer. In places where wood is scarce, hogans may be constructed of stone. Helen Jaskoski See also: Architecture: Southwest.

Hohokam Culture
Significance: Adapting to the desert environment, these ancestors of the modern Pimi and Papago established agricultural settlements and irrigation systems. One of four prehistoric cultures in the Southwest, the Hohokam people, ancestors of the modern Pimi and Papago, lived in the fertile valleys of the Salt and Gila Rivers in what is today southern Arizona. Artifacts show that this seemingly bleak region, the

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Arizona-Sonora Desert, was home to the Hohokam for more than seventeen hundred years, but archaeologists are not certain where they originated. Were they descendants of the earlier Cochise people, who hunted and gathered in the same desert area, or did they migrate from Mexico? Much of their cultural history suggests a Mesoamerican influence; however, this could have been acquired through the extensive trade routes established by the Hohokam. Development of Hohokam culture occurred in four phases: Pioneer, 300 b.c.e.-500 c.e.; Colonial, 500-900 c.e.; Sedentary, 900-1100 c.e.; and Classic, 1100-1400 c.e. The Hohokam culture was similar to the desert cultures of the Anasazi, Hakataya, and Mogollon, but a major difference was their complex irrigation system. Evidence from the Pioneer phase shows that the Hohokam lived in pit houses and began the cultivation of corn in their small villages. Floodplains along the rivers were rich with silt deposited from spring rains and snowmelt from nearby mountains. The earliest irrigation was probably achieved by directing the floodwaters. About 300 b.c.e., during the Pioneer phase, the village of Skoaquick, or Snaketown, was founded on the north bank of the Gila River. The first canal was built there to divert river water to irrigate fields as far as three miles away. Early canals were shallow but very wide. Later, using technology from Mexico, the Hohokam built narrow, deep canals with many branches and lined them with clay to channel water more than thirty miles. Gates made of woven grass mats controlled the flow from large dams throughout the canal system. Archaeological evidence suggests that construction of the canals was done by men using digging sticks and stone hoes. Earth was carried away in baskets by women and was probably used in building their pyramid ceremonial platforms. Continual maintenance was needed to keep the canals open after floods or thunderstorms, but this full-time technology provided a reliable subsistence for the Hohokam and supported a denser population. Instead of harvesting crops from the natural habitat, the Hohokam successfully brought agriculture into their villages to develop a stable farming society in which the men tended the fields instead of hunting.

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As domesticated corn moved northward from Mexico, it evolved into a new type with a floury kernel more easily crushed when dry. The Hohokam harvested their domestic corn and prepared it by traditional desert-culture methods of sun-drying, parching in baskets with coals, and grinding dried kernels. Storage in large pits kept their surplus food secure for several years. The plentiful food supply allowed time for the creation of art, including shell carving, loom weaving, and pottery making. Images of Kokopelli, the humpbacked flute player, a fertility god believed to assure a good harvest, frequently decorated the pottery. Epic poems carried Hohokam cultural history through many generations. The archaeological record shows that the Hohokam had no weapons; their bows, arrows, and spears were used for hunting deer, rabbits, and other small game to supplement their crops.

Area of the Hohokam Culture
CALIFORNIA

ANASAZI
Kayenta Canyon de Chelly Mesa Verde

Chaco Canyon

PATAYAN
Snaketown Casa Grande Point of Pines Mimbres

HOHOKAM

MOGOLLON

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Deerskins and rabbit fur were used for ponchos, robes, and blankets. Cotton shirts and breechcloths were typical outfits for men, and apron-skirts of shredded fiber were worn by women. Both wore sandals of woven fiber and wickerwork. Other Hohokam artifacts include stone and clay pipes, cane cigarettes, noseplugs, wooden spoons, flutes, and prayer sticks. Stick and ring games, guessing games, gambling bones, and dice were also part of Hohokam culture. Petroglyphs, pot shards, pyramids, and pit houses tell the story of Hohokam contact with Mexico. In addition to pottery and domestic crops, which by 600 c.e. included cotton, the Colonial phase shows the use of astronomy to calculate planting dates. Narrower, deeper canals were dug to control evaporation, ball courts were built for ceremonial use, and images of the feathered serpent were used in ceremonial art. In the Sedentary phase, a smaller area of the desert was occupied by the Hohokam. Greater development occurred in the material culture, which showed more influence from Mexico: red-onbuff pottery, copper bells, turquoise mosaics, iron-pyrite mirrors, textiles, and bright-feathered macaws as pets in homes. During this period, Hohokam artists began the process of etching. The earliest people in the Western world to master the craft, they devised a method of covering the shells with pitch, carving the design, then dipping shells in the acidic juice of the saguaro cactus fruit. Along with salt, these shells were highly prized for exchange on the extensive trade route. During the Classic phase, the Salados (a branch of the Anasazi people) moved into Hohokam territory, bringing a new architecture of multistory adobe houses. They introduced other varieties of corn, as well as beans and squash, and brought basketry, the newest art form. Always peaceful people, the Hohokam coexisted with the Salados, who assisted with the building of canals. By 1350 c.e., the complex network extended more than 150 miles. Of great importance to the Hohokam were the new songs and ceremonies brought by the Salado, for these kept the world in balance and assured a life of abundance and harmony.

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As early as 300 b.c.e., Snaketown had been the year-round site of a village of about fifty families who relied on the production of domestic crops. It remained the center of Hohokam culture for fifteen hundred years. During the expansive period, more than one hundred pit houses covered the three-hundred-acre site. A highly developed social organization was needed to oversee the large population, produce abundant food, and maintain the network of canals. As their culture evolved from the Pioneer through the Classic phase, Hohokam social organization had shifted from small bands to tribes to chiefdoms to states. In the early fifteenth century, the Hohokam abandoned Snaketown and other settlements, possibly because of a long period of drought. In the nineteenth century, Mormon farmers used part of the network of canals skillfully engineered almost two thousand years earlier. Continuing the legacy, a canal at Snaketown near present-day Phoenix was reconstructed in the twentieth century to divert water from the Salt River. The ancient Hohokam spoke Uto-Aztecan, one of the seven Southwest language families, which also included Hopi, Pima, Yaqui-Mayo, and Huichol. In the Piman language, the term “Hohokam” translates as “the vanished ones.” Myths and songs about the mysterious desert whirlwinds are found in Piman culture, inherited from their Hohokam ancestors. Perhaps the whirlwinds hold the secret of the vanished ones. Gale M. Thompson Sources for Further Study Abbott, David R., ed. Centuries of Decline During the Hohokam Classic Period at Pueblo Grande. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2003. An examination of the collapse of Hohokam culture during the fourteenth century. Ortiz, Alfonso, ed. Southwest. Vol. 9 in Handbook of North American Indians, edited by William C. Sturtevant. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1979. _______. Southwest. Vol. 10 in Handbook of North American Indians, edited by William C. Sturtevant. Washington, D.C.: Smithso-

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nian Institution, 1983. These two volumes in the Smithsonian’s multivolume history cover both the Pueblo (volume 9) and nonPueblo (volume 10) peoples of the Southwest. Maps, photographs, illustrations, bibliographies, indexes. Taylor, Colin, and William C. Sturtevant, eds. The Native Americans: The Indigenous People of North America. New York: Smithmark, 1991. Native American culture and lifestyle in nine culture areas, from the Arctic to the Southwest. Includes twenty-eight photographic spreads showing more than a thousand artifacts, dating from 1860 to 1920; 250 archival photographs, maps, and color plates, dating from 1850 to 1940; bibliography; catalog of artifacts; and index. Thomas, David Hurst. Exploring Ancient Native America: An Archeological Guide. New York: Routledge, 1999. Overview of Native American cultures and the evolution of numerous Native American civilizations. References more than four hundred accessible sites in North America. Discusses new scientific data from burial mounds, petroglyphs, artifacts, and celestial observations. Photographs, drawings, maps, and index. Underhill, Ruth M. Red Man’s America: A History of Indians in the United States. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1953. Concise volume surveying origins, history, and definitive accounts of social customs, material culture, religion, and mythology. Written from the perspective of the first peoples of North America. Illustrations, maps, notes, extensive bibliography, and index. See also: Agriculture; Architecture: Southwest; Anasazi Civilization; Corn; Irrigation; Mogollon Civilization; Pottery.

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Horses
Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: From the seventeenth century onward, the horse was an important aspect of many, if not most, North American Indian societies; it was most dominant in the lives of the Plains Indians. On his second voyage to the New World in 1493, Christopher Columbus imported the first horses to America. The settlement of Santo Domingo in Hispaniola became the horse-breeding center of the Caribbean islands. Subsequently, horse rancherías, both royal and private, were established in Cuba, Jamaica and other islands. When Hernán Cortés left Havana for the expedition to New Spain (Mexico) in 1519, he took with him sixteen horses, one of which foaled on board during the trip. After the fall of the Aztec empire, the Spaniards moved quickly to consolidate their gains. Antonio de Mendoza, the first viceroy of New Spain, faced the first serious challenge to Spanish rule since the conquest when natives rebelled in the northwestern province of Nueva Galicia, now the states of Jalisco and Nayarit. The rebellion, known as the Mixtón War of 1541-1542, caused the viceroy, for the first time, to send allied chieftains on horseback and use Spanish weapons to quell the uprising. It was with the Mixtón War that Native Americans started their long relationship with the horse. Dispersion of Horses. From New Spain, horses moved northward when Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, in his expedition of 1540-1542, took fifteen hundred horses with him to New Mexico (only a few of these animals survived). The first important breeding and distribution center of horses in what is now the United States was established in 1598 by Juan de Oñate in the San Juan Pueblo settlement on the east bank of the Rio Grande River, about 30 miles north of present-day Santa Fe, New Mexico. From this location, the horse was farther dispersed in an ever-northward and northwestward direction, arriving in the following areas in approximately these years: Colorado, 1659; Wyoming/Idaho, 1690-1700;

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Montana/Oregon/Washington, 1720-1730; Canada, 1730-1750; California, 1769-1775. In an eastern and northeastern direction, the horse was dispersed to the following areas: Texas/Oklahoma, 1600-1690; Nebraska/Kansas/South and North Dakota, 17201750. Except for the Mixtón incident and reports that, in 1567, tribes were observed riding horses in the Sonora Valley of Mexico, there is nothing to suggest that Southwest natives were on horseback before the seventeenth century. When Native Americans acquired horses they did so by stealing them from the Spaniards. By early 1700, horses with Spanish brands had reached the northern Plains, transforming every aspect of life for the people in the region. Before the advent of the horse, people in the Plains area used dogs to help transport personal possessions on travois tied to the dog’s back. The newly acquired horse became a “new superior dog” that was harnessed to a larger travois and was capable of transporting

The horse enabled the Plains Indians to use bigger travois to transport a larger volume of goods. (Library of Congress)

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greater volumes of material. Dog names were given to horses, honoring their function; the Assiniboine had two names for horses: Sho-a-thin-ga and Thongatch-shonga, both signifying “great dog”; the Blackfoot had Ponokamita, “elk dog”; the Gros Ventre, Itshouma-shunga, “red dog.” The Sioux word was Shonk-a-Wakan, “medicine dog”; and the Cree was Mistamin, “big dog.” Plains Horse Culture. Inevitably, horseback riding quickly followed the harnessed “big dogs,” and with the acquisition of firearms, mounted hunting parties enjoyed easier access to the vast buffalo herds roaming the Plains. Greater meat supplies raised many tribes above subsistence levels, providing time to pursue warlike activities such as raids for the acquisition of horses owned by other tribes. Individual horse ownership became an integral part of social transactions, and standards of wealth were measured in number of horses owned. Spiritual and religious customs incorporated the horse as powerful medicine, and members of horse cults believed they received their powers from horses. Horse breeding became commonplace among many tribes. The Flathead and Piegan acquired vast herds of horses (said to have numbered in the thousands), while the Nez Perce developed the outstanding, well-conformed, and spotted Appaloosa, which was known throughout the region as the hardiest and most reliable horse. The Blackfoot were the consummate horse keepers and trainers, and they practiced superior husbandry procedures. The Crow developed an honored horse “trading” tradition throughout the northern Plains and mountains. The Cheyenne attempted to steal horses without killing the members of the raided tribe, and the Comanche became the most dreaded and splendid horsemen of the Plains. The extermination of the buffalo, the sheer power of the western movement of European Americans, and the placement of the tribes on reservations ended the Native American horse culture. Moises Roizen See also: Buffalo; Dogs.

or an inappropriate choice of potential mate. An example is the tradition of “joking relations.” often cousins. In the controlled setting of a village or family unit. After his spiritual awakening. Similarly. a pejorative nickname based on undesirable physical attributes or lack of appropriate manly or womanly behavior might serve as an incentive to overcome limitations and conform to group norms. a young woman’s resistance to getting married. These cousins monitored each other’s actions. Lightheartedness might be used as a way of dealing with traditional restraints on expressing emotions. in various forms. Humor also served as a way of keeping interpersonal aggressions under control. For example. the Shawnee Prophet was once known as Lalawethika (the Drum or Rattle) because of his boastfulness. . or unworthiness might follow someone through life or might later be replaced with a more desirable name. unattractiveness. conveying a desired message of rebuke without the likelihood of physical retribution. he became known as Tenskwatawa—the Open Door. An unflattering name suggesting immaturity. arguments deriving from inevitable tensions could be very disruptive of common order. Playfulness.Humor / 365 Humor Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: North American Indian humor. In this way humor served as a way of discouraging deviant behavior and encouraging group norms while keeping the rebuke at a safe distance from the harmony of the immediate family. making pointed comments about a young man’s aptitude as a warrior. and other forms of humor were—and are—widespread among North American Indians. pervades various native traditions and serves important social functions. Conveying one’s point of view through humor rather than contention allowed for a socially acceptable release of emotions which might otherwise lead to socially harmful conflict. practical jokes. who might use sarcasm to suggest corrections in undesirable behaviors. however.

Carroll See also: Joking Relations. Indeed. thereby making them susceptible to occasional food shortages. Thomas P. Usually. At the same time. even against family members. tribes were so well adapted that even in the most marginal areas they easily supplied their continuing caloric needs by utilizing a wide range of food sources. Humor allowed important messages about behavior to be communicated in nonthreatening ways and thereby served as an important reinforcement of the community. Social Control. hunters and gatherers maintained the most leisurely lifestyle of any human societies. often devoting a scant two or three hours per day to subsistence activities. however. all related by kinship or marriage. but they generally met their needs adequately and had significant leisure time. Hunters and gatherers were migrant people possessing only rudimentary technology who traveled a fixed territory in pursuit of seasonal produce and game animals. Names and Naming. “Hunting and gathering” refers to the economic activities of the simplest and historically earliest form of human society. children—in the tolerant upbringing common to many native people—were often allowed to use humor and practical jokes. Within bands the nuclear family was . Because they were usually ignorant of techniques of food preservation. Occasionally kinship was fictive.366 / Hunting and Gathering Indian cultures frowned on sarcasm or ridicule directed from parents toward their children in the interest of preserving family unity and protecting budding egos. Hunting and Gathering Tribes affected: Prehistoric and pantribal Significance: Hunting and gathering societies could not amass surplus food supplies. Hunting and gathering tribes contained several small bands of less than fifty members. hunters and gatherers did not collect surplus.

and food sharing was a principal feature of life. his role was merely advisory. Although bands usually acknowledged a headman. and his status was in recognition of unusual prowess in a vital skill such as hunting. for example. instruction of women in abortion techniques and enforced sexual abstinence for more than a year after childbirth freed women from overly bur- . of men or women. Bands usually maintained a central camp. Of all human societies. (National Archives) the primary economic and social unit. Occasionally bands met on ceremonial occasions or for the exchange. there was greater sexual equality than among other types of societies. Among the Ute of the Great Basin. through marriage.Hunting and Gathering / 367 A late nineteenth century Paiute woman gathering seeds in southern Nevada. Likewise. hunting and gathering bands were the most egalitarian.

Tensions were often diffused by elaborate and ritualized methods such as insult singing. Unusual storytelling ability was valued. Division of labor was by sex. Hunter-gatherers: An Interdisciplinary Perspective. Virginia Sources for Further Study Lee. Catherine. Likewise. material possessions among hunters and gatherers were usually few. and Peter RowleyConwy. Mary E. . and Richard Daly. Robert H. By the mid-twentieth century. including storytelling and historical renditions. Child rearing and domestic activities such as cooking. California. 1999. The greatest pre-contact concentration of hunting and gathering tribes in North America was in the semi-arid Great Basin of Nevada. basketmaking. Yet fully two-thirds or more of caloric needs were met by women’s gathering activities. Trial marriages were common. Richard B. decorative arts could also be elaborate. New York: Cambridge University Press. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Hunters and Gatherers. Subsistence. eds. sewing. New York: Cambridge University Press. Ostracism and gossip within the band were also effective deterrents of crime.. as were religious and ceremonial leadership. Layton. and tanning hides were female duties. 2001. Oral traditions. Idaho. Hunting was awarded the highest social significance. Oregon. eds. and divorce could be accomplished simply by returning to the parental camp. Because they were limited by their nomadic lifestyles. were often elaborate. Panter-Brick. discipline was usually performed within families. Warfare and political functions were male responsibilities. See also: Gender Relations and Roles. Lacking higher authorities. elaborate rituals often surrounded a hunt. and Utah. often conferring high status. with men hunting and women gathering food.368 / Hunting and Gathering densome maternal responsibilities. all American Indian hunting and gathering tribes had abandoned their traditional lifestyles. which resulted in male dominance. however.

Husk Face Society / 369 Husk Face Society Tribes affected: Iroquois tribes Significance: Also called the Bushy Heads. agricultural spirits. which ranking members of the society recognize. Glenn J. and paddles for spreading or combing ashes. Membership in the Husk Face Society includes both men and women and comes as the result of dreaming of. and before departing they usually prophesy an abundant corn harvest for the coming year. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. William N. Masks. See also: Clowns. Husk Face Society members seem to handle hot coals with ease. Schiffman Source for Further Study Fenton. . Husk Faces function in the Midwinter Ceremony in a key role as clowns. Husk Faces herald the arrival of False Face Society members during the autumnal Thanksgiving Ceremony. Midwinter Ceremony. During False Face ceremonies. the Husk Faces are an Iroquoian medicine society ministering to specific illnesses and conducting certain ritual functions. the Husk Faces act as “doorkeepers. They also reverse dance roles in the Midwinter Ceremony.” Husk Face masks include protruded mouth holes from which healers expel a curative blow on hot coals. The False Faces of the Iroquois. Paraphernalia also includes wooden hoes. Husk Faces wear masks braided or woven from cornhusks. Public appearances at Green Corn and other ceremonies include functioning to dispel disease. The female members dress as men and the men as women. shovels. or visioning. 1987.

each course of snow blocks decreased in circumference until the very top. A window for light was made of ice. When placed one atop another in an inclined plane. were hemispherical structures of varying size made of wind-compacted snow. Additional insulation was provided by shoveling loose snow atop the completed structure. The entrance tunnel sump was always lowest. Igloos. It normally took two men three hours to build such a structure. It was important Igloo . The domoid igloo was divided into a living/cooking area and raised sleeping platform. Blocks were cut with bone or baleen knives. found mostly in the central Arctic. which was completed with a capblock.370 / Igloo Igloo Tribes affected: Primarily Inuit (Eskimo) groups in the Arctic culture area Significance: Igloos were the main dwelling structures of central Arctic tribes. so that entering cold air was warmed and then exited through a small opening over the sleeping area.

In some cultures the same denotation was applied to such cousins as was applied to siblings. The practice of incest was sometimes blamed for reduced success in hunting and other misfortunes which befell communities. particularly ice-sealing sites. Prohibited relatives also often included parallel cousins (that is. and an alter- . as if to reinforce the prohibition on any marital or sexual relationship. biological parents and siblings. but were not limited to. Such classes included. Incest was condemned in very grave terms by American Indian cultures. On occasion. Incest Taboo Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: This proscription was and continues to be taken very seriously by American Indian cultures. The ban on incest involved not only marriage but also any sexual intercourse with forbidden classes of relatives. were joined by tunnels. Igloo size varied from accommodation for an extended family to a large ceremonial structure. even to the extent of being associated with witchcraft and sorcery. The incest taboo is the near-universal prohibition against marrying close biological relatives. No such widespread ban. individual igloos situated at productive resource areas. John Alan Ross See also: Architecture: Arctic. however. a man marrying his father’s brother’s daughter or his mother’s sister’s daughter). In some cultures these marriages were not only permitted but also encouraged.Incest Taboo / 371 that the insulation effect not be reduced by the interior becoming too warm and the ice melting. One way of examining the likely acceptability of a match between relatives is thus by examining the terms used for the relationships between them. existed on relationships between cross cousins (a man marrying his father’s sister’s daughter or his mother’s brother’s daughter).

In 1817. since there is a biological relationship between both parties and their parents. kinship terms for in-laws are often not present. Kinship and Social Organization. a native police force and judicial system were created to administer justice on reservations. Related to the prohibition of incest is the practice of exogamy. the United States Supreme Court ruled that federal courts had jurisdiction over all cases. Indian Police and Judges Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: In 1878. Since the army did not .” The army served as the police force for Native Americans.372 / Indian Police and Judges native partner was wed only when no acceptable cross cousin was available. and trials were held in federal courts. restricting equal numbers of relatives of both parents. when Secretary of the Interior Carl Schurz recommended to Congress the creation of the United States Indian Police. Another. restricting marriage and sexual bonds with a greater number of relatives of the father. in “Indian country. local exogamy. In such communities. restricting a greater number of relatives of the mother. Exogamy within families may be patrilineal. Marriage and Divorce. Schurz received warnings from army officers in the West that starving Indians on reservations were becoming desperate and that a rebellion could break out at any time. requiring suitors to take a spouse from another location. Carroll See also: Clans. One example is the requirement that one marry outside one’s clan. dictates bans on marriage within a geographical community. or bilateral. matrilineal. That policy remained in effect until 1878. A man was also usually allowed to marry his brother’s widow. criminal and civil. Exogamy refers to certain traditional restrictions on marriage that are not based on such close biological ties. Thomas P.

so Congress approved hiring new Native American judges. arrest people for drunkenness. In 1883. Congress approved the creation of a native police force under the control of Office of Indian Affairs agents. find and return “truants” from the reservation. Indians respected their own police much more than they did white military personnel. Congress gave the Indian police the authority to guard reservations against trespassers. The police were to serve as judges in these courts.Indian Police and Judges / 373 Sioux Indian police at the Pine Ridge Agency in the late 1880’s. were working at forty agencies in the West. The officers and their men generally received high praise from Indians and white agents for their conduct. 162 officers and 653 privates. all Native Americans. the Department of the Interior authorized creation of Courts of Indian Offenses. Within three years. Some whites in Congress and in white areas surrounding reservations. (National Archives) have enough troops available to react quickly to such an alarming possibility. Policemen serving as both judges and arresting officers created conflicts in many trials. even though it meant spending a little more money. and provide other police services. it was suggested that Indians themselves be trained to handle such problems. feared giving Native Americans . however.

particularly in prehistoric times. irrigation in pre-Columbian North America was restricted to the Southwest. they had been ex- . Irrigation Tribes affected: Southwestern tribes Significance: Irrigation permitted some tribes of the Southwest. There. 1980. the Indian police and courts proved a successful reform in treatment of Native Americans by allowing for more self-government on reservations. Leslie V. assault. Tischauser Source for Further Study Hagan. the earliest known irrigation was practiced by people of the Hohokam archaeological tradition. Despite these limits. By 700. the bringing of water to agricultural fields.e. beginning around 100 c. Indian Police and Judges: Experiments in Acculturation and Control. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. but it was used relatively little by prehistoric North American Indians. Most of eastern North America had adequate rainfall for agriculture. The earliest canals were modest in scope. Indian judges could try cases involving only petty criminal offenses. and without sophisticated water control features. to practice effective agriculture in arid lands. rape. and much of western North America was so dry that agriculture was impractical. manslaughter. See also: Tribal Courts.374 / Irrigation full control of their criminal justice system. unlined. was practiced widely in pre-Columbian Mexico and Peru. arson. or larceny. the secretary of the interior acted to limit the types of crimes heard in the Indian courts. These crimes were returned to the jurisdiction of United States marshals and federal district courts. Indian judges could no longer hear cases concerning murder. As a result. Irrigation. In 1885. William T. burglary.

however. Hohokam Culture. who probably adopted their irrigation practices from the Spanish. Hohokam irrigation had diminished to small-scale ditches with far less engineering sophistication than the earlier systems. if . kin in avoidance relations are actually to avoid each other physically. by contrast.Joking Relations / 375 panded to a massive network. A feature of many North American kinship systems is joking relations. and plunge pools had been added to the system.) Avoidance relations are typically with one’s parents. and given definition by. including one main canal at least 17 miles long. In avoidance relations. (A cross cousin is a relative related to a person through that person’s father’s sister or mother’s brother. formal fashion with each other. Technology. (Parallel cousins are related through the father’s brother or the mother’s sister. Barber See also: Agriculture. The kin with whom one may joke are typically a person’s grandparents and cross cousins. in some cases. Russell J. Other historic tribes using irrigation include the Pueblo peoples and the Colorado River tribes (Mojave and Yuma). siblings of the opposite sex. a corresponding set of avoidance relations. head gates. By 1400. the canals were lined to reduce loss from seepage. for example. In joking relations. control features such as trash gates. and this sort of irrigation was continued by the Pima. and parallel cousins.and mothers-in-law.) North American Indians typically also practiced a strong avoidance relationship between sons. A few centuries later. among the Crow. Joking Relations Tribes affected: Widespread but not pantribal Significance: Joking relations refer to the humorous and informal relations between certain relatives in many Indian tribes. in addition. certain kin engage in free and easy bantering and talk with each other. Joking relations are almost always paired with. kin are to act in a reserved.

Joking kin often tried to outdo one another in the obscenity of references to one another’s sexual exploits or attributes. David J. and sexual intercourse was permitted between cross cousins. and behavior around avoidance kin was carefully controlled. but an important social message was delivered at the same time. personal warmth. the informality of the situation made the circumstances humorous and acceptable. In some cultures. people were relaxed. Generally. however.376 / Joking Relations a man’s mother-in-law entered an area. Avoidance relations were formal. a son-in-law would excuse himself and leave. . it would be judged incest. Kin with whom a person has avoidance relations are people with whom a person may not have sexual intercourse. joking relations were primarily a source of recreation and entertainment for those involved. such as the Hidatsa. Once again. Minderhout See also: Children. Incest Taboo. if sex between such individuals did occur. A Hidatsa man would tease a joking relative who had achieved few war honors or would tease a member of the Black Mouth secret society. who was thought to be unjust. A nonsexual relationship of mutual indulgence existed between grandparents and grandchildren. mock aggression and sexual allusion were common. Indians did not joke about or even talk about any topic even remotely related to sex with those kin. Children were taught from infancy to delight in considering some joking kin in sexual and conjugal terms. With these kin. To avoid even the appearance of the possibility of incestuous relationships with some relatives. a crime North American Indians strongly proscribed. and easygoing bantering marked interactions between grandparents and grandchildren. joking relations served an additional function: creating conformity through teasing. While a person’s interactions with parents were formal. which served as a kind of police force among the Hidatsa. By comparison. Kinship and Social Organization. joking relations were very informal and often bawdy. Humor. informality.

believe that they live under the lakes. and those representing the lesser spirits. All these suggest a prehistoric origin for the kachina cult. such as the Zuñi. The term “kachina” has three distinct meanings: a spirit being. concerned with the growth of crops and the fertility of all life. or most sacred. . while others. found at the prehistoric site of Double Butte Cave in Arizona. a small wooden effigy with the face painted to resemble a mask. which have more spectacular. or beaks.Kachinas / 377 Kachinas Tribes affected: Pueblo tribes Significance: The kachina cult. and changeable. spirits. are made primarily by the Hopi and to a lesser extent by the Zuñi. and a wooden figurine or doll made to resemble one of the spirits. Masked figures very similar to modern kachina masks have been found in ancient kiva murals at Hopi and in the Rio Grande Valley. believe that the kachinas live on mountaintops. arriving in late February for an initiation ceremony called the Powamu and returning after the Niman Ceremony.” the simple flat kachina dolls tied to a baby’s cradle. in July. or Home Dance. bears a similarity to Hopi “cradle dolls. which are simple and unchanging. the Hopi among them. While they are in the villages. The Hopi kachinas leave their mountain home to live in the villages for six months each year. although belief in the kachina spirits is common to all the groups. noses. features such as ears. the kachinas are represented in various dances and ceremonies by men wearing masks. These kachina dolls. Additionally. Some Puebloans. a dancer wearing a mask who impersonates one of the spirits in ceremonial dances. as well as in pictographs located throughout the Southwest. There are two major categories of masks: those representing the greater. is found among all the Puebloans in the Southwest. Kachinas are spirits of the dead who act as intermediaries between humankind and the gods and who bring the clouds and the rain. the best examples of woodcarving found among the Puebloans.

