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Title: Pictographs of the North American Indians. A preliminary paper - Fourth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1882-83, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1886, pages 3-256
Author: Mallery, Garrick
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Pictographs of the North American Indians. A preliminary paper - Fourth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1882-83, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1886, pages 3-256" ***

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Transcriber's Note

Italics are indicated by _underscores_, and superscript by caret signs,
e. g. Oheno^npa, 38^{mm}. Individual letters in square brackets were
inverted in the printed text.






  List of illustrations                                             7

  Introductory                                                     13

  Distribution of petroglyphs in North America                     19
   Northeastern rock-carvings                                      19
   Rock-carvings in Pennsylvania                                   20
    in Ohio                                                        21
    in West Virginia                                               22
    in the Southern States                                         22
    in Iowa                                                        23
    in Minnesota                                                   23
    in Wyoming and Idaho                                           24
    in Nevada                                                      24
    in Oregon and Washington Territory                             25
    in Utah                                                        26
    in Colorado                                                    27
    in New Mexico                                                  28
    in Arizona                                                     28
    in California                                                  30
    in Colored pictographs on rocks                                33

  Foreign petroglyphs                                              38
   Petroglyphs in South America                                    38
    in British Guiana                                              40
    in Brazil                                                      44
   Pictographs in Peru                                             45

  Objects represented in pictographs                               46

  Instruments used in pictography                                  48
   Instruments for carving                                         48
    for drawing                                                    48
    for painting                                                   48
    for tattooing                                                  49

  Colors and methods of application                                50
   In the United States                                            50
   In British Guiana                                               53
   Significance of colors                                          53

  Materials upon which pictographs are made                        58
   Natural objects                                                 58
    Bone                                                           59
    Living tree                                                    59
    Wood                                                           59
    Bark                                                           59
    Skins                                                          60
    Feathers                                                       60
    Gourds                                                         60
    Horse-hair                                                     60
    Shells, including wampum                                       60
    Earth and sand                                                 60

   The human person                                                61
    Paint on the human person                                      61
    Tattooing                                                      63
     Tattoo marks of the Haida Indians                             66
     Tattooing in the Pacific Islands                              73
   Artificial objects                                              78

  Mnemonic                                                         79
   The quipu of the Peruvians                                      79
   Notched sticks                                                  81
   Order of songs                                                  82
   Traditions                                                      84
   Treaties                                                        86
   War                                                             87
   Time                                                            88
    The Dakota Winter Counts                                       89
    The Corbusier Winter Counts                                   127

  Notification                                                    147
   Notice of departure and direction                              147
     condition                                                    152
   Warning and guidance                                           155
   Charts of geographic features                                  157
   Claim or demand                                                159
   Messages and communications                                    160
   Record of expedition                                           164

  Totemic                                                         165
   Tribal designations                                            165
   Gentile or clan designations                                   167
   Personal designations                                          168
    Insignia or tokens of authority                               168
    Personal name                                                 169
    An Ogalala roster                                             174
    Red-Cloud’s census                                            176
   Property marks                                                 182
   Status of the individual                                       183
   Signs of particular achievements                               183

  Religious                                                       188
   Mythic personages                                              188
   Shamanism                                                      190
   Dances and ceremonies                                          194
   Mortuary practices                                             197
   Grave-posts                                                    198
   Charms and fetiches                                            201

  Customs                                                         203
   Associations                                                   203
   Daily life and habits                                          205

  Tribal history                                                  207

  Biographic                                                      208
   Continuous record of events in life                            208
   Particular exploits and events                                 214

  Ideographs                                                      219
   Abstract ideas                                                 219
   Symbolism                                                      221

  Identification of the pictographers                             224
   General style or type                                          225
   Presence of characteristic objects                             230

  Modes of interpretation                                         233
   Homomorphs and symmorphs                                       239

  Conventionalizing                                               244

  Errors and frauds                                               247

  Suggestions to collaborators                                    254


  PLATE                                                    Page.

  I.--Colored pictographs in Santa Barbara County, California          34
  II.--Colored pictographs in Santa Barbara County, California         35
  III.--New Zealand tattooed heads                                     76
  IV.--Ojibwa Meda song                                                82
  V.--Penn wampum belt                                                 87
  VI.--Winter count on buffalo robe                                    89
  VII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1786-’87 to 1792-’93                100
  VIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1793-’94 to 1799-1800              101
  IX.--Dakota winter counts: for 1800-’01 to 1802-’03                 103
  X.--Dakota winter counts: for 1803-’04 to 1805-’06                  104
  XI.--Dakota winter counts: for 1806-’07 to 1808-’09                 105
  XII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1809-’10 to 1811-’12                106
  XIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1812-’13 to 1814-’15               108
  XIV.--Dakota winter counts: for 1815-’16 to 1817-’18                109
  XV.--Dakota winter counts: for 1818-’19 to 1820-’21                 110
  XVI.--Dakota winter counts: for 1821-’22 to 1823-’24                111
  XVII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1824-’25 to 1826-’27               113
  XVIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1827-’28 to 1829-’30              114
  XIX.--Dakota winter counts: for 1830-’31 to 1832-’33                115
  XX.--Dakota winter counts: for 1833-’34 to 1835-’36                 116
  XXI.--Dakota winter counts: for 1836-’37 to 1838-’39                117
  XXII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1839-’40 to 1841-’42               117
  XXIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1842-’43 to 1844-’45              118
  XXIV.--Dakota winter counts: for 1845-’46 to 1847-’48               119
  XXV.--Dakota winter counts: for 1848-’49 to 1850-’51                120
  XXVI.--Dakota winter counts: for 1851-’52 to 1853-’54               120
  XXVII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1854-’55 to 1856-’57              121
  XXVIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1857-’58 to 1859-’60             122
  XXIX.--Dakota winter counts: for 1860-’61 to 1862-’63               123
  XXX.--Dakota winter counts: for 1863-’64 to 1865-’66                124
  XXXI.--Dakota winter counts: for 1866-’67 to 1868-’69               125
  XXXII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1869-’70 to 1870-’71              126
  XXXIII.--Dakota winter counts: for 1871-’72 to 1876-’77             127
  XXXIV.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1775-’76 to 1780-’81           130
  XXXV.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1781-’82 to 1786-’87            131
  XXXVI.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1787-’88 to 1792-’93           132
  XXXVII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1793-’94 to 1798-’99          133
  XXXVIII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1799-1800 to 1804-’05        134
  XXXIX.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1805-’06 to 1810-’11           134
  XL.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1811-’12 to 1816-’17              135
  XLI.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1817-’18 to 1822-’23             136
  XLII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1823-’24 to 1828-’29            137
  XLIII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1829-’30 to 1834-’35           138
  XLIV.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1835-’36 to 1840-’41            139
  XLV.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1841-’42 to 1846-’47             140
  XLVI.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1847-’48 to 1852-’53            142
  XLVII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1853-’54 to 1858-’59           143
  XLVIII.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1859-’60 to 1864-’65          143
  XLIX.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1865-’66 to 1870-’71            144
  L.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1871-’72 to 1876-’77               145
  LI.--Corbusier winter counts: for 1877-’78 to 1878-’79              146
  LII.--An Ogalala roster: Big-Road and band                          174
  LIII.--An Ogalala roster: Low-Dog and band                          174
  LIV.--An Ogalala roster: The Bear Spares-him and band               174
  LV.--An Ogalala roster: Has a War-club and band                     174
  LVI.--An Ogalala roster: Wall-Dog and band                          174
  LVII.--An Ogalala roster: Iron-Crow and band                        174
  LVIII.--An Ogalala roster: Little-Hawk and band                     174
  LIX.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                          176
  LX.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                           176
  LXI.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                          176
  LXII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                         176
  LXIII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                        176
  LXIV.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                         176
  LXV.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                          176
  LXVI.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Cloud’s band                         176
  LXVII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Shirt’s band                        176
  LXVIII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Shirt’s band                       176
  LXIX.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Shirt’s band                         176
  LXX.--Red-Cloud’s census: Black-Deer’s band                         176
  LXXI.--Red-Cloud’s census: Black-Deer’s band                        176
  LXXII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Black-Deer’s band                       176
  LXXIII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Hawk’s band                        176
  LXXIV.--Red-Cloud’s census: Red-Hawk’s hand                         176
  LXXV.--Red-Cloud’s census: High-Wolf’s band                         176
  LXXVI.--Red-Cloud’s census: High-Wolf’s band                        176
  LXXVII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Gun’s band                             176
  LXXVIII.--Red-Cloud’s census: Gun’s band                            176
  LXXIX.--Red-Cloud’s census: Second Black-Deer’s band                176
  LXXX.--Rock Painting in Azuza Cañon, California                     156
  LXXXI.--Moki masks etched on rocks. Arizona                         194
  LXXXII.--Buffalo-head monument                                      195
  LXXXIII.--Ojibwa grave-posts                                        199

