The Indian women formed the labouring class. Such a result was inevitable. The warrior would only follow the chase or fight. There was labour to be performed. No men were to be employed for hire. Whatever, therefore, was to be done must be done by the females. The wife is, consequently, her husband’s slave. She plants the maize, tobacco, beans, and running vines; she drives the blackbird from the corn, prepares the store of wild fruits for winter, tears up the weeds, gathers the harvest, pounds the grain, dries the buffalo meat, brings home the game, carries wood, draws water, spreads the repast, attends on her husband, aids in canoe building, and bears the poles of the wigwam from place to place.
Mr. Lummis has written of the Apache warrior and described the war led by Geronimo. It was a daring thing. There was but a handful of the Indians. “Thirty-four men, eight well-grown boys, ninety-two women and children”—that was all. Only forty-two who could be called fighters. On May 17, 1885, the little band broke forth from their reservation and headed for Mexico. It took the United States a year and a half of useless trouble and expense to pursue them. Time after time, when it seemed certain that the Indians were trapped, they 14vanished. They never stood for a pitched battle. But anywhere, concealed behind rocks or hidden in brush, they picked off the soldiers sent to capture them. The forces of the United States and Mexico were both kept constantly upon the move. When a year had passed about sixty of the Indians returned home. Twenty warriors, with fourteen women, kept up the battle, when they too went home. During the year and a half of fighting more than four hundred whites and Mexicans were killed; only two of the Indian band were destroyed. During that time Arizona and New Mexico and all the northern part of Mexico were kept in constant terror. These Apaches were truly “wild Indians.”
Trade Beads and Hawk Bells
Indian “Buffalo Jump”—Yellowstone Valley.
An Indian tepee
Socially, the Indian had less liberty than the white man. He was bound by customs handed down from his forefathers. He could not marry outside his tribe. He could not sit in whatever seat he chose at a council. He could not even paint his face any color he fancied; for a young who had won no honors in battle would no mor ehave dared to decorate himself like a veteran warrior than a private soldier in the United States army would venture to appear at parade in the uniform of a major-general.
Each tribe had a "totem", ot badge to designate it. The "totem" was usually the picture of some animal. The totem was also used as a mark on gravestones, and as a seal.
The most ingenious work of the Indians was seen in the moccasin, the snow-shoe and the birch-bark canoe. The moccasin was a shoe made of buckskin, - durable, soft, pliant, noiseless. It was the best covering for a hunter's foot that human skill ever contrived.
The snow-shoe was a light frame of wood, covered with a network of strings of hide, and having such a broad surface that the wearer could walk on snow in the pursuit of game. Without it the Indian might have starved in a severe winter, since only by its use could he run down the deer at that season.
Ta-ton-ka-I-yo-ton-ka (Sitting Bull)
Sitting Bull, the famous commander at the Custer massacre, was, during his prosperous years, the chief of chiefs, or supreme head of the nation. He first inherited the office, and was able to retain it because of mental superiority and by reason of the fact that, until the last hope was gone, he assumed an uncompromising position in regard to the encroachment of the whites. Then, too, Ta-ton-ka-I-yo-ton-ka was a medicine man, capable of arousing religious fervor. That he was cruel toward the enemies of his people cannot be denied; but, according to the red man's philosophy, that was simple bravery and loyalty.
Specimens of American Indian picture-writing
No. 1, painted on a rock on the shore of Lake Superior, records an expedition across the lake, in which five canoes took part. The upright strokes in each indicate the number of the crew, and the bird represents a chief, “The Kingfisher.” The three circles (suns) under the arch (of heaven) indicate that the voyage lasted three days, and the tortoise, a symbol of land, denotes a safe arrival. No. 2 is a petition sent to the United States Congress by a group of Indian tribes, asking for fishing rights in certain small lakes. The tribes are represented by their totems, martens, bear, manfish, and catfish, led by the crane. Lines running from the heart and eye of each animal to the heart and eye of the crane denote that they are all of one mind; and a line runs from the eye of the crane to the lakes, shown in the crude little “map” in the lower left-hand corner.