“Action dolls”—those carved in more active positions—have also been developed to appeal to the collector. although referring to religious spirits. and feathers to replace features earlier represented by carving and painting. nor are there any references to them in the literature of the period. are not religious objects themselves and are not worshiped as idols. Therefore. This resulted in a greater naturalism in the modeling of the figures as well as the addition of pieces of cloth. The dolls. the doll must be accurate and detailed. although there are no examples dating earlier than about 1850. (Museum of New Mexico) It is not certain when the Puebloans began to carve modern versions of kachina dolls. especially the mask features. fur. when the traders who came into the Southwest began to sell the dolls to collectors. Kachina dolls are carved from cottonwood root and painted by the men of the pueblo to be given to their daughters or nieces in order to teach them the mask. costume. and body markings of each kachina spirit. LouAnn Faris Culley .378 / Kachinas Members of the Hopi tribe making kachina figures during the mid-1930’s. The commercialization of the kachina doll began sometime in the 1880’s.

huckleberry leaves. Tobacco. . the leaf was dried. The smoke has a sweet smell. John Alan Ross See also: Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact. Wherever the plant was found. dried. Schaafsma. moose. The leaf was used commonly for making tea by boiling the dried leaves.: Northland. toasted. 2000.” dwarf wild rose. particularly when cooked slowly in bear. the leaves were picked. and it can make the uninitiated smoker dizzy. the leaves and berries were utilized by Native Americans in a variety of ways. evergreen shrub that forms dense mats in well-drained sandy soils throughout much of North America. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press. seal. a member of the heather family. and red osier dogwood. Sculpture. ed. Kinnikinnick Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: This plant was used by Native Americans in many ways. 2000. Flagstaff. salmon. the tea was drunk medicinally as a diuretic or tonic. and often greased. Kachinas in the Pueblo World. Kinnikinnick berries were used in meat and soups and. Polly. or sturgeon grease. after the introduction of flour. Kinnikinnick. is a low. including wild tobacco. which made them more palatable. After the plant had flowered. Some groups believed the plant was placed on earth primarily for use as a tobacco. See also: Arts and Crafts: Southwest. and smoked as a substitute for tobacco or used as a mixture with other plants. “Indian marijuana. were made into dumplings. Traditional Hopi Kachinas: A New Generation of Carvers. Religion. trailing. The berries were eaten raw or after cooking. Most commonly. The Lillooet sometimes made temporary pipe stems from the dried roots.Kinnikinnick / 379 Sources for Further Study Day. Jonathan S. Masks. deer. Ariz. mountain goat.

identified by close familial relationship. and all live within the American legal . Finally. and various powers are passed down from mother to daughter. extended or immediate. in matrilocal societies. these groups were of varying importance. or nation. Family relationships could be quite complex. before further discussion of social organization. The term “matrilineal” describes a society in which lineage. The largest societal group was the tribe. A prime example of such changes is the fact that most Indians today are at least nominally Christian. including systems both much like and vastly different from those of Europeans. as could the larger units of social organization. Among various Indian tribes. property. Almost all of those that have continued have been changed—some dramatically—by contact with the dominant European American culture. Like almost all cultures around the world. Therefore. Patrilocal societies are those in which wives move into their husbands’ households. whereas others have not. The precise number of tribes that have existed in North America is difficult to ascertain. but they certainly numbered in the hundreds. it should be noted that some traditions and customs have survived to the present day. Finally there was the family group. often identified with particular animals.380 / Kinship and Social Organization Kinship and Social Organization Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Kinship relationships of various types have often formed the basis for political and social customs among native North Americans. traditional American Indian cultures considered family relationships to be of paramount importance. Patrilineal societies pass property and power from father to son. men move into their wives’ households. two subgroups within the tribe. Within some tribes were moieties. a number of terms must be noted before American Indian social organization can be examined. The next group was the clan. since many were virtually exterminated by the European invaders.

Matrilineage was quite common. notably the Subarctic tribes. such as certain Inuit groups. Unfortunately. at least legally. Wives often moved into their husbands’ households at marriage. Lineage Patterns. While there will be a brief discussion of modern conditions. the men customarily lived in “men’s houses. since many of these customs had already been altered before they were seriously studied. while differentiating between mothers and mothers’ sisters. all the following will be referred to in the past tense as an indication that times have changed since first contact between Europeans and Indians. In a few cases there was bilateral lineage. which also discourages marriage between close relatives. marriage between cousins was encouraged. In the Southwest. Marriage within a clan was almost always forbidden. Polygamy used to be common among Indian tribes. Some tribes described fathers and fathers’ brothers by the same term. there are a number of different traditions among Indians. In some cases. today. the marriage had to be outside the moiety. Many variations took place. Unlike European traditions. patrilineal descent was more common. the men spent most of their time outside. as they are usually assigned to the dictates of gods and spirits. In some cases. Power and property were passed from father to son or from brother to brother. the situations can be confusing. In many Indian cultures. The women were in charge of the household and often tended crops. it is nonexistent. in which the male line is almost always considered predominant. hunting and fishing or conducting warfare. these rules are remarkably logical in terms of modern genetics.Kinship and Social Organization / 381 system. Tribal chiefs still exist. . and the naming and meaning of various relatives were complex indeed. but they are ultimately under the control of the United States government. In some cultures.” while the regular households were composed entirely of women and children. While it is impossible to determine how ancient taboos originated. but incest was almost a universal taboo.

1957. Comparative Studies of North American Indians.Patterns of Descent Bilateral descent ral descent Matrilineal descent ineal descent Patrilineal descent Source: After Driver. Harold E. and William C.. Massey. .

The Crow of the northwestern Plains had a chief with widespread power. to have several wives. In some tribes. he was not necessarily an old man or significantly involved in religious ceremonies. especially a man of power and influence. Political Power. This chief was far from dictatorial. Chosen for his abilities. certainly. was bowed to regardless of what he said. Gender roles among American Indians. The common stereotype of the old chief sitting on his blanket and decreeing orders for the tribe was actually a very uncommon system of government among American Indians. Lesser men left his presence by walking backward. The shamans among the Eskimos (Inuits) were probably the most powerful people in their tribes. The Athapaskan peoples of the Subarctic. were ruled by a chief called the Great Sun. and occasionally great warriors achieved political power for a time. law was polygamy. the number of wives a man married was an important sign of prestige. He was an absolute dictator. including the division of labor between men and women and the amounts of social and political power held by each. however. religious leaders were also political leaders. whose political system is probably the best understood because they were among the last Indians to be significantly influenced by white culture. In many cases. There were some such chiefs. inherited his title but could be deposed by common opinion. In many Indian cultures it was customary for a man. were first observed and . the Natchez of Alabama and Louisiana. was a chief who was chosen by election. but he became chief by agreement of the tribal members.Kinship and Social Organization / 383 The one common custom among many Indian tribes that was totally abolished (at least legally) by U. and he was answerable to a village council. Gender Roles. who was practically considered a god. and was carried on a litter. but the political structure there was very loose. elected their chief. or simply became chief because he proved himself in battle or had great wealth.S. Much more common. for example.

for example. As a consequence. Among the Hopi. Yet there were a number of exceptions. gender roles in American Indian societies represent an area of study that has been subject to some debate and reinterpretation. their uniting was mainly a result of their warfare with the Algonquians. This was a league of six nations. . the Iroquois Confederacy sided with the English. Social Organization. men were hunters. and the official leaders. which was owned by the oldest woman in the household and passed down from mother to daughter. while women kept up the homes and often tended crops. There was also a war chief. Such division is not surprising for societies that were largely agrarian or were oriented toward hunting or fishing. and Onondaga. preindustrial European societies functioned in much the same way. the other major group in New York and southeastern Quebec. This post was handed down from father to son. The village chief was a man. Oneida. and they were run by women. Cayuga. The degree of social organization within and among groups varied widely among tribes. The ceremonies involving these fetishes were held by the brother or son of this woman. The union was strengthened when the French. the first European settlers in the area.384 / Kinship and Social Organization studied by European men who applied their own strong cultural biases and perceptions to what they observed. warriors. and the chief generally was more a mediator than a ruler. In the French and Indian War. Seneca. The household had a sacred bundle (fetish). sided with the Algonquians. While men almost always were officially in charge. from loosely knit groups of small families to huge nations with complex political structures. who had dictatorial powers in time of war but was chosen on the basis of his ability rather than lineage. As a general rule. Tuscarora. While these groups spoke a common language family and had many customs in common. women sometimes held considerable power. the Mohawk. the individual households were the most important unit. Probably the most highly organized group of North American Indians were the Iroquois.

nuclear family consisting of a husband. one or more wives. although even here there were great differences. that Iroquois society was probably the closest to a genuinely matriarchal society in North America. American Indian societies today—although some traditions continue and others are being rediscovered and reintroduced—reflect the disruption and cultural adaptation brought about by centuries of contact . including the Athapaskans. and ruled the extended families. and disputes among clans were settled by councils of chiefs. The original rulers were called sachems. because they had very early contact with Europeans. they were generally either elected or simply assumed to be in charge because they had proved themselves. the women owned the property. who lived in large numbers in longhouses—log cabins that could hold a great number of people of several generations. Among the Iroquois. moving in search of game. they were often nomadic. arranged the marriages. Generally. and this contact was usually violent. the family unit was the most important social structure. Eskimos (Inuits). Paramount in most cases was the tribe. In the Southwest. however. larger clans prevailed. and Aleuts. It is known. to large. extended families spanning several generations. Where there were chiefs at all. In the Northeast. and any number of children. These people were not particularly warlike. Contemporary Conditions. As stated previously. with common historical ancestors.Kinship and Social Organization / 385 The prehistoric traditions of the Iroquois are hard to determine. Early European reports suggested that the real power was held by the women. Beyond the clan was the moiety. the tribe tended to be highly powerful. but they were more mediators in tribal disagreements than rulers or dictators. At the opposite extreme were the tribes of the Subarctic and Arctic. often supposedly descended from a spirit or even an animal. These people had an extremely loose political structure. The family unit varied from a small. A group of families constituted a clan. small clans tended to be most powerful. with a complex political structure. In the Northwest.

In addition to the wide variety of traditional lifeways of American Indians. Eskimo Prehistory. or even visitors.) There are still some Indians. which continue to provide differences among tribes. Marc Goldstein Sources for Further Study Bandi. the Yukon. the structures of contemporary Indian societies are strongly affected by where Indians live today. Moreover. and those who live in very remote areas (as in the Subarctic). mostly in very remote areas. Reservation Indians. diagrams. including illustrations. and the Northwest Territories. College: University of Alaska Press. but the native languages are used for traditional ceremonies. Typically. discussing their culture from arrival upon the American continent. and reservation villages often still have chiefs and shamans. because there has been considerable intermarriage. at a major event such as a birth. although still facing certain biases and prejudices. on the other hand. (It might be noted. usually with no more than eighty or ninety residents. two ceremonies will be held. and maps. or death. marriage. 1979. the other is a Christian ceremony similar to one that might be held in any city or town in North America. Broadly speaking. that income from tourism has sometimes also played a part in the maintenance or reestablishment of certain ceremonies or customs. three categories may be delineated: those who live in urban areas or large towns. . are more likely to have preserved the old rituals. it is not always obvious that an individual is of Indian descent. Hans-George. They live in log cabins in tiny villages. English is the working language. those who live on reservations. American Indians in cities and towns. An archaeological study of early Eskimos. who have been little affected by white culture. however. are rare apart from a few government officials and schoolteachers. Probably the most widespread group still holding to ancient customs in many ways are the Athapaskans of Alaska. have generally acculturated to the dominant white culture.386 / Kinship and Social Organization with European-derived culture. White residents. One is in the ancient language (complete with dances and songs) and is usually barred to whites.

Herman J. This book was originally published in 1871. eds. 1972. Morgan.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Introduction by Elisabeth Tooker. Morgan studied the kinship systems of more than one hundred cultures—exploring the similarities and dissimilarities among the groups. Hamilton. 1997. and religion. A compilation of articles by American Indians about their culture. Calif. D. ethnicity. from prehistory to contemporary times. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Marriage and Divorce. politics. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Raymond J. Societies: Non-kin-based. Political Organization and Leadership. 1990.Kinship and Social Organization / 387 DeMallie. Lewis Henry. Women. 2d ed. includes photographs and maps showing tribal areas. law. Spencer. See also: Clans. art. Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity of the Human Family. This Land Was Theirs: A Study of North American Indians. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. and contemporary conditions. A history of North American Indian cultures. 2001. Washington. Wendell H. New ed. After Columbus: The Smithsonian Chronicles of the American Indians. including memories of childhood. 1977. Gender Relations and Roles. historical beginnings. The Native Americans. North American Indian Anthropology: Essays on Society and Culture. Description of representative tribes in various regions. Charles. Robert F. Mountain View. Jennings.. et al. Osalt. Cry of the Thunderbird: The American Indian’s Own Story. . 1994.: Mayfield. An encyclopedic discussion of American Indian culture.. with a particular emphasis on the changes in those cultures as a result of European influence. Viola. New York: Harper & Row.C. A collection of essays on kinship and social organization. Jesse D. 7th ed. and Alfonso Ortiz. Social Control.

the opening through which humankind emerged onto the face of the earth. they always built one extra structure. a small hole near the central fire pit represented sipapu. As the Mogollon constructed their pit house villages. they designated one large pit house as a ceremonial kiva. the Modified Basket Maker Anasazi developed a circular pit house. a single center post supported a conical roof. has its own kiva. the Hohokam then built an entire “wattle-anddaub” structure within the pit. semi-subterranean structure used for ceremonial purposes. it is likely that they conceived and developed their architecture themselves. The roof now had a double pitch. About 500 c. sloping ramp on one side served as an entryway. ac- . In the packed earthen floor. The Mogollon were the first to begin building permanent houses. the Mogollon circular pit house consisted of a hole several feet deep that was lined with poles and brush to create low sidewalls. Hohokam. consisting of small posts interlaced with brush and packed with mud and clay. which served as the kiva—their ceremonial center. and a hole in the center of the roof provided a vent for the fire pit.. Starting with a large rectangular hole 20 to 30 feet in length. and entrance was by ladder through the smoke hole..388 / Kivas Kivas Tribes affected: Pueblo people (prehistoric to modern) Significance: The kiva is a circular. This method. Like the Mogollon. A short. offered better protection from the elements. usually deeper and larger. about 5 feet deep and up to 25 feet in diameter.e. but entry was still gained through a sloping ramp on one side.e. The Hohokam were also pit house builders. where members meet to commune with the spirits and with one another. The kiva first appeared in the Southwest among the prehistoric Mogollon. and Anasazi cultures. The walls of the pit were plastered with clay. but their structures differed from those of the Mogollon both in design and in construction techniques. usually exclusively male. By circa 100 c. without outside influence. each tribal clan or society.

it had stone-lined walls and floor. Clan membership and access to the kivas are reserved for men only. a stone bench around the inside. Every pueblo has several kivas. Thus. When the Anasazi built their stone pueblos consisting of long. they placed their kivas in the center. the kiva has served as the center of Puebloan ceremonial life. slightly curved rows of contiguous rooms. low stone walls were eventually used to divide the pit house into two separate spaces. The Pueblo Anasazi refined the earlier pit house into a more formal ceremonial structure which was deeper in the ground. the kiva also serves as Early twentieth century corn dancers entering a kiva in San Ildefonso Pueblo. one for daily living and one for ceremonial functions. and stone pilasters to support the roof. (Edward S. the Anasazi pit house served as both home and ceremonial center. Curtis/Museum of New Mexico) . From ancient times to the present.Kivas / 389 cording to Puebloan legends of creation. one for each of the clans or societies that play roles in influencing the spirits on behalf of all the people. Originally.

used by the Iroquois especially for carving false face masks. which may be defined simply as tools for cutting. Knives Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Knives have been in use throughout prehistoric and historic times.390 / Knives a clubhouse for the men. One special type of knife was the crooked knife. These early knives would have resembled those in common use throughout the prehistoric period: stone knives flaked on both faces to form a sharp edge. Mogollon Civilization. The crooked knife was made of trade iron but was based on an earlier native design made of bone.c. Knives. Sacred. were made from other materials or by other techniques in the prehistoric era. the. These included the coldhammered copper knives used as grave offerings by Indians around the Great Lakes from 2500 to 500 b. Pueblo. Russell J. Another Inuit knife. Religion. LouAnn Faris Culley See also: Architecture: Southwest.” was half-moonshaped and made from ground slate. metals became more available for knives. the ulu. giving them a place to work and socialize that is exclusively their own—an important function in a matrilineal society. Some knives. With the advent of Europeans. Barber .e. arriving sometimes as trade knives and sometimes as other iron items that were remade into knives by Indian craftspeople. doubtless were carried across the Bering Strait land bridge when the ancestors of American Indians entered the Americas tens of thousands of years ago. or “woman’s knife. mostly for special purposes. and the bone snow knives used by Inuits for cutting blocks for igloo construction. Pit House.

Ky. the lead dancer typically played the part of . Weapons. the influence of the Kuksu society spread to include a significant number of tribal groups in central-northern California. Tully. Lawrence N. The Kuksu Rituals. For example. Miwok. 2000.: Collector Books. as they were traditionally practiced. 2d ed. Tully. as a result of contact with Spanish.Kuksu Rituals and Society / 391 Sources for Further Study Taylor. Boulder. See also: Lances and Spears. Native American Weapons. Maidu. however. Patwin (Southern Wintu). and Steven N. Through time.” as it is sometimes called by anthropologists. C. G. Yeager. Field Guide to Flint Arrowheads and Knives of the North American Indian: Identification and Values. Colin F.. refers to an integrated set of rituals or ceremonies originally practiced by the river Patwin of the central Sacramento Valley of California. Arrowheads and Stone Artifacts: A Practical Guide for the Amateur Archaeologist. 2001. the Kuksu cycle became the domain of a secret society dedicated to revitalizing native culture. Pomo. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Paducah. and Anglo populations and influence from the Native American Ghost Dance. Mexican. Colo. As this became more and more the case. The Kuksu rituals. Kuksu ritual provided for the initiation of young males into adulthood.: Pruett. In its traditional context. Kuksu Rituals and Society Tribes affected: Costano. took place in semi-subterranean houses and involved dancers who impersonated important mythical spirits and deities. Projectile Points. Tools. Northern Yokuts Significance: The Kuksu ritual and the emergence of the Kuksu society represent a shift from traditional religious beliefs that resulted from contact with European Americans. 1998. The “Kuksu complex.

Each dancer had to know the precise set of choreographed movements associated with each of the spirit characters. the Kuksu ceremonies originally functioned primarily as a means of initiating adolescent males into the status of adults. This suggests that a major function of these ceremonies involved the reinforcement of mythic stories of cosmogony (origins) and cosmology (the nature of the cosmos). Other spirit characters were Tuya (“Big-Headed Dancer”) and Chelito—who helped coordinate the movements of Tuya. these dances and ceremonies not only had the general effect of telling members of society how the world came into existence but also afforded . This ceremony began the ritual cycle which ran from fall to spring. Anthropologists and historians have also pointed to a number of more subtle functions. as is typical of many Native American ceremonies. The Hesi ritual took four days to complete and. and to enhance the status of the dancers as mystics. most of the religious themes employed in these ceremonies relied to a significant degree on references to mythical characters. he ran the risk of insulting the spirit and. to slit the throats of the initiates. veiled headdresses. After this was done the dancers. feathered cloaks. most of whom were actual shamans. through clever manipulation of knives and other sharp objects. creating the possibility of bringing bad luck to the village. Most of these materials actually allowed the dancers to impersonate various spirits. Cultural Functions. In the Hesi ritual.392 / Kuksu Rituals and Society Moki. As mentioned above. and drums (otherwise rare in California) were all used to enhance the performances of the dancers. acted out the revival of their subjects. For example. for example. Most of the Kuksu rituals involved elaborate use of performance paraphernalia. Masks. thus. The dancers pretended. As such. especially those associated with creation myths. Hesi was the most important. a spirit of great significance in the scheme of Patwin cosmology. young initiates were subjected to a dance that involved the symbolic killing of the initiates. If a dancer made a mistake. Of all the Kuksu ceremonies. was conducted in a highly formal and prescriptive manner.

that shamans were extending their roles beyond part-time healing into a different function—that of community organizers. the term “Kuksu” was used to refer to a specific type of healer. at least to some anthropologists. some shamans were able to obtain greater overall status by way of elevating their participation in Kuksu rituals. the Ghost Dance of the Great Basin and elsewhere in North America extended its influence into California. During the 1870’s. Among the Pomo. As more and more people of European descent began to settle in central-northern California. by way of their exclusion. were not allowed to attend Kuksu ceremonies. 1880’s. This individual was usually responsible for organizing and carrying out those ceremonies connected with the Kuksu cycle. Another emphasis found throughout the Kuksu cycle centered on the status and role of traditional healers. Moreover. Kuksu practitioners began to incorporate elements of the Ghost Dance into their rituals. women were defined as fundamentally different from men. This suggests. This had the effect of reinforcing a division of labor into male and female activities. and these stories often carried themes indicating fundamental differences between the roles of males and females. for example. the Kuksu . thus. with the introduction of Ghost Dance elements. the ceremonies essentially acted out much of the content of stories and myths. Anthropologists have also noted that the Kuksu complex defined status differences across both age and gender dimensions. Prior to this time. For example. Moreover. the Kuksu had been organized into a secret society. many of the stories acted out in the dances pointed to specific tasks associated with men.Kuksu Rituals and Society / 393 a way to make these ideas concrete and visible through ritual action. The Kuksu Society and Cult. for example. two levels of status based on age were always clearly defined through the structure and carrying out of Kuksu ceremonies: young male initiates and their elders. and 1890’s. inevitable problems associated with close and immediate contact with Native American groups arose. Women. Furthermore.

Berkeley: University of California Press. Ghost Dance. when Kuksu eventually died out. Berkeley: University of California Press. Alfred L. Rinehart and Winston. Hultkrantz. A. many of the groups that had been involved with a more traditional approach to Kuksu themes had converted to a Ghost Dance version. Pre-Columbian American Religions. 1968. By 1900. 2d ed. The California Indians: A Source Book. Puberty and Initiation Rites. et al. Whipple. Loeb. The Eastern Kuksu Cult. Edwin Meyer. Heizer.394 / Kuksu Rituals and Society society began to stimulate the formation of a reactionary organization whose primary goal was to invoke dead ancestors who would presumably expel whites from North America. . Berkeley: University of California Press. Ake. Michael Findlay Sources for Further Study Frickeberg. for the underlying purpose of such movements was to revitalize a culture through purging all foreign and hostile elements.. New York: Holt. Walter. The Western Kuksu Cult. 1971. This continued into the 1920’s. Religion. and M. 1932. Drums. Kroeber. 1932. 1933. 1979. Robert F. The Patwin and Their Neighbors. The Religions of the American Indians. _______. Berkeley: University of California Press. Social scientists have referred to these types of associations as “revitalization” movements. See also: Dances and Dancing. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Players carried sticks of 3 to 5 feet in length with a woven leather pouch on the end used to carry. It was played on fields of varying sizes of up to 2 miles long and 200 yards wide. American Indian Sports Heritage. Joseph B. most notably the Iroquois. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. and it became popular in North America and parts of Europe. Lacrosse: The National Game of the Iroquois. 2002. See also: Games and Contests. This feature is emphasized in the French name “lacrosse. Diane. It is also firmly established as a college sport and is growing in popularity at the high school level. Teams attempted to score by throwing a hard wooden or sand-filled buckskin ball through a goal. 1998. 1995. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. in some areas women also played. While it was usually a man’s game. European settlers in Canada and the United States learned and adopted the game. Lacrosse: A History of the Game. Oxendine. Donald M. and catch the ball. Charles Louis Kammer III Sources for Further Study Fisher. it is believed to be more than a thousand years old. lacrosse often had ceremonial significance. The actual origins of the game are unknown. throw.” meaning “the stick. Hoyt-Goldsmith. Today it remains popular among Indian peoples.Lacrosse / 395 Lacrosse Tribes affected: Pantribal except for the Southwest Significance: The most widespread and popular game among Indians in North America. but based on its widespread popularity and similarity of rules throughout North America. New York: Holiday House. European settlers learned the game.” The game was often part of ceremonial events including healing ceremonies and a regular part of celebrations. Contests were also a means of friendly tribal rivalry and were often the focus for wagering. .

. affixed to a long shaft of wood. similar to an arrowhead. they were also used as symbols in religious ceremonies. reducing the risk of injury and producing surer results than could be obtained from using close-quarter weapons such as knives. The lance originated in ancient times as an effective distance weapon. the two barbs around the point hold the speared fish in place. The spear or lance consisted of a projectile point. probably because they were especially well suited to being thrown from horseback. Besides being used as weapons for hunting or combat. The Inuit used them primarily for hunting. The distance and force with which the lance could be propelled were significantly increased by means of a throwing stick. The lance and spear were widely distributed hunting and war weapons. The Plains tribes made most extensive use of them in warfare. but they were used most extensively by the Inuit and Plains tribes. lances and spears acquired religious and ceremonial significance.396 / Lances and Spears Lances and Spears Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Lances and spears were widely used since ancient times as weapons of battle and hunting. The specific materials used and the lance’s form depended on environmental demands and available materials. Among Type of spear used by the Micmac of the Northeast for salmon fishing.

S. Peck. office. Native American Weapons. For example. Arrows.S. U. Knives. Bows. by depopulation.S. 2001. Land Claims Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: American Indians are using a variety of means to repossess land that was taken from them by conquest. which could make decisions on their behalf. Tools. or status of the owner. and Quivers. Supreme Court justice John Marshall ruled that American Indian lands were “effectively vacant” and could be taken from Indians without their consent. in the United States. by treaty. The claims stem from the repeated seizure of Indian lands by non-Indians since the beginning of European contact. state. Land claims are a key component in conflicts between American Indians and federal. American Indians have seen their land taken from them by military conquest. History. and local governments throughout North America. treaty. See also: Atlatl.Land Claims / 397 some tribes they were housed in elaborately decorated sheaths that signified the society. Weapons. Projectile Points. Indian nations were seen as “domestic to and dependent upon” the U. and by court action. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. in the 1810 case of Fletcher v. Laurence Miller Source for Further Study Taylor. Subsequent U. court cases in the early nineteenth century ruled that the federal government had precedent rights over American Indians by the fact of discovery. or court decision. Colin F. Even the reservation land guaranteed to American Indians in . government.

American Indians lost effective control of two-thirds of the acreage assigned to them by treaty. (Library of Congress) the more than three hundred treaties signed between Indians and the U. Because there were far fewer Indians than land parcels in 1887.S. In this way. such as the Crow Reservation in Montana. Individual Indians were also given the right to dispose of their reservation allotment. non-Indians control nearly half of reservation land. government bought from the Chickasaw.398 / Land Claims An advertisement from 1879 selling land the U. On some reservations. Creek.S. government between 1790 and 1870 was open to non-Indian exploitation. The land was originally intended for settlement by other Indians and former slaves. family heads were assigned 160 acres. . and many individuals found themselves coerced by poverty or pressure from non-Indians to lease their holdings to nonIndians. for example. The General Allotment Act of 1887 ended the traditional Indian land tenure system of communal ownership by assigning plots of land as private property to individual Indians on reservations. Choctaw. the General Allotment Act gave the federal government the right to lease “surplus” reservation land to non-Indians or to incorporate it into national parks or forests. and Seminole tribes.

but of thirty-nine Chippewa who elected this procedure. Similar land claim conflicts have occurred in Canada and Mexico. in 1983. and legal actions against governments or individuals in courts—to gain access to land taken from them. or fishing. the Inuit were required to renounce their claims to all ancestral lands. in some cases. in 1991. the Canadian government created a new 770.000-square-mile Arctic territory called Nunavut and assigned 136. Many Inuit found that to . In the United States. Indians have often turned to the federal court system to enforce the terms of treaties or to set aside the effects of the General Allotment Act. however. none prevailed. For example. trapping. Individuals who did not agree with the court’s decision were granted the right to sue for outright return of land within a given time period. Similarly. the actual implementation of those rights has been controversial. The courts have been reluctant. and minerals. a federal court in Wisconsin gave Indians the right to hunt and fish by traditional methods both on and off their reservations in that state. a federal court in Minnesota awarded each individual of the White Earth Chippewa (Ojibwa) compensation for land lost to the General Allotment Act based on the value of the land at the time it was lost plus 5 percent compound interest. an additional six million dollars was granted the tribe for economic development of the reservation. While the Canadian government has asserted the rights of Indians and Inuits to self-government on native lands since 1989. For example. Indians have instead been awarded restitution or access to former treaty lands for hunting. however. in 1986. American Indians have used a variety of means—including peaceful demonstrations.Land Claims / 399 Modern Issues. especially those areas rich in oil. Many American Indians see land claims as basic to their efforts to improve their economic status and to gain an increased sense of self-worth and autonomy. In return. to return land leased or owned by non-Indians. violent confrontations. gas.000 square miles to the Inuit. This led to occasional violent confrontations between Indians and non-Indian sport fishermen when Indians asserted their treaty rights to set their own season and size limit for fishing.

000 Note: Figures represent acres. Bureau of the Census.400 / Land Claims Effect of Allotment on Land Ownership.000 72.000 32. Maya Indians in 1992 peacefully marched 1.000 36.S. rounded off to thousands. in return.000 4.000 Total 104.094. 1994.000 10.314.047.000 56.574.235. 1975. and a former governor of Chiapas was kidnapped.000 55.608.642. the U.698.000 39.097. The failure of the Mexican government to fulfill its pledges led to a January. the Mexican government pledged to resolve local land disputes in the state of Chiapas and to finance hundreds of small community development projects.S.000 41.: U.534.000 863.226.000 38.000 31.C.000 37. govern- .000 32.865. nearly one hundred persons were reported to have been killed.000 12.000 Tribal 104.052.000 kilometers across Mexico to protest the loss of traditional lands as well as to publicize other grievances.618. Historical Statistics of the United States.000 41. Dash (—) indicates unavailable data.000 35. the Canadian government insisted that Indians give up all traditional land claims as part of any agreement on land use and self-government.146.408.502. under Bureau of Indian Affairs jurisdiction.005. be too steep a price to pay for land that they effectively possessed anyway.000 16. Colonial Times to 1970. 1890-1970 Indian-Owned Year 1890 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1949 1960 1970 Trust Allotted — 6. Source: U. uprising in Chiapas in which Indians battled with government troops.407.000 58.S.000 72.000 5. Washington. Part 1.737.000 77. Means of Land Acquisition.000 GovernmentOwned — — — — — 1.661.314.068. D.602. In other cases as well.000 — 17.159.786. Government Printing Office.000 55.000 84. Department of Commerce. Between passage of the General Allotment Act of 1887 and this 1934 legislation. In Mexico.079.097.

often in arid. Today much of the litigation and other activity surrounding land claims is directed toward acquisition of lands that historically were occupied by the tribes.Land Claims / 401 ment took more than 90 million acres of Indian land. Tribes can acquire land in trust by purchase from federal surplus lands or by an act of Congress. land. the Department of Interior has taken into trust for American Indians approximately 9 million acres. Sioux. and rural or remote areas. Yakima. Minderhout. to exchange or sell tribal lands to eliminate undivided fractional interests in Indian trust or restricted lands or to consolidate its tribal holdings. updated by Christina J. Moose Sources for Further Study Anaya. but that is only 10 percent of the lands lost. David J. S. and some tribes have no land of their own. the Indian Land Consolidation Act authorized any tribe. Legal proceedings and court cases to secure land continue across North America—involving tribes as disparate as the Chippewa. James. In all sections of the North American continent Indians see land claims as central to their disputes with non-Indians. which was designed in part to compensate Native Americans for previous unjust takings of their land. In 1983. the more than five hundred federally recognized Indian tribes hold only about 2 percent of U.” Cultural Survival Quarterly 17. “Native Land Claims in the United States: The Unatoned-for Spirit of Place. However. or approximately 50 million acres. no.S. It is also possible for the the Department of Interior to take land into trust for American Indian tribes. Since 1934. 4 (1994): 52-55. subject to approval of the Department of Interior. Today in the United States. which holds an area in the Southwest as big as the state of West Virginia. most reservations are only small pockets of land. . a power conferred in 1934 through the Indian Reorganization Act. this size is an exception. Several amendments to this key piece of legislation have occurred since. rocky. Most of this area is broken into widely scattered and small parcels. The largest reservation is that of the Navajo. and Iroquois—and Congress continues to consider bills on land-into-trust issues.