  FIGURE 1.--Petroglyphs at Oakley Springs, Arizona           30
  2.--Deep carvings in Guiana                                          42
  3.--Shallow carvings in Guiana                                       43
  4.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Beaver                 47
  5.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Bear                   47
  6.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Mountain sheep         47
  7.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Three Wolf heads       47
  8.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Three Jackass rabbits  47
  9.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Cotton-tail rabbit     47
  10.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Bear tracks           47
  11.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Eagle                 47
  12.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Eagle tails           47
  13.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Turkey tail           47
  14.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Horned toads          47
  15.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Lizards               47
  16.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Butterfly             47
  17.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Snakes                47
  18.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Rattlesnake           47
  19.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Deer track            47
  20.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Three Bird tracks     47
  21.--Rock etchings at Oakley Springs, Arizona: Bitterns              47
  22.--Bronze head from the necropolis of Marzabotto, Italy            62
  23.--Fragment of bowl from Troja                                     63
  24.--Haida totem post, Queen Charlotte’s Island                      68
  25.--Haida man, tattooed                                             69
  26.--Haida woman, tattooed                                           69
  27.--Haida woman, tattooed                                           70
  28.--Haida man, tattooed                                             70
  29.--Skulpin (right leg of Fig. 26)                                  71
  30.--Frog (left leg of Fig. 26)                                      71
  31.--Cod (breast of Fig. 25)                                         71
  32.--Squid (Octopus), (thighs of Fig. 25)                            71
  33.--Wolf, enlarged (back of Fig. 28)                                71
  34.--Tattoo designs on bone, from New Zealand                        74
  35.--New Zealand tattooed head and chin mark                         75
  36.--New Zealand tattooed woman                                      75
  37.--Australian grave and carved trees                               76
  38.--Osage chart                                                     86
  39.--Device denoting succession of time. Dakota                      88
  40.--Device denoting succession of time. Dakota                      89
  41.--Measles or Smallpox. Dakota                                    110
  42.--Meteor. Dakota                                                 111
  43.--River freshet. Dakota                                          113
  44.--Meteoric shower. Dakota                                        116
  45.--The-Teal-broke-his-leg. Dakota                                 119
  46.--Magic Arrow. Dakota                                            141
  47.--Notice of hunt. Alaska                                         147
  48.--Notice of departure. Alaska                                    148
  49.--Notice of hunt. Alaska                                         149
  50.--Notice of direction. Alaska                                    149
  51.--Notice of direction. Alaska                                    150
  52.--Notice of direction. Alaska                                    150
  53.--Notice of distress. Alaska                                     152
  54.--Notice of departure and refuge. Alaska                         152
  55.--Notice of departure to relieve distress. Alaska                153
  56.--Ammunition wanted. Alaska                                      154
  57.--Assistance wanted in hunt. Alaska                              154
  58.--Starving hunters. Alaska                                       154
  59.--Starving hunters. Alaska                                       155
  60.--Lean Wolf’s map. Hidatsa                                       158
  61.--Letter to “Little-man” from his father. Cheyenne               160
  62.--Drawing of smoke signal. Alaska                                161
  63.--Tesuque Diplomatic Packet                                      162
  64.--Tesuque Diplomatic Packet                                      162
  65.--Tesuque Diplomatic Packet                                      162
  66.--Tesuque Diplomatic Packet                                      163
  67.--Tesuque Diplomatic Packet                                      163
  68.--Dakota pictograph: for Kaiowa                                  165
  69.--Dakota pictograph: for Arikara                                 166
  70.--Dakota pictograph: for Omaha                                   166
  71.--Dakota pictograph: for Pawnee                                  166
  72.--Dakota pictograph: for Assiniboine                             166
  73.--Dakota pictograph: for Gros Ventre                             166
  74.--Lean-Wolf as “Partisan”                                        168
  75.--Two-Strike as “Partisan”                                       169
  76.--Lean-Wolf (personal name)                                      172
  77.--Pointer. Dakota                                                172
  78.--Shadow. Dakota                                                 173
  79.--Loud-Talker. Dakota                                            173
  80.--Boat Paddle. Arikara                                           182
  81.--African property mark                                          182
  82.--Hidatsa feather marks: First to strike enemy                   184
  83.--Hidatsa feather marks: Second to strike enemy                  184
  84.--Hidatsa feather marks: Third to strike enemy                   184
  85.--Hidatsa feather marks: Fourth to strike enemy                  184
  86.--Hidatsa feather marks: Wounded by an enemy                     184
  87.--Hidatsa feather marks: Killed a woman                          184
  88.--Dakota feather marks: Killed an enemy                          185
  89.--Dakota feather marks: Cut throat and scalped                   185
  90.--Dakota feather marks: Cut enemy’s throat                       185
  91.--Dakota feather marks: Third to strike                          185
  92.--Dakota feather marks: Fourth to strike                         185
  93.--Dakota feather marks: Fifth to strike                          185
  94.--Dakota feather marks: Many wounds                              185
  95.--Successful defense. Hidatsa, etc.                              186
  96.--Two successful defenses. Hidatsa, etc.                         186
  97.--Captured a horse. Hidatsa, etc.                                186
  98.--First to strike an enemy. Hidatsa                              187
  99.--Second to strike an enemy. Hidatsa                             187
  100.--Third to strike an enemy. Hidatsa                             187
  101.--Fourth to strike an enemy. Hidatsa                            187
  102.--Fifth to strike an enemy. Arikara                            187
  103.--Struck four enemies. Hidatsa                                  187
  104.--Thunder bird. Dakota                                          188
  105.--Thunder bird. Dakota                                          188
  106.--Thunder bird (wingless). Dakota                               189
  107.--Thunder bird (in beads). Dakota                               189
  108.--Thunder bird. Haida                                           190
  109.--Thunder bird. Twana                                           190
  110.--Ivory record, Shaman exorcising demon. Alaska                 191
  111.--Ivory record, Supplication for success. Alaska                192
  111_a_.--Shaman’s Lodge. Alaska                                196
  112.--Alaska votive offering                                        197
  113.--Alaska grave-post                                             198
  114.--Alaska grave-post                                             199
  115.--Alaska village and burial grounds                             199
  116.--New Zealand grave effigy                                      200
  117.--New Zealand grave-post                                        201
  118.--New Zealand house posts                                       201
  119.--Mdewakantawan fetich                                          202
  120.--Ottawa pipe-stem                                              204
  121.--Walrus hunter. Alaska                                         205
  122.--Alaska carving with records                                   205
  123.--Origin of Brulé. Dakota                                       207
  124.--Running Antelope: Killed one Arikara                          208
  125.--Running Antelope: Shot and scalped an Arikara                 209
  126.--Running Antelope: Shot an Arikara                             209
  127.--Running Antelope: Killed two warriors                         210
  128.--Running Antelope: Killed ten men and three women              210
  129.--Running Antelope: Killed two chiefs                           211
  130.--Running Antelope: Killed one Arikara                          211
  131.--Running Antelope: Killed one Arikara                          212
  132.--Running Antelope: Killed two Arikara hunters                  212
  133.--Running Antelope: Killed five Arikara                         213
  134.--Running Antelope: Killed an Arikara                           213
  135.--Record of hunt. Alaska                                        214
  136.--Shoshoni horse raid                                           215
  137.--Drawing on buffalo shoulder-blade. Camanche                   216
  138.--Cross-Bear’s death                                            217
  139.--Bark record from Red Lake, Minnesota                          218
  140.--Sign for pipe. Dakota                                         219
  141.--Plenty buffalo meat. Dakota                                   219
  142.--Plenty buffalo meat. Dakota                                   220
  143.--Pictograph for Trade. Dakota                                  220
  144.--Starvation. Dakota                                            220
  145.--Starvation. Ottawa and Pottawatomi                            221
  146.--Pain. Died of “Whistle.” Dakota                               221
  147.--Example of Algonkian petroglyphs, from Millsborough,
          Pennsylvania                                                224
  148.--Example of Algonkian petroglyphs, from Hamilton Farm,
          West Virginia                                               225
  149.--Example of Algonkian petroglyphs, from Safe Harbor,
          Pennsylvania                                                226
  150.--Example of Western Algonkian petroglyphs, from Wyoming        227
  151.--Example of Shoshonian petroglyphs, from Idaho                 228
  152.--Example of Shoshonian petroglyphs, from Idaho                 229
  153.--Example of Shoshonian petroglyphs, from Utah                  230
  154.--Example of Shoshonian rock painting, from Utah                230
  155.--Rock painting, from Tule River, California                    235
  156.--Sacred inclosure from Arizona. Moki                           237
  157.--Ceremonial head-dress. Moki                                   237
  158.--Houses. Moki                                                  237
  159.--Burden-sticks. Moki                                           238
  160.--Arrows. Moki                                                  238
  161.--Blossoms. Moki                                                238
  162.--Lightning. Moki                                               238
  163.--Clouds. Moki                                                  238
  164.--Clouds with rain. Moki                                        238
  165.--Stars, Moki                                                   238
  166.--Sun. Moki                                                     239
  167.--Sunrise. Moki,                                                239
  168.--Drawing of Dakota lodges, by Hidatsa                          240
  169.--Drawing of earth lodges, by Hidatsa                           240
  170.--Drawing of white man’s house, by Hidatsa                      240
  171.--Hidatsati, the home of the Hidatsa                            240
  172.--Horses and man. Arikara                                       240
  173.--Dead man. Arikara                                             240
  174.--Second to strike enemy. Hidatsa                               240
  175.--Third to strike enemy. Hidatsa                                240
  176.--Scalp taken. Hidatsa                                          240
  177.--Enemy struck and gun captured. Hidatsa                        240
  178.--Mendota drawing. Dakota                                       241
  179.--Symbol of war. Dakota                                         241
  180.--Captives. Dakota                                              242
  181.--Circle of men. Dakota                                         242
  182.--Shooting from river banks. Dakota                             242
  183.--Panther. Haida                                                242
  184.--Wolf head. Haida                                              243
  185.--Drawings on an African knife                                  243
  186.--Conventional characters: Men. Arikara                         244
  187.--Conventional characters: Man. Innuit                          244
  188.--Conventional characters: Dead man. Satsika                    244
  189.--Conventional characters: Man addressed. Innuit                244
  190.--Conventional characters: Man. Innuit                          244
  191.--Conventional characters: Man. From Tule River, California     244
  192.--Conventional characters: Man. From Tule River, California     244
  193.--Conventional characters: Disabled man. Ojibwa                 244
  194.--Conventional characters: Shaman. Innuit                       245
  195.--Conventional characters: Supplication. Innuit                 245
  196.--Conventional characters: Man. Ojibwa                          245
  197.--Conventional characters: Spiritually enlightened man. Ojibwa  245
  198.--Conventional characters: A wabeno. Ojibwa                     245
  199.--Conventional characters: An evil Meda. Ojibwa                 245
  200.--Conventional characters: A Meda. Ojibwa                       245
  201.--Conventional characters: Man. Hidatsa                         245
  202.--Conventional characters: Headless body. Ojibwa                245
  203.--Conventional characters: Headless body. Ojibwa                245
  204.--Conventional characters: Man. Moki                            245
  205.--Conventional characters: Man. From Siberia                    245
  206.--Conventional characters: Superior knowledge. Ojibwa           246
  207.--Conventional characters: An American. Ojibwa                  246
  208.--Specimen of imitated pictograph                               249
  209.--Symbols of cross                                              252




A pictograph is a writing by picture. It conveys and records an idea or
occurrence by graphic means without the use of words or letters. The
execution of the pictures of which it is composed often exhibits the
first crude efforts of graphic art, and their study in that relation
is of value. When pictures are employed as writing the conception
intended to be presented is generally analyzed, and only its most
essential points are indicated, with the result that the characters
when frequently repeated become conventional, and in their later forms
cease to be recognizable as objective portraitures. This exhibition of
conventionalizing also has its own import in the history of art.

Pictographs are considered in the present paper chiefly in reference to
their significance as one form of thought-writing directly addressed
to the sight, gesture-language being the other and probably earlier
form. So far as they are true ideographs they are the permanent,
direct, visible expression of ideas of which gesture-language gives the
transient expression. When adopted for syllabaries or alphabets, which
is known to be the historical course of evolution in that regard, they
have ceased to be the direct and have become the indirect expression
of the ideas framed in oral speech. The writing common in civilization
records sounds directly, not primarily thoughts, the latter having
first been translated into sounds. The trace of pictographs in the
latter use shows the earlier and predominant conceptions.

The importance of the study of pictographs depends upon their
examination as a phase in the evolution of human culture, or as
containing valuable information to be ascertained by interpretation.

The invention of alphabetic writing being by general admission the
great step marking the change from barbarism into civilization, the
history of its earlier development must be valuable. It is inferred
from internal evidence that picture-writing preceded and originated
the graphic systems of Egypt, Nineveh, and China, but in North America
its use is still modern and current. It can be studied there, without
any requirement of inference or hypothesis, in actual existence as
applied to records and communications. Furthermore, its transition
into signs of sound is apparent in the Aztec and the Maya characters,
in which stage it was only arrested by foreign conquest. The earliest
lessons of the birth and growth of culture in this most important
branch of investigation can therefore be best learned from the Western
Hemisphere. In this connection it may be noticed that picture-writing
is found in sustained vigor on the same continent where sign-language
has prevailed or continued in active operation to an extent unknown in
other parts of the world. These modes of expression, _i. e._, transient
and permanent idea-writing, are so correlated in their origin and
development that neither can be studied with advantage to the exclusion
of the other.

The limits assigned to this paper allow only of its comprehending the
Indians north of Mexico, except as the pictographs of other peoples
are introduced for comparison. Among these no discovery has yet
been made of any of the several devices, such as the rebus, or the
initial, adopted elsewhere, by which the element of sound apart from
significance has been introduced.

The first stage of picture-writing as recognized among the Egyptians
was the representation of a material object in such style or connection
as determined it not to be a mere portraiture of that object, but
figurative of some other object or person. This stage is abundantly
exhibited among the Indians. Indeed, their personal and tribal names
thus objectively represented constitute the largest part of their
picture-writing so far thoroughly understood.

The second step gained by the Egyptians was when the picture became
used as a symbol of some quality or characteristic. It can be readily
seen how a hawk with bright eye and lofty flight might be selected as
a symbol of divinity and royalty, and that the crocodile should denote
darkness, while a slightly further step in metaphysical symbolism made
the ostrich feather, from the equality of its filaments, typical of
truth. It is evident from examples given in the present paper that
the North American tribes at the time of the Columbian discovery had
entered upon this second step of picture-writing, though with marked
inequality between tribes and regions in advance therein. None of them
appear to have reached such proficiency in the expression of connected
ideas by picture as is shown in the sign-language existing among some
of them, in which even conjunctions and prepositions are indicated.
Still many truly ideographic pictures are known.

A consideration relative to the antiquity of mystic symbolism, and its
position in the several culture-periods, arises in this connection.
It appears to have been an outgrowth of human thought, perhaps in the
nature of an excrescence, useful for a time, but abandoned after a
certain stage of advancement.

A criticism has been made on the whole subject of pictography by Dr.
Richard Andree, who, in his work, Ethnographische Parallelen und
Vergleiche, Stuttgart, 1878, has described and figured a large number
of examples of petroglyphs, a name given by him to rock-drawings
and adopted by the present writer. His view appears to be that these
figures are frequently the idle marks which, among civilized people,
boys or ignorant persons cut with their pen-knives on the desks and
walls of school-rooms, or scrawl on the walls of lanes and retired
places. From this criticism, however, Dr. Andree carefully excludes the
pictographs of the North American Indians, his conclusion being that
those found in other parts of the world generally occupy a transition
stage lower than that conceded for the Indians. It is possible that
significance may yet be ascertained in many of the characters found in
other regions, and perhaps this may be aided by the study of those in
North America; but no doubt should exist that the latter have purpose
and meaning. Any attempt at the relegation of such pictographs as are
described in the present paper, and have been the subject of the study
of the present writer, to any trivial origin can be met by a thorough
knowledge of the labor and pains which were necessary in the production
of some of the petroglyphs described.