Jo. Churchill. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. Thornton.402 / Language Families Benedek. Menzies. some separated by thousands of years. Haas. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico. ancient source. Elias. “Stories from Home: First Nations. Walter R. 1994. that fact helps scholars reconstruct the origins and kinship of tribes. David M. ed. Readings in American Indian Law: Recalling the Rhythm of Survival. “The Earth Is Our Mother: Struggles for American Indian Land and Liberation in the Contemporary United States. no. Peter D. . Goldschmidt.. The Navajo-Hopi Land Dispute: An American Tragedy. and Native Peoples in Canada. Carrillo. “Anthropology and Aboriginal Claims Research. The Wind Won’t Know Me: A History of the NavajoHopi Land Dispute. and Resistance. Ward. 1998. Land Claims. 1993. Our Land: Tlingit and Haida Land Rights and Use. and Euro-Canadians. Brugge. Charles R. They came in a series of migrations. New York: Knopf.” In Anthropology. Colonization. Waldram. Boston: South End Press. See also: Black Hills. Edited by Noel Dyck and James B. Resources. 1992. 4 (1994): 776-791.” In The State of Native America: Genocide. 1999. and Theodore H. Emily. Seattle: University of Washington Press. Edited with an introduction by Thomas F. Haa Aani. Anthropologists believe that humans first reached North America via a land bridge that intermittently connected Alaska and Siberia between twenty thousand and five thousand years ago. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press.” American Ethnologist 21. 1992. Public Policy. Language Families Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A language family’s existence indicates that its member languages have descended from a common.

and it changed at different rates and in different manners among the subgroups as each developed a distinct culture. When they find similar pronunciations. Linguists often use the metaphor of a tree to characterize the . Soon subgroups spoke mutually unintelligible versions of the ancestral tongue. they encountered what seemed to them a bewildering variety of languages radically unlike their own. Typology and Genetic Classifications. called typology. and grammatical features among two or more languages that cannot be explained by coincidence or by borrowing. Typology. Yet despite the apparent diversity. As a group slowly spread through North America and perhaps into Central and South America. because all languages evolve. The original language the group spoke changed. a type that combines major grammatical features into single words. scholars noted that most Indian languages are polysynthetic (or incorporative). Soon after American linguistics began. classifies languages based on structural similarities. genetic classification. these languages must share a family relationship—a genealogy— just as organisms descended from the same parent share physical traits. Historical and comparative linguists analyze languages to discover features that can only have been inherited from the same source. In this sense. each had its own language. underlying relationships exist among the languages. For example. does not necessarily prove historical kinship. New World languages seemed distinct from all other languages then known.Language Families / 403 and (the theory holds) each migrating group spoke a single language. hunts for these historical connections. according to typological criteria. The second method. The first. to which English has a known historical connection. in other words. There are basically two ways to describe a linguistic relationship. it fragmented into subgroups that settled different areas along the way. words and affixes. English is more like Japanese than it is like German. however. Many subgroups lost contact with one another. So disparate had the descendant languages become that when Europeans arrived on the American continents in the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries.

words. Merritt Ruhlen lists 627 Indian and Eskimo languages in the Americas. many of which are extinct and known only from short word lists that European explorers compiled. and what the families say about the original settlement of the Americas—have remained controversial from their beginnings. each branch into sub-branches. Although their methods were often crude. As European colonists moved westward and more Indian languages became known. Even if the parent language no longer exists. History of Classifications. wrote in 1789 that a common parentage might become apparent from a study of Indian vocabularies and suggested New World languages may have a kinship to Asian languages. many American Indian languages do indeed belong in families. affinities among them led to speculations about their relationships. and sub-branches into separate languages. scholars have had notable success. and grammar. its living offspring reveal much of its nature. linguists offer potential evidence of humankind’s prehistoric character. for example. The first formal studies of individual North American languages appeared in the mid-seventeenth century: John Eliot’s Natick grammar in 1666 and Roger Williams’ Narragansett phrase book in 1643. In A Guide to the World’s Languages (1987). . Yet a number of topics—how many families. Since the early nineteenth century. Thomas Jefferson. By using modern evidence to reconstruct an ancient tongue’s sounds. which lends its name to the family.404 / Language Families relationships: An ancestral language (also called a “proto” language) splits into branches. The term “family” refers collectively to the descendants of the ancestral language. A grouping of multiple families is called a superfamily or phylum. an idea that scholars began exploring seriously in the late twentieth century. reapplying linguistic methods developed during the study of the Indo-European languages. these explorers were the first contributors to American linguistics. evidence parallel to the ruins and middens studied by archaeologists and the skeletal remains studied by paleontologists. which languages belong in each.

Powell and his staff distinguished fifty-eight language families and isolates (languages which do not show kinship to other languages).Language Families / 405 Attempts to define the genetic relationship of American Indian languages began in the mid-nineteenth century. Those students. Gallatin’s classification remained the standard until 1891. and early in his career he suggested that structural similarities among some languages bespoke a common origin. a secretary of war. His article in the bureau’s seventh annual report. he also had a staff of linguists to help him. although he separated them into about eighty families for each continent in The American Race. a dispute that gradually arose between Columbia University anthropologist Franz Boas and several former students. as director of the Bureau of American Ethnology and a founder of the American Anthropological Association. The report served as the basis for subsequent investigations in North American linguistics well into the twentieth century. Boas collected and analyzed information on a remarkable number of Indian languages. Based on comparisons of vocabulary. soliciting information on six hundred words and some grammatical features. while Brinton’s book did much the same for the languages of South America. He grouped all North American languages. collecting and assessing languages on their own. when separate studies by Daniel Brinton and John Wesley Powell appeared. perceived a fundamental unity behind them. principally Edward Sapir. The first comprehensive study came from Albert Gallatin in 1836 (revised and expanded in 1848). especially in California. distributed a questionnaire to Indian language experts nationwide. Powell. Gallatin made his classification by systematically comparing the responses. had access to much more information than Brinton did. Brinton. Gallatin. Later he changed his mind about the validity of genetic groupings and criticized the findings of his students. American linguistics has been divided by a dispute over methods. except those of California. treated only those languages north of Mexico. who included all the languages in both North and South America about which he could get information. however. worked to classify them in ever . into thirty-two families.

they must be accompa- . Sapir tentatively proposed six families for all of North America and parts of Mexico and Central America because of similarities in vocabulary and grammar: Eskimo-Aleut. Algonquian-Mosan. In an influential 1929 Encyclopædia Britannica article. borrowings. in this view. Second. only purely linguistic evidence is admissible. are irrelevant. listed three criteria for genetic classifications that would satisfy the traditionalists. and Hokan-Siouan. and true cognates when he compared vocabulary items. First.” Traditionalist Classification.406 / Language Families larger families. the findings of cultural anthropologists or archaeologists. some claiming that the resemblances he cited were purely fanciful and others faulting him for not distinguishing adequately between coincidental similarities. English yoke. words. Aztec-Tanoan. resisted large-scale classifications and argued with reductionists. and German Joch are cognates deriving from the hypothetical Indo-European form jugo. in the spirit of Boas. In their introduction to The Languages of Native America (1979). meaning “born together”) are words in different languages that have similar sounds and meanings because they derive from the same word in an ancestral language. Basically. If two or more languages have only a similar sound structure (such as the same number and type of consonants) or only employ the same method for constructing words (such as the use of suffixes to turn verbs into nouns). Cognates (from Latin. Campbell and Mithun argue. and grammatical features must not be conducted piecemeal. The two sides were somewhat facetiously known as “splitters” and “lumpers. Third. comparisons of sounds. Specialists in individual families denounced Sapir’s broad classifications. who followed Sapir in proposing families. The controversy persisted through the rest of the century. rejecting the simple vocabulary comparisons of reductionists. For example. for example. should be viewed with skepticism. linguists should look for as many cognates as possible. Latin iugum. NaDene. Lyle Campbell and Marianne Mithun. only resemblances between languages that include both sound and meaning are to be considered. the kinship. traditionalist linguists. Penutian.

Still.” or the borrowing of words and (less often) grammatical features between groups living close to one another. That is. not common origins and kinship. intended to summarize contemporary research and serve as a starting point for further work. They recognize that many of the languages they list as isolates and some of the major branches will eventually be proved to belong together.” in order to give American Indian linguistics a scientific rigor. Greenberg published Language in the Americas. paleoanthropological evidence fails to support such great diversity. Furthermore. Applying these criteria and cautions. That a more recently settled region such as the Americas should show greater linguistic diversity than an older cultural area such as Africa flouts this principle. Only then will the relation between the offspring languages be proved. Their 62 families for North America and the 117 families posited for South America by the traditionalist Cestmir Loukotka in 1968 amount to considerable linguistic diversity. they completely reject four of his six groupings. In general. among the . Such borrowings prove only physical proximity. they warn that not enough attention has been paid to “areal diffusion.” not “lumping. Yet their call for rigor and their criteria have placed traditionalists in something of a dilemma. Campbell and Mithun list 62 language families and isolates for North America.Language Families / 407 nied by a hypothesis systematically explaining how changes took place. a fact which has made some linguists unhappy with the traditionalist approach. Their classifications are pointedly conservative and uncontroversial. Additionally. Reductionist Classification. they follow Sapir in some cases. linguists must discover laws of change from a parent language to its offspring languages. In 1987 Stanford University’s Joseph H. notably the universally accepted Eskimo-Aleut and Na-Dene families. Campbell and Mithun insist that the watchword for linguistics should be “demonstration. but they refuse to allow lumping based on comparisons of vocabulary alone. however. anthropologists have found that cultural diversity increases with time. far more than exists in Europe or Africa—both of which were settled long before the Americas.

which together have perhaps two thousand speakers. because such words are seldom borrowed. and Navajo. If two or more languages contain a sufficient number of cognates. Then they compared the words for a particular concept all at once. terms for family members. and Eyak. names for body parts. Because it has relatively little diversity. which meet at Alaska’s Norton Sound. then it is reasonable to assume that those languages descend from a common protolanguage. For this method. eliminates much valuable evidence. with about 149. applied their system of “multilateral analysis” to hundreds of languages. Greenberg argues. such as pronouns. Greenberg concluded that all the languages in the Americas belong to one of three phyla: EskimoAleut. and Amerind. Haida. Together they discerned the etymologies (historical roots of modern words) of about five hundred words and found 107 grammatical features existing in more than one language.408 / Language Families most controversial books about historical linguistics published in the twentieth century. and names for water. The Eskimo branches fall into two sub-branches. is the largest single Indian language in North America and the only one with a growing number of . his former student. they compiled lists of words for universal concepts and natural phenomena. Athapaskan. Greenberg and Ruhlen.000 speakers. western (or Yupik) and eastern (or Inuit). Na-Dene. To ignore cognates because no sound laws exist to explain their varying forms. Tlingit. Eskimo-Aleut is thought to be the youngest of the three phyla. which he argues are largely specious. In it he sweeps aside the traditionalists’ cautions. Navajo. and a large branch. Apache. He claims that it is not necessary to reconstruct sound laws in order to show linguistic relationships. From this evidence. most notably Chipewyan. Beaver. which has thirty-two languages. Eskimo-Aleut includes ten languages and is spoken by about eighty-five thousand people living on the Aleutian Islands and in a belt of land that extends from western Alaska across the top of Canada to the coasts of Greenland. Na-Dene contains three independent languages. not language by language as traditionalists would have it.

Andean (eighteen languages). but Amerind. has impressed some scholars. an Andean language in Colombia. Greenberg and Ruhlen divide the Amerind phylum into six major stocks. Alabama. Yuma. Oregon. Dakota. There has been little controversy about Eskimo-Aleut and NaDene. and Hokan (twenty-eight languages). Detailed reconstructions of lan- . The remaining four major stocks. Massachusett. Penutian (sixtyeight languages).is a common third-person marker. Pawnee. Cree. EquatorialTucanoan (192 languages). Shoshone. Cheyenne. not an end in itself. such widespread features for basic language concepts. with Hopi. which in its sub-branches has such famous languages as Blackfoot. Quechau. and Northern California and a large island that covers a substantial portion of New Mexico and Arizona. Peru. Greenberg remarks that his broad approach to classification is a beginning. by far the largest group with 583 languages. and Ge-Pano-Carib (117 languages). Mohawk. with Pomo. Tillamook. and Washoe. Arapaho. was immediately denounced by traditionalists. has the largest number of speakers. and Yucatec. and Cherokee. Comanche. Mojave. and Oto-Manguean (seventeen languages). The large number of etymologies. The Na-Dene phylum spreads from central Alaska as far as Hudson Bay in the east and south well into British Columbia. with Chinook. Northern Amerind contains Almosan-Keresiouan (sixty-nine languages). with Kiowa and Taos. Choctaw. and Bolivia. Central Amerind includes Tanoan (forty-nine languages). There are also small linguistic islands of Athapaskan in coastal Washington. Ecuador. occupy South America and the Caribbean islands. and Nahuatl (the Aztec language). Natchez. Nez Perce. while i. Uto-Aztecan (twenty-five languages).Language Families / 409 speakers. however. who not only rejected the phylum but many of the branches and sub-branches in it because Greenberg does not distinguish typological similarities from genetic similarities. Paiute. can only point to a common ancestral language. Most telling is the appearance of n in first-person pronouns and m in second-person pronouns in all Amerind subgroups. Ojibwa. two of which apply to North America. about eight million. Shawnee. Chibchan-Paezan (forty-three languages). Greenberg contends. Crow.

CavalliSforza claims that Greenberg’s language phyla accord with his ge- . in anthropological terms. but much more distantly. and Japanese. and may have been the Thule culture. came no more recently than twelve thousand years ago and may correspond. with possible affiliation to SinoTibetan. Despite the debate among linguists. Geneticists also have found that American Indians belong in three distinct groups. by population. The Eskimo-Aleuts came last. Ultimately. The periods are so vague because the archaeological and linguistic evidence is difficult to date precisely. he remains confident that the overall plan is correct. The first. some Russian and American scholars have placed Na-Dene and Caucasian (languages of central Russia) in Dene-Caucasian. which he calls Proto-Sapiens and others have called Proto-World and Proto-Human. The Na-Dene migration began to arrive sometime between seven and ten thousand years ago and probably became the Paleo-Arctic culture. Cavalli-Sforza studied variations in Rh factor. or Paleo-Indian. the ancestors of Amerind speakers. Greenberg’s Eskimo-Aleut. Nonlinguistic Evidence.410 / Language Families guages and sound laws. L. Na-Dene. The findings all appear to substantiate the theory that American Indians and Eskimos crossed from Asia in at least three migrations that correspond to the three language phyla. culture. to the Clovis. A team led by L. Greenberg suggests. a postulated immense superfamily whose members include English. Amerind may also be related to Eurasiatic. although that identification is uncertain. about four to five thousand years ago. EskimoAleut may belong in Eurasiatic. the scrutiny which traditionalists demand. and Amerind categories have found some support from other scientific disciplines. all modern languages may descend from a single stock. Since Language in the Americas appeared. Turkic. a blood antigen. Although he admits that some features of his groupings may need revising after such examinations. He further proposes that the three American phyla show connections to Old World language groups. a family that includes the Chinese languages. are still needed to work out the details in his proposal.

1973. immunoglobulin G. An analysis of the history of Native American languages. and the mutual influence of languages within regions present summary information on genetic and typological classifications. analyses of human teeth. The Languages of Native America: Historical and Comparative Assessment. Linguistics in North America. 1987. . scientists largely agree that the Americas were populated by a small number of groups who traveled from Asia and whose languages slowly differentiated as the groups spread throughout the New World. protolanguages. and Marianne Mithun. eds. New York: Oxford University Press.: Stanford University Press. 10 in Current Trends in Linguistics. Lyle. which language-by-language comparison and deduction of sound laws will eventually confirm. eds. Thus. The editors propose sixty-two language families and isolates. The Hague: Mouton. At the same time. or at least are skeptical of. William. most assume that large-scale relationships do exist among the more than six hundred known Indian languages. Essays devoted to the history of American linguistics. edited by Thomas A. Calif. based on rigorous and systematic classification methods. 1997. Campbell. and blood serums in modern Indian populations have produced corroborating findings. This controversial book classifies all languages in North and South America into three phyla based on correspondences in vocabulary and grammar. 1979. Stanford. Greenberg.. Sebeok. Studies of variations in mitochondrial deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) by Douglas C. Roger Smith Sources for Further Study Bright. Austin: University of Texas Press. Lyle. Language in the Americas. American Indian Languages: The Historical Linguistics of Native America. et al. and contributors summarize research on seventeen of the families. Joseph H. Wallace also appear to support Greenberg.Language Families / 411 netic groups. Campbell. Finally. A majority of linguists reject. Vol. the multilateral analysis Greenberg and Ruhlen used to reach their conclusions.

1 in A Guide to the World’s Languages. The Languages of Native North America. 1987. cattails. A lean-to was basically an inclined rectangular or V-shaped side roof that was freestanding using several vertical supporting upright poles. or privacy when people were in transit or at resource exploitation sites.. Sign Language. See also: Culture Areas. plaited willow. Marianne. Stanford. 1999. “Linguistic Origins of Native Americans. strips of bark. and Merritt Ruhlen. An illuminating chapter on classification methods helps make sense of the long-standing controversy over American Indian languages. another chapter presents major classification proposals for them and repeats Greenberg’s conclusions. New York: Cambridge University Press. An exhaustive and scholarly study of native North American languages. Lean-To Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Lean-tos were most useful as quickly constructed. It might also be supported against a tree or large boulder. grass. and outlines corroborating evidence from genetics and anthropology. leaves. mostly for shelter. Lean-tos were used as temporary structures throughout North America. Ruhlen. seaweed.” Scientific American 267 (November. The size of the structure was depen- . natives utilized natural materials available on the site such as tules. Merritt.: Stanford University Press.412 / Lean-To Greenberg. Classification. 1992): 94-99. windbreaks. Calif. Joseph H. temporary shelters. Summarizes the authors’ classification of American languages into three phyla. Mithun. Vol. The main attribute of this simple but effective structure was its ease of construction. or even clothing or blankets. discusses their relation to Old World language families.

With more complex lean-tos. these structures were relatively large and were used for several weeks or even months by an extended family. and time required to construct the shelter. the bearing poles were carefully tied and stored in or against a tree for future use. Lean-tos were strategically situated so the prevailing wind was at a right angle to the opening. Architecture: Subarctic. to draft away any smoke or embers from a cooking or warming fire. in the Great Basin. number of occupants. A basic lean-to could accommodate four to five persons.Lean-To / 413 Lean-to dent upon materials at hand. . John Alan Ross See also: Architecture: Plateau.

and Scandinavia. often reaching 50 to 70 feet in length and 12 to 15 feet in width. The longhouse is. relatively long and narrow. The nuclear families within a longhouse usually are closely related and form a matrilineal extended family. the longhouse is a symbol of traditional values and. Among the Iroquois. longhouses have been traditional for the Iroquois and various the Northwest Coast tribes. In North America. including native North America. when it was the primary form of housing. Micronesia. Longhouses usually have several fires for cooking and heating arrayed along their central axis. Northwest Coast tribes Significance: The longhouse is a distinctive architectural structure used by various tribes for housing in traditional times and used as the setting for religious ceremonies today. as the name implies.414 / Longhouse Longhouse Tribes affected: Primarily Iroquois. was the site of various tradi- Longhouse . Africa. The longhouse is an architectural form that occurs widely throughout the world. each maintained by a nuclear family.

or the Gaiwiio. Longhouse Religion. Though today Iroquois live mostly in single-family housing. influential among the Iroquois. The berries had a healing effect. The Longhouse religion.” is the modern religious tradition that traces its roots to the Seneca prophet Handsome Lake. “the good word. In June. and alcoholism. stressed the importance of the family and the harmful effects of such “sins” as promiscuity. Russell J. particularly the Senecas. as was his half-brother. whom Handsome Lake later identified with the Great Spirit. Cornplanter was the better known of the two among non-Indians. His first vision occurred in 1799. the religious association of the longhouse has been continued. Cornplanter. commonly called the “Longhouse religion. he began to talk with the three men. Handsome Lake was born at the Seneca village Canawaugus. other Iroquois tribes Significance: The Longhouse religion. Barber See also: Architecture: Northeast.” holds its ceremonies in a longhouse dedicated to that purpose. He reported having a vision while in this state. Most Northwest Coast tribes use longhouses solely for potlatches and other ceremonies. The religion of Handsome Lake. New York. In this vision he saw three men holding berry bushes. During his conversations with the three men. Longhouse Religion Tribes affected: Seneca. near Avon. who delivered his prophecies in 1810. who would come again at a later time. and as he recovered. Handsome Lake was seriously ill and fell unconscious. wife beating. He was a recognized Seneca chief.Longhouse Religion / 415 tional religious ceremonies. It was understood that there was one man missing. having traveled widely on behalf of Seneca and general Native American issues. 1799. a fourth. they offered berries to Handsome Lake. Handsome . Architecture: Northwest Coast.

and condemn witchcraft generally. and other threats to social existence. such as stinginess. saw little conflict in active membership in both movements. traditional religion among the Senecas had been almost entirely replaced by membership in either a Christian missionary church or the Longhouse religion based on the teachings of Handsome Lake. The Code sounds very similar to apocalyptic biblical visions. it is a series of admonitions and bits of advice on preserving personal piety and family life and rejecting alcohol. in that it describes visions of heaven and hell and involves a conversation between a mortal and a being who describes what the person is seeing. alcoholism. as advice from the Great Spirit. and quarrelsome family relations. Furthermore.416 / Longhouse Religion Lake heard them condemn alcoholism. gambling. witchcraft. Many Senecas then. gambling. such as those found in the books of Daniel and Revelation. and the visions of Handsome Lake him- . Indeed. a “Code” of teachings was gathered and became a part of Seneca oral tradition. sexual promiscuity. Most of the information about the early development of the Handsome Lake religion. Handsome Lake himself was told not to drink anymore. Each of these sins was associated with a particularly graphic punishment in hell. By 1861. and over sixteen years of activity. It is clear that the enumerated sins are signs of social breakdown and trouble among the Senecas themselves in times of contact with European American culture. As the Code reads in Arthur C. emphasizing the importance of the message. Handsome Lake had many such visions after this initial one. pronounce a death sentence on a witch. Handsome Lake was given to understand that his sins were not unforgivable and that he was to teach his people the proper way to live. Among the more significant of the visions of Handsome Lake are his reports of punishments in hell for specific sins. The Code is worded in a concerned and compassionate tone. as now. wife beating. Parker’s 1913 edition (based on oral tradition as it existed in 1910). the religion of Handsome Lake was to become a significant response to and survival mechanism for the Seneca people.

working with a descendant of Cornplanter. come from two main sources. not open to non-Indian investigation.” Modern practitioners frequently describe the Longhouse religion as “a way of living and feeling that is our way” or say that “the Earth is filled with gifts. and Halliday Jackson. it involves strong encouragement to maintain a pure lifestyle according to the teachings of Handsome Lake and emphasizes such important matters as alcoholism and family unity.Longhouse Religion / 417 self. In 1798. Modern estimates of Longhouse religious practice suggest that nearly half of the Seneca-Iroquois are active participants and that adherents stretch from modern New York into . according to the Code of Handsome Lake..” From written accounts. In response to modern questions. Parker. and we should give thanks for what is received. respondents generally reply with answers similar to the following: “I do not have the right to exploit this tradition. Furthermore. The other main source of information are the journals of Quaker workers who lived with the Senecas at the time of Handsome Lake’s visions and were on hand to record many of those visions at the precise time of Handsome Lake’s activity. since it is not mine to give—I am only a follower. which must be read before noon. sponsored a project involving Edward Cornplanter and a Seneca Baptist Christian. held at first in Cornplanter’s home. it is possible to summarize Longhouse religious practice as highly personal and often emotional. They were not so much missionaries as relief workers whose intention was to teach trades and skills such as agriculture and spinning and to teach reading and writing to any young Senecas who were interested in attending regular school sessions. Joel Swayne. regular occasions are set aside for recounting the Code of Handsome Lake. The journals have been edited and published by Anthony F. C. The journals of these Quaker workers represent eyewitness accounts. The modern practice of the Longhouse religion is largely a private affair. this may take from three to five days. the Quakers sponsored the work of Henry Simmons. Arthur C. who translated into English the oral tradition as recollected by Cornplanter himself in about 1910. Jr. Wallace.

C. Mechanicsburg. Parker. Manibozho Tribe affected: Ojibwa Significance: Manibozho—legendary wise man.418 / Manibozho southern Canada. Religion. Nana. Pa. Smith-Christopher Sources for Further Study Handsome Lake. no. Swatzler. _______. 2 (1952): 117-147.: Stackpole Books. ed.” Part 1. the Shaker Church. Bulletin 163. New York: Alfred A. Visions and Vision Quests. and into Oklahoma on Seneca reservations there. Pennsylvania History 19. 2000. Daniel L. such as the Longhouse religion. where he is also known as Nanabozho. Simmons. and Henry C. 1913. prophet. “Halliday Jackson’s Journal to the Seneca Indians. The Code of Handsome Lake. and messenger from the Great Spirit—was also a trickster who was sometimes outdone by his own tricks. no. the use of peyote (as in the Native American Church). Knopf. and the Great Hare. keeping in mind the sad history of exploitation that is very much in the minds of most Native American practitioners of native religious traditions. 3 (1952): 325-349. Manibozho was a messenger from Gitche Manitou .” Part 2. Anthony F. and other expressions of religious faith. Edited by Arthur C. A Friend Among the Senecas: The Quaker Mission to Cornplanter’s People. 1973. Non-Indian students interested in the Longhouse religion should exercise great care in investigating this tradition with Seneca members. Death and Rebirth of the Seneca. See also: Longhouse. ed. Wallace. Tales of Manibozho are told throughout the Great Lakes region. _______. 1798-1800. David. 1798-1800. “Halliday Jackson’s Journal to the Seneca Indians. Pennsylvania History 19. Wenebojo. New York: New York State Museum.

geese are calling.Manibozho / 419 (Great Spirit). People listened respectfully when Manibozho sang of flying far and high. he turned himself into a white rabbit. they are told in the winter. Manibozho was said to have brought his people the gift of fire. Manibozho was turned to stone by Gitche Manitou and now lies sleeping as an island in Gitchee Gumee. Down from the sky. was daughter of the Moon. Manibozho changed his form at will—to a tree. Gale M. . Nokomis. Midewiwin. and remade the earth after the great flood. Nana is falling. He shouted for them to stop. Tales of Manibozho still abound. with the middle goose in the lead and the others forming a V. Tricksters. Shortly after Manibozho’s magical birth near Gitchee Gumee (Lake Superior). a flock of geese landed on the nearby lake. with Manibozho dangling at one end. Thompson See also: Kinnikinnick. but later they sang. Letting go. but they flew on. created the Midewiwin (Grand Medicine Society). Oral Literatures. he strung them all together by tying their legs. He also invented kinnikinnick (smoking mixture). or any animal. Determined to catch as many as possible. one day while he was picking berries. His greedy task took so long he gasped loudly for air when he came up. a rock. According to one story about Manibozho. when spirits of the forest are asleep.” Once a great creator and magician. Wild geese have been flying in a V ever since. his father was the West Wind. he landed in a swamp. The geese took flight. Swimming quietly under the floating birds. “High in the sky. His grandmother. he wove a rope of cedar bark strips.

The Chippewa used a cedar spile. blended it with water for a beverage. birches. They point to the absence of description in contemporary travelers’ accounts. What they could not use immediately. apparently distributed the syrup and sugar as a trade good. The Iroquois mixed it with corn mush. Tribes from the Abenaki of northern New England and Quebec to the Chippewa (Ojibwa) of Minnesota and Ontario tapped the abundant maples for these products. Later. tribal peoples used the sweetener in various ways. The Abenaki cut a slanting gash and inserted an elderberry twig spile with its pith hollowed out and collected the drips in birchbark containers. perhaps by centuries. There exists some dispute among historians about the sugarmaking capacities of the indigenous people. and stuffed sugar into duck bills for portable candy treats for their children. Many indigenous tribal peoples in the Northeastern Woodlands relied on the saps and gums of certain trees for food and gum products. and fish dishes. such as the Ottawa. The Abenaki. Among these trees were spruces. The last often supplied the tribes with a sweet. according . with the introduction of metal technology by European Americans. The techniques of gathering the sap varied only slightly. One school of thought holds that tribal peoples did not begin to boil down the syrup until the arrival of reliable iron pots from the Europeans. The Chippewa stirred it into wild rice. the iron or tin spile came into use (the dating for this switch is unclear). Once they had gathered enough syrup. sewn birchbark packages that often held five pounds of sugar. The other camp believes that sugar making definitely predated European contact. syrupy substance they mixed with other foodstuffs and possibly boiled down to make sugar. Tribes in Michigan. the Chippewa stored in mococks. vegetables. and maples.420 / Maple Syrup and Sugar Maple Syrup and Sugar Tribes affected: Northeast tribes Significance: Maple syrup and possibly maple sugar were used by tribes of the Northeast as foodstuffs and occasionally as trade goods.

Whatever the case. Altherr See also: Food Preparation and Cooking. Thomas L. Demonstrations and images of sap gathering and sugar making. employed birchbark pails and clay pots for the boiling. Over the centuries.Maple Syrup and Sugar / 421 to the second theory. rarely point to the indigenous origins of the practice. however. (National Archives) . early European American settlers soon adapted the customs themselves eagerly. maple syrup and sugar production became a thriving industry in the Northeast and Canada to the point that states such as Vermont have become stereotypically identified with those products. because it was more plentiful and cheaper than cane products on the frontier. Many a colonist depended on maple syrup for a nip of sweetness. Two women cooking cane sugar at the Seminole Indian Agency in the early 1940’s.

it was the groom who would provide for the bride’s family. That respect was publicly demonstrated by bringing goods to her family. but there were very strict arrangements made between the two uniting families before the couple came together. During these events. even if not in personal contact with each other. industrious girl who would bring honor to a man’s home commanded respect. cooking utensils. reserved. Establishing the Marriage. he would contact the bride’s family to arrange the terms of the union. with the man moving in with his bride’s family. tanned hides.422 / Marriage and Divorce Marriage and Divorce Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: For the American Indian. Usually. No marriages with members of one’s own clan were permitted. Among the Hopi and Zuñi of the Southwest the marriage was less public. but it was not expected. many items were also given to the new couple so that when they began their lives together it would be in the manner to which they were accustomed. weapons. divorce was possible. This encounter might be a formal courting situation. If accepted. tanned and painted robes. Marriage partners had often known each other all their lives. they knew the families involved. the integrity of the family was paramount. or it might only be a quick look at a public event. The groom usually contacted the girl discreetly but personally to see whether she would accept him. the bride’s family reciprocated with a feast and gifts for the groom’s relatives. Among Plains tribes this could include a number of horses. In the Northeast and Plains tribes there was usually not a ceremony to celebrate the wedding. . The amount of goods brought to the girl’s family was in accord with the status of the family and the girl. and food. these items were distributed among the girl’s relatives. A virtuous. Marriage customs differed from tribe to tribe. Among most tribes. Once the young man believed that there was a mutual attraction. clothing decorated with quillwork or beadwork.

the couple could decide without any pressure whether they were compatible. These men added another presence to the households of their female relatives. household goods. It was not unusual for a young man to come to stay at the home of his potential in-laws for a week or more prior to the wedding ceremony. Likewise. Patrilineal tribes. The husband took his things and returned to the house of his mother or another female relative. They often had obligations to their sisters’ children. In this way. (National Archives) . marriages could be easily terminated by the woman. Most couples lived in harmony according to custom. The house. such as the Ojibwa. and any children were to be cared for by the wife. Divorce was not uncommon. a divorced woman took her household goods and children and returned An Apache bride is pictured in her wedto her family’s area. differed somewhat because the right to use land was passed from father or uncle to son or nephew. She had only to put her husband’s personal items—his clothing and weapons—outside the door of their abode and the divorce was complete. ding attire.Marriage and Divorce / 423 Divorce. but it was the exception rather than the norm. but if there was disharmony it was thought best to separate. It was not unheard of for men to remain single for years or not to marry at all. In this case. This was the case in most matrilineal tribes. helpful in supplying food and teaching the children in the households.

If the man were able to provide for such a large family. Still. would demand that the husband return her to her family. Sometimes when the second or third wife was especially troublesome. so this alternative was less desired. In some tribes. a younger sister or cousin of his wife. Girls were expected to be virgins when they married in most (but not all) tribes. Sexual Relations. who retained primacy. Most women practiced birth control with native herbs. wives were shared with guests for their pleasure. all members of the extended family tried to provide an environment to support good behavior. Unmarried pregnancy was rare. it was practiced discreetly. it was done as a comforting gesture to a man risking his life in travel. Even among those who . Most tribes considered sexual behavior to be private. Behavior within marriage was designed to bring esteem to the family and to create a harmonious home. Girls were warned not to succumb to boys’ advances and were usually chaperoned by an older female relative when they became teenagers. Because mutual respect between a virtuous woman and a man who was a bountiful provider was the basis for an honorable home. within the communal atmosphere of the home. he would choose a wife who was compatible with his first wife to maintain harmony in his home. although a man could take a second wife in the form of a captured woman of another tribe or. Elopements were another way of uniting. This did not imply any disrespect for the wife. more often. There was no exchange of goods and no honoring between families. the first wife.424 / Marriage and Divorce Marriage was considered a lifetime commitment. An unhappy home was rarely chosen over removing the person in question. it was not held against them. it was considered a socially acceptable way for a young couple to begin if neither had much social standing and neither could provide goods. although if they had tried marriage and found it unsuitable. The integrity of the family was foremost. so unwanted children were rare. Any children that were born belonged to the wife and were an accepted part of the household. Infidelity was frowned upon.

Omaha Boy Sources for Further Study Embree.. Nancy H. New York: Collier Books. 2d ed. Reprint. America’s Fascinating Indian Heritage. way to come together. and Reality.Y. Powers. 2000. 1978. 1986. ed. Native American Courtship and Marriage Traditions. though not esteemed. 1970. 1977.: Cornell University Press. Occasionally. which began as a religious ceremony and ideology in the 1870’s and resurfaced in the 1890’s among Plains Indians. Pleasantville. Spencer. Maru Cult Tribe affected: Pomo Significance: The Maru cult. Kinship and Social Organization. Indians of the Americas. Reader’s Digest. Ithaca. New York: Hippocrence Books. Jennings. 1939. Plane. See also: Children. Ritual. Gender Relations and Roles. et al. Gourse. Jesse D. Oglala Women: Myth. Clans. American Indian Life. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Ann Marie. Leslie. N. The Native Americans. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Among some Plains tribes. Elsie Clews. 2000. women who were not faithful were physically punished.Maru Cult / 425 could. a revitalization movement. The Ghost . Colonial Intimacies: Indian Marriage in Early New England. it was an acceptable. Robert F. The Maru cult of the California Pomo (surrounding the Clear Lake area in Northern California) is a direct offshoot of the Ghost Dance. Parsons. New York: Dover.Y. 1992. women had their noses cut off in retribution for their behavior. N. Women. New York: Harper & Row. has beliefs in common with the Ghost Dance movement. Marla N. Edwin R.: Author.

The actual ceremony usually involves an opening flag-raising to “purify” the hall where the ceremonies are to take place. which arrived in Pomo territory as early as 1872. and it is not unusual for non-Pomo. Originally. among them a return to Indian ways and a rejection of settler culture. since 1920. women have played an increasingly large role in the Maru ceremonies) who dreams and calls the ceremonies dictates the rules of the ceremony itself. believing that the simple ways of traditional warfare were not effective against the encroaching settler. Maru ceremonies are still observed.” a religious response to social circumstances of breakdown and change brought about by contact between two alien cultures—and the power difference between them. As such. The influence of Christian missionaries can be discerned in the Noah’s Ark theme of these longhouse constructions. all according to the dreams of the specific Maru. and the dream is highly respected as a source of direction from supernatural promptings. There are other dancers who must also observe a number of purity rules throughout the occupation of the ceremony itself. was seen as “revivalist.426 / Maru Cult Dance involved various ideological aspects. and the many religious movements it inspired. or part-Pomo. A Maru who dreams becomes the individual leader of the ceremonies. of which some pictures are available) were to be a place of refuge from an anticipated destruction. Although less frequent today.” who was the head functionary of religious ceremonies. In its Pomo manifestation. the selecting of lodges for these ceremonies was inspired by the notion that large houses (dome-roofed constructions. Prominent in most observations of the Maru cult are “BigHead Dancers” (so named because of their large headdresses).” or “dreamer. The ceremony may last many days and may vary in the style of dances and songs that are performed. the cult was led by a “Maru. the Ghost Dance. typically four in number. He or she (for. peoples . and a number of drummers and singers. The inequality in settler/Indian relations may explain why many tribal members sought supernatural comfort and deliverance. The main influence of the Ghost Dance movements in California were the “Earthlodge” cults.

Daniel L. Navajo. and Francis Riddell. Seneca.. In the prehistoric times. social. Eskimo. be used as a vehicle for contact with supernatural powers. See also: Dances and Dancing. masks were used to control the spiritual world and for magical purposes. Kwakiutl. Cherokee. This allowed the wearer to present a different persona easily by changing the color of the face and by emphasizing certain features. Haida. Salish.Masks / 427 to be recognized as “dreamers” who may call for the ceremonies to begin. Plains tribes. Nootka. The simplest way of wearing a mask was to paint the face. Putting on a “false face” could provide protection or disguise. Pueblo tribes. By putting on a false face it was . The making and wearing of masks was an art form that served religious. By painting the face. giving the wearer a different outlook and the ability to affect the impression and response of others. Types of Masks. others Significance: Masks have been used by many American Indian tribes since prehistoric times for ceremonial. Smith-Christopher Source for Further Study Meighan. and religious purposes. and artistic purposes for American Indians. Tsimshian. The occasion for the ceremonies varies. Lenni Lenape. Ghost Dance. Iroquois tribes. Makah. Los Angeles: Southwest Museum Papers. Naskapi. a transformation of personality took place. The Maru Cult of the Pomo Indians: A California Ghost Dance Survival. social. Masks Tribes affected: Aleut. Clement W. allowing access to and control of the spiritual world. Bella Coola. Maya. or enhance the role of storytelling. but is always dependent on the dream instructions of the Maru. Tlingit. 1972.

and in the Northwest masks were related to the clan totem. who. and plant fibers in North America and of wood. and the wearer could become one with the spiritual power. the spirit protector of the clan. They were . metals. (Library of Congress) entertainment. Masks were made of wood. stone. had an impact on one’s life.428 / Masks believed that one could engage the power of the surrounding spirits. In the Southwest masks were used to invoke spirits to help in providing rain. Masks made the powers visible. Some Indians believed that the spirits of deceased ancestors returned in a mask. Very often they were used in ritual dances to exorcise evil or invoke blessing. war dances. Regional Examples. being good or evil. The Northwest Coast area had perhaps the greatest development in the quality and use of masks. Masks were considered holy and sacred objects in themselves as they had the power to transform the wearer into the representative spirit. Storytelling and dramatization of symbolic legends made A masked dancer from the Cowichan use of masks and provided tribe. and clay in Central and South America. Which material was used depended upon the region and its natural resources and the degree of development in the use of masks. which varied from tribe to tribe. animal hides. Ceremonial use included such occasions as initiations. and fertility rites.

and square heads represented the female. with dark green being a favorite color. Pueblo Indians made simple head coverings of animal hides that were painted and decorated with feathers. were worn by both men and women. The Kwakiutl made highly expressive. In the Southwest. Eskimos (Inuits) used masks in acting out cosmic dramas. representing the duality of the inner human spiritual form and the outer animal form. with a few representing animals. cloth. masks were used to drive away evil spirits. herbs. the respective shapes could also represent deities or lesser spirits. These masks had distorted features. made of bands of braided corn husks. They also made large wooden masks to represent and honor the dead. complex masks with moveable parts such as beaks. Some masks were hinged. and carved wooden beaks. or spirit. and deeply set eyes. generally cedar. Masks were sacred to the Pueblos. all having supernatural power. and they were painted in red . A shaman wearing a mask could be transformed into the animal or spirit represented by the mask. and masks were ceremonially sanctified with sacred pollen or corn meal before being stored in the kiva. Most Pueblo masks represented spirits. The masks were made by carvers (who were held in high esteem by the community) of wood. The kachina dancer portrayed the spirit of a deceased clan member who lived in the underworld and was called upon for aid in assuring rain and good crops. and were colorfully and boldly painted. Rounded heads represented the male. they were left unpainted and bore solemn expressions. Sometimes masks were double-layered. Masks were often in the form of a human face. others were made of fur. The Iroquois made masks for False Face Ceremonies to exorcise demons. animal. but Husk Faces. Their masks displayed animal features representing a host of beings and phenomena. Clan masks represented the clan totem. The wearer had to be purified before wearing a mask. or the head of a bird. Wooden masks were worn only by men. long hair. In the Eastern Woodlands region.Masks / 429 used in curing ceremonies and midwinter performances of dramatized myths and legends in song and dance. who did not allow exact photographic reproductions of them.

Masks and Demons. Furst. New York: Henry N. 1980. and aesthetics of the people.. Totems. Conn. masks are also made for commercial purposes. New York: Kraus Reprint. New York: Oxford University Press. Reprint. Husk Face Society. Native American Art in the Denver Art Museum. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present.430 / Masks and/or black. Peter T. and Herman Rosse. 1923. ears. 1972. Cordry. Janet Catherine. Native North American Art. Richard. Wherry. 1974. Furst. Introduction to American Indian Art. The Cherokee made masks for hunting. and Jill L. Macgowan. Kachinas. Glorieta. masks were symbolic expressions of beliefs and were worn at ritual dances.Mex. religion. 1979. Religion. Crowell. The Living Solid Face mask of the Lenni Lenape (Delaware) was considered a helpful spirit and guide as well as a living mask. Kenneth. Lois Sherr. Paints and Painting. Van Noord Sources for Further Study Berlo. 1999. such as the eyes. nose. mask making was a complex art form in which masks were used to record the history.: Rio Grande Press. Dubin. Masks made by American Indians today are still used for ceremonial purposes. 1982. et al. or antlers. Mexican Masks. 1973. Donald. as aids to help them get close to game animals. New York: Thomas Y. The Iroquois also made buffalo-head masks that were used in the Buffalo Dance. Indian Masks and Myths of the West. Among some tribes. Their masks boldly emphasized the distinctive features of animals. Denver: Denver Art Museum. . 1998. New York: Rizzoli International. False Face Ceremony. Abrams. In Mesoamerica. See also: Dances and Dancing. North American Indian Art. Made of a wide variety of materials. N. Austin: University of Texas Press. Oliver. Diane C. Joseph H. LaFarge.

fish. (The origin of the decimal system. it simply meant counting objects. Bundles of sticks were also used to count and keep track of days. meaning that their numbers were based on groupings of ten. and Sioux. one stone for each object counted. noted by Aristotle long ago. In parts of California. and five (the binary. and years to be independently followed. Other systems based on two. knives. but number systems for counting were developed by most tribes. To derive numbers. Similar to the number systems of most ancient cultures throughout the world. Hunting tribes. for example. ternary. one stick being removed . number systems were based on groupings of twenty.Mathematics / 431 Mathematics Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The most highly developed mathematical systems in the pre-contact Americas were the Mayan and Aztec calendar systems. most tribes used additive and multiplicative principles and. Iroquois. in the latter case. seasons. In the former case.) Almost one-third of American Indian tribes that have been studied used the decimal system. subtractive and divisive principles. Nine was considered one less than ten. and quinary systems. months. and canoes. animals. Salish. respectively) were also used. Repeated addition (multiplication) was used for large numbers. In North America. Mathematical skills developed by American Indian tribes included the development of number systems—words and symbols used for calendrical measurement and economic bookkeeping. many number systems of North America were based on the decimal system. and so on. and eleven was one greater than ten. this included the Algonquian. people. this allowed the passage of days. The fingers and toes of five men could be used to count one hundred objects. three. to a lesser extent. since small numbers were sufficient for enumeration in the counting of objects such as spears. had little use for extensive number systems. To preserve a record of counted objects a pile of stones could be used. was a result of the fact that humans are born with ten fingers and ten toes. known as the vigesimal system.

c. and Postclassic (900 c. or months. The highland areas of southern Guatemala and Chiapas flourished during the late Preclassic period. and the Petén region. Every day—18. Guatemala. and Quintana Roo. The 260-day and 365-day cycles overlapped. Mayan history is divided into three periods: Preclassic (2000 b. and El Salvador.). scholars refer to this fiftytwo-year period as the Calendar Round. Mayan Civilization Significance: These Mesoamericans contributed profound achievements in art.432 / Mayan Civilization from a bundle to represent the passage of a day. Yucatan.e. there were 360 “named” days in the years and 5 unnamed days. Honduras.). of twenty days each.e. Scholars who study the Maya have divided the entire region into three subregions: the southern subregion of Guatemala highlands and the Pacific coast. the central subregion of northern Guatemala. Nicholas C. its adjacent lowlands.200 c. astronomy. Thomas See also: Aztec Empire. mathematics. to the Spanish conquest). and the northern subregion of the Yucatan peninsula. In the Mayan system. The complex Mayan and Aztec calendar systems used both the 365-day year and a 260-day cycle tied to the cultures’ religious rituals.e. A tally of years was kept by scratching notches in sticks. The 360-day period of named days was called the tun and was composed of eighteen uinals. the more accurate of the two. Campeche. Mayan Civilization. lowland areas in the Petén region reached their height during the Classic pe- . every fifty-two years the two cycles returned to the same relative positions. Classic (200-900 c. in addition to the countries of Belize. The Maya lived in an area that included the present-day Mexican states of Chiapas.980 in all—in the round had a unique combination of day numbers and names and month numbers and names.e. Tabasco. and architecture.

and calendars were used. and the area in the Yucatan Peninsula prospered in the late Classic and Postclassic periods. more advanced city-states for which the Maya are known. writing. During the late Preclassic period. astronomy. The end of the Preclassic period and the beginning of the Classic period. but these were all more fully developed in the Classic period. Consequently the “official” end of the Preclassic period and beginning of the Classic period has been changed from 300 to 250 or 200 c. such as El Mirador and Kaminaljuyu. F OF CA LI FO G U L F N IA O F R M E X I C O Teotihuacán Tenochtitlán AZTEC Monte Alban Mitla MAYA ZAPOTEC . developed in the Preclassic period. but it was the Classic period that witnessed the rise of the larger. mathematics. and polychrome pottery. However.Mayan Civilization / 433 Area of the Mayan Civilization G UL P A C I F I C O C E A N riod.e. A few city-states. located in the Petén region of Guatemala. One of the earliest and largest of the Classicperiod centers was Tikal. when the Maya flourished. subsequent finds have revealed that each of these traits appeared at different times during the Terminal Preclassic. had formerly been defined by the appearance of vaulted stone architecture. monumental inscriptions. architecture.

which was located in the central basin of Mexico. Some of these representations have helped scholars to realize that the Maya were not the peaceful people they once were believed to be. and had an estimated forty thousand inhabitants. Mexico. This influence ended in the eighth century. Other important centers in the Yucatan peninsula. including the Mayan cities of Kaminaljuyu. Their knowledge of astronomy was such that they not only had an accurate calendar of 365 days but also were able to predict solar and lunar eclipses. and there has been speculation that this was a . which helped to concentrate their vision on selected celestial bodies. 250 miles southeast of Tikal. began to spread its influence throughout southern Mesoamerica. The lid of the sarcophagus was a five-ton. in Chiapas. jade tubes were used. also located in Chiapas. began in the Classic period but continued to flourish in the Postclassic period under the influence of the Toltecs. with a four-story tower with an internal stairway. Teotihuacán. and Tikal. The frescoes depict many activities and scenes of daily life not represented elsewhere. who died in 683 after ruling for sixty-eight years. as well as the movement of Venus. Copán. twelve-foot slab of limestone carved with a bas-relief image of the ruler as he entered the jaws of death in the underworld. is the tallest pre-Columbian edifice in America. Palenque. Although the Maya did not have telescopes. had an aqueduct to direct water from a nearby stream to the center of the city and contained a building called the Palace. which was 228 feet long and 180 feet deep. 224 feet high. which was in Honduras. is best known for its Temple of Frescoes. contained more than three thousand constructions. Some of the aforementioned centers had previously experienced a foreign influence early in the Classic period.434 / Mayan Civilization It covered a six-square-mile area. may have been a scientific center specializing in astronomy. Palenque also is special for the fact that two women ruled before Pacal assumed the throne. Perhaps its most famous feature is the tomb of the ruler Pacal. who invaded Mayan territory in the tenth century. Bonampak. Copán. One pyramid. In the fifth century. such as Chichén Itzá.

Mayan Civilization / 435 factor in the demise of the Classic period at the end of the ninth century. jutting corbeled arches or vaults. and monoliths inscribed with names. A major feature of the large ceremonial centers was the formal plaza lined by public buildings. which is believed to have been by patrilineal primogeniture accessible to others only through marriage. It was the function of the common people to provide not only necessities but also luxuries for the elite. and important events. or a new and larger structure enveloped the older one. When a child was born. Buildings were typically covered with stucco. Either existing structures were demolished and the material was used in the new construction. At the top was an elite who ruled and enjoyed special privileges. Myriad gods controlled everything and therefore had to be consulted and appeased constantly. the date would be recorded and the event would be celebrated with a religious ceremony that included bloodletting. Religion was of central importance to Mayan culture. ballcourts. altars. and stelae. Each city-state had its own ruling dynasty. flat-topped stone pyramids with steps that led to a temple decorated with tiled pediments known as “roof combs”. buildings covered with bas-reliefs. Much of this was made possible by the Mayan practice of cementing the cut stones together. which may have been hereditary. a priest would . often one on top of the other. the peasants were buried under the floor in their homes. The Classic period was characterized by the construction of impressive structures. while the nobility were buried in tombs. plaster. There were probably a number of strata between the royal family and the common farmers. If it was an important structure. and stucco. large public squares or plazas. based on birth or occupation. Some of the main features of Mayan architecture were large. dates. They had perfected the use of mortar. Society was highly stratified. The inequality of treatment did not end with death. Each day and number had its patron deity. Mayan religious concerns encouraged the development of astronomy and mathematics.

disease and malnutrition. Invasion and economic collapse due to changes in other parts of Mesoamerica are possible external causes. Each day and each moment was governed by a different god. political. there were both internal and external causes. The former may have included environmental degradation. but it also brought increased competition for territory and power. While the southern part of the Mayan civilization was undergoing collapse and depopula- . The end of the classic Mayan civilization was both swift and mysterious. with the heads possibly used as trophies. and decay of the artistic. overpopulation relative to the food supply. a child would owe a special devotion to the ascendant deity throughout its lifetime. Tikal was defeated by Caracol. Thus fortunes changed for communities and individuals alike. Warfare was a frequent outcome. During this period. In addition to giving nurture and praise to the gods. Bloodletting took the form of human sacrifices— either of enemies or possibly of devout martyrs—and nonfatal self-mutilation. which entailed the piercing of the tongue. lips. a revolution of peasants against the elite. The Classic period was marked by competition and conflict.436 / Mayan Civilization predict its future with the aid of astrological charts and books. Numerous theories attempt to explain the rather sudden and widespread demise of the prosperous lowland Mayan communities. An important aspect of some religious ceremonies was the practice of shedding human blood. There was an extensive system of short. The latter seems to have been a common practice. the Maya believed contact could be made with gods or deceased ancestors by the letting of blood. Depending on the exact day and time of its birth. or penis. The blood was sometimes dripped onto paper strips that then were burned. others were beheaded. and intellectual superstructure of society. Some of the conquered rivals provided sacrificial victims to satisfy the gods. Religious ceremonies were of the utmost importance. which later was defeated by Dos Pilas. Undoubtedly. Economic success brought growth and prosperity to the many city-states. earlobes. not only among the Maya but with other indigenous peoples as well.and long-distance trade.

: Rutgers University Press. Diego de. and Zapotec civilizations are studied before and after contact with Europeans. the centers in northern Yucatan continued to prosper and some southward immigration occurred to fill the vacuum. Mathematics. John.J. Examines Mayan culture from the earliest settlements through the period of Spanish conquest. New York: Dover. Translated by William Gates. Yucatan Before and After the Conquest. The World of the Ancient Maya. Ball Game and Courts. New York: Madison Square Press. Landa. Mayan. Codices. 1978.Y. New York: Cambridge University Press. Ivanoff. Philip E. 1996-2000. See also: Astronomy. 1982. Religion. Ithaca. which is the source of much of the information available on Mayan history and culture. which witnessed the dominance of the Yucatan area. Ancient Maya Civilization. Good synthesis of available data. 3 vols. Henderson. 1981. Carrasco. Religions of Mesoamerica. Pierre. with scholars’ theories and interpretations. Historical explanation of manuscript by Landa.: Cornell University Press. Maya Monuments of Civilization. Olmec. Norman. David. Culture Areas. The Aztec. Lampe Sources for Further Study The Cambridge History of the Native Peoples of the Americas. continued until the Spanish conquest in the midsixteenth century. Hammond. The succeeding Postclassic period. N. San Francisco: Harper & Row. Includes chapters on Mayan religion and closely related practices.Mayan Civilization / 437 tion. N. 1990. . New Brunswick. Photographs and brief text on many important sites. 1973.

By the middle of the nineteenth century. It was not until 1921 that the federal government. nearly all the native population of the United States had been consigned to reservations. diabetes. In various treaties with the federal government. by the mid. New Mexico. South Dakota. especially those living on reservations. Moreover. are located primarily in Alaska. By the middle of the twentieth century. and many alcohol-related diseases—have complicated the problem of providing adequate health care to Indians.to late nineteenth century. Montana. and the high incidence of certain health problems among Indians—especially accidental death. Indian health care had come under the jurisdiction of the Indian Health Service of the federal Public Health Service. officially mandated that health services be provided to American Indians. in the Snyder Act. such care was under the jurisdiction of the Department of War and was provided by military doctors stationed on or near reservations. Indians were historically guaranteed health care services. These reservations.438 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Meeting the health care needs of contemporary American Indians. is largely the responsibility of the Indian Health Service. Arizona. Minnesota. Utah. found today in thirty-two states. Until the late nineteenth century. Washington. depression. Among the primary factors in this vast depopulation was the devastation caused by infectious European diseases (such as smallpox). Central issues such as the rural location of many American Indians. . the American Indian population had been decimated by three centuries of contact with Europeans and European Americans. against which Indians did not have immunity. and Wisconsin. Some health care was also provided by religious and social groups. the widespread existence of Indian poverty.

the BIA began to organize a medical care division in the middle of the 1870’s. Indians were given the right of American citizenship in 1924. . Initially. shall be administered by the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service. and duties . nineteenth century peace treaties between the federal government and the Indian tribes who agreed to live on reservations included some sort of health care provisions. This division grew slowly. The quality of the health care Indians received varied greatly and depended on the attitudes of the personnel who were involved in it. the U. tuberculosis. health facilities for Indians. relating to the maintenance and operation of . First.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact / 439 Early Indian Health Care. the next thirty years saw relatively little overall improvement of their health. In the middle of the nineteenth century. and the other contagious diseases that were endemic among reservation populations. however. . In 1955 the Public Health Service took over Indian health care via the Division of Indian Health. . Regrettably. authorities. the Department of War used the most appropriate—or convenient—personnel at military posts close to the individual reservations to carry out Indian medical care and training in health-related areas such as sanitation. which stated that “all the functions. despite the efforts of the health care practitioners who worked among them. . Department of the Interior was created. In many cases. While initially inefficient at providing health care. health funds were combined with funds aimed at general education and were administered by either religious or philanthropic organizations that operated with widely varying degrees of success. and conservation of Indian health . by the 1920’s its main efforts were in the treatment of trachoma.” Three factors enabled the Indian Health . At this time civilians took over Indian health care entirely as this charge passed into the hands of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). the radically underfunded programs aimed at meeting these needs were of two types. Second. . Development of the Indian Health Service. .S. responsibilities. which is now called the Indian Health Service. This change was mandated by Public Law 83-568 (the Transfer Act).

Most weaknesses of the Indian Health Service arise from its relatively inadequate funding. First and foremost of these was the widespread use of antibiotics such as penicillin. such as the facts that the population being served lives mostly on reservations that are located in isolated rural areas and that transportation difficulties arise when patients must be moved . The hierarchy leads to swifter action and to better communication than was possible under other systems. they became an essential cadre of advocates for the Indian Health Service. and the fact that it is smaller than might be desired (51 hospitals and about 425 outpatient clinics and health centers). Another valuable aspect of the Indian Health Service is its efficient hierarchical organization and governance at all of its levels from the national office to its management areas to its service units (often a whole tribe). federal legislation made it possible for physicians and other health professionals to serve in the Public Health Service Officer Corps instead of performing active military service. reservation inhabitants must accept the care of a reservation’s appointed doctors or must purchase their own health care. the transience and undersupply of its biomedical staff. armed forces during World War II had returned to their reservations. and clinics. Second. One problem associated with the Indian Health Service is the lack of choice of individual physicians. they also soon represented many members of its staff.S. This brought a great many more qualified individuals into the Indian Health Service. many of the Indians who had served in the U.440 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact Service to operate more efficiently than had previous agencies concerned with American Indian health. Health Service Weaknesses and Solutions. these facilities are usually very well run within their limitations. Nevertheless. health centers. high-technology medical services at its component hospitals. Third. Now familiar with life and medical care off reservations. which could cure many diseases very quickly and gave Indians more faith in the efficacy of white medicine. These factors are aggravated by the lack of many essential.

alcoholrelated deaths (from cirrhosis of the liver. This reservation. The reservation’s Indian Health Service component is divided into 8 of the 137 service units found in the United States. It contains hospitals with a total of about five hundred beds as well as numerous clinics and other health centers. for example). Problems of overcrowding and the already mentioned lack of high-technology health services necessitate the expensive transfer of many Navajo Indian patients to private-sector facilities. Another severe problem is the high turnover and shortage of nurses and other essential health care professionals. Complicating the issue still more are the existing decreases and the expected ending of some federal programs that pay all of the educational costs of physicians and nurses in return for a term of practice in the underserved regions of the United States. for example.000. including Indian reservations. private-sector health providers for services that are otherwise unavailable to them. The problems of Indian Health Service health care delivery. New Mexico. and Utah. In the long run. It has been noted by upperlevel Indian Health Service administrators that increasing staff salaries will only partly solve the problem. Present solutions include using both Medicare and Medicaid revenue obtained for qualifying Indians. Rather. This is particularly problem- . the problem is viewed as being largely attributable to both geographic and professional isolation. Permanent nursing positions in the Indian Health Service. and diabetes that consume much of the resource base of the Navajo reservation service units. with a population of more than 200. increased budgets for the Indian Health Service and additional hospital facilities will be required. Other problems include the high incidence of heart disease. is located on an area about the size of West Virginia and sprawls over parts of Arizona. are exemplified by the Navajo reservation. on which live the members of the largest American Indian tribe. as well as some of the solutions.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact / 441 to distant. A partial solution to this logistics problem is the use of a relatively economical ambulance service operated by the Navajo tribe. homicide. are reported to be only 75 to 80 percent filled. suicide.