All criticism in question with regard to the actual significance of
North American pictographs is still better met by their practical use
by historic Indians for important purposes, as important to them as
the art of writing, of which the present paper presents a large number
of conclusive examples. It is also known that when they now make
pictographs it is generally done with intention and significance.

Even when this work is undertaken to supply the demand for painted
robes as articles of trade it is a serious manufacture, though
sometimes imitative in character and not intrinsically significant.
All other instances known in which pictures are made without original
design, as indicated under the several classifications of this paper,
are when they are purely ornamental; but in such cases they are often
elaborate and artistic, never the idle scrawls above mentioned. A main
object of this paper is to call attention to the subject in other parts
of the world, and to ascertain whether the practice of pictography
does not still exist in some corresponding manner beyond what is now

A general deduction made after several years of study of pictographs of
all kinds found among the North American Indians is that they exhibit
very little trace of mysticism or of esotericism in any form. They
are objective representations, and cannot be treated as ciphers or
cryptographs in any attempt at their interpretation. A knowledge of
the customs, costumes, including arrangement of hair, paint, and all
tribal designations, and of their histories and traditions is essential
to the understanding of their drawings, for which reason some of those
particulars known to have influenced pictography are set forth in this
paper, and others are suggested which possibly had a similar influence.

Comparatively few of their picture signs have become merely
conventional. A still smaller proportion are either symbolical or
emblematic, but some of these are noted. By far the larger part of them
are merely mnemonic records and are treated of in connection with
material objects formerly and, perhaps, still used mnemonically.

It is believed that the interpretation of the ancient forms is to be
obtained, if at all, not by the discovery of any hermeneutic key, but
by an understanding of the modern forms, some of which fortunately
can be interpreted by living men; and when this is not the case
the more recent forms can be made intelligible at least in part by
thorough knowledge of the historic tribes, including their sociology,
philosophy, and arts, such as is now becoming acquired, and of their

It is not believed that any considerable information of value in
an historical point of view will be obtained directly from the
interpretation of the pictographs in North America. The only pictures
which can be of great antiquity are rock-carvings and those in shell or
similar substances resisting the action of time, which have been or may
be found in mounds. The greater part of those already known are simply
peckings, etchings, or paintings delineating natural objects, very
often animals, and illustrate the beginning of pictorial art. It is,
however, probable that others were intended to commemorate events or to
represent ideas entertained by their authors, but the events which to
them were of moment are of little importance as history. They referred
generally to some insignificant fight or some season of plenty or of
famine, or to other circumstances the evident consequence of which has
long ceased.

While, however, it is not supposed that old inscriptions exist directly
recording substantively important events, it is hoped that some
materials for history can be gathered from the characters in a manner
similar to the triumph of comparative philology in resurrecting the
life-history and culture of the ancient Aryans. The significance of the
characters being granted, they exhibit what chiefly interested their
authors, and those particulars may be of anthropologic consequence.
The study has so far advanced that, independent of the significance
of individual characters, several distinct types of execution are
noted which may be expected to disclose data regarding priscan habitat
and migration. In this connection it may be mentioned that recent
discoveries render it probable that some of the pictographs were
intended as guide-marks to point out trails, springs, and fords, and
some others are supposed to indicate at least the locality of mounds
and graves, and possibly to record specific statements concerning
them. A comparison of typical forms may also usefully be made with the
objects of art now exhumed in large numbers from the mounds.

Ample evidence exists that many of the pictographs, both ancient and
modern, are connected with the mythology and religious practices of
their makers. The interpretations obtained during the present year of
some of those among the Moki, Zuñi, and Navajo, throw new and strong
light on this subject. It is regretted that the most valuable and novel
part of this information cannot be included in the present paper, as
it is in the possession of the Bureau of Ethnology in a shape not yet
arranged for publication, or forms part of the forthcoming volume of
the Transactions of the Anthropological Society of Washington, which
may not be anticipated.

The following general remarks of Schoolcraft, Vol. I, p. 351, are of
some value, though they apply with any accuracy only to the Ojibwa and
are tinctured with a fondness for the mysterious:

  For their pictographic devices the North American Indians have two
  terms, namely, _Kekeewin_, or such things as are generally understood
  by the tribe; and _Kekeenowin_, or teachings of the _medas_ or
  priests, _jossakeeds_ or prophets. The knowledge of the latter is
  chiefly confined to persons who are versed in their system of magic
  medicine, or their religion, and may be deemed hieratic. The former
  consists of the common figurative signs, such as are employed at
  places of sepulture, or by hunting or traveling parties. It is also
  employed in the _muzzinábiks_, or rock-writings. Many of the figures
  are common to both, and are seen in the drawings generally; but it
  is to be understood that this results from the figure-alphabet being
  precisely the same in both, while the devices of the nugamoons, or
  medicine, wabino, hunting, and war songs, are known solely to the
  initiates who have learned them, and who always pay high to the
  native professors for this knowledge.

It must, however, be admitted, as above suggested, that many of the
pictographs found are not of the historic or mythologic significance
once supposed. For instance, the examination of the rock carvings in
several parts of the country has shown that some of them were mere
records of the visits of individuals to important springs or to fords
on regularly established trails. In this respect there seems to have
been, in the intention of the Indians, very much the same spirit as
induces the civilized man to record his initials upon objects in the
neighborhood of places of general resort. At Oakley Springs, Arizona
Territory, totemic marks have been found, evidently made by the
same individual at successive visits, showing that on the number of
occasions indicated he had passed by those springs, probably camping
there, and such record was the habit of the neighboring Indians at that
time. The same repetition of totemic names has been found in great
numbers in the pipestone quarries of Dakota, and also at some old
fords in West Virginia. But these totemic marks are so designed and
executed as to have intrinsic significance and value, wholly different
in this respect from vulgar names in alphabetic form. It should also
be remembered that mere _graffiti_ are recognized as of value by the
historian, the anthropologist, and the artist.

One very marked peculiarity of the drawings of the Indians is that
within each particular system, such as may be called a tribal system,
of pictography, every Indian draws in precisely the same manner. The
figures of a man, of a horse, and of every other object delineated, are
made by every one who attempts to make any such figure with all the
identity of which their mechanical skill is capable, thus showing their
conception and motive to be the same.

The intention of the present work is not to present at this time a
view of the whole subject of pictography, though the writer has been
preparing materials with a reference to that more ambitious project.
The paper is limited to the presentation of the most important known
pictographs of the North American Indians, with such classification
as has been found convenient to the writer, and, for that reason, may
be so to collaborators. The scheme of the paper has been to give very
simply one or more examples, with illustrations, in connection with
each one of the headings or titles of the classifications designated.
This plan has involved a considerable amount of cross reference,
because, in many cases, a character, or a group of characters, could be
considered with reference to a number of noticeable characteristics,
and it was a question of choice under which one of the headings
it should be presented, involving reference to it from the other
divisions of the paper. An amount of space disproportionate to the
mere subdivision of Time under the class of Mnemonics, is occupied by
the Dakota Winter Counts, but it is not believed that any apology is
necessary for their full presentation, as they not only exhibit the
device mentioned in reference to their use as calendars, but furnish a
repertory for all points connected with the graphic portrayal of ideas.

Attention is invited to the employment of the heraldic scheme of
designating colors by lines, dots, etc., in those instances in the
illustrations where color appeared to have significance, while it was
not practicable to produce the coloration of the originals. In many
cases, however, the figures are too minute to permit the successful use
of that scheme, and the text must be referred to for explanation.

Thanks are due and rendered for valuable assistance to correspondents
and especially to officers of the Bureau of Ethnology and the United
States Geological Survey, whose names are generally mentioned in
connection with their several contributions. Acknowledgment is
also made now and throughout the paper to Dr. W. J. Hoffman who
has officially assisted the present writer during several years by
researches in the field, and by drawing nearly all the illustrations


Etchings or paintings on rocks in North America are distributed

They are found throughout the extent of the continent, on bowlders
formed by the sea waves or polished by ice of the glacial epoch; on the
faces of rock ledges adjoining streams; on the high walls of cañons
and cliffs; on the sides and roofs of caves; in short, wherever smooth
surfaces of rock appear. Drawings have also been discovered on stones
deposited in mounds and caves. Yet while these records are so frequent,
there are localities to be distinguished in which they are especially
abundant and noticeable. Also they differ markedly in character of
execution and apparent subject-matter.

An obvious division can be made between characters etched or pecked and
those painted without incision. This division in execution coincides to
a certain extent with geographic areas. So far as ascertained, painted
characters prevail perhaps exclusively throughout Southern California,
west and southwest of the Sierra Nevada. Pictures, either painted or
incised, are found in perhaps equal frequency in the area extending
eastward from the Colorado River to Georgia, northward into West
Virginia, and in general along the course of the Mississippi River. In
some cases the glyphs are both incised and painted. The remaining parts
of the United States show rock-etchings almost exclusive of paintings.

It is proposed with the accumulation of information to portray the
localities of these records upon a chart accompanied by a full
descriptive text. In such chart will be designated their relative
frequency, size, height, position, color, age, and other particulars
regarded as important. With such chart and list the classification and
determination now merely indicated may become thorough.

In the present paper a few only of the more important localities will
be mentioned; generally those which are referred to under several
appropriate heads in various parts of the paper. Notices of some of
these have been published; but many of them are publicly mentioned for
the first time in this paper, knowledge respecting them having been
obtained by the personal researches of the officers of the Bureau of
Ethnology, or by their correspondents.


A large number of known and described pictographs on rocks occur
in that portion of the United States and Canada at one time in the
possession of the several tribes constituting the Algonkian linguistic
stock. This is particularly noticeable throughout the country of the
great lakes, and the Northern, Middle, and New England States.

The voluminous discussion upon the Dighton Rock, Massachusetts,
inscription, renders it impossible wholly to neglect it.

The following description, taken from Schoolcraft’s History, Condition,
and Prospect of the Indian Tribes of the United States, Vol. IV, p.
119, which is accompanied with a plate, is, however, sufficient. It
is merely a type of Algonkin rock-carving, not so interesting as many

  The ancient inscription on a bowlder of greenstone rock lying in
  the margin of the Assonet, or Taunton River, in the area of ancient
  Vinland, was noticed by the New England colonists so early as 1680,
  when Dr. Danforth made a drawing of it. This outline, together with
  several subsequent copies of it, at different eras, reaching to 1830,
  all differing considerably in their details, but preserving a certain
  general resemblance, is presented in the Antiquatés Americanes
  [_sic_] (Tab. XI, XII) and referred to the same era of Scandinavian
  discovery. The imperfections of the drawings (including that executed
  under the auspices of the Rhode Island Historical Society, in 1830,
  Tab. XII) and the recognition of some characters bearing more or less
  resemblance to antique Roman letters and figures, may be considered
  to have misled Mr. Magnusen in his interpretation of it. From
  whatever cause, nothing could, it would seem, have been wider from
  the purport and true interpretation of it. It is of purely Indian
  origin, and is executed in the peculiar symbolic character of the


Many of the rocks along the river courses in Northern and Western
Pennsylvania bear traces of carvings, though, on account of the
character of the geological formations, some of these records are
almost, if not entirely, obliterated.

Mr. P. W. Shafer published in a historical map of Pennsylvania, in
1875, several groups of pictographs. (They had before appeared in
a rude and crowded form in the Transactions of the Anthropological
Institute of New York, N. Y., 1871-’72, p. 66, Figs. 25, 26, where
the localities are mentioned as “Big” and “Little” Indian Rocks,
respectively.) One of these is situated on the Susquehanna River,
below the dam at Safe Harbor, and clearly shows its Algonkin origin.
The characters are nearly all either animals or various forms of the
human body. Birds, bird-tracks, and serpents also occur. A part of this
pictograph is presented below, Figure 149, page 226.

On the same chart a group of pictures is also given, copied from the
originals on the Allegheny River, in Venango County, 5 miles south of
Franklin. There are but six characters furnished in this instance,
three of which are variations of the human form, while the others are

Mr. J. Sutton Wall, of Monongahela City, describes in correspondence a
rock bearing pictographs opposite the town of Millsborough, in Fayette
County, Pennsylvania. This rock is about 390 feet above the level of
Monongahela River, and belongs to the Waynesburg stratum of sandstone.
It is detached, and rests somewhat below its true horizon. It is about
6 feet in thickness, and has vertical sides; only two figures are
carved on the sides, the inscriptions being on the top, and are now
considerably worn. Mr. Wall mentions the outlines of animals and some
other figures, formed by grooves or channels cut from an inch to a mere
trace in depth. No indications of tool marks were discovered. It is
presented below as Figure 147, page 224.