The American Indian population has traditionally exhibited a significantly greater incidence of infant mortality as well as adult deaths from a number of diseases than seen in the general U. Indian Health Service facilities are not limited to reservation-based Indians.442 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact atic because a large percentage of the Indian Health Service professional staff comes from this source (the National Health Service Corps. only 5 to 10 percent of NHSC physicians have remained in the Indian Health Service for even one year beyond the time required by their scholarship program obligations. Even in the best of times. in most of these areas by the end of the twentieth century. however. depending upon the source of the estimate of the total U. Special Health Needs.S. population. NHSC). there has been a drop in infant mortality from 22. A positive change is the increased number of Indians entering and projected to enter the system as professional staff. Another approach is based on the percentage of Indian blood possessed by a person. Estimates of the percentage of American Indians who are being treated by the Indian Health Service vary from 60 to about 80 percent. For example. One basis for counting the Indian population is self-assessment of being an Indian via the U. Census. but they often consist of being of one-fourth Indian blood. One reason that the service provides care for both reservation and nonreservation Indians is that many tribes count individuals as members regardless of their formal place of residence. Requirements for this recognition vary from tribe to tribe. Indian population. however. Rather. The Indian Health Service itself is not concerned with quantifying the amount of Indian blood in the people it serves.S.2 . Identifying Indians to Be Served. These problems have been attributed to Indian families’ generally lower incomes as well as to their poorer nutrition and living conditions. service at one of its facilities depends on being recognized as an Indian by a contemporary Indian tribe.S. Inroads had been made. although most facilities are located on or near reservations.

Furthermore. Another aspect of disease prevention among Indians is a widespread nutrition and dietetics program in which clinical nutrition counseling and general health aspects are promoted.180 Indian homes still needed either a safe water supply or an acceptable sewage disposal system. Improvement of both health services and living conditions has also diminished the absolute numbers of deaths from the main diseases that kill modern Indian adults. In some cases the homes lacked both of these initiatives. all races” category. and the development of local organizations to maintain the new systems. Shamanic and Modern Health Care.000 homes were provided with modernized sanitary facilities by the service. This assistance has included water and sewage facilities. This aspect of Indian Health Service activity is viewed as possessing a very high potential for success. almost 200. Contemporary deaths from accident. This combination of treatments may be found in many In- . Yet much more help is needed in these ventures. a rate very near that for the “U. The Indian Health Service has attempted to diminish the extent of these health problems in a variety of ways. solid waste disposal. having had a large number of contacts per year with patients. alcoholism and related problems. diabetes. the promotion of seat belt use. suicide. homicide. Also important is the provision by the Indian Health Service of modern sanitary facilities for many Indian homes. nearly 30.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact / 443 per 1. influenza/pneumonia.7. A particularly intriguing aspect of modern medical treatment is the combination of conventional Western treatment with the activities of the traditional tribal shaman. Among efforts directed toward accident reduction is an injury prevention program that includes motor vehicle aspects such as child passenger protection. In 2001.000 live births to 8. and the deterrence of drunk driving. and tuberculosis still exceed those in the “all races” population.S. Between 1960 and 1991. educational programs on such topics as smoke detector use and drowning protection are widespread. an article on the Indian Health Service’s Sanitation Facilities Initiative reported that after ten years of funding..

Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Sanford S. New Mexico. 1988. Included are the capacity to respond to patient needs and conflicts engendered when health providers and consumers have different cultural backgrounds. Carl A. Elinor D. Singer Sources for Further Study Gregg. and shortcomings are described knowledgeably. Various aspects of a psychiatrist’s experience with Indian healing are described. San Francisco: Harper & Row. Shamanic Healing and Ritual Drama: Health and Medicine in Native North American Religious Traditions. and other interesting aspects of federally funded care of American Indians from 1922 to 1937. Its use is partly attributable to the fact that shamanic treatment is comfortable to many Indians. Both the historical and modern aspects of shamanic ritual are covered. Provides much insight into physicians. strengths. and Indian patients. Hammerschlag. shortcomings. Points out problems. 1992. 1971.. problems. Kane. Also included is a copious set of valuable references. Many of today’s physicians find that the shamanic ceremonies and medicinal treatments are a useful complement to their ministrations. Federal Health Care (with Reservations). The Dancing Healers: A Doctor’s Journey of Healing with Native Americans. interactive processes are carefully explored. Examples of syntheses of Indian and Western medicine that produce useful. The Indians and the Nurse. A detailed survey of Indian practice and belief in health. Hultkrantz. and Rosalie A. New York: Springer. nurses. These procedures are deemed to be particularly important in resolving mental health problems. .444 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact dian Health Service facilities and elsewhere. Indian Health Service strengths. and religion. Robert L. Kane was a director of the Indian Health Service Navajo service unit at Shiprock. Kane. New York: Crossroad. Ake. medicine. but they have also found wide utility in problems ranging from heart disease to dermatitis to cancer. 1965.

This interesting multiauthored book covers mental health problems of North American Indians. This substantive book covers. Included are organizational data. Religious Specialists. Torrey. in depth. 1989-. a population overview. Walnut Creek. 2000. Disease and Intergroup Contact. This report briefly describes the Indian Health Service and its history and gives many modern statistics about Indian health care. U. A comprehensive review of the health and health care of Native Americans. E. Indian Health Service. Health. U.: AltaMira Press. handy health statistics. Clifford E. drugs. Indian Health Care. and Policy. and Diane Weiner.. ed. 2001.S. It includes articles on general problems. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact / 445 Rhoades. many aspects of Indian health care. American Indian health status. and Survival Among Native Americans. cultural conflicts. Medicine Ways: Disease. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. See also: Alcoholism. et al. Office of Technology Assessment. 1986. the Indian Health Service. Hendrie. 1974. Calif. Everett R..: Government Printing Office. and Indian mental health care needs. and statistics on many related issues. Community Health and Mental Health Care Delivery for North American Indians.S. Division of Program Statistics. An examination of the thought and practice of health care in the Native American communtiy. . Shamanic aspects are also described. selected special health topics. American Indian Health: Innovations in Health Care. Fuller. Trafzer. E. eds. Foulkes. D. Department of Health and Human Services. F. C. H. New York: MSS Information Corporation. Washington. Promotion. and extensive references. Trends in Indian Health.C. Included are the federal-Indian relationship. alcoholism. suicide.

wounds. dislocations. or shamans. was universally utilized by Native Americans for curing diarrhea. Indigenous medical systems resulted from a group’s particular adaptation to a certain environment—its wide variety of medicinal as well as noxious plants. and even occupationally related deaths. they will develop diarrhea. Medical Systems. Most external injuries. as clay effectively absorbs liquids. Many internal illnesses and psychological afflictions. skin irritations. bruises. and they consume clay to correct this condition. however. were considered to have been caused by natural means. such as fractures. It was not unusual for Native Americans to learn medical procedures from the close observation of certain animals. For example. were diagnosed as being the result of sorcerers who were capable of manipulating supernatural malevolent powers. The cause. clay eating. and supernatural approaches. in the early spring. who possessed special benevolent religious powers and abilities. when deer go from browsing to grazing. consisting of a corpus of time-tried explanations and therapeutic procedures that were inextricably related to the notion of supernatural and natural causes. Clay was also applied externally for certain dermal eruptions. ritualistic. resulting in maladies that could be treated only by medical practitioners. Native American groups had adequate medical systems for successfully treating illness and disease.446 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Traditional American Indian cultures had a number of explanations of illness and approaches to healing. and prognosis of all illnesses and diseases were explained by a definite classification that was usually unique to a particular group. Similarly. including medicinal. . snake and insect bites. During the prehistoric period. or geophagy. diagnosis.

dreaming. this was an occasion when one’s power could be stolen by a more powerful individual. receiving a sign. inheritance from a kinsperson. Because of this concern. fasting. Shamans tended to work individually but sometimes required the assistance of herbalists. and less frequently. which. For example. The curing knowledge and skills of a shaman were sometimes acquired through serving an apprenticeship to a known shaman or to an established practitioner of one’s family who would serve as a sponsor and guide during the often long and arduous training period. bear power was most effective in treating burns. according to elevation and time of year. Usually. dreaming. if violated. and usually one’s tutelary spirit was associated with curing a particular illness.” The supernatural power to cure could be general or specific to certain maladies. reciting special curing songs. shamans would publicly demonstrate their powers to the congregation. women who usually had a more complete knowledge of local plants and their medicinal uses and . and continually revitalizing their medicines and paraphernalia through purification. could mean the shaman’s loss of power or even illness and possibly death. survival of an illness. but more often through the vision quest. Shamans.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact / 447 Hunters and gatherers were more concerned with illness than with the advent of death because of their need to maintain a high degree of mobility in order to exploit the animal and plant foods that were located in different areas. Consequently. isolation. The principal medical practitioner was the shaman. resurrection after “death. illness could debilitate a group’s strategies for obtaining food. a man or woman who had acquired supernatural curing power through a variety of ritualized procedures. heron power to retrieve a lost soul. during an annual rite. The practitioner’s life was further burdened by almost continual stress in observing strict behavioral and dietary taboos. Shamans maintained their power through frequent renewal rituals such as sweating. Native Americans developed extensive and successful methods of interpreting and treating different afflictions by the use of medical practitioners.

Often esoteric medical knowledge was jealously guarded. for a person who could cure was also believed capable of sorcery. Medical practitioners were sometimes physically different because of blindness. or permanent injuries. . during the late nineteenth century.448 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact A medicine man. Little Big Mouth. Shamans were respected and even feared. If a patient died. Oklahoma. near Fort Sill. minor congenital defects. (National Archives) properties than did men. the attending shaman could be accused of being the sorcerer. They were also considered psychologically different from others because of their ability to perform shamanistic rites such as soul-flight.

and if the person in the dream was not properly warned. many Native Americans. If one had such a prophetic dream. Native Americans were not disease-free. the fear of sorcery was an effective means of social control. revealed their dreams to an elderly member of the family who would interpret the dream’s significance and prescribe appropriate behavior to prevent misfortune. illnesses and injuries attributable to natural causes were well understood and could be treated by an elderly. Illness could be self-induced through breaking a taboo or by not informing a person who was to suffer an illness or some misfortune. unfulfilled dreams. more knowledgeable kinsperson. not only because of the dire consequences but also because one was not always certain who was a sorcerer. boisterous. Supernatural maladies and death were believed to be caused by moral transgression. and various prophetic skills.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact / 449 physical and spiritual transformation. Causes of Illness. A person who was greedy. arthritis. In fact. or malicious was subject to being sorcerized. spirit intrusion. Spiritual or supernatural illnesses were invariably thought to be caused by a sorcerer who had successfully manipulated an individual’s soul or tutelary spirit because the victim had offended or humiliated someone—or simply because the sorcerer was malicious. glossalalia (nonmeaningful speech or “speaking in tongues”). pneumonia. it was common for the dreamer to experience that specific misfortune. ventriloquism. one that ensured the particular power would be acquired later by another person. upon awakening in the morning. as revealed in one’s dream. misusing one’s power. in some cases. poisoning. sorcery (as in soul loss. They experienced mostly gastrointestinal problems. legerdemain. and some endemic maladies. or object intrusion). Illness or even death could occur if one failed to ac- . and. Consequently. It also freed the aged shaman from further responsibilities and possible maladies. Therefore. It was not unusual for an aged or sick shaman to give up his or her curing power through a special ritual. selfish.

Women sometimes became shamans after menopause. These rituals were shamanistic performances that included dancing. sought for empowering courting flutes or providing love incantations or medicines. even when fecundity was thought to be a problem. singing. uterine hemorrhaging. failed to accord the deceased certain respect. Female shamans were. and they instructed the new mother about postnatal dietary and behavioral taboos. a man who killed a bear had to sing the death song of the creature and. when they could receive obstetrical power for assisting as midwives in difficult deliveries. Curing Rituals. the dead bear might appear in the man’s dream and pull back its scalp. Universal to Native Americans was the strict observance of dietary and behavioral taboos that surrounded an individual’s death. or if the widow or widower married too soon. Treatment of supernatural illnesses depended upon an impressive array of medicines. which could result in the hunter losing his mind and being condemned to endless wandering and continual hunger. If the hunter was remiss. powders. cures. Nor was it unusual for a person who had not accorded proper respect through the strict observance of taboos associated with killing an animal to become ill. then a specific illness would beset the offender. roots. on occasion. for if the survivors violated purification rites intended to prevent spiritual contamination. They administered decoctions. or cases of malposition. and ritual therapies that required the intervention of a shaman. drumming. prolapse. or dreamed improperly of the dead person. abstain from sexual relationships and eat a restricted diet. Female shamans were knowledgeable about abortives and contraceptives. and other medicines for dysmenorrhea and other female disorders. For example. mentioned the name of the deceased.450 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact knowledge that one possessed curing power and should fulfill the obligations of this responsibility. . They often instructed a menarcheal girl about pertinent taboos associated with being a woman. for a prescribed period. inflicted by the dead person’s ghost.

and provided an opportunity for others to make confessions of transgressions that would prevent them from becoming ill. Shamans effectively utilized various prophetic rituals and interpreted signs to ascertain the diagnosis and prognosis of illness. and even the specific cause. or therapeutic interview. dreaming. it was not uncommon to tie a shaman’s hands and feet securely with rawhide and place him behind . which meant that the practitioner and his or her entourage would reside temporarily with the patient. or a container of water. These rituals invariably lasted until the patient was completely rehabilitated. This collective psychodrama functioned to integrate the group and to reinstate a moral order. It was an effective therapeutic session that publicly permitted shamans to demonstrate their power and ability. Shamans were sometimes attended by a medical chorus who chanted curing songs and played percussion and wind instruments which were believed to facilitate a shaman’s power flight in seeking a vision or recovering a lost soul. The group medical inquest also afforded the patient a managerial role. Some groups had prophetic devices such as special tule mats. sand paintings. noting reasons for illness and anxiety. smoke. hypnosis. fasting. facilitated group confession of moral transgressions. Medical knowledge was jealously guarded.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact / 451 and the use of religious paraphernalia that were personal and power-associated. An important aspect of treating supernatural illnesses was the group medical inquest. Often a shaman’s prophetic abilities in foreseeing medical problems were enhanced by the use of drugs. for it was feared that a shaman could lose his or her power if the knowledge were divulged. expiated guilt through oral catharsis. The offending sorcerer could be identified and might later participate in removing the malevolent power that was causing the affliction. tobacco. and the use of musical instruments and singing. spiritual transformation. Prior to a curing ceremony. a collective ceremony in which the patient and shaman were joined by family and friends. or they had tutelary spirits that would communicate the needed information. and on occasion the entire village. trances.

Immediately he would throw the loose rawhide over the screen. ed. such as withstanding excruciating pain or demonstrating unusual manipulative skills. shamans might dramatically plunge an arm into boiling water or hold a hot stone to show the patient and group they were impervious to pain because of their power. Temporarily without power. For example. Note: A partial listing of herbal medicines still used today in Canada. shamans might also perform different proofs of ordeal. Medical Services Branch. Alberta Region. During curing ritual shamans often had to be protected as their personal powers might be elsewhere seeking the cause of a patient’s malady. The Native North American Almanac. shamans were be- Traditional Indian Medicines Still Used Plant Black spruce Devil’s club Fireweed Lichen Sage Soapberry Spruce needles Spruce pitch Strawberry leaf Strawberry root Tamarack bark Wild rhubarb Wild rhubarb Willow leaves Symptom Cough Aching muscles Swelling Ulcers Colds Diarrhea Eye infection Infected wound Ensure safe pregnancy Diarrhea Stomach trouble Arthritis Infected wound Insect stings Preparation Soft inner bark Boiled Large infusion steamed Mixed with other herbs Boiled None Needles boiled Applied directly Dried and boiled Boiled Beaten..452 / Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact a hide screen. To demonstrate their power before curing. 1994. Detroit: Gale Research. Primary source. . health and Welfare Canada. tea added Boiled as tea Pounded root Chewed and applied How Used Chewed Drunk As poultice Chewed Inhaled Eaten As eye wash As poultice Drunk Drunk Drunk Drunk As poultice As poultice Source: Duane Champagne.

Native Americans developed an extensive materia medica. febrifuges. John Alan. since their power could be lost or taken by a more powerful person. and faunal substances. estimated to have been approximately fifty-four percent chemically active. On occasion. floral.” Medical Journal 62. Most medicines were acquired locally. The Medicine-Man of the American Indian and His Cultural Background. Paul. John Alan Ross Sources for Further Study Corlett. New York: Boni & Liveright. stimulants. Ill. anesthetics. salves. Medicines. It was constituted from geological. An article dealing with aboriginal and syncretic medicine in the Plateau. “Indian Shamans of the Plateau: Past and Present. Springfield. narcotics. particularly the role of the shaman.: Charles C Thomas. . Medicines were administered in the form of poultices. A shaman of lesser power could be killed by the illness when it was removed from the patient. 3 (1989). Radin. The Story of the American Indian. An early but significant recognition of Native American medical systems that explains the role of ritual in treating psychosomatic illnesses. astringents. vermifuges.Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact / 453 lieved susceptible to danger. and infusions. These compounds and simple medicaments were administered to most internal and external afflictions by shamans who were knowledgeable of the intended effect. poisons. Through continual observation and long use. emetics. the shaman may have been required to have a power duel with the malevolent power. 1935. no. cathartics. William Thomas. Ross. a struggle which was evident by the practitioner’s unusual behavior when he or she was thrown about or lifted into the air. 1927. particularly if the shaman used a sucking tube. A book that explains the cultural significance of medicines and their ritual application. expectorants. diuretics. but some were obtained through trade. which is representative of many Native American groups.

and readability for the nonspecialist. or whittled sticks. A comprehensive text explaining indigenous Native American medical systems that contains an extensive bibliography. A medicine bundle is a collection of objects that have connection with sacred power. references. smooth stones. whether shaman. warrior. Whatever the contents. It is illustrated and stresses the significance of medicinal plants. gaming dice. Vogel. or priest. This excellent book is the most definitive study of Native American medicine because of extensive research. clan’s. the bundle represents and contains great power: It is the physical embodiment of the spiritual power of the owner. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Post-contact. Religious Specialists. Sweet grass. naturally occurring crystals. Clio Medicia 7. Eric. whether bound by string and tied with special knots or rolled into a bark or buckskin container. The objects may include artifacts such as the carved stone statue of the Kiowas (known as the Tai-me). as well as natural or found items such as feathers. or may be constructed according to directions received in a vision. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. sage. may be given by a mentor to a disciple. Contains a comprehensive bibliography. American Indian Medicine. Helen Jaskoski . or nation’s relationship to the spiritual world and its power. the bundle is always carefully arranged.454 / Medicine Bundles Stone. The bundle may be inherited from clan or family. See also: Disease and Intergroup Contact. Virgil J. Medicine Among the American Indians. and herbs and sweet grasses collected for the bundle. 1962. In any case. Medicine Bundles Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A medicine bundle is a physical token of an individual’s. 1970. and other aromatic herbs are renewed periodically. New York: Hafner.

One of the spokes points to the place on the horizon where the sun rises at summer solstice.Medicine Wheels / 455 See also: Bundles. found in the Bighorn Mountains in north central Wyoming. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact.700 feet in altitude on Medicine Mountain. and campground. some of which are still extant. was used by a number of different tribes. with three small outer circles. . Religion. Cheyenne. Sacred. Glenn J. Medicine Wheels Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A medicine wheel is a circle of iconic stones used as a teaching tool. picnic area. powerful teaching circle. The most famous. It is a circle 80 feet in diameter with twenty-nine spokes of numerous limestone slabs. two outer vessel shapes. Clans. the. all placed at about 8. Religion. Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. and one inner vessel shape. Arapaho. The medicine wheel is a sacred. and Lakota. The Department of the Interior wishes to turn this site into a tourist attraction and build a visitor center. including Crow. Another spoke points to Arcturus rising at spring equinox. Schiffman See also: Architecture: Plains. Religious Specialists. There were numerous medicine wheels composed of stones laid out by the indigenous North Americans. Sacred. Tribes have petitioned the government to declare twelve days on both sides of equinoxes and solstices limited to tribal use of the site. The tribes also want the protected area around the medicine wheel enlarged so that the habitat within three miles of the wheel is undisturbed.

Even those tribal groups that did not insist on strict cloistering demanded that a menstruating woman keep clear of cooking areas and away from any task necessary to tribal survival. and undergo special diets (often abstaining from eating meat) and baths. the Yukon. celebrated the onset of a girl’s puberty as a milestone of maturation with a great feast. Watchers scrutinized the woman to see how well she adhered to these prohibitions. most tribal peoples required her to go into seclusion. Some groups on the Northwest Coast. and Canadian Subarctic regions treated the girl as dangerous to the welfare of herself and the group and constructed elaborate rules she had to follow to prevent contaminating others. Many tribal groups assumed that a menstruating woman would scare off game animals during the hunt or diminish a warrior’s medicine during warfare.456 / Menses and Menstruation Menses and Menstruation Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Indigenous tribal peoples have viewed menstruation as an important phenomenon. some groups viewed these as tests that predicted a woman’s future behavior. especially in Northern California and Apache territory. At the end of the seclusion. for example. but some customs dictated that the menstruant remain alone. Menstruation occasioned widely varied responses and rituals by indigenous tribal peoples. avoid contact with men. Often an older woman supervised her. In some practices she could not touch her hair or skin for fear of selfcontamination. cloistered her from her first menstruation onward in part of the dwelling until her marriage. After Cheyenne chief Roman Nose was fatally wounded during the Battle of Beecher’s Island in 1868. usually the woman underwent a ritual bathing and received new clothes. to safeguard a young woman’s virginity. meriting ritual treatment. either he . Believing that a menstruating woman possessed supernatural powers that might harm her or her tribe. Older women in Mesoamerican groups tried to keep a girl’s first menstruation secret from the men in the tribe. but tribes in the intermountain basin. Other tribes.

Altherr See also: Children. The earliest examples of metals being used in North America date to around 4000 b. Women. pieces of native copper were gathered and hammered into lance points and decorative or ritual objects. Although most European American groups did not force menstruating women into seclusion or insist they refrain from cooking. Seneca). In the Great Lakes region. Onondaga. Puberty and Initiation Rites. more recently. Many men thought a menstruating woman unclean morally and physically and sometimes shunned her.Metalwork / 457 or others in the tribe blamed his wound on his having eaten food that a menstruating woman had prepared or touched. silver. Rites of Passage. Archaeologists have discovered necklace beads composed of thin copper strips and fish-shaped pieces fashioned from the same metal during this era. have been used extensively for Indian ornamentation.e. have also been found that date to the Common Era. Iroquois. Zuñi) Significance: Copper and. Northeast tribes (especially Cayuga. Metalwork Tribes affected: Hopewell prehistoric tradition. She was often treated circumspectly.c. for fear she possessed special magic or linkage with the Devil. European American settlers and missionaries did not find these indigenous menstruation customs strange. menstruation was the subject of certain cultural taboos. since the native metal was simply beaten and treated as a malleable stone. Thomas L. These so-called Old Copper culture people did not practice true metallurgy. Copper ornaments and weapons produced by cold hammering. Southwest tribes (especially Navajo. and some engraved sheets of silver of the Hopewell people. The use of copper for personal ornamentation is one of the most striking differences .

bow guards. Northeast tribes. and buttons are only a few of the objects that. rings. Most North American tribes lacked any effective metalworking skills until after contact with other cultures. whereas the sixteenth century Spanish explorers of the New World found welldeveloped metalwork skills in Mexico and Central America. Later. the Zuñi (Pueblo) learned the craft from the Navajo. earrings. necklaces. shaped. and cut European silver coins for jewelry. The more intricate techniques of silverworking were introduced to the Southwest Navajo by Mexican silversmiths during the early second half of the nineteenth century.458 / Metalwork between North American tribes and the pre-Columbian cultures of South and Central America. such as the Seneca. hammered. The Navajo style was distinguished by die-stamp designs that showed off the metal itself. Bracelets. through the years. (Library of Congress) . and die work was rarer. concha belts. Zuñi work was more intricate in detail. where gold was extensively used. By the seventeenth century. and Onondaga. have been cre- A depiction of an Indian blacksmith shop. Cayuga. Indian silversmiths produce work of extraordinary variety and beauty that reflects the unique creativity of Indian art.

also called the Grand Medicine Society. they paid a fee and were assigned a teacher. Ponca. Ojibwa (Chippewa). Thomas Source for Further Study Dubin. These scrolls are one of the few examples of Indian writing north of Mexico. was both a secret society and a series of initiation and healing ceremonies. Nicholas C. . herbal medicines. rules for moral living were given. The songs. See also: Gold and Goldworking. Silverworking. North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment: From Prehistory to the Present. 1999. rites. Winnebago Significance: Midewiwin refers to a secret society and set of rituals that transferred knowledge of healing rites. Iowa. The Midewiwin. To join a society.Midewiwin / 459 ated from hand-wrought silver. and stories of tribal origins are recorded in picture writing on birchbark scrolls. Ornaments. Turquoise. Miami. New York: Henry N. A central symbol is the white shell. Simultaneously with the shell. has also featured prominently in Indian silverwork. Midewiwin Tribes affected: Fox. a man or woman had to be recommended by a member. Although commercial imitations of Navajo and Zuñi work have been massproduced for the tourist market. Menominee. this knowledge and power were given by the Great Spirit through an intermediary during a time of trouble and death. Abrams. In tribal myths. representative of one which appeared to the Ojibwa from the eastern sea and led them west. If accepted. they are unable to reproduce the beauty of authentic hand-made pieces. and moral codes to succeeding generations. which was frequently used in ornamentation long before the introduction of silversmithing. Turquoise. Lois Sherr.

Although the ceremony is still important today. The Midewiwin powers of healing and code for living were believed to guarantee a long life. usually celebrated in the spring and lasting several days. after which they feigned death. Charles Louis Kammer III See also: Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact. propitiatory. Similar practices are found in the shell society of the Omaha and the Navajo chantway rituals. however. The Midwinter Ceremony. initiates were ritually shot with pieces of white shell from a Mide bag. In the central ceremonies.460 / Midwinter Ceremony There were eight degrees of instruction. eight days of thanksgiving. At each level. the pivotal event of the annual Iroquois ceremonial cycle. The power of the Midewiwin was considered so great that members resisted Christian conversion. reviving the initiates to new life. Medicine Bundles. both moral and spiritual. and curing ceremonies traditionally began five days after the first new moon after the Pleiades were directly overhead at sunset. a Mide bag (medicine bundle) made of bird or animal skin containing the elements associated with that degree was presented. this article will dis- . Religious Specialists. Secret Societies. legal and cultural pressures led to a decline of the practice. and is. each of which required separate initiation rites. sometimes called the New Year Ceremony. With the renewal of Indian culture that began in the 1960’s. movements such as the Three Fires Society have revived the practice of the Midewiwin. Eventually. Midwinter Ceremony Tribes affected: Iroquois Confederacy (Six Nations) Significance: The Midwinter Ceremony was. At the higher levels. persons were taught the use of herbal medicines and poisons. The fragments were then removed by Mide leaders. is the biggest annual ceremony in Iroquois culture.

The Thanksgiving Address. was then offered.Midwinter Ceremony / 461 cuss it in the past tense to emphasize that the discussion concerns the ceremony as it existed before it was somewhat modified by contact with European culture. which were brought to the longhouse where the ceremony was held. acted as clowns. This ritual reflected the game of dice played between Creator and Dead Earth for the right for life to exist on earth. and mnemonics for its recitation are found on wampum . The Iroquois put much faith in the sacred quality of dreams. and prophesied an abundant corn harvest in the coming year. The Midwinter Ceremony was ordained first by the Peacemaker. interspersed with pauses for praying and rejoicing that life continues. and a dream-guessing festival to initiate new members into the established medicine societies and to purge living souls of bad thoughts and spiritual tortures. One popular event of the Midwinter Ceremony was the gambling game. The game did not end until one moiety controlled all 108 dice. Next the children born since the Green Corn Ceremony of midsummer were given clan names. The last ceremony of the Midwinter Ceremony was the sacrifice of the white dog. The ashes of each hearth were swept to find glowing coals. a cosmological statement of profound holistic knowledge. The spirit of the dog served as messenger to the Master of Life. the rite of personal chant. Here a new fire was kindled. Then the Great Feather Dance was conducted. One moiety of four clans played against the other moiety for personal power and certain political and ceremonial rights in the coming year. The Midwinter Ceremony began at dawn of the first day with shamans entering the village compounds beating on drums. Fifty-three songs accompanied the Thanksgiving Prayer. conveying the good wishes and thankfulness of the people. Another key ceremony was the arrival of the Husk Face Society. Hearth fires for the new year were kindled from this fire. with its many songs. Other events included washing with fire. men who imitated women. The villagers assembled were congratulated for having survived to participate in another Midwinter Ceremony.

_______. N. and highly developed. Morgan. were made up of men from different bands within a tribe. Rochester.: Sage and Brothers. in the Plains. 1979. They were most common. Games and Contests. Husk Face Society. Carol. See also: False Face Ceremony. Jesse D. . 1968. ed. N.. Wilderness Messiah: The Story of Hiawatha and the Iroquois. 2000. Robert F. Tooker. The Iroquois Ceremonial of Midwinter. or sodalities.Y. Henry. Lewis H. Jennings. Military societies. Schiffman Sources for Further Study Cornelius.Y. “The Thanksgiving Address: An Expression of the Haudenosaunee Worldview. These voluntary societies were often agegraded.. League of the Ho-de-no-sau-nee. no. or Iroquois.462 / Military Societies belts. New York: Harper & Row. Josephy. Glenn J.” Akwe:kon Journal 9. Elisabeth. The Indian Heritage of America. New York: Bonanaza Books. Jr. Thomas R. and that version is the one in use today. 1992). with a person usually gaining greater status with age. Knopf. 1977. 1851. 1955.: Syracuse University Press. 2d ed. The prophet Handsome Lake adjusted the Thanksgiving Prayer to fit the needs of the 1800’s. et al. Spencer. New York: Paulist Press. Native North American Spirituality of the Eastern Woodlands. Syracuse. The Native Americans. Alvin M. 3 (Fall. New York: Alfred A. Military Societies Tribes affected: Primarily Plains tribes Significance: The main function of military societies was to enculturate young men into the ways and ethos of warfare.

The societies’ leaders were the main war chiefs of the tribe. Some tribes. built schools and churches. to exercise social control during communal bison hunting. and to accord status to a society’s members. such as the Blackfeet. Missions and Missionaries Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Missionaries and their missions provided American Indians with their first concentrated contact with white culture. Warfare and Conflict. They also. had its own sacred and profane paraphernalia. had as many as seven military societies. Many societies were totemic by name and origin. physical endurance. though fundamentally alike in their internal organization. until the 1950’s. which was sometimes reflected in dances and in art form upon shields. war and dance songs. The main functions of these societies were to enculturate young men into the ways and ethos of warfare. bravery. Societies: Non-kin-based.” There was often competition between the societies in games. Missionaries helped implement the policies of assimilation. rattles. horses. when Spanish and French explorers brought Roman Catholic priests to North America. Each fraternity. however. and honor. and dress.Missions and Missionaries / 463 Sometimes one could shift membership and allegiance to another society. and even a member’s body. to embody the concepts of self-control. spread disease . Missionaries taught English. pipes. and “ambassadors. to police tribal ceremonies. policy toward Indians. messengers.S. power bundles. From the 1500’s. John Alan Ross See also: Secret Societies. agrarianism. emblems. who would have an entourage of subchiefs. and cultural extermination. and military deeds. and created pantribal connections. missionaries influenced both American Indians and U.

Sixteenth Century Through Eighteenth Century. but they were not state-sponsored as they were in the Spanish Empire. The French allowed Catholic missionaries into their territory. In the seventeenth century. They provided protection. such as the Pueblo Indians. when tribes rose up and chased the missionaries and the Spanish settlers out of New Mexico. John Eliot of Massachusetts established praying villages where Indians lived “as white men”: They wore English clothes. Most missionaries were well-meaning. The Spanish viewed Christianization as their holy duty to God and used it to rationalize conquest. Texas. The Spanish reestablished the missions within fifteen years. and California. learned farming techniques. Jesuits attempted to Christianize the Hurons.464 / Missions and Missionaries and forced assimilation and Christianization on Indians. Arizona. but since the 1950’s. The Jesuits retreated and simply kept missions at trading posts until the 1790’s. and shelter to the weaker tribes. Missionary work supported by various denominations continues today. such as the Apaches and the Navajos. but instead they brought smallpox. missionaries have been more sensitive than their predecessors to Indian culture. which decimated the tribe. Missionaries first entered North America through the Spanish Empire in Mexico and through French trading posts in Quebec. Some were so convinced of the correctness and superiority of their own culture and belief system that they tried to suppress and destroy those of the Indians. food. and the Iroquois attacked and killed off most of the Hurons. and became Christians. The English Protestants also saw Christianization of the Indians as part of their role in North America. This upset the tribal balance of power. State-sponsored Catholic missionaries developed missions in New Mexico. while being constantly threatened by the stronger tribes. This system suffered a setback in the 1680 Pueblo Revolt (also known as Pope’s Revolt). but their efforts were often misguided. the remaining members . As disease decimated many of the Northern Woodlands tribes. Missionaries and their missions remain controversial in most American Indian communities today.

Additionally. the Indians showed little interest in converting to Christianity.Missions and Missionaries / 465 joined the praying villages for survival. an Eliot student. All these early missionaries—Spanish. The high attendance rate made the school appear to be a success. and Catholic societies sponsored hundreds of missionaries. David Brainerd. government that tied them to conversion quotas. In return. and the necessity of extinguishing Indian culture. Nineteenth Century. the government demanded that the missionaries increase their efforts to Christianize and “civilize” the Indians. most died from diseases spread by the whites within the praying villages. Individual missionaries became responsible for their own financial support. the missionary societies grew impatient with the lack of progress. began a mission among the Cherokee in Tennessee. The Cherokee used the mission to learn English and to learn about white culture. This method was a general failure. Many entered into agreements with the U. By the 1870’s. French. Mission work exploded with the development of large missionary societies between 1830 and 1850. missionary societies lost patience with the lack of success and cut off funding for missionaries. The government wanted a certain number of “pacified” Indians in exchange for its invested dollars. which inspired other Protestant groups to send missionaries among the Indians. to work with Indians. Money was supplied to help assimilate all Indian groups to sedentary farming and Christianity. The villages appeared to be successful at attracting converts. They accepted money from the American government to help support their missions. and English—believed in the power of Christianity. Methodist. Baptist. Despite these efforts. Presbyterian. the importance of sedentary farming. both male and female. Missionaries built schools and churches to attract Indians to Christianity and white civilization. perhaps most conspicuously with Plains and Northwest Coast groups. . Though many of the Indian residents did convert.S. In the 1850’s. They expected Indians to convert in large numbers and to support their own missions financially (as the natives of India and Africa had done).

agrarianism. the Salish. Despite their funding problems. These writings influenced public views of the condition of the American Indian. the Cheyenne. and other native groups. Missionaries removed Indian children from their parents and sent them away to be acculturated into white society. or practice any aspect of their own culture. wear their own clothes. the Navajo. At this time. The height of this policy occurred during the 1870’s when the government’s “peace policy” allowed missionaries to administer the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). (National Archives) missionaries wrote pamphlets and books about the “wretched condition” of specific Indian groups.466 / Missions and Missionaries Young girls praying at the Phoenix Indian School in the early twentieth century. residential schools became popular. Missionaries forbade the children to speak their own language. . missionaries continued their program of assimilation. Many of these missionary works formed the basis for anthropological studies of the Sioux. and cultural extermination.

Louis: Concordia. Finally. which saw their attempts at fostering assimilation as failures. This development helped many tribal groups in their legal battles against white governments. the residential school system provided a common experience for native leaders and gave them the opportunity to meet people from different tribal groups. Church. Robert Pierce. Grant. and the American Indians. Robert. 1984. 1820-1900. C. Few Indians had converted to Christianity. L. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. 1630-1900. L. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky. Higham Sources for Further Study Beaver.Missions and Missionaries / 467 At this point. John Webster. education and acculturation provided Indian groups with a common language—English. wrote reports. Moon of Wintertime: Missionaries and the Indians of Canada in Encounter Since 1543. Jr. missionary and government policy coalesced into one united front against Indian culture. education created bicultural natives who understood their own culture and white culture. missionaries remained part of Indian policy through the 1950’s. Carol. Berkhofer. Though missionaries generally attempted to destroy Indian cultures and societies in their efforts to help Indians. First. they made some positive contributions. However. Higham. They ran schools. 1966. Second. . Devens. State. C. most had developed a resentment of missionaries and saw them as agents of cultural genocide. 1992. and continued to act as agents and intermediaries for the government. Positive Contributions. Albuquerque: University of Mexico Press. By the end of the nineteenth century. St. Salvation and the Savage. Noble. 2000. 1965. missionaries had fallen out of favor with the government. Wretched and Redeemable: Protestant Missionaries to the Indians in Canada and the United States. Berkeley: University of California Press. Countering Colonization: Native American Women and Great Lakes Missions.

Disease and Intergroup Contact. This period is the last prehistoric period in the Eastern Woodlands culture pattern. The Mississippian Culture Complex included six major areas: Oneota. with centers in Cahokia (Illinois) and in Moundville.e. with a ceremonial center at Spiro. 1983. and the South Appalachian Mississippian culture centered around Etowah in present-day Georgia. See also: Boarding Schools. The immediate source of this cultural pattern is not clear. Not just a time of change in the style of artifacts. Chief among the developments of the period was a turning away from the traditional cultivation of native plant crops. “Mississippian” describes hundreds of Native American societies that populated the river valleys and the drainage system of the Mississippi River from about 750 to about 1500 c. Education: Post-contact. between 800 and 1100. American Protestantism and United States Indian Policy. Plaquemine Mississippian. around the Great Lakes. Religion. the Mississippian period saw a new way of life with new kinds of technology and a new relationship to the surroundings. Fort Ancient in present-day Ohio. now in Oklahoma. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. there were dramatic developments taking place in the area. however. a period of some forty generations. A sin- . the Caddoan Mississippian. with a center in Nunih Waya in presentday Mississippi. It has been said that the period was the closest to being a time of cultural revolution that the prehistoric Central Valley had experienced up to that time. now Alabama. Mississippian Culture Significance: A maize-based economy that dominated the Eastern Woodlands and built its largest city. Praying Indians. Robert.. Cahokia. the Middle Mississippian area. Children.468 / Mississippian Culture Kelley.

Later. Cahokia was located north of the Central Valley. within what is called the American Bottom region just opposite what would become St. One change led to others. Its dispersed community covered an area of almost five square miles. Louis. when the city of Cahokia in present-day Illinois emerged as a center of urban expansion. and the population has been estimated at approximately thirty thousand. crops available in quantities sufficient to provide the main food supply. These crops were supplemented by game and fish.Mississippian Culture / 469 gle species of corn. As these proliferating societies were connected by the common denominator of maize. This development led to radical changes in the social and political fabric of the people. the nonindigenous maize. came to dominate both the fields and the lives of the Mississippian peoples. the arrangement of housing gave greater distance between nobles and commoners. an eight-rowed maize that matured more quickly and was more frost-resistant than earlier tento twelve-row varieties. thousands of families poured into the area. maize would be just as important in the lives of the Creek and Choctaw to the south. . Maize would become the staple of the Oneota people on the Great Lakes. and the people responded to the challenge by reorganizing their settlements into hierarchical arrangements. Missouri. and the Mandan and Pawnee people in the Great Plains area. beans and squash. that along with maize formed what the Iroquois called the Three Sisters. The hub of much of this reorganization was under way by about 950. Agricultural surpluses were needed for redistribution of food. there developed a need for more centralized authority and more concentrated social controls. and those in the river valleys to the southeast and in the Midwest. thrived in some of the country’s richest farmland. the people along the middle Ohio River Valley. The Mississippians also cultivated two other crops. Within a century. The Northern Flint variety of maize. It is the largest archaeological site in the eastern United States. That is. the Iroquoian Confederacy to the northeast. making Cahokia the largest city north of Mexico.

the elite literally towered over everyone and everything in the Cahokia area.470 / Mississippian Culture The walled city of Cahokia was characterized by the presence of more than one hundred mounds of various sizes. and involved elaborate death rituals in homage to social leaders. The bestknown of the burial mounds at Cahokia is the one now labeled Mound 72. the more important ceremony and sacrament became to the people. . some were burial mounds. the huge community became fragmented into several townships. As long as chiefs were particularly effective. and the burial offerings in the mounds reveal much about the extensive communication that the Mississippians had with other people on the Atlantic coast. These ceremonies expressed obligations to ancestors. hunts. on which various kinds of structures were built. and eastern Oklahoma. shapes. celebrated successful harvests. now called Monk’s Mound. east Texas. The Cahokian aristocrats presided over complex ceremonies and rituals that were at the center of the Mississippian’s life. On some of the flat-topped mounds. conch shells indicated contacts with people living along the Atlantic Ocean. perhaps as much as 5 percent of the population. Not all the mounds were used as sites for palaces of royalty. Examination of the style and content of arrow points has indicated sources in Wisconsin. The greatest of the mounds. Tennessee. was originally taller because there was a conical mound atop it. When a chief died. had been constructed. palaces for the living ruler and housing for the new nobility. In other locations in Cahokia. The more social and political ranking increased. and warfare. The majority of the mounds were platform mounds. This mound provides extensive information about the major trade contacts of the Mississippians. In it was found copper from Lake Superior and mica from the southern Appalachians. Thus. it now is approximately 100 feet high and extends 1. perhaps arranged around plazas. and functions distributed in a pattern that indicates an organized community.037 feet north to south and 790 feet east to west. the people gladly accepted their rule and united as a regional community. The sense of community was closely related to long-term political cycles.

dancing men in elaborate costumes. the puskita. and Chickasaw. The objects are associated with the burial of high-status personages. falcon. many of the Mississippian beliefs lived on among southeastern tribes of later generations. Disease in epidemic proportions overtook people in the surviving towns. It included a network of artifacts and motifs. These symbols are found on pottery and on shell and copper ornaments. their ultimate collapse is associated with the appearance of Europeans in their territory. or the Southeastern Ceremonial Complex. and eagle.Mississippian Culture / 471 The religious system that evolved is called the Southern cult. arrows. Nevertheless. the Southern Death Cult. Creek. and by 1500. such as the Cherokee. Although Cahokia and other great Mississippian centers were already in decline prior to Hernando de Soto’s arrival in North America. raccoon. and the distribution of particular styles is outside regional boundaries. Rich in caffeine. Victoria Price . Another ceremony of the Southern Cult. the complex political and social mores that defined the Mississippians were greatly diminished. human hands with eyes or crosses on the palms. was taken with great ceremony and in the belief that the drink conferred spiritual purification upon all participants. Some of the important motifs included crosses. or Green Corn ceremony. the drink was believed to clear the minds for debate and to cleanse and strengthen the bodies of warriors for battle. Also important were animal symbols such as the feathered serpent. also survived. The drink. mostly at major centers such as Cahokia. the Black Drink. Constructed public works such as the mounds and palisades were no longer built. shows the influence of the fertility rituals associated with the maize crop. woodpecker. winged or weeping eyes. made from roasted leaves of the sassina shrub. Choctaw. and symbols of the sun. Burial rituals for ancestors and support for royalty ended. Ceramics modeled on animal and human forms could be found throughout much of the East during Mississippian times. human skulls. long bones. For example.

North American Indians: A Comprehensive Account. New York: Academic Press. and deflation of the myth that the Mound Builders were a lost race. 2d ed. Smith.J. Timothy R.: Prentice-Hall. A collection of essays that explore religion. Conn. ed.. subsistence. charts. 1992. Kehoe. . Morse. Greenwich. 1997. Englewood Cliffs. The Native Americans: An Illustrated History. A comprehensive study of various mound-building prehistoric societies. New York: Academic Press. and recommended lists. See also: Black Drink. Atlanta: Turner. Silverberg. Systematically traces the Americas’ earliest humans and discusses the people of each of seven geographical areas. Emerson. Culture Areas. triumph. Dan F. Betty. and Phyllis A. 1993. Corn. and mound construction in Cahokia. trade. Cahokia: Domination and Ideology in the Mississippian World. Morse. Ohio Mound Builders. Places the complex origins of the Cahokia site in the context of the entire Mississippian complex. Robert. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. eds. Pauketat. Chapter 6 of this comprehensive treatment of Native American history discusses the emergence and demise of the Mississippian Culture Complex. 1978. including those of Cahokia and the American Bottom. social organization. Archaeology of the Central Mississippi Valley. Green Corn Dance. in which the Indian confederacies of the southland were rooted. and Thomas E. Alice B. 1983. 1968. Mississippian Settlement Patterns.. N. Mounds and Moundbuilders. Discusses a number of Mississippian settlement patterns. and Ian Ballantine.: New York Graphic Society. Maps. Bruce D. Mound Builders of Ancient America: The Archaeology of a Myth. Discusses the emergence.. Focuses on environmental adaptation and ceramics and other important artifacts. eds.472 / Mississippian Culture Sources for Further Study Ballantine.

styles. while others are tied with straps. although in the Arctic sealskin is preferred. and decoration are tribe-specific. elk. Michael W. cut to medium height to make an ankle-high shoe. Moccasins are often decorated with beautiful designs using porcupine quills or beads of various kinds. footwear is most often made of cedar and other vegetable fibers. Although this type of footwear is widely used. buffalo. . Moccasins can be cut low. Hides and Hidework. or made in the form of a boot that can be tied as high as the thigh. Some are slipped on. Moccasins are soft leather shoes or slippers made of animal hide and worn throughout the Americas in areas where animal skins are used in the making of clothing and footwear. in the form of a slipper. particulars regarding materials. moose. were the type of American Indian footwear most widely worn in North America.Moccasins / 473 Moccasins Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Animal-skin moccasins. Simpson See also: Dress and Adornment. and other large game are most often used. construction. On the Northwest Coast. There are many styles of moccasin. comfortable and practical. some use laces. which is derived from the Algonquian word maxkeseni. The word “moccasin” is an Anglicization of the Natick term mohkussin. The hides of deer.

brown and red pottery. unlike their highly sedentary neighbors—for example. but.474 / Mogollon Culture Mogollon Culture Significance: Along with the Anasazi and Hohokam cultures. The florescence of “classic” Mogollon culture (roughly 900 to 1200 c. By 1250. Through time. The pre-Columbian Mogollon cultural tradition of the Southwest (distributed throughout central New Mexico and extending into eastern central Arizona and northern Mexico) is a subcultural variant of the “Pueblo Complex. advanced textile weave patterns.c. intensive agricultural systems. Diagnostic Mogollon culture traits first appear during a transitional phase from the older and more generalized Cochise period (7000 b.e. Mogollon culture as a cohesive tradition began to fall apart.e. to 1000 c. and beans. polychrome pottery.e. pueblostyle dwellings. and distinctive burials. The Mogollon cultural complex and its Southwestern counterparts are among the most notable cultural developments in North American prehistory.e. and indications of a complex social and political order. . tightly stitched basket weaves.). however. there was also a tendency toward increased sedentary settlement. primarily maize. large and extensive settlements. cotton textiles. Distinctively Mogollon culture came to dominate the core area of what is now central New Mexico by 750 c. This transition is characterized by a gradual shift away from an exclusively hunter-gatherer and foraging way of life to one dominated by domestication of plants. squash.) is identified by the presence of multiple-room. the Mogollon peoples created pueblo dwellings and a complex social order. Classic Mogollon culture reached its pinnacle at approximately 1200. extending into the Sonoran Desert of northern Mexico). the Anasazi and Hohokam—the Mogollon maintained numerous seasonal village sites and periodically shifted residence according to the availability of water and wild food resources. Other traits include the presence of circular and semicircular house pits.” which includes two other great traditions: Anasazi (of the Colorado Plateau) and Hohokam (central and southern Arizona.

while others were sparse or contained only skeletal mate- Area of the Mogollon Culture CALIFORNIA ANASAZI Kayenta Canyon de Chelly Mesa Verde Chaco Canyon PATAYAN Snaketown Casa Grande Point of Pines Mimbres HOHOKAM MOGOLLON . Materials that originated in regions as far away as the Mississippi Valley and Mesoamerica (particularly southern and central Mexico) have been found at Mogollon sites. For example. pipe stone sourced to the Mississippi and Wisconsin areas has been found at numerous Mogollon sites. some burial sites contained numerous and sumptuous grave goods. For example. while copper bells. and a wide variety of effigy designs are most likely of Mexican origin. Anthropologists and archaeologists who have worked on interpreting Mogollon artifacts have speculated that Mogollon society showed some signs of class or status differences.Mogollon Culture / 475 Excavations carried out in the Mogollon area suggest that longdistance trade was an important component of the Mogollon economy. shell beads.

there are some continuities between historical Southwestern Native American populations and religious traits that occur in earlier Mogollon contexts. Kivas are cylindrical. subterranean structures used primarily for purposes of carrying out religious ceremonies. Numerous artifacts suggesting religious themes have been found. To maintain such economic systems. to acknowledge that Mogollon society must have been relatively complex.476 / Mogollon Culture rial with no grave goods present at all. however. Despite such archaeological evidence. To understand what the Mogollon political system must have been like. Although few specific aspects of Mogollon religion can be described. and their ability to persuade or influence decision making through speeches. an exact reconstruction of Mogollon society can never be made. Their real power typically rests on their ability to redistribute goods effectively. but without specific ethnographic or historical data to indicate their actual cultural functions. interpretations have been highly speculative. Perhaps the most conspicuous is the kiva. trade. Equally problematic have been attempts to reconstruct a tenable picture of Mogollon religion. A chiefdom. It is possible that Mogollon leaders operated in much the same way as their modern counterparts. and construction projects could be effectively organized and conducted. These scholars have also speculated that these class differences indicate a general cultural evolutionary pattern favoring increases in intensive economic productivity. Chiefs found in contemporary horticultural societies enjoy higher status than other members of society but have little explicitly recognized political power. The concept of a chiefdom has been used to describe sociopolitical structuring at this level. anthropologists have looked at modern horticultural populations to provide a working analogy. it is sufficient. bordering on large-scale. as defined by anthropologists. refers to a sociopolitical system that depends on the redistribution of goods through a local chief or set of subchiefs. more centralized political authority must have become increasingly important so that various subsistence. often during festivals or ceremonies. Kivas are present at all significant late-period Mogollon sites and are still in use throughout much of .

who were latecomers in the Southwest. these researchers posit. the Mogollon area. and much of the artistic splendor of the classic period disappeared. Calling for rain by appealing to kachinas or nature spirits is also highly religious.Mogollon Culture / 477 the Native American Southwest. although contemporary researchers cannot describe in detail how these rituals were conducted. among contemporary Zuñi and Acoma peoples. religion is integrated closely with other aspects of life. possibly as early as 1100 c. Some artifactual material suggests that Mogollon cultural institutions were highly inflexible and fragile. Still others have indicated that warfare may have delivered the final blow. Some archaeologists have suggested that Mogollon decline resulted from severe changes in climate. offers evidence of cultural conflicts that. Many of the large pueblo sites were abandoned. From about 1200. These researchers have pointed out that tree ring and pollen data show that after 1200. along with the neighboring Hohokam and Anasazi areas. paleoclimatological. the Southwest became much more arid than it had been previously. For example. Archaeologists analyzing various types of artifactual remains (material culture. Kachina symbols appear as art motifs in the Mogollon area. It is likely that the Mogollon ritual cycle followed the same basic annual pattern. The presence of Athapaskan-speaking groups (Navajo and Apachean). and human osteological data) have generated four basic theories to explain the decline. Moreover. and may have become too disconnected from practical economic concerns. experienced a period of rapid decline. . Researchers speculate that the Mogollon subsistence economy could not withstand this shift in climate and eventually collapsed. and continuing into the fourteenth century. might have permanently disrupted the Mogollon way of life. the ritual cycles of the contemporary Acoma and Zuñi are closely tied to the annual growing cycle.e. various general characteristics of contemporary Southwest practices suggest some general features of Mogollon religion. Other scholars have suggested that Mogollon society fell apart as a result of internal cultural disintegration. planting corn is considered a religious activity. In addition.

These were not simple societies. An overview of ceramic types for most Southwestern cultural traditions. Some of this latter group of scholars have downplayed the idea of decline and inferred that the Mogollon tradition did not disappear. and George J. 1989. Winifred. Sally R. and Harold S. A comprehensive overview of scientific approaches to archaeology. 1933. buy artwork. but complex.C. Glove. however. but became fragmented and subsequently evolved into the various contemporary Native American traditions now found in central New Mexico and eastern Arizona. Cordell. Gumerman. Gladwin. Gladwin. believing that the combined forces outlined in all of these theories caused the decline. Euro-Americans also have felt this influence when they visit ancient Mogollon sites. jewelry. and Lewis R. take a synthetic or systemic view of Mogollon decline. 1968. it is accurate to say that the Mogollon have had a significant impact on modern views of pre-contact Native American societies of the Southwest and in North America in general. or observe native ceremonies as they continue to be practiced. and textiles that resemble Mogollon forms. Includes many references to Southwest prehistory. . Contains a variety of high-quality articles on Southwestern prehistory. Many Native American groups in central and southern New Mexico still make pottery. Chicago: Aldine. Binford. or the impact it has had on contemporary EuroAmericans. eds. Linda S. New Perspectives in Archaeology. eds.: Gila Pueblo. Although it is difficult to measure precisely the impact Mogollon culture has had on contemporary Southwest native traditions.. Ariz. long-held traditions that rival any found in other parts of the world. its influence is felt. Series III. Dynamics of Southwest Prehistory. Michael Findlay Sources for Further Study Binford. Whatever may have stimulated their decline.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Washington. Some Southwestern Pottery Types. D..478 / Mogollon Culture Most scholars.

Includes a notable section on Southwestern archaeology. Jefferson. Culture Areas. 1979.Money / 479 Martin. Money Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: A variety of monetary systems were developed by American Indians for economic and ceremonial purposes.C. Hohokam. Washington. Ancient Peoples of the American Southwest. The daily life of this ancient community has been deduced from the artifacts found in the more than 100 rooms that have been excavated at this site. Reid. Money has certain defining criteria: value (worth and desirability). Grasshopper Pueblo: A Story of Archaeology and Ancient Life. stability . Pottery. and Stephanie Whittlesey. New York: Chelsea House. Stephen. in-depth overview of North American archaeology. 9 in Handbook of North American Indians. Grasshopper Pueblo is a prehistoric ruin that was the home to a Mogollon community. Vol. durability. D. Religion. Snow. New York: Thames and Hudson. An examination of the Anasazi. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. Money can be defined as a medium of exchange that is used by common consent to pay for goods and services. and Mogollon cultures. divisibility (it can be separated into parts).” In The Southwest. See also: Anasazi Civilization. Paul. 1999.: Smithsonian Institution Press. edited by Alfonso Ortiz. Plog. portability. A detailed. “Prehistory: Mogollon. 1997. A detailed article on the archaeology of the Mogollon culture area. the two shared many features. Architecture: Southwest. Arts and Crafts: Southwest. 1989. Hohokam Culture. Dean R. The Archaeology of North America. standardization (which may be established by authority or custom). although these systems differed from European coinage systems. Political Organization and Leadership.

was often intimately involved with myth and religion. money became more secularized. Indians clearly had money. golden orange magnesite cylinder beads were most valued and white clam or snail shell discs less so. cloth. traded by the Apaches and Mojaves. and cognizability (it is known or recognized). to the Omaha shells embodied the Great Spirit). Dentalium. and ornamental symbols of wealth and status. and dentalia. unlike European systems of coinage and currency. For the Chinook. bride buying. and rain. and health. Woodpecker scalps. need only involve mutual consent involving an exchange between two parties. although coinage was entirely unknown. These materials were ground and shaped to a uniform size and appearance and polished on deerskin to give them a beautiful shine. With the advent of trade with whites. Shells also symbolized fecundity. Kop kop consisted of . olivella. atonement for religious trespass. and blankets became valued exchange media. By these criteria. Stones were thought to resemble animals and had healing powers. symbolized blood or earth’s life substances. was the exclusive medium on the Northwest Coast. good luck. Barter. This money assumed many different forms and. the hiaqua consisted of no more than twenty-five shells to the fathom (six feet). and obsidian blades also had monetary value. Money came into being when certain items became desirable and symbolized wealth. “blood money” indemnification. At one time a necklace of 160 clam shell beads was worth about one dollar. its value and desirability increased significantly. abalone. birth. These monies were used for a variety of purposes. Shells symbolized water (the Haida believed the first people came from a shell. the shells of haliots. as it circulated eastward. such as purchase of staples and goods. a type of shell. For several centuries sacred and secular monies existed side by side and sometimes were combined into a single medium. Red ochre. soul. In contrast.480 / Money (its value is relatively constant). Feathers represented the wind. an average two-inchlong piece of finished magnesite was worth about eight hundred clam shells. In southern and central California. as tools. weapons. on the other hand.

which were acquired from whites in exchange for beaver fur. Preparations included the procure- . Tied to a wooden scaffold. the Morning Star (a young warrior) and the Evening Star (a young woman) were the parents of a daughter who was the mother of the first humans (the son of the Sun and Moon was the father). The Morning Star Ceremony was one of the most sacred Pawnee rituals. she was killed by an arrow through the heart. a hawk. Its central act was the raiding of another village. Wampum. Dentalium eventually gave way to blankets. The Tlingit used sea otter and caribou skins as money. Trade. a sacred Pawnee ritual. The Skidi Pawnee of the central Plains were the last group to practice this ritual. including an otter-fur collar. and her sacrifice at the rising of the Morning Star (Mars or Venus). The ceremony itself was orchestrated by the caretaker of the Morning Star bundle.Morning Star Ceremony / 481 smaller shells strung together with broken ones and shells of poorer quality and was used as small change. Shells and Shellwork. The stars entrusted humans with sacred bundles that became the focus of Pawnee ceremonies. he undertook the raid and brought back an adolescent girl to sacrifice. the capture of a young girl. Her blood was included in a burnt offering of buffalo meat. It began when a young warrior underwent purification rituals and prepared special materials. and a sacred pipe. Morning Star Ceremony Tribe affected: Pawnee Significance: The Morning Star Ceremony. After observing the rising of the Morning Star. was intended to ensure the abundance of corn and buffalo. He was equipped with objects from the bundle. an ear of corn. Laurence Miller See also: Blankets. For the Pawnee. The many songs sung during the ceremony indicate its purpose was to ensure the growth and abundance of corn and buffalo.

Chichimec. tile. Music and Song. In Mesoamerica. or other materials such as feathers and straw to form a decorative design or picture. Corn. pavements. The sacrifice commenced with sacred songs and dances extending over four days. red and white shells. mosaic and inlay were used by the Maya Indians for funeral masks—small pieces of turquoise. glass. Carib. and mother-of-pearl were glued to a wooden base and buried with the deceased. Navajo. Some exterior walls .482 / Mosaic and Inlay ment of buffalo meat. and architecture. Olmec. Mosaic and Inlay Tribes affected: Aztec. Tlingit. the victim was treated well and instructed to eat with a special horn spoon and bowl. The Mixtec Indians made ceremonial shields by covering a ceramic base with cut and polished turquoise stones. male members of the village (including children) shot arrows into her body as part of their contributions to the ritual. the Southwest. The Aztecs made feathered mosaic shields for their commanders and chiefs. The Zapotec Indians decorated their cultural center with stone mosaics in zigzag patterns. After her death. Mosaic is an art form using small pieces of stone. floors. and walkways were often covered with tiled mosaics. They also covered the interior and exterior of buildings with precisely patterned tiled mosaics. mosaic art was common among the Indians of Mesoamerica. John Hoopes See also: Buffalo. Zuñi Significance: Mosaic and inlay were used for decorative purposes by Indians prior to European contact and continue to be used by modern Indians. Pueblo. Mixtec. Maya. Ceilings. and the Northwest. jewelry. During this time. walls. jade. She was then dressed in ritual clothing and fixed to a scaffold made of several different kinds of wood. Zapotec. Used for such things as masks.