The resemblance between this record and the drawings on Dighton Rock is
to be noted, as well as that between both of them and some in Ohio.

Mr. J. Sutton Wall also contributes a group of etchings on what is
known as the “Geneva Picture Rock,” in the Monongahela Valley, near
Geneva. These are foot-prints and other characters similar to those
mentioned from Hamilton Farm, West Virginia, which are shown in Figure
148, page 225.

Schoolcraft (Vol. IV, pp. 172, 173, Pll. 17, 18), describes also,
presenting plates, a pictograph on the Allegheny River as follows:

  One of the most often noticed of these inscriptions exists on the
  left bank of this river [the Allegheny], about six miles below
  Franklin (the ancient Venango), Pennsylvania. It is a prominent
  point of rocks, around which the river deflects, rendering this
  point a very conspicuous object. * The rock, which has been lodged
  here in some geological convulsion, is a species of hard sandstone,
  about twenty-two feet in length by fourteen in breadth. It has an
  inclination to the horizon of about fifty degrees. During freshets
  it is nearly overflown. The inscription is made upon the inclined
  face of the rock. The present inhabitants in the country call it
  the ‘Indian God.’ It is only in low stages of water that it can be
  examined. Captain Eastman has succeeded, by wading into the water,
  in making a perfect copy of this ancient record, rejecting from its
  borders the interpolations of modern names put there by boatmen,
  to whom it is known as a point of landing. The inscription itself
  appears distinctly to record, in symbols, the triumphs in hunting and


In the Final Report of the Ohio State Board of Centennial Managers,
Columbus, 1877, many localities showing rock carvings are noted. The
most important (besides those mentioned below) are as follows: Newark,
Licking County, where human hands, many varieties of bird tracks, and a
cross are noticed. Independence, Cuyahoga County, showing human hands
and feet and serpents. Amherst, Lorain County, presenting similar
objects. Wellsville, Columbiana County, where the characters are more
elaborate and varied.

Mr. James W. Ward describes in the Journal of the Anthropological
Institute of New York, Vol. I, 1871-’72, pp. 57-64, Figs. 14-22, some
sculptured rocks. They are reported as occurring near Barnesville,
Belmont County, and consist chiefly of the tracks of birds and animals.
Serpentine forms also occur, together with concentric rings. The
author also quotes Mr. William A. Adams as describing, in a letter to
Professor Silliman in 1842, some figures on the surface of a sandstone
rock, lying on the bank of the Muskingum River. These figures are
mentioned as being engraved in the rock and consist of tracks of the
turkey, and of man.


Mr. P. W. Norris, of the Bureau of Ethnology, reports that he found
numerous localities along the Kanawha River, West Virginia, bearing
pictographs. Rock etchings are numerous upon smooth rocks, covered
during high water, at the prominent fords of the river, as well as
in the niches or long shallow caves high in the rocky cliffs of this
region. Although rude representations of men, animals, and some deemed
symbolic characters were found, none were observed superior to, or
essentially differing from, those of modern Indians.

Mr. John Haywood mentions (The Natural and Aboriginal History of
Tennessee, Nashville, 1823, pp. 332, 333) rock etchings four miles
below the Burning Spring, near the mouth of Campbell’s Creek, Kanawha
County, West Virginia. These consist of forms of various animals,
as the deer, buffalo, fox, hare; of fish of various kinds; “infants
scalped and scalps alone,” and men of natural size. The rock is said to
be in the Kanawha River, near its northern shore, accessible only at
low water, and then only by boat.

On the rocky walls of Little Coal River, near the mouth of Big Horse
Creek, are cliffs upon which are many carvings. One of these measures
8 feet in length and 5 feet in height, and consists of a dense mass of

About 2 miles above Mount Pleasant, Mason County, West Virginia, on the
north side of the Kanawha River, are numbers of characters, apparently
totemic. These are at the foot of the hills flanking the river.

On the cliffs near the mouth of the Kanawha River, opposite Mount
Carbon, Nicholas County, West Virginia, are numerous pictographs. These
appear to be cut into the sandstone rock.

See also page 225, Figure 148.


Charles C. Jones, jr., in his Antiquities of the Southern Indians,
etc., New York, 1873, pp. 62, 63, gives some general remarks upon the
pictographs of the southern Indians, as follows:

  In painting and rock writing the efforts of the Southern Indians
  were confined to the fanciful and profuse ornamentation of their
  own persons with various colors, in which red, yellow, and black
  predominated, and to marks, signs, and figures depicted on skins and
  scratched on wood, the shoulder blade of a buffalo, or on stone.
  The smooth bark of a standing tree or the face of a rock was used
  to commemorate some feat of arms, to indicate the direction and
  strength of a military expedition, or the solemnization of a treaty
  of peace. High up the perpendicular sides of mountain gorges, and
  at points apparently inaccessible save to the fowls of the air,
  are seen representations of the sun and moon, accompanied by rude
  characters, the significance of which is frequently unknown to the
  present observer. The motive which incited to the execution of work
  so perilous was, doubtless, religious in its character, and directly
  connected with the worship of the sun and his pale consort of the

The same author, page 377, particularly describes and illustrates one
in Georgia, as follows:

  In Forsyth County, Georgia, is a carved or incised bowlder of
  fine-grained granite, about 9 feet long, 4 feet 6 inches high, and 3
  feet broad at its widest point. The figures are cut in the bowlder
  from one-half to three-fourths of an inch deep. * It is generally
  believed that they are the work of the Cherokees.

These figures are chiefly circles, both plain, nucleated, and
concentric, sometimes two or more being joined by straight lines,
forming what is now known as the “spectacle-shaped” figure.

Dr. M. F. Stephenson mentions, in Geology and Mineralogy of Georgia,
Atlanta, 1871, p. 199, sculptures of human feet, various animals, bear
tracks, etc., in Enchanted Mountain, Union County, Georgia. The whole
number of etchings is reported as one hundred and forty-six.


Mr. P. W. Norris found numerous caves on the banks of the Mississippi
River, in Northeastern Iowa, 4 miles south of New Albion, containing
incised pictographs. Fifteen miles south of this locality paintings
occur on the cliffs.


Mr. P. W. Norris has discovered large numbers of pecked totemic
characters on the horizontal face of the ledges of rock at Pipe Stone
Quarry, Minnesota, of which he has presented copies. The custom
prevailed, it is stated, for each Indian who gathered stone (Catlinite)
for pipes to inscribe his totem upon the rock before venturing to
quarry upon this ground. Some of the cliffs in the immediate vicinity
were of too hard a nature to admit of pecking or scratching, and upon
these the characters were placed in colors.


A number of pictographs in Wyoming are described in the report on
Northwestern Wyoming, including Yellowstone National Park, by Capt.
William A. Jones, U. S. A., Washington, 1875, p. 268 _et seq._, Figures
50 to 53 in that work. The last three in order of these figures are
reproduced in Sign Language among North American Indians, in the First
Annual Report, Bureau of Ethnology, pages 378 and 379, to show their
connection with gesture signs. The most important one was discovered on
Little Popo-Agie, Northwestern Wyoming, by members of Captain Jones’s
party in 1873. The etchings are upon a nearly vertical wall of the
yellow sandstone in the rear of Murphy’s ranch, and appear to be of
some antiquity.

Further remarks, with specimens of the figures, are presented in this
paper as Figure 150, on page 227.

Dr. William H. Corbusier, U. S. Army, in a letter to the writer,
mentions the discovery of rock etchings on a sandstone rock near the
headwaters of Sage Creek, in the vicinity of Fort Washakie, Wyoming.
Dr. Corbusier remarks that neither the Shoshoni nor the Arapaho Indians
know who made the etchings. The two chief figures appear to be those
of the human form, with the hands and arms partly uplifted, the whole
being surrounded above and on either side by an irregular line.

The method of grouping, together with various accompanying appendages,
as irregular lines, spirals, etc., observed in Dr. Corbusier’s drawing,
show great similarity to the Algonkin type, and resemble some etchings
found near the Wind River Mountains, which were the work of Blackfeet
(Satsika) Indians, who, in comparatively recent times, occupied
portions of the country in question, and probably also etched the
designs near Fort Washakie.

A number of examples from Idaho appear _infra_, pages 228 and 229.


At the lower extremity of Pyramid Lake, Nevada, pictographs have been
found by members of the United States Geological Survey, though no
accurate reproductions are available. These characters are mentioned as
incised upon the surface of basalt rocks.

On the western slope of Lone Butte, in the Carson Desert, Nevada,
pictographs occur in considerable numbers. All of these appear to have
been produced, on the faces of bowlders and rocks, by pecking and
scratching with some hard mineral material like quartz. No copies have
been obtained as yet.

Great numbers of incised characters of various kinds are found on the
walls of rock flanking Walker River, near Walker Lake, Nevada. Waving
lines, rings, and what appear to be vegetable forms are of frequent
occurrence. The human form and footprints are also depicted.

Among the copies of pictographs obtained in various portions of the
Northwestern States and Territories, by Mr. G. K. Gilbert, is one
referred as to as being on a block of basalt at Reveillé, Nevada, and
is mentioned as being Shinumo or Moki. This suggestion is evidently
based upon the general resemblance to drawings found in Arizona, and
known to have been made by the Moki Indians. The locality is within
the territory of the Shoshonian linguistic division, and the etchings
are in all probability the work of one or more of the numerous tribes
comprised within that division.


Numerous bowlders and rock escarpments at and near the Dalles of the
Columbia River, Oregon, are covered with incised or pecked pictographs.
Human figures occur, though characters of other forms predominate.

Mr. Albert S. Gatschet reports the discovery of rock etchings near
Gaston, Oregon, in 1878, which are said to be near the ancient
settlement of the Tuálati (or Atfálati) Indians, according to the
statement of these people. These etchings are about 100 feet above the
valley bottom, and occur on six rocks of soft sandstone, projecting
from the grassy hillside of Patten’s Valley, opposite Darling Smith’s
farm, and are surrounded with timber on two sides. The distance from
Gaston is about 4 miles; from the old Tuálati settlement probably not
more than 2-1/2 miles in an air-line.

This sandstone ledge extends for one-eighth of a mile horizontally
along the hillside, upon the projecting portions of which the
inscriptions are found. These rocks differ greatly in size, and slant
forward so that the inscribed portions are exposed to the frequent
rains of that region. The first rock, or that one nearest the mouth of
the cañon, consists of horizontal zigzag lines, and a detached straight
line, also horizontal. On another side of the same rock is a series
of oblique parallel lines. Some of the most striking characters found
upon other exposed portions of the rock appear to be human figures,
_i. e._, circles to which radiating lines are attached, and bearing
indications of eyes and mouth, long vertical lines running downward
as if to represent the body, and terminating in a bifurcation, as if
intended for legs, toes, etc. To the right of one figure is an arm and
three-fingered hand (similar to some of the Moki characters), bent
downward from the elbow, the humerus extending at a right angle from
the body. Horizontal rows of short vertical lines are placed below and
between some of the figures, probably numerical marks of some kind.

Other characters occur of various forms, the most striking being an
arrow pointing upward, with two horizontal lines drawn across the
shaft, vertical lines having short oblique lines attached thereto.

Mr. Gatschet, furthermore, remarks that the Tuálati attach a trivial
story to the origin of these pictures, the substance of which is as
follows: The Tillamuk warriors living on the Pacific coast were often
at variance with the several Kalapuya tribes. One day, passing through
Patten’s Valley to invade the country of the Tuálati, they inquired
of a passing woman how far they were from their camp. The woman,
desirous not to betray her own countrymen, said that they were yet at
a distance of one (or two?) days’ travel. This made them reflect over
the intended invasion, and holding a council they preferred to retire.
In commemoration of this the inscription with its numeration marks, was
incised by the Tuálati.

Capt. Charles Bendire, U. S. Army, states in a letter that Col. Henry
C. Merriam, U. S. Army, discovered pictographs on a perpendicular cliff
of granite at the lower end of Lake Chelan, lat. 48° N., near old Fort
O’Kinakane, on the upper Columbia River. The etchings appear to have
been made at widely different periods, and are evidently quite old.
Those which appeared the earliest were from twenty-five to thirty feet
above the present water level. Those appearing more recent are about
ten feet above water level. The figures are in black and red colors,
representing Indians with bows and arrows, elk, deer, bear, beaver, and
fish. There are four or five rows of these figures, and quite a number
in each row. The present native inhabitants know nothing whatever
regarding the history of these paintings.

For another example of pictographs from Washington see Figure 109, p.


A locality in the southern interior of Utah has been called Pictograph
Rocks, on account of the numerous records of that character found there.

Mr. G. K. Gilbert, of the United States Geological Survey, in 1875
collected a number of copies of inscriptions in Temple Creek Cañon,
Southeastern Utah, accompanied by the following notes: “The drawings
were found only on the northeast wall of the cañon, where it cuts the
Vermillion cliff sandstone. The chief part are etched, apparently
by pounding with a sharp point. The outline of a figure is usually
more deeply cut than the body. Other marks are produced by rubbing or
scraping, and still other by laying on colors. Some, not all, of the
colors are accompanied by a rubbed appearance, as though the material
had been a dry chalk.

“I could discover no tools at the foot of the wall, only fragments of
pottery, flints, and a metate.

“Several fallen blocks of sandstone have rubbed depressions that may
have been ground out in the sharpening of tools. There have been many
dates of inscriptions, and each new generation has unscrupulously run
its lines over the pictures already made. Upon the best protected
surfaces, as well as the most exposed, there are drawings dimmed beyond
restoration and others distinct. The period during which the work
accumulated was longer by far than the time which has passed since the
last. Some fallen blocks cover etchings on the wall, and are themselves

“Colors are preserved only where there is almost complete shelter from
rain. In two places the holes worn in the rock by swaying branches
impinge on etchings, but the trees themselves have disappeared. Some
etchings are left high and dry by a diminishing talus (15-20 feet), but
I saw none partly buried by an increasing talus (except in the case of
the fallen block already mentioned).

“The painted circles are exceedingly accurate, and it seems incredible
that they were made without the use of a radius.”

In the collection contributed by Mr. Gilbert there are at least fifteen
series or groups of figures, most of which consist of the human form
(from the simplest to the most complex style of drawing), animals,
either singly or in long files, as if driven, bird tracks, human feet
and hands, etc. There are also circles, parallel lines, and waving or
undulating lines, spots, and other unintelligible characters.

Mr. Gilbert also reports the discovery, in 1883, of a great number of
pictographs, chiefly in color, though some are etched, in a cañon of
the Book Cliff, containing Thompson’s spring, about 4 miles north of
Thompson’s station, on the Denver and Colorado Railroad, Utah.

Collections of drawings of pictographs at Black Rock spring, on Beaver
Creek, north of Milford, Utah, have been furnished by Mr. Gilbert. A
number of fallen blocks of basalt, at a low escarpment, are filled with
etchings upon the vertical faces. The characters are generally of an
“unintelligible” nature, though the human figure is drawn in complex
forms. Foot-prints, circles, etc., also abound.

Mr. I. C. Russell, of the United States Geological Survey, furnished
rude drawings of pictographs at Black Rock spring, Utah (see Figure
153). Mr. Gilbert Thompson, of the United States Geological Survey,
also discovered pictographs at Fool Creek Cañon, Utah (see Figure 154).
Both of those figures are on page 230.


Captain E. L. Berthoud furnished to the Kansas City Review of Science
and Industry, VII, 1883, No. 8, pp. 489, 490, the following:

  The place is 20 miles southeast of Rio Del Norte, at the entrance of
  the cañon of the Piedra Pintada (Painted Rock) Creek. The carvings
  are found on the right of the cañon, or valley, and upon volcanic
  rocks. They bear the marks of age and are cut in, not painted, as
  is still done by the Utes everywhere. They are found for a quarter
  of a mile along the north wall of the cañon, on the ranches of W.
  M. Maguire and F. T. Hudson, and consist of all manner of pictures,
  symbols, and hieroglyphics done by artists whose memory even
  tradition does not now preserve. The fact that these are carvings,
  done upon such hard rock merits them with additional interest, as
  they are quite distinct from the carvings I saw in New Mexico and
  Arizona on soft sand-stone. Though some of them are evidently of
  much greater antiquity than others, yet all are ancient, the Utes
  admitting them to have been old when their fathers conquered the


On the north wall of Cañon de Chelly, one fourth of a mile east of
the mouth of the cañon, are several groups of pictographs, consisting
chiefly of various grotesque forms of the human figure, and also
numbers of animals, circles, etc. A few of them are painted black, the
greater portion consisting of rather shallow lines which are in some
places considerably weathered.

Further up the cañon, in the vicinity of cliff-dwellings, are numerous
small groups of pictographic characters, consisting of men and animals,
waving or zigzag lines, and other odd and “unintelligible” figures.

Lieut. J. H. Simpson gives several illustrations of pictographs copied
from rocks in the northwest part of New Mexico in his Report of an
Expedition into the Navajo Country. (Sen. Ex. Doc. No. 64, 31st Cong.,
1st sess., 1856, Pl. 23, 24, 25.)

Inscriptions have been mentioned as occurring at El Moro, consisting
of etchings of human figures and other unintelligible characters. This
locality is better known as Inscription Rock. Lieutenant Simpson’s
remarks upon it, with illustrations, are given in the work last cited,
on page 120. He states that most of the characters are no higher than
a man’s head, and that some of them are undoubtedly of Indian origin.

At Arch Spring, near Zuñi, figures are cut upon a rock which Lieutenant
Whipple thinks present some faint similarity to those at Rocky Dell
Creek. (Rep. Pac. R. R, Exped., Vol. III, 1856, Pt. III, p. 39, Pl. 32.)

Near Ojo Pescado, in the vicinity of the ruins, are pictographs,
reported in the last mentioned volume and page, Plate 31, which are
very much weather-worn, and have “no trace of a modern hand about


On a table land near the Gila Bend is a mound of granite bowlders,
blackened by augite, and covered with unknown characters, the work of
human hands. On the ground near by were also traces of some of the
figures, showing some of the pictographs, at least, to have been the
work of modern Indians. Others were of undoubted antiquity, and the
signs and symbols intended, doubtless, to commemorate some great event.
(See Ex. Doc. No. 41, 30th Cong., 1st sess. (Emory’s Reconnaissance),
1848, p. 89; Ill. opposite p. 89, and on p. 90.)

Characters upon rocks, of questionable antiquity, are reported in the
last-mentioned volume, Plate, p. 63, to occur on the Gila River, at 32°
38′ 13″ N. lat., and 109° 07′ 30″ long. [According to the plate, the
figures are found upon bowlders and on the face of the cliff to the
height of about 30 feet.]

The party under Lieutenant Whipple (see Rep. Pac. R. R. Exped., III,
1856, Pt. III, p. 42) also discovered pictographs at Yampais Spring,
Williams River. “The spot is a secluded glen among the mountains. A
high, shelving rock forms a cave, within which is a pool of water and
a crystal stream flowing from it. The lower surface of the rock is
covered with pictographs. None of the devices seem to be of recent

Many of the country rocks lying on the Colorado plateau of Northern
Arizona, east of Peach Springs, bear traces of considerable artistic
workmanship. Some observed by Dr. W. J. Hoffman, in 1871, were rather
elaborate and represented figures of the sun, human beings in various
styles approaching the grotesque, and other characters not yet
understood. All of those observed were made by pecking the surface of
basalt with a harder variety of stone.

Mr. G. K. Gilbert discovered etchings at Oakley Spring, eastern
Arizona, in 1878, relative to which he remarks that an Oraibi chief
explained them to him and said that the “Mokis make excursions to a
locality in the cañon of the Colorado Chiquito to get salt. On their
return they stop at Oakley Spring and each Indian makes a picture on
the rock. Each Indian draws his crest or totem, the symbol of his gens
[(?)]. He draws it once, and once only, at each visit.” Mr. Gilbert
adds, further, that “there are probably some exceptions to this, but
the etchings show its general truth. There are a great many repetitions
of the same sign, and from two to ten will often appear in a row. In
several instances I saw the end drawings of a row quite fresh while the
others were not so. Much of the work seems to have been performed by
pounding with a hard point, but a few pictures are scratched on. Many
drawings are weather-worn beyond recognition, and others are so fresh
that the dust left by the tool has not been washed away by rain. Oakley
Spring is at the base of the Vermillion Cliff, and the etchings are on
fallen blocks of sandstone, a homogeneous, massive, soft sandstone.
Tubi, the Oraibi chief above referred to, says his totem is the rain
cloud but it will be made no more as he is the last survivor of the

A group of the Oakley Spring etchings of which Figure 1 is a copy,
measures six feet in length and four feet in height. Interpretations
of many of the separated characters of Figure 1 are presented on page
46 _et seq._, also in Figures 156 _et seq._, page 237.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.--Petroglyphs at Oakley Springs, Arizona.]

Mr. Gilbert obtained sketches of etchings in November, 1878, on
Partridge Creek, northern Arizona, at the point where the Beale wagon
road comes to it from the east. “The rock is cross-laminated Aubrey
sandstone and the surfaces used are faces of the laminæ. All the
work is done by blows with a sharp point. (Obsidian is abundant in
the vicinity.) Some inscriptions are so fresh as to indicate that
the locality is still resorted to. No Indians live in the immediate
vicinity, but the region is a hunting ground of the Wallapais and
Avasupais (Cosninos).”

Notwithstanding the occasional visits of the above named tribes, the
characters submitted more nearly resemble those of other localities
known to have been made by the Moki Pueblos.

Rock etchings are of frequent occurrence along the entire extent of the
valley of the Rio Verde, from a short distance below Camp Verde to the
Gila River.

Mr. Thomas V. Keam reports etchings on the rocks in Cañon Segy, and in
Keam’s Cañon, northeastern Arizona. Some forms occurring at the latter
locality are found also upon Moki pottery.


From information received from Mr. Alphonse Pinart, pictographic
records exist in the hills east of San Bernardino, somewhat resembling
those at Tule River in the southern spurs of the Sierra Nevada, Kern

These pictographic records are found at various localities along the
hill tops, but to what distance is not positively known.

In the range of mountains forming the northeastern boundary of Owen
Valley are extensive groups of petroglyphs, apparently dissimilar to
those found west of the Sierra Nevada. Dr. Oscar Loew also mentions a
singular inscription on basaltic rocks in Black Lake Valley, about 4
miles southwest of the town of Benton, Mono County. This is scratched
in the basalt surface with some sharp instrument and is evidently
of great age. (Ann. Report upon the Geog. Surveys west of the 100th
meridian. Being Appendix J J, Ann. Report of Chief of Engineers for
1876. Plate facing p. 326.)

Dr. W. J. Hoffman, of the Bureau of Ethnology, reports the occurrence
of a number of series of etchings scattered at intervals for over
twenty miles in Owen’s Valley, California. Some of these records were
hastily examined by him in 1871, but it was not until the autumn of
1884 that a thorough examination of them was made, when measurements,
drawings, etc., were obtained for study and comparison. The country
is generally of a sandy, desert, character, devoid of vegetation
and water. The occasional bowlders and croppings of rock consist
of vesicular basalt, upon the smooth vertical faces of which occur
innumerable characters different from any hitherto reported from
California, but bearing marked similarity to some figures found in the
country now occupied by the Moki and Zuñi, in New Mexico and Arizona,

The southernmost group of etchings is eighteen miles south of the town
of Benton; the next group, two miles almost due north, at the Chalk
Grade; the third, about three miles farther north, near the stage road;
the fourth, half a mile north of the preceding; then a fifth, five and
a half miles above the last named and twelve and a half miles south of
Benton. The northernmost group is about ten or twelve miles northwest
of the last-mentioned locality and south west from Benton, at a place
known as Watterson’s Ranch. The principal figures consist of various
simple, complex, and ornamental circles, some of the simple circles
varying as nucleated, concentric, and spectacle-shaped, zigzag, and
serpentine lines, etc. Animal forms are not abundant, those readily
identified being those of the deer, antelope, and jack-rabbits.
Representations of snakes and huge sculpturings of grizzly-bear
tracks occur on one horizontal surface, twelve and a half miles south
of Benton. In connection with the latter, several carvings of human
foot-prints appear, leading in the same direction, _i. e._, toward the

All of these figures are pecked into the vertical faces of the rocks,
the depths varying from one-fourth of an inch to an inch and a quarter.
A freshly broken surface of the rock presents various shades from a
cream white to a Naples yellow color, though the sculptured lines are
all blackened by exposure and oxidation of the iron contained therein.
This fact has no importance toward the determination of the age of the

At the Chalk Grade is a large bowlder measuring about six feet in
height and four feet either way in thickness, upon one side of which
is one-half of what appears to have been an immense mortar. The sides
of this cavity are vertical, and near the bottom turn abruptly and
horizontally in toward the center, which is marked by a cone about
three inches high and six inches across at its base. The interior
diameter of the mortar is about twenty-four inches, and from the
appearance of the surface, being considerably grooved laterally, it
would appear as if a core had been used for grinding, similar in action
to that of a millstone. No traces of such a core or corresponding form
were visible. This instance is mentioned as it is the only indication
that the authors of the etchings made any prolonged visit to this
region, and perhaps only for grinding grass seed, though neither grass
nor water is now found nearer than the remains at Watterson’s Ranch and
at Benton.