Animists believe that all things are alive and related. Van Noord See also: Feathers and Featherwork. After the Spanish conquest. and small silver boxes. using turquoise stones inlaid in polished silver forms. Plant and animal life as well as the elements and forces of nature are the source of hu- . Diane C. Shells and Shellwork. In many mythopoeic oral traditions throughout the Americas. Turquoise was the most commonly used stone in mosaic design and inlay in the Southwest and Mesoamerica because of its availability and also because of its mystical association with both the sky and water. Metalwork. such as squash blossom necklaces. The Navajo are known for making silver and turquoise jewelry. In North America. the Pueblo made crosses with inlays. Modern Zuñi jewelry uses mosaic patterns of stones and shells in turquoise and white. The Pueblo and Zuñi made jewelry and pendants with colored shell mosaics. bracelets. abalone shell was most commonly used for inlay. all things receive their life from the earth itself. This personification of the regenerative and provident attributes of nature has its roots in animism. the ancient Anasazi were known to have made turquoise mosaic pendants. Turquoise. red and black. the Tlingit Indians of the Northwest made headdress frontlets and hats carved out of cedar and inlaid with abalone shells. Everything that exists is further defined by its relationship to all other things.Mother Earth / 483 had patterns inlaid on them using cut stones that were cemented in the walls like bricks. In the Southwest. Mother Earth Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: The original people of the Americas viewed Mother Earth as the source of all life. In the Northwest region.

484 / Mounds and Mound Builders man life. Human beings are seen as the spiritual guardians and stewards of the natural world. These mounds were constructed by a number of different Native Ameri- . They are the children of Mother Earth and must treat her in ways that show respect and honor. Mounds and Mound Builders Tribes affected: Northeast and Southeast tribes (prehistoric and historic) Significance: Various groups of American Indians built earthen mounds at different time periods in different locations. Michael W. Religion. with concentrations in the Midwest along the Ohio and Mississippi River drainages. Sacred. Numerous ceremonial and ritual means can be used to address Mother Earth—such as the sweatlodge ceremony and prayer—in order to ensure her continued beneficence. It is thought that when people cease to use such means to express their respect and gratitude for her blessings all life will be destroyed and human life on this planet will come to an end. Traditional native peoples and their belief in Mother Earth are seen as the primary sources of knowledge that can reverse the destructive materialistic worldview and processes of Western civilization. Sacred Narratives. the. The spiritual traditions which have their roots in the natural world see all things as part of the sacred web of life. Those who honor Mother Earth live in accordance with traditions that sustain life. Spiritualism is seen as the highest form of political consciousness. Simpson See also: Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. Earthen mounds are located in the eastern United States from the Gulf of Mexico to the Great Lakes. the American Indian construction of these mounds was not fully accepted until 1894. which served different cultural functions.

The Hopewell developed vast. and other American Indian tribes. the Adena Indians.E. until about 400 or 500 C. Many scholars believe that the Mississippians were direct ancestors to the Cherokee.C. nearly continentwide. The last North American mound-building culture. Illinois.Mounds and Mound Builders / 485 Areas of Mound Building Aztalan Norton Mounds State Park Miamisburg Fort Ancient Cahokia Angel Kincaid Newark Grave Creek Adena Seip Serpent Mound Mound Bottom Spiro Chucalissa Hiwassee Island Etowah Winterville Belcher Hollywood Moundville Ocmulgee Kolomoki Adena culture Emerald Mound Mount Royal Hopewell culture Mississippian core area Mississippian culture The earliest of the Ohio River Mound Builders.E.E. are thought to have lived between 700 B.E. trading networks. and 200 C. where East St. at Cahokia. and flourished until after 1500.C. also centered in the valleys of the Ohio River and its tributaries. which is recognized from around 100 B. Some researchers posit that Hopewellians were ancestral to the Iroquois. It developed around 700 C. the Mississippian. was centered along the Mississippi River. . Sioux. The Adena gave rise to the Hopewell Indian culture. now stands.E. Louis.

they stimulated acrimonious debate concerning their origins. These arguments continued unabated until Cyrus Thomas’ Report on the Mound Explorations of the Bureau of Ethnology (1894).). and on racist beliefs concerning Native Americans. and they were used for a range of functions. they constructed flat-topped pyramidal mounds to serve as the foundations for important buildings such as temples or chiefly residences.-400 c. which may explain the proliferation of hypotheses proposing that various early European groups built the earthen monuments. In addition. the dispute originated during the early colonial period.e.486 / Mounds and Mound Builders can groups during several different time periods. which demonstrated that Native Americans had built the mounds.e. When these mounds were first noted by Europeans in the late eighteenth century. Missouri (with a florescence between 1050-1250 c. based on these data.).c. Native American land rights could be denied if it could be demonstrated that earlier. and those associated with the Hopewell culture (circa 200 b. Second. near St. Indians built conical mounds to inter their dead. There are several underlying factors that explain why it took scholars so many years to accept the aboriginal origins of the moundbuilders. while an 1812 work opted for the Welsh. it was suggested that the Ohio Mound Builders were Danes. or others had constructed them. in 1787. centered in the Ohio Valley. Louis. Alabama (a dominant center from 1250 to 1500 c. it seemed unlikely to them that the Indian ancestors of these groups would have possessed the technological skills to construct the mounds. In some cases. For example. Moundville.e. their ancestors.). namely whether Indians. more “civilized” people had once inhabited the area. while in other locations or time periods.e. in some instances. when settlers’ understanding of Native American culture was based on their interactions with socially disrupted Indian groups no longer continuing all of their pre-Columbian activities. First. Some of the better-known mound sites are Cahokia. European Americans also may have desired to construct a heroic past for members of their own cultures. Caleb Atwater’s article “Description of the Antiquities Discovered in the State of Ohio and Other .

there were a few dissenters from the prevailing views of the time. Music and Song Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Music has always played an important role in American Indian culture. and Fort Ancient People. See also: Astronomy. Effigy Mounds. and it provided funds to the Smithsonian Bureau of Ethnology. believing them to be of a different. With the publication of Thomas’ 1894 report. H. Va. favored Mayan or Aztec construction. as well as at social gatherings. directed by Major John Wesley Powell. more evolved “race” from the local Indians. and Jerry N. such as E. Hopewell. but these dissenting voices did not affect general public opinion.. Because this culture was considered “primitive” and was thus branded inferior. . they found a culture vastly different from their own. By the 1880’s. Ohio Mound Builders. Wurtzburg Source for Further Study Woodward. Powell appointed Cyrus Thomas to lead the Division of Mound Exploration. Others. singing. G. 2d ed. is essential in many ceremonies. the “Mound Builders controversy” was effectively quelled.: McDonald & Woodward. and a Native American origin for these constructions was accepted. 2002. Squier and E. Susan J. When Europeans first encountered the natives of North America. Granted. Davis. the United States Congress became involved in the controversy. Serpent Mounds.Music and Song / 487 Western States” (1820) went so far as to propose Hindu builders. Blacksburg. Susan L. McDonald. to investigate the mounds. in their Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley (1848). Cole. in particular. Indian Mounds of the Middle Ohio Valley: A Guide to Mounds and Earthworks of the Adena. including religious rituals.

religious music. musical styles changed over the centuries before the Europeans’ arrival. and it was assumed that Indian songs. often of a religious nature. in Indian cultures. as there has been in Europe and in the cultures the Europeans brought to North America. and dance were complex. Indian Concept of Music. There are songs to appease the spirits. songs for success in hunting and fishing. as none of the American tribes developed written languages or a system of describing specific tunes in a permanent manner. virtually everyone may participate in music and singing. and songs celebrating victory in war. There are also personal songs composed by individuals who have had visions. and “serious” music. moreover. they varied greatly among the assorted cultures of North America. As a general rule. For this . like other aspects of their culture. and singing in particular. As American Indians began the attempt to reclaim their cultural heritage. but modern researchers are at a loss to trace prehistoric developments of this sort.488 / Music and Song there was little attempt to understand the culture of the “savages” at first. The Indian Scale. In this sense. song. There is no group of professional composers or performers. Indian singing is accompanied only by percussion instruments or is unaccompanied. American Indian music was often described as atonal chanting. Undoubtedly. it was found that American Indian music. There has never been a difference between popular or folk songs. Possibly the most essential difference between the European and American Indian cultures when it comes to music is that. One of the major reasons that early settlers and explorers found American Indian music so difficult to comprehend was that the Indians had a completely different concept of music in general. all Indian music is folk music. This attitude persisted well into modern times. and scholars began taking this culture seriously. were less advanced than those of the Europeans. songs in preparation for war. The Indians use songs for specific purposes. Indian cultures have never codified music as European cultures have.

It is therefore impossible to play American Indian music on an instrument that is limited to the twelve-tone chromatic scale that has played an essential role in European music at least since the time of the ancient Greeks. Many songs in many tribes are named after animals and are intended to appease the spirit controlling the animal. This aspect can also be found in Christian cultures. A song may not even come close to the harmonic patterns to which white cultures are accustomed. for example. One very common type of religious song is essentially a prayer. To the American Indian. The Plains Indians have songs for buffalo. but these have a very limited range in pitch and are not used to accompany songs. for example. though this is far from universal. and other potential food sources. (Some tribes play flutelike instruments made of hollowed wood or reeds.Music and Song / 489 reason. seals. fish. and other game. are greatly dependent on the sea for their survival. they are specific to a particular spirit or aspect of nature. and the proper chant may drive out this spirit. An Indian with a serious disease is often considered to be possessed by an evil spirit. The Inuits (Eskimos). Yet this element is far more essential to American Indian songs. rather. Religious Songs. thus giving the hunter or fisherman a greater chance of subduing his prey. especially herbal treatments. and there is considerable popular music based on religious themes. all music has a strong supernatural element. A common scheme is a steady fall in pitch during the song. It is also impossible to use standard musical notation to record tunes accurately. Another type of religious singing is the chanting of spells to cure disease. Music is considered a gift of the gods and is vital to almost all religious ceremonies. deer. When other remedies. a song does not have to be “in tune” in the sense that a specific scale must be used at all times. In their boats. hymns are an important part of church services. The songs involved are not hymns as such. they sing specific songs for whales. .) The result of this situation is that many Indian songs sound discordant to people used to European musical traditions.

however. It is difficult to explain this. Personal songs are considered a form of wealth. There are also songs to control the forces of nature. An unusual aspect of some Indian songs is the use of nonsense syllables (vocables). There are also lullabies to put children to sleep and children’s songs for pure entertainment. love songs. but sometimes entire songs have no concrete meaning whatsoever. Everything on earth is controlled by spirits. During the rest of the week. Often these meaningless syllables are inserted into a song to fill out a necessary rhythm. From the “tra-la-las” of traditional European songs to the “doo- . There are songs to ensure crop fertility as well. they work in secular occupations that have no relation to their worship. there are songs to appease the water gods and lessen the rain. In American Indian cultures. of course. the songs still play a vital role. Not all songs are related to specific religious rituals. In arid areas. The Navajo have a strong tradition in this regard. some religious songs are used as a celebration of religious events rather than as an invocation. and may say prayers at other special times. There are. and Moslems worship once a week. For this reason. In essence. These are personal songs. American Indians have never separated the religious and secular sides of life to any great extent. sometimes related to courting rituals but often made up simply to express affection.490 / Music and Song are used. the case is vastly different. In areas subject to flooding. Most modern Christians. there is really no way of speaking of secular songs in a strict sense of the term. The herbs must be sung over to ensure their potency. except that it is not limited to American Indian cultures. they are not much different from the love songs that are sung in European cultures. owned by the singers. Jews. These songs are usually of an individual nature. and every facet of life has a religious aspect. Finally. composed and sung by a person who has had a vision. there are many songs to appease the rain spirits and cause muchneeded rain. Secular Songs. and spirits may not be mentioned in them at all.

This is another great difference between the European and American Indian cultures. Many centuries ago. There was probably religious dancing at some time in ancient Europe. American Indians have developed very little in the way of instrumental music. Modern Changes. however. dance still retains its religious aspect and is often accompanied by songs. hundreds of songs with their related dance steps must be sung in a specific sequence to fulfill a religious obligation. and most dancers did not sing at the same time. songs are accompanied by body movements. may have a somewhat deeper meaning. Like virtually all aspects of American Indian society. but in . With rare exceptions. as it seems to be a nearly universal aspect of cultures around the world. other cultures have often used this device. Its use in American Indian songs. There are dance/song cycles in many areas. however. especially among the Navajos and a number of Plains tribes. A comparison can be made to European culture’s development of instrumental music unaccompanied by singing. Among American Indians. Indian songs have been somewhat altered by contact with white culture. The singing of nonsense songs may be an indication that music for music’s sake is a universal enjoyment. In some cases.Music and Song / 491 wahs” of 1950’s rock and roll songs. The traditions are still very much in evidence. often highly ritualized body movements specific to a particular song. Both the dance steps and the songs can be extremely complex and are often performed in elaborate sequences. apart from percussion accompaniment to singing. dancing in Europe became strictly a social event. Song and Dance. a Beethoven sonata has no concrete meaning. A virtually universal aspect of American Indian song is its relationship to dance. The very fact that not all Indian songs have literal meaning suggests that the act of singing is enjoyed for its own sake and is not always a prayer or a prelude to war or hunting. One major reason for this is the close ties both singing and dancing have to religious rituals.

492 / Music and Song many cases they have lost their original significance. at least partly because the only written records of Indi- Image not available These drummers and singers provided the important song element at a powwow in Springfield. Many modern American Indians have adopted the Christian religion and no longer sing and dance to appease spirits. It is difficult to assess fully the influence of white culture on Indian music. Missouri. (Unicorn Stock Photos) . At important tribal ceremonies. there may be Christian hymns intermixed with ancient tribal songs.

The most common tone is one of sadness. Yet one particular modern development must be considered. One of the most disturbing aspects of American Indian music for someone used to the European tradition is that the singers may not follow the rhythm of the drums.Music and Song / 493 ans in the earliest days of contact were written by whites. religion.” . The particular musical instruments involved will be discussed below. however. is a common accompaniment of singing. this has meant that Indian song is not necessarily confined to a particular scale. Musical Accompaniment. Drumming. American folk music changed drastically in many ways. but it is essential here to stress that tonal instruments are rarely used while singing is going on. Rather. for a recapturing of a lost world. Indian songs are almost always accompanied by drums of various sorts. It does not provide an exact rhythm for the song. and historical events. There was a movement toward increasing social and political meaning in a genre that was once mostly concerned with romance. This development suggests a true resurgence of the ancient uses of song among the Indian cultures. of a return to the land. They rarely have the angry tone that so many songs protesting ill conditions have. who did not understand the cultures they were facing. to the accompaniment of electric guitars or even orchestras. As discussed above. Usually these songs were written in English so that they could reach as wide an audience as possible. Even if they are sung in English. In the 1960’s. it is completely acceptable to be “off the beat. They often speak of love of the earth. the lyrics often involve some use of a native language and are essentially born of the same thoughts and feelings that inspired the ancient songs. The “protest songs” written and sung by American Indians are in some ways fundamentally different from those written by white Americans. American Indians were among the many who used this vehicle to express their concerns. of ancient traditions and ceremonies. they tend toward a longing for a return to basics.

and. One common type of drum is a hand drum. The proper spirits must be invoked for many ceremonies. which can be carried about by an individual and played while dancing. with a sort of “Morse code” utilized to send messages over long distances. covered with leather. but woven baskets are used in some areas. they play it together. and the sound of such a drum can be heard for miles. Most often the body of the drum is made of hollowed wood. or a large wooden structure may be made. one of the ways to invoke the spirit is by drawing or painting the appropriate pictures on the drum. Drums are almost always used to accompany singing and dancing and have also been used as a form of communication.494 / Music and Song Drums. most often a deer. Water drums are made from hollowed logs that are partially filled with water. quickly discarded. Although in many cases the drumsticks are merely twigs. wooden or metal washtubs have sometimes been used. including poles or planks around which a number of players are seated. In modern times. and have particular ceremonial meanings. A decorated drumstick can be a sign of prestige in certain tribes. There are other percussion instruments used in Indian music. and hollowed gourds are used in the Southwest. and stretched hides with no drum body attached. the drumsticks may be decorated. Drums are frequently decorated in elaborate fashions. The water greatly increases resonance. Another type of drum is a large drum around which several people are seated. in other ceremonies. . The musical instrument most often associated with American Indians is the drum. This may be made by simply planting stakes in the ground and stretching a hide over them. Indians place a somewhat greater importance upon drumsticks than European cultures do. The head is generally the hide of an animal. The materials used in construction vary according to the materials available. since drums are so heavily involved. The paintings are often filled with religious symbolism. beads and leather thongs are often added.

S. While they may have variable pitch. In many areas. ceremonies. The Rhythm of the Red Man. New York: G. dances. Whistles are far simpler and are used more often as signals than for playing music. it has a few holes to vary pitch and is blown through the top end. The most common sort of flute is much like a recorder. 1979. Putnam’s Sons. Marc Goldstein Sources for Further Study Bancroft-Hunt. Flutes and whistles are used alone or in concert with percussion instruments. Julia M. Rattles are nearly universal instruments among North American Indian tribes. It may be made of clay. Densmore. A description of the Northwest American Indian culture. This sort of rattle is very important in many tribal ceremonies and is an essential component of many medical treatments. Some Indian tribes have used flutes and whistles to produce music. the body of a rattle is a hollowed gourd. Norman. The American Indians and Their Music. New York: A. music. Rattles are also made by suspending small objects so that they clash together. especially music and dance. Butree. A descripton of Indian rituals. or seeds. They are used by men courting women. again depending upon available materials. rattles are often painted and decorated. The most common type of rattle is a hollow object filled with pebbles. and contemporary conditions. Frances. Rattles. P. by shamans invoking spirits. 1930. wood. or reeds.Music and Song / 495 Wind Instruments. bits of clay. A comprehensive guide to Ameri- . including step-by-step instructions for a number of songs. they are made individually from natural materials and are far from standard in their scales. or by war parties passing signals. rawhide is shaped into an appropriate receptacle. In some places. including a study of their history. Like drums. Wind instruments are not generally used as an accompaniment to song. and rituals followed by a variety of tribal groups. 1936. Barnes. People of the Totem. New York: Woman’s Press.

Folk Music in the United States. Luke E. The translations were deemed “colorful” by Europeans.. New York: Harper & Row. song. Jennings. Drums. North American Indians generally used a single name for an individual. rather than attaching a surname as was the European fashion. 1977. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. The Native Americans. understood. An examination of how song is created. 3d rev. Robert F. and dance. Jesse D. such as the case in which a name meaning “Young Man Whose Very Horses Are Feared” was mistranslated as “Young Man Afraid of . and dances. both as discussed by the first European settlers and as it exists in contemporary times. Includes an overview of Indian culture and specific discussions of songs. Pow-wows and Celebrations. and its purpose to individuals. from prehistoric times to the 1970’s. Flutes. Religion. Bruno. musical instruments. A general overview of American folk music. At the time of first contact with Europeans. Lassiter.496 / Names and Naming can Indian music. The Power of Kiowa Song: A Collaborative Ethnography. Hand Tremblers. Spencer. et al. See also: Dances and Dancing. Detroit: Wayne State University Press. ed. from prehistory to modern times. including a long and comprehensive chapter on American Indian music. Feasts. 1976. although mistranslations were common. An encyclopedic discussion of American Indian culture. Nettl. Indian names were often descriptive of some action or trait or of some occurrence in the life of the bearer. 1998. Medicine and Modes of Curing: Pre-contact. Names and Naming Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: Indian names were often descriptive of a person’s unique trait or of a significant action or event in his or her life.

Common occasions for the bestowal of new names included the onset of menses for girls. either matrilineal or patrilineal.) Some tribes gave children derogatory or unflattering nicknames. which were extended after the baby’s birth. When the baby was given the name of a dead ancestor. resulting in the child’s death. (Inuit parents refrained from slapping or verbally abusing their children.Names and Naming / 497 His Horses. Some names were . also served as an occasion for a new name. When names were inherited from living relatives. Older men past the age of active hunting and warfare would often turn their attentions to civil and religious affairs and would assume new names related to their activities. When an Indian child was born. naming might be delayed from a few days to a few months. Various tribes followed different naming practices. shamans. Usually Indians did not name themselves but were given names by parents. and were bestowed following the prevalent line of descent. or the acquisition of a supernatural power during the vision quest for both genders. or other members of their tribal group. It was considered improper for an Indian to mention his or her own name. For boys. This often paralleled the intensification of pregnancy taboos surrounding the mother. such as a father. and husbands and wives generally did not use their proper names when speaking to each other.” These names were not static throughout life. but could change many times between birth and late adulthood. Some names could be inherited from a dead ancestor. some tribes believed that the ancestor’s spirit entered into the child. initiation into a sodality (a club or organization for men). the boy might be prevented from assuming the name until he had attained a status in warfare or hunting comparable to that of his father. fearing that the ancestor’s spirit would be offended and depart the child’s body. success in hunting or warfare for boys. Baby names were not considered particularly important or anticipatory of an individual’s character or performance in later life. with the intent of encouraging them to seek accomplishments that would bring the bestowal of an appropriate new name.

such as the names of certain animals. If a warrior was about to be left behind in battle. use of a person’s name called forth obligations that were almost impossible to ignore. and that warrior was honor-bound to return and attempt to rescue him. famous ancestors. even if such action meant his own certain death. The collection of teachings that became the doctrine of the Native American Church had their beginnings in the 1880’s. Puberty and Initiation Rites. Surnames are common—often tying the bearer to parents. the Native American Church has been a unifying force for scattered Native American peoples. Belief in the power of a name was strong. the taboo was lifted. Patricia Masserman See also: Children. Among the main themes of the church’s ethical code are mutual aid among . probably among the Kiowas and Comanches living in Oklahoma. Native American Church Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: From its beginnings in the late nineteenth century. The church emphasizes the brotherhood of all American Indians. Many tribes did not speak the name of a deceased member for fear of attracting the departed’s spirit back from the other world. Modern American Indians choose names in many different ways.498 / Native American Church taboo and were never used. Among the Apaches. Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. when the spoken word could be made manifest within the creation. Rites of Passage. but when a living person was given the name. Others have adopted or been given names from the mainstream American culture that do not reflect their Indian heritage. The origin of this belief can be traced to ancient tales of the beginnings of the people. he could call out the name of a companion. or perhaps identifying clan affiliation.

forced dispersal. and the avoidance of alcohol.Native American Church / 499 members. peyote is both a teacher and a healer. and rituals. The ceremony that was to become central to the Native American Church was first described by anthropologist James Mooney in 1892. To the Native American Church. the use of peyote has at times made the church controversial among Indian leaders and organizations. Jesus is seen as a deified spirit with whom church members can communicate. Peyote produces an altered state of consciousness. the confiscation of land. and other use is vigorously opposed. a body of symbolically rich origin legends. and Indian agencies. a strong family. ethics. Wherever the church entered a tribe. and forced religious conversion. catastrophic depopulation. and an individualistic approach that emphasized profound original spiritual experiences. Opposition to its spread came from traditional tribalists. Indians had been subjected to slaughter. The ingestion of peyote is part of the ritual of the church (the church has sometimes been called the Peyote Church). the destruction of food supplies. In 1918 it was chartered as a legal church. Christian missionaries. a strong sense of morality. American Indians of every tribe were still reeling from the devastating effects of three centuries of contact with European American culture. The use of peyote is strictly limited to the church’s ceremonies. Yet American Indians in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries created a monotheistic church with discernible and complex doctrines. At that time. Nevertheless. Anthropologists helped write the articles of incorporation and appeared before judicial and legislative bodies in defense of the church. it rejected both significant belief aspects of that tribe and the dominant white culture. After 1900 the ceremony spread rapidly throughout tribal North America. forced labor. Its form was similar to that of present-day meetings. The Native American Church was chartered as a Christian church in 1918. enslavement. shrewdly aided by insightful Indians who included Christian elements to make the chartering process more amenable to legislatures. self-reliance. Today church members find the universalism of .

Slotkin.000 members. Since U. . Peyote Religious Art: Symbols of Faith and Belief. Sterling. Santa Fe. Hamden. Echo-Hawk. Daniel C. Reuben Snake.: Clear Light Publishers. James.500 / Native American Church Christian ideology acceptable. Conn. In 1960 the church was believed to have about 200. Swan. 1970. Foreword by Donald L.: Free Press. G. The Peyote Religion. Westport. Switzerland: C. Ruth. and Walter B. 18702001: A Companion Reader. Schiffman Sources for Further Study Evans. comps. 1956. See also: Peyote and Peyote Religion. The Peyote Cult. Conn. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi. Zurich. The Native American Church continues to exist as an important pan-Indian movement uniting diverse cultures in common goals. the Giver of Visions. Reprint. LaBarre.: Praeger. Smith. John H. but it is rare to find Christian symbols in the ceremony. judgment. By 1947 the Native American Church was a widely prevalent religion among the Indians of the United States and had assumed the proportions of an intertribal religion. Christian sin. or half the population of adult Indians. On the Symbolism of the Native American Church of North America. Jung Institute. 1938. Shonle. ed. 1964. Ill. Laney. and eds. “Peyote. 1996. One Nation Under God: The Triumph of the Native American Church. Glenn J. and redemption are not found in Native American Church doctrine. Weston. Huston. et al. Some songs still appeal to Jesus for health and help.S. non-Indian participation is minimal. American Indians in American History.Mex. law classifies peyote as a psychotropic drug and prohibits non-Indian use. Glencoe. N.. 2002. 1999. Religion.: Shoestring Press. Fixico.” American Anthropologist 40 (1932): 698-715.

given the high culture developed by the Native Americans in Mexico and Peru. or ancestral to. Late in the nineteenth century. In fact. the Vikings. Most evidence suggests that the original natives of North and South America were members of Siberian tribes that crossed the Bering Strait from Siberia to Alaska some time after fifteen thousand years ago. and South America as the ice sheets melted. How did the builders of such elaborate structures. the ancestors of native North Americans seemed an unlikely source for their grandeur. Various non-Indian Mound Builders were hypothesized: the lost tribes of Israel.Ohio Mound Builders / 501 Ohio Mound Builders Significance: The earliest “architects” in North America built elaborate burial sites. This was during the early stages of the last glacial retreat. and reasonable hypotheses for their origin and relationship to the historic Indian tribes have been developed. but much is known about the Mound Builders. This oversight of Native Americans is surprising. when the Bering Strait was dry land. and seemingly less highly cultured. presumably sedentary agriculturalists of high culture. Central. These tribes were big-game hunters who moved south into North. however. at least to the European mind. natives encountered by the pioneers? These questions cannot be answered definitively. develop? How did they give rise to the more mobile. These people. called PaleoIndians. Few explanations allowed for a relationship to North American Indians. these Middle American cultures. moved into the eastern part of North America and came . and other Old World groups. other hypotheses suggested that the Mound Builders were an offshoot of. When a large number of human-made burial mounds were found in the Ohio River drainage and other parts of eastern North America in the nineteenth century. careful studies by the Smithsonian Institution’s Bureau of Ethnology demonstrated that the mounds were built by ancestors of the historic North American tribes.

which was also centered in the valleys of the Ohio River and its tributaries. and more elaborate funeral procedures and burial mounds.e. The earliest of the Ohio River Mound Builders are called Adena Indians and are thought to have lived between 700 b. wide-ranging populations in the forests that developed there after the glacier melted. domestication of several kinds of native plants. and a few built small burial mounds. The Adena gave rise to the Hopewell Indian culture. Some late Archaic woodland groups buried their dead in small. Their culture is characterized by the development of fibertempered pottery. they gathered wild plant products and hunted available animals. They also worked stone to make pipes and various ornaments. and 200 c. They used a spear-throwing device called an “atlatl” (developed by Archaic or late Paleo-Indians) to produce greater flight speed in their spears.e. In addition to cultivating plants. Archaeologists recognize a second Native American culture. ultimately obtained from Mexico). The Hopewell tradition is characterized by advanced pottery production and stoneworking. including the mounds in which they were buried.c. more intensive cultivation of native plants.e. it was not the staple it became in Middle American and Mississippian cul- . and were more sedentary than their Archaic predecessors. The Ohio Hopewell culture is recognized from around 100 b.e. Directly descended from Paleo-Indians. The larger burial mounds are widespread throughout eastern North America but are centered in the Ohio River drainage.e. the presumed progenitors of the more elaborate burial mounds built by the Woodland Indians. beginning about eight thousand years ago.502 / Ohio Mound Builders to live in sparse. and the development of elaborate rituals and practices for burying their dead. the Archaic. There is evidence that trading networks developed between the Adena people and contemporaneous American Indian cultures. some cultivation of corn (Zea mays.c. until about 400 or 500 c. natural hills. They added burials to individual mounds through time. Although corn was grown by the Hopewell people.c. the Archaic Indians are thought to have given rise to the Mound Builders around 700 b.