The records at Watterson’s are pecked upon the surfaces of detached
bowlders near the top of a mesa, about one hundred feet above the
nearest spring, distant two hundred yards. These are also placed at
the southeast corner of the mesa, or that nearest to the northern most
of the main group across the Benton Range. At the base of the eastern
and northeastern portion of this elevation of land, and but a stone’s
throw from the etchings, are the remains of former camps, such as stone
circles, marking the former sites of brush lodges, and a large number
of obsidian flakes, arrowheads, knives, and some jasper remains of like
character. Upon the flat granite bowlders are several mortar-holes,
which perhaps were used for crushing the seed of the grass still
growing abundantly in the immediate vicinity. Piñon nuts are also
abundant in this locality.

Upon following the most convenient course across the Benton Range to
reach Owen’s Valley proper, etchings are also found, though in limited
numbers, and seem to partake of the character of “indicators as to
course of travel.” By this trail the northernmost of the several groups
of etchings above mentioned is the nearest and most easily reached.

The etchings upon the bowlders at Watterson’s are somewhat different
from those found elsewhere. The number of specific designs is limited,
many of them being reproduced from two to six or seven times, thus
seeming to partake of the character of personal names.

One of the most frequent is that resembling a horseshoe within which
is a vertical stroke. Sometimes the upper extremity of such stroke is
attached to the upper inside curve of the broken ring, and frequently
there are two or more parallel vertical strokes within one such curve.
Bear-tracks and the outline of human feet also occur, besides several
unique forms. A few of these forms are figured, though not accurately,
in the Ann. Report upon the Geog. Surveys west of the 100th meridian
last mentioned (1876), Plate facing p. 326.

Lieutenant Whipple reports (Rep. Pac. R. R. Exped. III, 1856, Pt. III,
p. 42, Pl. 36) the discovery of pictographs at Pai-Ute Creek, about
30 miles west of the Mojave villages. These are carved upon a rock,
“are numerous, appear old, and are too confusedly obscure to be easily

These bear great general resemblance to etchings scattered over
Northeast Arizona, Southern Utah, and Western New Mexico.

Remarkable pictographs have also been found at Tule River Agency. See
Figure 155, page 235.


Mr. Gilbert Thompson reports the occurrence of painted characters at
Paint Lick Mountain, 3 miles north of Maiden Spring, Tazewell County,
Virginia. These characters are painted in red, blue, and yellow. A
brief description of this record is given in a work by Mr. Charles B.
Coale, entitled “The Life and Adventures of Wilburn Waters,” etc.,
Richmond, 1878, p. 136.

Mr. John Haywood (The Natural and Aboriginal History of Tennessee,
Nashville, 1823, p. 149) mentions painted figures of the sun, moon, a
man, birds, etc., on the bluffs on the south bank of the Holston, 5
miles above the mouth of the French Broad. These are painted in red
colors on a limestone bluff. He states that they were attributed to
the Cherokee Indians, who made this a resting place when journeying
through the region. This author furthermore remarks: “Wherever on
the rivers of Tennessee are perpendicular bluffs on the sides, and
especially if caves be near, are often found mounds near them, enclosed
in intrenchments, with the sun and moon painted on the rocks,” etc.

Among the many colored etchings and paintings on rock discovered by
the Pacific Railroad Expedition in 1853-’54 (Rep. Pac. R. R. Exped.,
III, 1856, Pt. III, pp. 36, 37, Pll. 28, 29, 30) may be mentioned those
at Rocky Dell Creek, New Mexico, which were found between the edge of
the Llano Estacado and the Canadian River. The stream flows through a
gorge, upon one side of which a shelving sandstone rock forms a sort
of cave. The roof is covered with paintings, some evidently ancient,
and beneath are innumerable carvings of footprints, animals, and
symmetrical lines.

Mr. James H. Blodgett, of the U. S. Geological Survey, calls attention
to the paintings on the rocks of the bluffs of the Mississippi River,
a short distance below the mouth of the Illinois River, in Illinois,
which were observed by early French explorers, and have been the
subject of discussion by much more recent observers.

Mr. P. W. Norris found numerous painted totemic characters upon the
cliffs in the immediate vicinity of the pipestone quarry, Minnesota.
These consisted, probably, of the totems or names of Indians who had
visited that locality for the purpose of obtaining catlinite for making
pipes. These had been mentioned by early writers.

Mr. Norris also discovered painted characters upon the cliffs on the
Mississippi River, 19 miles below New Albin, in northeastern Iowa.

Mr. Gilbert Thompson reports his observation of pictographs at San
Antonio Springs, 30 miles east of Fort Wingate, New Mexico. The human
form, in various styles, occurs, as well as numerous other characters
strikingly similar to those frequent in the country, farther west,
occupied by the Moki Indians. The peculiarity of these figures is
that the outlines are incised or etched, the depressions thus formed
being filled with pigments of either red, blue, or white. The interior
portions of the figures are simply painted with one or more of the same

Charles D. Wright, esq., of Durango, Colorado, writes that he has
discovered “hieroglyphical writings” upon rocks and upon the wall of
a cliff house near the Colorado and New Mexico boundary line. On the
wall in one small building was found a series of characters in red and
black paints, consisting of a “chief on his horse, armed with spear and
lance, wearing a pointed hat and robe; behind this were about twenty
characters representing people on horses, lassoing horses, etc.; in
fact, the whole scene represented breaking camp and leaving in a hurry.
The whole painting measured about 12 by 16 feet.” Other rock-paintings
are also mentioned as occurring near the San Juan River, consisting
of four characters representing men as if in the act of taking an
obligation, hands extended, etc. At the right are some characters in
black paint, covering a space 3 by 4 feet.

The rock-paintings presented in Plates I and II are reduced copies of
a record found by Dr. W. J. Hoffman, of the Bureau of Ethnology, in
September, 1884, 12 miles west-northwest of the city of Santa Barbara,
California. They are one-sixteenth original size. The locality is
almost at the summit of the Santa Ynez range of mountains; the gray
sandstone rock on which they are painted is about 30 feet high and
projects from a ridge so as to form a very marked promontory extending
into a narrow mountain cañon. At the base of the western side of this
bowlder is a rounded cavity, measuring, on the inside, about 15 feet
in width and 8 feet in height. The floor ascends rapidly toward the
back of the cave, and the entrance is rather smaller in dimensions
than the above measurements of the interior. About 40 yards west of
this rock is a fine spring of water. One of the four old Indian trails
leading northward across the mountains passes by this locality, and it
is probable that this was one of the camping-places of the tribe which
came south to trade, and that some of its members were the authors of
the paintings. The three trails beside the one just mentioned cross the
mountains at various points east of this, the most distant being about
15 miles. Other trails were known, but these four were most direct
to the immediate vicinity of the Spanish settlement which sprang up
shortly after the establishment of the Santa Barbara Mission in 1786.
Pictographs (not now described) appear upon rocks found at or
near the origin of all of the above-mentioned trails at the base of
the mountains, with the exception of the one under consideration. The
appearance and position of these pictographs appear to be connected
with the several trails.

The circles figured in _b_ and _d_ of Plate I, and _c_, _r_, and
_w_ of Plate II, together with other similar circular marks bearing
cross-lines upon the interior, were at first unintelligible, as their
forms among various tribes have very different signification. The
character in Plate I, above and projecting from _d_, resembles the
human form, with curious lateral bands of black and white, alternately.
Two similar characters appear, also, in Plate II, _a_, _b_. In _a_, the
lines from the head would seem to indicate a superior rank or condition
of the person depicted.




Having occasion subsequently to visit the private ethnologic collection
of Hon. A. F. Coronel, of Los Angeles, California, Dr. Hoffman
discovered a clue to the general import of the above record, as well
as the signification of some of the characters above mentioned. In a
collection of colored illustrations of Mexican costumes some of them
probably a century old, he found blankets bearing borders and colors,
nearly identical with those shown in the circles in Plate I, _d_, and
Plate II, _c_, _r_, _w_. It is more than probable that the circles
represent bales of blankets which early became articles of trade at the
Santa Barbara Mission. If this supposition is correct, the cross-lines
would seem to represent the cords, used in tying the blankets into
bales, which same cross-lines appear as cords in _l_, Plate II. Mr.
Coronel also possesses small figures of Mexicans, of various conditions
of life, costumes, trades, and professions, one of which, a painted
statuette, is a representation of a Mexican lying down flat upon an
outspread serape, similar in color and form to the black and white
bands shown in the upper figure of _d_, Plate I, and _a_, _b_, of Plate
II, and instantly suggesting the explanation of those figures. Upon the
latter the continuity of the black and white bands is broken, as the
human figures are probably intended to be in front, or on top, of the
drawings of the blankets.




The small statuette above mentioned is that of a Mexican trader, and
if the circles in the pictographs are considered to represent bales of
blankets, there is a figure in Plate I, _d_, still more interesting,
from the union of one of these circles with that of a character
representing the trader, _i. e._, the man possessing the bales. Bales,
or what appear to be bales, are represented to the top and right of the
circle _d_, Plate I, and also upon the right hand figure in _l_, Plate
II. To the right of the latter are three short lines, evidently showing
the knot or ends of the cords used in tying a bale of blankets without
colors, therefore of less importance, or of other goods. This bale is
upon the back of what appears to be a horse, led in an upward direction
by an Indian whose head-dress, and ends of the breech-cloth, are
visible. Other human forms appear in the attitude of making gestures,
one also in _j_, Plate II, probably carrying a bale of goods. Figure
_u_ represents a centipede, an insect found occasionally south of the
mountains, but reported as extremely rare in the immediate northern
regions. (For _x_, see page 232.)

Mr. Coronel stated that when he first settled in Los Angeles, in 1843,
the Indians living north of the San Fernando mountains manufactured
blankets of the fur and hair of animals, showing transverse bands of
black and white similar to those depicted, which were sold to the
inhabitants of the valley of Los Angeles and to Indians who transported
them to other tribes.

It is probable that the pictograph is intended to represent the salient
features of a trading expedition from the north. The ceiling of the
cavity found between the drawings represented in Plate I and Plate II
has disappeared, owing to disintegration, thus leaving a blank about 4
feet long, and 6 feet from the top to the bottom of the original record
between the parts represented in the two plates.

Dr. W. J. Hoffman also reports the following additional localities in
Santa Barbara and Los Angeles counties. Fifteen miles west of Santa
Barbara, on the northern summit of the Santa Ynez range, and near the
San Marcos Pass, is a group of paintings in red and black. One figure
resembles a portion of a checker-board in the arrangement of squares.
Serpentine and zigzag lines occur, as also curved lines with serrations
on the concave sides; figures of the sun, groups of short vertical
lines, and _tree forms_, resembling representations of the dragon-fly,
and the human form, as drawn by the Moki Indians, and very similar to
Fig. _e_, Pl. II. These paintings are in a cavity near the base of an
immense bowlder, over twenty feet in height. A short distance from this
is a flat granitic bowlder, containing twenty-one mortar holes, which
had evidently been used by visiting Indians during the acorn season.
Trees of this genus are very abundant, and their fruit formed one of
the sources of subsistence.

Three miles west-northwest of this locality, in the valley near the
base of the mountain, are indistinct figures in faded red, painted upon
a large rock. The characters appear similar, in general, to those above

Forty-three miles west of Santa Barbara, in the Najowe Valley, is
a promontory, at the base of which is a large shallow cavern, the
opening being smaller than the interior, upon the roof and back of
which are numerous figures of similar forms as those observed at San
Marcos Pass. Several characters appear to have been drawn at a later
date than others, such as horned cattle, etc. The black color used was
a manganese compound, while the red pigments consist of ferruginous
clays, abundant at numerous localities in the mountain cañons. Some of
the human figures are drawn with the hands and arms in the attitude of
making the gestures for _surprise_ or _astonishment_, and _negation_.

One of the most extensive records, and probably also the most
elaborately drawn, is situated in the Carisa Plain, near Señor Oreña’s
ranch, sixty or seventy miles due north of Santa Barbara. The most
conspicuous figure is that of the sun, resembling a face, with
ornamental appendages at the cardinal points, and bearing striking
resemblance to some Moki marks and pictographic work. Serpentine lines
and numerous anomalous forms also abound.

Four miles northeast of Santa Barbara, near the residence of Mr.
Stevens, is an isolated sandstone bowlder measuring about twenty feet
high and thirty feet in diameter, upon the western side of which is
a slight cavity bearing figures corresponding in general form to
others in this county. The gesture for _negation_ again appears in the
attitude of the human figures.

Half a mile farther east, on Dr. Coe’s farm, is another smaller
bowlder, in a cavity of which some portions of human figures are shown.
Parts of the drawings have disappeared through disintegration of the
rock, which is called “Pulpit Rock,” on account of the shape of the
cavity, its position at the side of the narrow valley, and the echo
observed upon speaking a little above the ordinary tone of voice.

Painted rocks also occur in the Azuza Cañon, about thirty miles
northeast of Los Angeles, of which illustrations are given in Plate
LXXX, described on p. 156.

Dr. Hoffman also found other paintings in the valley of the South Fork
of the Tule River, in addition to those discovered in 1882, and given
in Figure 155, p. 235. The forms are those of large insects, and of the
bear, beaver, centipede, bald eagle, etc.

Upon the eastern slope of an isolated peak between Porterville and
Visalia, several miles east of the stage road, are pictographs in red
and black. These are chiefly drawings of the deer, bear, and other
animals and forms not yet determined.

Just previous to his departure from the Santa Barbara region, Dr.
Hoffman was informed of the existence of eight or nine painted records
in that neighborhood, which up to that time had been observed only by
a few sheep-herders and hunters.

Other important localities showing colored etchings, and other
painted figures, are at San Diego, California; at Oneida, Idaho; in
Temple Creek Cañon, southeastern Utah, and in the Cañon de Chelly,
northwestern New Mexico.


The distribution and the description of the petroglyphs of Mexico,
as well as of other forms of pictographs found there, are omitted in
the present paper. The subject is so vast, and such a large amount of
information has already been given to the public concerning it, that it
is not considered in this work, which is mainly devoted to the similar
productions of the tribes popularly known as North American Indians,
although the pre-Columbian inhabitants of Mexico should, in strictness,
be included in that category. It is, however, always to be recognized
that one of the most important points in the study of pictographs, is
the comparison of those of Mexico with those found farther north.

Copies of many petroglyphs found in the eastern hemisphere have been
collected, but the limitations of the present paper do not allow of
their reproduction or discussion.


While the scope of this work does not contemplate either showing the
distribution of the rock carvings in South America, or entering upon
any detailed discussion of them, some account is here subjoined for the
purpose of indicating the great extent of the ethnic material of this
character that is yet to be obtained from that continent. Alexander
von Humboldt, in Aspects of Nature in different lands and different
climates, etc., Vol. I, pp. 196-201, London, 1850, gives the following
general remarks concerning pictographs from South America:

  In the interior of South America, between the 2d and 4th degrees of
  North latitude, a forest-covered plain is enclosed by four rivers,
  the Orinoco, the Atabapo, the Rio Negro, and the Cassiquiare. In
  this district are found rocks of granite and of syenite, covered,
  like those of Caicara and Uruana, with colossal symbolical figures
  of crocodiles and tigers, and drawings of household utensils, and
  of the sun and moon. At the present time this remote corner of the
  earth is entirely without human inhabitants, throughout an extent
  of more than 8,000 square geographical miles. The tribes nearest to
  its boundaries are wandering naked savages, in the lowest stages
  of human existence, and far removed from any thoughts of carving
  hieroglyphics on rocks. One may trace in South America an entire
  zone, extending through more than eight degrees of longitude, of
  rocks so ornamented; viz. from the Rupuniri, Essequibo, and the
  mountains of Pacaraima, to the banks of the Orinoco and of the
  Yupura. These carvings may belong to very different epochs, for
  Sir Robert Schomburgk even found on the Rio Negro representations
  of a Spanish galiot, which must have been of a later date than the
  beginning of the 16th century; and this in a wilderness where the
  natives were probably as rude then as at the present time. But it
  must not be forgotten that * * nations of very different descent,
  when in a similar uncivilized state, having the same disposition to
  simplify and generalize outlines, and being impelled by inherent
  mental dispositions to form rythmical repetitions and series, may
  be led to produce similar signs and symbols. * * * Some miles from
  Encaramada, there rises, in the middle of the savannah, the rock
  Tepu-Mereme, or painted rock. It shews several figures of animals and
  symbolical outlines which resemble much those observed by us at some
  distance above Encaramada, near Caycara, in 7° 5′ to 7° 40′ lat., and
  66° 28′ to 67° 23′ W. long. from Greenwich. Rocks thus marked are
  found between the Cassiquiare and the Atabapo (in 2° 5′ to 3° 20′
  lat.), and what is particularly remarkable, 560 geographical miles
  farther to the East in the solitudes of the Parime. This last fact is
  placed beyond a doubt by the journal of Nicholas Hortsman, of which I
  have seen a copy in the handwriting of the celebrated D’Anville. That
  simple and modest traveller wrote down every day, on the spot, what
  had appeared to him most worthy of notice, and he deserves perhaps
  the more credence because, being full of dissatisfaction at having
  failed to discover the objects of his researches, the Lake of Dorado,
  with lumps of gold and a diamond mine, he looked with a certain
  degree of contempt on whatever fell in his way. He found, on the
  16th of April, 1749, on the banks of the Rupunuri, at the spot where
  the river winding between the Macarana mountains forms several small
  cascades, and before arriving in the district immediately round Lake
  Amucu, “rocks covered with figures,”--or, as he says in Portugese,
  “de varias letras.” We were shown at the rock of Culimacari, on
  the banks of the Cassiquiare, signs which were called characters,
  arranged in lines--but they were only ill-shaped figures of heavenly
  bodies, boa-serpents, and the utensils employed in preparing manioc
  meal. I have never found among these painted rocks (piedras pintadas)
  any symmetrical arrangement or any regular even-spaced characters. I
  am therefore disposed to think that the word “letras” in Hortsmann’s
  journal must not be taken in the strictest sense.

  Schomburgk was not so fortunate as to rediscover the rock seen by
  Hortsmann, but he has seen and described others on the banks of the
  Essequibo, near the cascade of Warraputa. “This cascade,” he says,
  “is celebrated not only for its height but also for the quantity of
  figures cut on the rock, which have great resemblance to those which
  I have seen in the island of St. John, one of the Virgin Islands,
  and which I consider to be, without doubt, the work of the Caribs,
  by whom that part of the Antilles was formerly inhabited. I made the
  utmost efforts to detach portions of the rock which contained the
  inscription, and which I desired to take with me, but the stone was
  too hard and fever had taken away my strength. Neither promises nor
  threats could prevail on the Indians to give a single blow with a
  hammer to these rocks--the venerable monuments of the superior mental
  cultivation of their predecessors. They regard them as the work of
  the Great Spirit, and the different tribes who we met with, though
  living at a great distance, were nevertheless acquainted with them.
  Terror was painted on the faces of my Indian companions, who appeared
  to expect every moment that the fire of heaven would fall on my head.
  I saw clearly that my endeavors would be fruitless, and I contented
  myself with bringing away a complete drawing of these memorials.” *
  * * Even the veneration everywhere testified by the Indians of the
  present day for these rude sculptures of their predecessors, shews
  that they have no idea of the execution of similar works. There is
  another circumstance which should be mentioned: between Encaramada
  and Caycara, on the banks of the Orinoco, a number of these
  hieroglyphical figures are sculptured on the face of precipices at a
  height which could now be reached only by means of extraordinarily
  high scaffolding. If one asks the natives how these figures have been
  cut, they answer, laughing, as if it were a fact of which, none but
  a white man could be ignorant, that “in the days of the great waters
  their fathers went in canoes at that height.” Thus a geological
  fancy is made to afford an answer to the problem presented by a
  civilization which has long passed away.

Mr. A. Pinart has for several years past been engaged in ethnologic
researches, in which, as he explained to the present writer, orally,
he has discovered a very large number of pictographs in the islands
of the Caribbean Sea, in Venezuela, and Nicaragua, with remarkable
correspondences between some of them, and strongly demarkating lines in
regard to different types. His report will be of inestimable value in
the complete discussion of this subject.


In particular, a copious extract is given from the recent work Among
the Indians of Guiana, by Everard F. im Thurn: London, 1883. His
account is so suggestive for comparison with the similar discoveries
made in North America that there is a temptation to extract from it
even more liberally than has been done.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--Deep carvings in Guiana.]

The following is taken from pages 391, _et seq._, of that author:

  The pictured rocks, which are certainly the most striking and
  mysterious of the antiquities of Guiana, are--and this has apparently
  never yet been pointed out--not all of one kind. In all cases various
  figures are rudely depicted on larger or smaller surfaces of rocks.
  Sometimes these figures are painted, though such cases are few and,
  as will be shown, of little moment; more generally they are graven on
  the rock, and these alone are of great importance. Rock sculptures
  may, again, be distinguished into two kinds, differing in the depth
  of incision, the apparent mode of execution, and, most important of
  all, the character of the figures represented.

  Painted rocks in British Guiana are mentioned by Mr. C. Barrington
  Brown, well known as a traveler in the colony. He says, for instance,
  that in coming down past Amailah fall (in the same district and
  range as the Kaieteur), on the Cooriebrong River, he passed ‘a large
  white sandstone rock ornamented with figures in red paint.’ When in
  the Pacaraima mountains, on the Brazilian frontier, I heard of the
  existence of similar paintings in that neighborhood, but was unable
  to find them. Mr. Wallace, in his account of his ‘Travels on the
  Amazons,’ mentions the occurrence of similar drawings in more than
  one place near the Amazons; and from these and other accounts it
  seems probable that they occur in various parts of South America.
  If, as seems likely, these figures are painted with either of the
  red pigments which the Indians use so largely to paint their own
  bodies as well as their weapons and other implements, or, as is also
  possible, with some sort of red earth, they must be modern, the work
  of Indians of the present day; for these red pigments would not long
  withstand the effects of the weather, especially where, as in the
  case quoted from Mr. Brown, the drawings are on such an unenduring
  substance as sandstone. Some further account of these paintings is,
  however, much to be desired; for, though they are probably modern,
  it would be very interesting to know whether the designs resemble
  those depicted on the engraved rocks, or are of the kind with which
  the Indian at the present time ornaments both his own skin and his
  household utensils and paddles. It may be mentioned that in the
  Christy collection there is a stone celt from British Guiana on which
  are painted lines very closely resembling in character those which
  the Indian commonly paints on his own body.

  The engraved rocks, on the contrary, must be of some antiquity; that
  is to say, they must certainly date from a time before the influence
  of Europeans was much felt in Guiana. As has already been said,
  the engravings are of two kinds and are probably the work of two
  different people; nor is there even any reason to suppose that the
  two kinds were produced at one and the same time.

  These two kinds of engraving may, for the sake of convenience, be
  distinguished as ‘deep,’ [a typical example of which is in Figure 2]
  and ‘shallow’ [typical example Figure 3,] respectively, according as
  the figures are deeply cut into the rock or are merely scratched on
  the surface. The former * * vary from one-eighth to one-half of an
  inch, or even more, in depth; the latter are of quite inconsiderable
  depth. This difference probably corresponds with a difference in the
  means by which they were produced. The deep engravings seem cut into
  the rock with an edged tool, probably of stone; the shallow figures
  were apparently formed by long continued friction with stones and
  moist sand. The two kinds seem never to occur in the same place or
  even near to each other; in fact, a distinct line may almost be
  drawn between the districts in which the deep and shallow kinds
  occur, respectively; the deep * * form occurs at several spots on the
  Mazeruni, Essequibo, Ireng, Cotinga, Potaro, and Berbice Rivers. The
  shallow form has as yet only been reported from the Corentyn River
  and its tributaries, where, however, examples occur in considerable
  abundance. But the two kinds differ not only in the depth of
  incision, in the apparent mode of their production, and in the place
  of their occurrence, but also--and this is the chief difference
  between the two--in the figures represented.