This trade may have been associated with another cultural development that differentiates the Hopewell from the Adena. and their mound-building activities. produced a healthier population than did the cornintensive diet of the Mississippians. Researchers have hypothesized that some Hopewell men obtained privileged positions in society due to their trading skill and trade contacts.e. called a borrow pit.. It is impossible to determine the point in time at which the Adena culture ended and the Hopewell began. Large mounds with many burials were built in stages. trading networks. Hopewell characteristics are all elaborations of Adena characteristics. More of these are found in Hopewell burials than in Adena burials. nearly continentwide. The theories range from an environmental catastrophe. the Hopewell tradition is a continuation of the Adena culture. at least as Mound Builders. with one set of burials superposed upon an earlier group. . there is a lengthy transition period. As a result. and contrasting Adena egalitarianism. and depositing the dirt on the growing mound. These men were buried with more elaborate material goods and in larger and more complex mounds than were other members of the population.Ohio Mound Builders / 503 tures. presumably prized possessions and tools needed for the next life. The Hopewell culture peaked in the Ohio River Valley around 200 c. are hypothesized on the basis of such artifacts and specific conditions of the burials. instead. based on the cultivation of several native plant species and supplemented by hunting and gathering. disappeared between 400 and 500 c. The Hopewell differentiation of class. at least. Instead. corn seemed to be grown more for symbolic and religious ceremonies. Many artifacts. were buried with the dead. Numerous hypotheses have been proposed for the decline of Hopewellian peoples. Clearly. There is some anthropological evidence that the Hopewell people’s more diversified diet. Adena and Hopewell mounds were built by people carrying baskets full of dirt from a source region. The Hopewell Indians also developed vast.e. Hopewell burials suggest a class structure not seen in the more egalitarian Adena burials.

through intermediates who.504 / Ohio Mound Builders brought on by larger population concentrations and intensive agriculture. bibliography. maps. The last North American mound-building culture. 2000. Illinois. now stands. Many scholars believe that these Mississippian Mound Builders were descendants of the Hopewell.” In Ancient North America: The Archeology of a Continent. for unknown reasons. Adena and Hopewell mounds were primarily burial mounds. Ohio: University of Akron Press. and flourished until after 1500. Mysteries of the Hopewell: Astronomers. Geometers. The Ohio Mound Builders maintained a developing culture for more than a millennium and played a central role in North American prehistory for much of that time. Chapter 2 gives a brief history of the European Mound Builder hypothesis. index. Brian M. and other historic American Indian tribes. houses. Carl W. Their descendants gave rise to the prehistoric Mississippian culture and to historic Indian tribes. and other structures were built. to changes in trade balances that brought an end to the Hopewell people’s strategic central position between the northern and southern and between the eastern and western sources of raw materials and finished goods. Describes the Mound Builders and their place in prehistory. William F. In addition. 1995. Some researchers posit that Hopewellians were ancestral to the Iroquois. at Cahokia. “The Eastern Woodlands. An analysis of the Hopewell and . and Magicians of the Eastern Woodlands. was centered along the Mississippi River. Many also believe that the Mississippians were directly ancestral to the Cherokee. It developed around 700 c. Louis. New York: Thames and Hudson. Romain. Sioux. Hoagstrom Sources for Further Study Fagan. North American archaeology traces its professional roots to the exploration of their mounds. 2d ed. Akron.e. but many Mississippian mounds were platforms upon which temples. Illustrations. abandoned mound-building activities. the Mississippian. where East St.

McDonald.: M.. Cyrus. index. Reprint. A guide to Adena and Hopewell sites that can be visited by the public.Y. maps. and Charles E. Thomas. Susan L. 1894. Descriptions of the mounds. Discusses the European-Mound-Builder-race hypothesis and its demise. and other artifacts of the Adena and Hopewell people. 1970. 1985. Also describes the American Indian Mound Builder cultures.C. maps. geometry. Athens: Ohio University Press. Outlines the prehistory of the Mound Builders. and measurement. Native Americans Before 1492: The Moundbuilding Centers of the Eastern Woodlands. bibliography. pipes. Illustrations. index.. Illustrations. Washington. D. The introduction to the 1985 edition adds historical perspective. The Mound Builders.” In The Archaeology of North America. Lynda Norene. Snow. Illustrations. glossary.: Smithsonian Institution Press. maps. E. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press. Dean R. Woodward. Shaffer. Sharpe. Effigy Mounds. Describes the Bureau of Ethnology’s mound work. Explores Mound Builder cultures and the interactions and interrelationships between those cultures and other Native American cultures. William S. bibliography. bibliography. 1992. Serpent Mounds.Ohio Mound Builders / 505 their achievements in astronomy. Indian Mounds of the Middle Ohio Valley: A Guide to Adena and Hopewell Sites. 1974. The Adena People. Illustrations. Chapter 1 covers the Mound Builder mystery and its importance in American archaeology.: McDonald and Woodward. 1989. Blacksburg. pottery. maps. index. Snow. index. maps. . N. Report on the Mound Explorations of the Bureau of Ethnology. See also: Culture Areas. Illustrations. lists of pertinent topographic maps and publications. Mounds and Moundbuilders. maps. New York: Chelsea House. Armonk. 1986. Illustrations. and Jerry N. Webb. Silverberg. Mississippian Culture. Robert. bibliography. Va. index. index. “The Nations of the Eastern Woodlands.

such as the snake or beaver. the two men ran a circle around the outside of the medicine lodge. At the conclusion of this grueling experience. Sun Dance. The main action. Participants sometimes collapsed and had to be dragged. Ruffin Stirling See also: Religion. They then had to make their way to a masked warrior. The Okeepa was a ceremony conducted by the Mandans. who would proceed to cut off one or two of their fingers.506 / Okeepa Okeepa Tribe affected: Mandan Significance: The Okeepa was a Mandan summer ceremony conducted to reestablish the tribe’s ties with nature. . which Mandan legend claimed had once covered the earth in a flood. centered on two young men who dangled in the air. Other members were painted to represent day and night. The specific purpose of the Okeepa was to appease the spirits of the waters. a seminomadic tribe living in the northern Great Plains. It was a ritual held during the summer that was seen as a means to renew the life of the tribe and to reestablish the tribal relationship with nature. Any young man who excelled in withstanding the ceremony was considered a good candidate for future leadership positions. Tribal members took part in the ceremony by impersonating certain animal spirits. After a certain period of time they were lowered to the ground. however. hung by ropes stuck into their flesh with pegs.

The earthen platforms consisted of layers of worked colored stone laid out in large plazas and covered with as many as a dozen .e. the Olmec constructed large earthen platforms more than 3. and burial sites for Olmec royalty. At the site of La Venta. the Olmec constructed conical pyramids in the center of their platform complexes. and 150 feet high. Olmec civilization is considered to be one of the oldest civilizations of native North America. gathering places for public ceremonies. These platform complexes served several purposes. The term “Olmec” is drawn from the Aztec language Nahuatl and loosely translates as “the rubber people. Recognition and identification of Olmec culture are based exclusively on archaeological evidence. Evidence of Olmec culture first appears about 1500 b. 1. particularly corn. which led to the development of sedentary societies and advanced forms of social and political organization. The Olmec heartland included the present Mexican states of Veracruz.c. in the state of Tabasco. At sites such as San Lorenzo Tenochtitlán. but Olmec influence extended across most of southern Mexico and northern Central America.000 feet wide. Tabasco. perhaps meant to imitate mountains or volcanoes not found in the immediate Olmec area. including residences for elite Olmec families and rulers. The area consists of flat.000 feet long. along the southern and western edge of the Gulf of Mexico. and Chiapas. swampy coastal floodplains crossed by rivers draining from highland mountains to the south into the Gulf of Mexico to the north. since no direct descendants of Olmec civilization have ever been identified. Seasonal flooding and the lush tropical environment permitted the development of agriculture and the exploitation of domesticated plants. upon which were erected ritual and ceremonial structures of stone and more perishable materials such as wood or plaster.” in reference to the production of rubber in the Olmec heartland.Olmec Civilization / 507 Olmec Civilization Significance: One of the earliest advanced civilizations on the North American continent.

Advanced systems of political organization must have been in place to enable the assembly and management of the workforce necessary to construct such elaborate complexes. It is also significant that the Olmec created their buildings and monuments without the wheel. were transported as much as sixty miles from volcanic mountain ranges such as the Tuxtla mountains. domesticated animals. most of these forms have not survived in the archaeological record. The scale and complexity of the earthen platforms. Platforms were engineered and constructed to control water flow throughout the structure. The basalt boulders were carved into a variety of shapes. The Olmec were extremely adept at working very hard types of stone. neither of which occurs naturally near the Olmec heartland sites. particularly volcanic basalt and jade. diverting it for waste runoff and public hygiene and creating decorative and sacred ponds and streams of fresh water within the platform complexes.508 / Olmec Civilization sequential layers of sand and earth piled one on top of the other to construct the platforms. Most information regarding Olmec culture that does not come from their architecture is drawn from their remaining artworks. and the remaining carved stone images convey a great deal of information about Olmec beliefs. The complexity suggests that the process of construction was as important as the final structure. none of which was used by any Mesoamerican peoples. channeled water throughout the platforms. suggest that several thousand people may have used or occupied the sites at one time. probably originally intended to be displayed in the open . sacred green jade was imported from areas of western Mexico or eastern Guatemala and Belize. such as paintings and textiles. along with the evidence of extensive farming and agriculture. What has survived in great abundance is Olmec stone sculpture. some more than ten feet tall and weighing several tons. usually human but occasionally representing animals or mythological deities. composed of sections of carved stone. Although the Olmec probably created a wide variety of art forms. At least ten large-scale Olmec sites have been identified in the Olmec heartland. or metal tools. Elaborate drainage systems. Large basalt boulders.

usually by decapitation. the eagle. One of the most common types of boulder sculptures is a series of human heads carved in a lifelike. Facial features vary noticeably from one head to the next. perhaps most important. Olmec sites were probably governed by elite royal families and kings. and implements such as ax heads were frequently formed in the shape of humans. were ritually sacrificed. the size and degree of naturalism attest the Olmec sculptors’ ability to manipulate large. and jade was much valued by all preColumbian societies. and each wears a distinctively different type of skullcap or helmet. such as jewelry. including jade. Regardless of the specific identity of the stone heads. which was played on stone. Portions of the ball game may have developed in the Olmec heartland. Although the specific identity of the subjects is not clear. The caps may represent royal headdress or a type of headgear worn by participants in a ball game similar to modern-day soccer. I-shaped courts throughout ancient Mesoamerica. suggesting that the Olmec practiced formalized warfare and related forms of human sacrifice. since that is the source of the rubber used for the ball itself. suggesting a spiritual tie between the function of the object and its symbolic imagery. The color green was probably considered sacred. suggesting individualized depictions. naturalistic style.Olmec Civilization / 509 plazas of the earthen platforms. Many of the large carved boulders were intentionally defaced or broken and buried within the platforms during Olmec times. The Olmec were . Warriors and human prisoners are frequently depicted in Olmec sculpture. and burial offerings. hard stone for artistic purposes. and. ritual implements. chief among which were powerful animals such as the cayman or alligator. The losers of this game. suggesting that either the Olmec or a foreign people symbolically killed the sculptures before abandoning the sites. They worshiped a pantheon of natural spirits. were carved from other hard stones. Smaller stone objects. the shark. the jaguar. Humans and animals were common subjects. evidence suggests that the heads portray either former Olmec rulers or defeated enemies. Olmec art reveals much about Olmec political and religious beliefs.

e. but these cases are rare.. paintings. Between 1000 and 300 b. Stirling. seem to have considered the Olmec as their divine ancestors. Coe. New York: American Heritage. and the Maya.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collections. or curers. Collected papers focusing on shared artistic influences between Olmec and neighboring or later Mesoamerican cultures. Large Olmec-style carved boulders and upright stones occur along the southern Pacific coast of Guatemala and El Salvador during this period. and Olmecstyle rock carvings. James D. D.c. appear in a few isolated examples of Olmec art. Michael D. similar to the later hieroglyphic writing of the Maya.e. and Olmec civilization appears to have declined before the writing system was fully exploited. 1968. Trustees for Harvard University.C. ed. and earthen platforms occur in areas south of Mexico City. Olmec influence stretched far beyond the Olmec heartland. in fact.c.c. The evidence suggests that the Olmec were interacting with a large number of non-Olmec cultures throughout the area at this time. early examples of hieroglyphic writing. Elizabeth P. One of the earliest comprehensive treatments of . After 300 b. inherited and continued many aspects of Olmec style and culture. who were believed to be able to change into animal forms at will and communicate directly with the supernatural world. and Olmec ceramics are found as far east as eastern Guatemala and Belize.. Several later Mesoamerican cultures. Olmec sculpture frequently depicts shamans in the act of such transformations.e. Olmec culture disappears from the archaeological record.510 / Olmec Civilization similar to most Native American cultures in that the most important religious figures in Olmec society were the shamans. Farmer Sources for Further Study Benson. After 500 b. particularly the Maya of Guatemala and the Yucatan peninsula. 1981. Washington. Carved jade and ceramics in Olmec style have been found in central and far west Mexico.. The Olmec and Their Neighbors: Essays in Memory of Matthew W. America’s First Civilization..

Translated by Warren McManus. eds. Includes numerous detailed maps and line drawings and illustrations of stone monuments from the site. Stuart.Olmec Civilization / 511 Olmec art and culture.” National Geographic 184. Regional Perspectives on the Olmec. Sharer. 1989. Robert J. Mayan Civilization. Political Organization and Leadership.. Sculpture. Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs. Extensive report of archaeological investigations at the Olmec site of San Lorenzo Tenochtitlán between 1966 and 1968. and David C. Roman. no. 2002.. An exhaustive introduction to Mexico’s early history and peoples. Discusses up-to-date interpretations of Olmec culture and art. Religion. Ball Game and Courts. Coe was the first scholar to interpret Olmec culture as the precursor to later. George S. Culture Areas. Coe. 1989. New York: Thames & Hudson. Includes artists’ reproductions of Olmec lifeways. Grove. Coe. New York: Cambridge University Press. 5th ed. “New Light on the Olmec. Pina Chan. Corn. Scholarly treatment of Olmec cultural interaction with other pre-Columbian cultures. . In the Land of the Olmec. and culture by a noted Mexican and pre-Columbian scholar. See also: Agriculture. including previously undocumented monuments and controversial translations of Olmec hieroglyphic writing. Austin: University of Texas Press. New York: Rizzoli International Publications. Michael D. Discusses Olmec culture in the broader context of greater Mesoamerica. and Richard A. more widely known Mesoamerican cultures such as the Maya. 5 (November. archaeology.. 1980. Presents a thorough summary of Olmec art. and Rex Koontz. The Olmec: Mother Culture of Mesoamerica. 1993): 88-115. Well-illustrated volume of Olmec art. Michael D. Diehl.

and magic. Legends of American Indians relate closely to all elements of the natural environment. Geographic Influence. animals. events. trees. In Indian tales. rivers. senior members of a tribe used storytelling to pass ideas. and rivers may be given human characteristics and feelings. Just as quickly. Among peoples who do not have a written language. rocks.512 / Oral Literatures Oral Literatures Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: With no written languages. stars. The Supernatural. others by the sea. Legends also set human lovers as stars in the sky. ritual. while humans may be turned into fish. Oral storytelling differs greatly from written literature because stories are slightly varied with each telling. Humans. With each generation. others existed on dusty plateaus. and value systems to the next generation. For example. cultural traditions and philosophies are transmitted orally. shells—pulsate with life. Some characters are permanently assigned natural forms. these elements may return to their former states. Natural elements are often personified during the course of a storyline. American Indian peoples transmitted their ideas from one generation to the next through storytelling. the surviving legends link Indian history to the present. Tribes occupied a wide range of geographical landscapes. and landforms are all interrelated. troublemakers may become mountain peaks as lessons for future rascals. all parts of the natural landscape—pebbles. regardless of the environment. Indian stories are religious experiences that include taboo. vegetation. stories are altered to fit the present situation. they can exaggerate some aspects or eliminate ideas altogether. In traditional American Indian cultures. mountains. Storytellers have individual styles and preferences. Mountains. destined to chase . with some Indians living in desert conditions. Some tribes occupied wooded mountains where rivers and waterfalls were plentiful. or mountains.

Indian tales are filled with an interweaving of supernatural and natural elements. They claim that recognizable beginnings and endings are missing. the supernatural. The repetitive circular patterns allow listeners to hear subtle variations on themes. Many Indian tales center on celestial elements that are used to inspire appropriate behavior and to punish unacceptable actions and attitudes. which promotes both the remembrance and the understanding of oral legends. The knowledge of past legends may be needed to understand a particular story.” listeners may misinterpret a particular story. oral stories are often told in chains. The time progression reflects the Indian belief that all reality is cyclical. Those accustomed to European storylines have at times criticized Indian legends as chaotic or incomplete. Indian stories are not intended to be evaluated by Western logic. Indian legends are not isolated stories for entertainment but are part of a lifetime collection which educates tribe members about religion. The chain often reaches back in time. For example. They also attempt to explain the mysterious nature of the skies. with one image or character triggering another story. Many tales are not intended to be isolated from previous episodes. There is often a circular element to the progression of Indian legends and stories that is different from the linearity of European storylines. Story Structure. these stories are parts of a progression. This fascination with the heavens is reflected in Indian legends. however. They studied the stars carefully to determine when their crops should be planted and harvested. the word for “sun” may represent the name of a sun god who is present in a whole line of stories. Moreover. Without knowledge of the full significance of the word “sun. They followed the sun’s placement in the sky as an indication of the seasons. certain words may have meaning only if previous tales have been heard. The sky held great significance for American Indians. and living in harmony with nature and with other humans. Sun and Moon. The sun is seen .Oral Literatures / 513 each other for eternity. instead.

and the seasons. with the sun coming out only after the moon is gone. and Inuit regard the sun as female. follows. Cherokee. Man and woman then come together on Earth and through mutual understanding and caregiving join their bodies to people the earth. In many tales. wanting the box of light for his own. most tribes give male attributes to the sun. where it becomes the moon woman. the sister runs. but to animals. and cold comes to the world. They are always far away from each other. The reward for his great power in bringing light to his tribe is that humans would thereafter be chiefs over animals. A large windstorm lifts the brother and sister into the sky. . In one Winnebago myth of the sun’s creation. they relied greatly on the stars to indicate direction. The moon and sun escape into the sky. the male sun removes an eye and throws it into the wind. The Plains tribes were primarily nomadic hunters and gatherers. In a Brule Sioux tale. time. The Blackfoot explain the origin of the North Star in this way: A young maiden looks longingly at the Morning Star and wishes that she could have that star for her husband. lighting her way with a torch. where he is turned into the moon and she into the sun. which is stolen by Grandmother Spider and brought to her people along with fire. Her brother. The Zuñi tell about Coyote. Coyote disobeys the chief and opens the box to examine the light. not only to humans. The Inuit tell about a brother raping his sister. the orb is reduced to a small object that is snared by Little Brother. Coyote is greedy. After the rape. who steals the sun and moon from the kachinas (supernatural intermediaries). Although the Juchi. These Indians considered the celestial bodies supernatural beings and often told stories of various stars taking human form. The Stars. where his torch turns from flames to embers. The sun directs the moon maiden to walk along a bridge of lightening so that she can roam the earth.514 / Oral Literatures as the great fertilizing agent of the universe. In time. who carries a torch of his own. The Cherokee give female qualities to the sun. but falls in the snow. the sun makes love to mortal women who then give birth. the trickster. Because of his curiosity.

up. from the forested lands of Northern California. Many explanations describe a watery primordial environment from which mud is brought up to make the earth. The seven stars of the Pleiades hold great significance for many cultures. Sun and Moon. never moves and is called the Fixed Star by the Blackfoot and the Star That Does Not Walk Around by the Omaha. except for Littlest Coyote. The Shasta. Earth. This small cluster of stars helps define the calendar and signals coming events. They become the Pleiades. earth. The Zuñi of New Mexico use the Pleiades to determine when planting should begin. the North Star. The maiden is married to Morning Star and lives a life of ease in Sky Country. Indians of the Northwest tell of entering a hole in the sky in order to emerge on the earth. the trickster. Many Indian legends incorporate the Pleiades. As punishment. however. Seven is a sacred number because it represents seven directions—north. The Cherokee of the Southeast give special significance to the Pleiades because there are seven stars in the group. After several warnings from the elders. and center. This star. Some tribes describe life in the interior of the world. Earth is that environment which is in light. Many tribes have myths which explain the emergence of the earth. the children of Raccoon kill all Coyote’s children. From the California region and the Southwest come tales . south. Raccoon’s children and Littlest Coyote run away to Sky Country to be protected from the selfishness of Coyote. down.Oral Literatures / 515 the Morning Star appears on Earth as a handsome youth who takes the maiden to the house of his parents. west. her curiosity and disobedience result in her son being turned into a star. never to return. who is not selfish. east. lead him to kill Raccoon. these children become so lightheaded that they drift into the sky. The Onondaga of the Northeast tell of seven children who neglect their chores and dance throughout each day. is reached. These inhabitants dig their way up from the center of the world until the top layer. The disappearance of the Pleiades tells the Tapirape Indians that the rainy season will soon end. tell how the greed and selfishness of Coyote.

carrying all living things to death. always in pairs. or from animals. Animals and humans are later brought to life. Coyote. In frustration. or the west wind.516 / Oral Literatures about the original world parents. The deceitful side of humans is the result of having been created by Coyote. the world will tumble. which leads to many quarrels. The Sioux tell of Stone Boy. born of a supernatural god. Humans. In some stories. The two goddesses then create a little wren out of clay. covered with water. Many myths have the creation of Earth eliminating the darkness of the universe. which humans must maintain for survival. This tale also incorporates the supernatural. For some tribes. Many legends have women as the first humans. Humans are generally created from supernatural beings. . The Cherokee describe an Earth suspended in delicate balance. A number of legends have the first woman of Earth impregnated by a sunbeam. Earth and Sky. The earth floats on waters and is tied to the ceiling of the sky by four ropes connected to the sacred four directions. is given credit for breathing life into humans. the first human is a child endowed with supernatural powers. and pregnancy. however. In others the trickster. the first humans are twins. say that the first human is an old woman who has sacred medicinal powers. Humans feed mostly on rabbits and deer. The Hopi tell a tale about two goddesses who cause the waters of the world to recede eastward and westward until dry land appears. for women are associated with fertility. from natural elements. the sun removes his skin of gray fox and dons a yellow skin to brighten the sky. for sorcerers and shamans are called upon to put the sun higher so that the earth will not be too hot for human survival. who brings sacred ceremonies and prayers to his tribe by building the first sweatlodge for purification. conception. Human creation myths seek to answer mysteries about the human condition. In most tales. the goddesses leave to live in the middle of the ocean. If the ropes break. animals and plants precede the creation of humans. a salmon. To bring light and warmth to this land. The Brule Sioux. The earth will then be like a submerged island.

In some tales. The characters are often given tests to demonstrate the strength of their commitments. Darkness permeates the underworld. The Pima tell how Man Maker uses clay to mold human images and then places them in an oven. the earth and the universe are often seen as neverending circles within which humankind is just another animal. Indian love stories teach responsibility and commitment to loved ones. He saves the forms that please him best. battles are fought between two men for the love of a young maiden. and the Modoc the bravest of all. the Klamath easily frightened. gather berries and dig roots. The Penobscot tell of a young man “born from the foam of the waves. he takes some underground spirits with him to people his world. These contests . the others are sent to live in various places across the water. a rabbit comes across a clot of blood and begins to kick it around as if it were a ball. Old Man of the Ancients. the processes and rhythms of nature bring life to humans. animals are often responsible in whole or in part for the creation of humans.Oral Literatures / 517 The Modoc tell about Kumush. and after a week. Women shall get wood and water. He then designates certain roles for the people: “Men shall fish and hunt and fight. At times.” Some stories explain the different races. He and his daughter descend into the underground. He makes the Shastas brave warriors. foam quickened by the wind and warmed by the sun. To feed these people. gathers bones in the underworld and selects certain ones to make Indians to reside in particular places. he supplies fish and beasts. The movement of the clot brings it to life in human form. The Modoc explain that Kumush. When he removes the various forms.” The same legend tells of a girl born after “a drop of dew fell on a leaf and was warmed by the sun. When he returns to the upper world. roots and berries. Old Man of the Ancients. In a tale from the White River Sioux. they have different shapes and colors. and cook for their families. Kumush longs for light. Love. Because all elements of nature are related. where spirits gather to sing and dance.” In human creation myths.

and a wife follows a butterfly man. To ease the pain of losing loved ones. In doing so. however. The tribes are dispersed in this way. The Wishram tell of an Indian hunter who kills more elk than is needed for food. Today. a death in the name of love. exists in the waters of Multnomah Falls. In the worlds before this world. . She jumps from a cliff as the moon rises over the trees. he also kills his guardian elk. The Haida tell of a great flood which takes the lives of many people. From the Brule Sioux comes another story which teaches that humans must live in balance with nature. He told the people that they must live in harmony with one another and with all living things. The Keres Pueblo tell a story about men and women who try to live apart. The Caddo explain that people must die because the earth is too crowded. The tale illustrates that women depend on men for survival. and floods to destroy the previous worlds. earthquakes. These tales also include traditions that had significance in the courting process. Because his guardian spirit no longer exists. Death. a man marries the moon. The end. a medicine man sings songs that call the spirits of the dead to come and reside with those still living. Crazy Horse claimed that being willing to die was a way of honoring the human spirit. A legend of unselfishness comes from the Multnomah. dressed in white. so Creating Power used fire. human lovers are transformed into stars. Legends of love also weave the natural and supernatural together. Survivors drift in the waters until they reach mountain peaks sticking out of the ocean. He then remade the world and populated it with people of understanding and speech. it concerns a maiden who shows great love for her people by sacrificing her life to the spirits so that all those suffering from sickness will be cured. a whale takes a human wife. makes way for the arrival of the new. American Indians believe that accepting death is an affirmation of life.518 / Oral Literatures are fought until death. the young brave dies in the Lake of the Lost Spirits. In various stories. people did not know how to act properly. her spirit. Indian tales reveal not only human death but also the crumbling of cultures and nations.

Karl. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. The selections are arranged geographically.Oral Literatures / 519 All Indian legends teach the need for balance between living creatures and natural phenomena. J. They Dance in the Sky. Vancouver. and ed. The Inland Whale. This collection of nine California Indian legends is followed by a thorough discussion of each piece. and Alfonso Ortiz. 1984. . 1987. and Ray A. New York: Pantheon Books. Oral storytelling gives importance to the elders in a tribe. Kroeber. They are the transmitters of traditions and history. This collection of 166 Indian legends covers a wide range of native people of North America. comp. Traditional Literatures of the American Indian: Texts and Interpretations. Kroeber. Monroe. Williamson. Thirty Indian Legends of Canada. When greed and egotism cause humans to treat nature or other people abusively. By weaving natural and supernatural elements into every story. An appendix gives background on sixty-eight tribes from North America. American Indian Myths and Legends. Erdoes. Through their art. Included are a glossary and suggested further readings. 1959. then the offenders are punished. eds. 1997. Indians pass on models of behavior that reflect harmony between physical and spiritual realms. A discussion is also offered about qualities of Indian stories and about the place of oral literature in the study of comparative literature. Most of these stories are taken from their original sources. Margaret. A collection of essays that provide an introduction to the analysis and understanding of Native American oral literatures. A pronunciation guide to vocabulary is included. A fine bibliography is included. Linda J. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. British Columbia: J. Douglas. 1973. comps. This collection of star myths comes from North American Indians who lived all across the United States. they preserve culture. Richard. 2d ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Theodora. for they are respected for their wisdom. Meyers Sources for Further Study Bemister. Jean Guard.

See also: Ethnophilosophy and Worldview. The information handed down included family and tribal histories. Perhaps the most concise division of the types of Native American oratory comes from A. Dhyani. The ability to speak powerfully and persuasively is a talent every culture admires. Sacred Narratives. the ability to speak effectively was a respected trait and a necessary one. preaching. Before the invasion of North America by Europeans. LaVonne Brown Ruoff’s book American Indian Literatures (1990). Ywahoo discusses oral teachings rather than oral stories. Bahr. 1987. Wampum. uses a more complex system for categorizing such orations as ritual oratory. along with dreaming. and songs and stories. so human experience was memorized and transmitted orally from one generation to the next. Most tribes developed both understandings of what made oratory effective and formal rituals surrounding the practice of it. as a spiritual power. which had no written languages. Donald M. in which the author suggests that Native American oratory may be ceremonial. Religion. Oratory Tribes affected: Pantribal Significance: In traditional American Indian cultures. most native peoples had no written language. Voices of Our Ancestors. in Pima and Papago Ritual Oratory (1975). craft techniques. Oratorical skill is still highly valued today. For Native Americans. and the content and syntax of rituals and ceremonies. since oratory was seen. oratory is an extremely important element of ceremonial and nonceremonial life.520 / Oratory Ywahoo. . Oratory. Boston: Shambhala. mythology. or a mixture of these two. Many tribes honored articulate speakers with leadership. nonceremonial. This book does not include stories but is a discussion of the philosophy behind many Cherokee traditions.

or preaching. These addresses may be directed toward the powers of nature or to the tribe itself. particularly. as well as tribal values and the original meanings behind customs and ceremonies.S. hope. Every respected warrior was expected to speak on matters of policy if he had a strong opinion. Children and adults learned history and geography from tribal storytellers. leaders and warriors were often moved to eloquence as they expressed sorrow.Oratory / 521 Ceremonial or ritual oratory occurs in sacred situations. By repeating key words or phrases. For example. and may take the form of prayer or the tale of a hero’s journey. In rituals of mourning and celebration. Nonceremonial oratory. takes place in public settings. whatever its context. government forums in which Native Americans struggled for peace and for their rights. Celsa Apapas (Cupeño). Bonnin (Sioux name: Zitkala Sa). battle sites. One of the most common tropes is repetition. he frequently referred .” In daily practice. Sarah Winnemucca (Paiute). and thanksgiving for all that the Great Spirit had done. such as at parties. In his essay “The Plains Indian as a Public Speaker. when Creek leader Tecumseh confronted Governor William Henry Harrison about his violation of various agreements. The most commonly collected examples of native oratory are speeches given at tribal councils and U. and Gertrude S. A variety of techniques can be identified in Native American oratory. the status of women as orators has grown significantly. including Chief Viola Jimulla (Yavapai). In the Southwest. political events. oratory took many forms. The right to speak publicly. Ruoff notes.” Theodore Balgooyen writes. “Public speaking was associated with nearly every kind of public ceremony and was an important means of settling political and legal questions. but there have been numerous exceptions. was generally restricted to men. the orator is able to emphasize certain themes and is able to make each speech more memorable for his or her listeners. and council meetings. tribal leaders often gave a sermon each morning from the top of a hut or mound. Over the past several decades. Warcaziwin (Sioux).

they would declare war.522 / Oratory to Harrison as “brother.&q