       *       *       *       *       *

  They (the shallow engravings) seem always to occur on comparatively
  large and more or less smooth surfaces of rock, and rarely, if
  ever, as the deep figures, on detached blocks of rock, piled one
  on the other. The shallow figures, too, are generally much larger,
  always combinations of straight or curved lines in figures much more
  elaborate than those which occur in the deep engravings; and these
  shallow pictures always represent not animals, but greater or less
  variations of the figure which has been described. Lastly, though I
  am not certain that much significance can be attributed to this, all
  the examples that I have seen, face more or less accurately eastward.

  The deep engravings, on the other hand, consist not of a single
  figure but of a greater or less number of rude drawings. * * These
  depict the human form, monkeys, snakes, and other animals, and also
  very simple combinations of two or three straight or curved lines
  in a pattern, and occasionally more elaborate combinations. The
  individual figures are small, averaging from twelve to eighteen
  inches in height, but a considerable number are generally represented
  in a group.

  Some of the best examples of this latter kind are at Warrapoota
  cataracts, about six days’ journey up the Essequibo.

  * * * The commonest figures at Warrapoota are figures of men or
  perhaps sometimes monkeys. These are very simple, and generally
  consist of one straight line, representing the trunk, crossed by
  two straight lines at right angles to the body line: one, about
  two-thirds of the distance from the top, represents the two arms as
  far as the elbows, where upward lines represent the lower part of the
  arms; the other, which is at the lower end, represents the two legs
  as far as the knees, from which point, downward lines represent the
  lower part of the legs. A round dot, or a small circle, at the top of
  the trunk-line, forms the head; and there are a few radiating lines
  where the fingers, a few more where the toes, should be. Occasionally
  the trunk-line is produced downwards as if to represent a long tail.
  Perhaps the tailless figures represent men, the tailed monkeys. In a
  few cases the trunk, instead of being indicated by one straight line,
  is formed by two curved lines, representing the rounded outlines of
  the body; and the body, thus formed, is bisected, by a row of dots,
  almost invariably nine in number, which seem to represent vertebræ.

  Most of the other figures at Warrapoota are very simple combinations
  of two, three, or four straight lines similar to the so-called
  ‘Greek meander pattern,’ which is of such widespread occurrence.
  Combinations of curved lines and simple spiral lines also frequently
  occur. Many of these combinations closely resemble the figures which
  the Indians of the present day paint on their faces and naked bodies.
  The resemblance is, however, not so great but that it may be merely
  due to the fact that the figures are just such simple combinations
  of lines which would occur independently to the rock-engravers and to
  the body-painters as to all other untaught designers.

[Illustration: FIG. 3.--Shallow carvings in Guiana.]

The same author (pp. 368, 369) gives the following account of the
superstitious reverence entertained for the petroglyphs by the living
Indians of Guiana:

  Every time a sculptured rock or striking mountain or stone is seen,
  Indians avert the ill-will of the spirits of such places by rubbing
  red peppers (_Capsicum_) each in his or her own eyes. For instance,
  on reaching the Timehri rock on the Corentyn River, I at once began
  to sketch the figures sculptured thereon. Looking up the next moment
  I saw the Indians--men, women and children--who accompanied me all
  grouped round the rock-picture, busily engaged in this painful
  operation of pepper-rubbing. The extreme pain of this operation when
  performed thoroughly by the Indians I can faintly realize from my
  own feelings when I have occasionally rubbed my eyes with fingers
  which had recently handled red-peppers; and from the fact that,
  though the older practitioners inflict this self-torture with the
  utmost stoicism, I have again and again seen that otherwise rare
  sight of Indians, children, and even young men, sobbing under the
  infliction. Yet the ceremony was never omitted. Sometimes when by a
  rare chance no member of the party had had the forethought to provide
  peppers, lime-juice was used as a substitute; and once, when neither
  peppers nor limes were at hand, a piece of blue indigo-dyed cloth was
  carefully soaked, and the dye was then rubbed into the eyes. These,
  I believe, are the only ceremonies observed by the Indians. One idea
  underlies them all, and that is the attempt to avoid attracting the
  attention of malignant spirits.

The following extract from a paper on the Indian picture writing
in British Guiana, by Mr. Charles B. Brown, in the Journal of the
Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, 1873, Vol. II,
254-257, gives views and details somewhat different from the foregoing:

  These writings or markings are visible at a greater or less distance
  in proportion to the depth of the furrows. In some instances they
  are distinctly visible upon the rocks on the banks of the river
  at a distance of one hundred yards; in others they are so faint
  that they can only be seen in certain lights by reflected rays
  from their polished surfaces. They occur upon greenstone, granite,
  quartz-porphyry, gneiss, and jasperous sandstone, both in a vertical
  and horizontal position, at various elevations above the water.
  Sometimes they can only be seen during the dry season, when the
  rivers are low, as in several instances on the Berbice and Cassikytyn
  rivers. In one instance, on the Corentyne river, the markings on the
  rock are so much above the level of the river when at its greatest
  height, that they could only have been made by erecting a staging
  against the face of the rock, unless the river was at the time much
  above its usual level. The widths of the furrows vary from half an
  inch to one inch, while the depth never exceeds one-fourth of an
  inch. Sometimes the markings are almost level with the surrounding
  surfaces, owing to the waste or degradation by atmospheric
  influences, which have acted with greater force upon the rough rock
  than on the polished face of the grooved markings. The furrows
  present the same weather-stained aspect as the rocks upon which they
  are cut, and both the rocks and the furrows are in some instances
  coated with a thin layer of the oxides of iron and manganese.

  The Indians of Guiana know nothing about the picture writing by
  tradition. They scout the idea of their having been made by the
  hand of man, and ascribe them to the handiwork of the Makunaima,
  their great spirit. Nevertheless, they do not regard them with any
  superstitious feelings, looking upon them merely as curiosities,
  which is the more extraordinary as there are numbers of large rocks
  without any markings on some rivers, which they will not even look at
  in passing, lest some calamity should overtake them. Their Peaimen or
  sorcerers always squeeze tobacco juice in their eyes on approaching
  these, but pay no regard to the sculptured rocks. In the Pacaraima
  mountains, between the villages of Mora and Itabay, the path passes
  through a circle of square stones placed on one end, one of which
  has a carving upon it; some of these blocks have been thrown down
  and broken by the Indians, clearly proving their utter disregard for
  them. If then there were any traditions regarding these writings
  handed down from father to son, I conclude that the Indians of the
  present day--the most superstitious of beings--would undoubtedly
  treat them with awe and respect. Again, if their forefathers were
  as indolent as they now are, they never would have gone to the
  trouble of making these pictures merely for the purpose of passing
  away their time, which they could have more easily accomplished by
  lying in their hammocks from morning to night in a semi-dreamy sort
  of state, as their descendants do at present. As these figures were
  evidently cut with great care and at much labor by a former race of
  men, I conclude that they were made for some great purpose, probably
  a religious one, as some of the figures give indications of Phallic


The following is an abstract from a paper by J. Whitfield on Rock
Inscriptions in Brazil, in the Journal of the Anthropological Institute
of Great Britain and Ireland, 1874, Vol. III, p. 114:

  The rock inscriptions were visited in August, 1865, during an
  exploring expedition for gold mines in the province of Ceará.
  Several similar inscriptions are said to exist in the interior of
  the province of Ceará, as well as in the provinces of Pernambuco and
  Piauhy, especially in the _Sertaõs_, that is, in the thinly-wooded
  parts of the interior, but no mention is ever made of their having
  been seen near the coast.

  In the margin and bed only of the river are the rocks inscribed. On
  the margin they extend in some instances to fifteen or twenty yards.
  Except in the rainy season the stream is dry. The rock is a silicious
  schist of excessively hard and flinty texture. The marks have the
  appearance of having been made with a blunt heavy tool, such as might
  be made with an almost worn-out mason’s hammer.

  The situation is about midway between Serra Grande or Ibiapaba and
  Serra Merioca, about seventy miles from the coast and forty west of
  the town Sobral. There are not any indications of works of art or
  other antiquarian remains, nor anything peculiar to the locality. The
  country is gently undulating, and of the usual character that obtains
  for hundreds of miles extending along the base of the Serra Ibiapaba.

  The native population attribute all the ‘Letreiros’ (inscriptions),
  as they do everything else of which they have no information, to the
  Dutch as records of hidden wealth. The Dutch, however, only occupied
  the country for a few years in the early part of the seventeenth
  century. Along the coast numerous forts, the works of the Dutch,
  still remain; but there are no authentic records of their ever
  having established themselves in the interior of the country, and
  less probability still of their amusing themselves with inscribing
  puzzling hieroglyphics, which must have been a work of time, on the
  rocks of the far interior, for the admiration of wandering Indians.


Dr. J. J. Von Tschudi mentions in his Travels in Peru during the
years 1838-1842, [Wiley and Putnam’s Library, Vols. XCIII-XCIV, New
York, 1847,] Pt. II, p. 345-346, that the ancient Peruvians also used
a certain kind of “hieroglyphics” which they engraved in stone, and
preserved in their temples. Notices of these “hieroglyphics” are given
by some of the early writers. There appears to be a great similarity
between these Peruvian pictographs and those found in Mexico and Brazil.

The temptation to quote from Charles Wiener’s magnificent work Pérou
et Bolivie, Paris, 1880, and also from La Antigüedad del Hombre en el
Plata, by Florentine Ameghino, Paris (and Buenos Aires), 1880, must be


The objects depicted in pictographs of all kinds are too numerous and
varied for any immediate attempt at classification. Those upon the
petroglyphs may, however, be usefully grouped. Instructive particulars
regarding them, may be discovered, for instance the delineation of the
fauna in reference to its present or former habitat in the region where
the representation of it is found, is of special interest.

As an example of the number and kind of animals pictured, as well as
of their mode of representation, the following Figures, 4 to 21, are
presented, taken from the Moki inscriptions at Oakley Springs, Arizona,
by Mr. G. K. Gilbert. These were selected by him from, a large number
of etchings, for the purpose of obtaining the explanation, and they
were explained to him by Tubi, an Oraibi chief living at Oraibi, one of
the Moki villages.

Jones, in his Southern Indians, p. 377-379, gives a résumé of objects
depicted as follows:

  Upon the Enchanted Mountain in Union County, cut in plutonic rock,
  are the tracks of men, women, children, deer, bears, bisons, turkeys
  and terrapins, and the outlines of a snake, of two deer, and of a
  human hand. These sculptures--so far as they have been ascertained
  and counted--number one hundred and thirty-six. The most extravagant
  among them is that known as the footprint of the “Great Warrior.”
  It measures eighteen inches in length, and has six toes. The other
  human tracks and those of the animals are delineated with commendable
  fidelity. * * *

  Most of them present the appearance of the natural tread of the
  animal in plastic clay. * * * These _intaglios_ closely resemble
  those described by Mr. Ward [Jour. Anthrop. Inst. of N. Y., No.
  1, 57 _et seq._], as existing upon the upheaved strata of coarse
  carboniferous grit in Belmont County, Ohio, near the town of

The appearance of objects showing the influence of European
civilization and christianization should always be carefully noted. An
instance where an object of that character is found among a multitude
of others not liable to such suspicion is in the heart surmounted by
a cross, in the upper line of Figure 1, page 30 _ante._ This suggests
missionary teaching.


  Fig. 4
  Fig. 5
  Fig. 6
  Fig. 7
  Fig. 8
  Fig. 9
  Fig. 10
  Fig. 11
  Fig. 12
  Fig. 13
  Fig. 14
  Fig. 15
  Fig. 16
  Fig. 17
  Fig. 18
  Fig. 19
  Fig. 20
  Fig. 21

The following is the explanation of the figures:

  Fig. 4. A beaver.
       5. A bear.
       6. A mountain sheep (_Ovis montana_).
       7. Three wolf heads.
       8. Three Jackass rabbits.
       9. Cottontail rabbit.
      10. Bear tracks.
      11. An eagle.
      12. Eagle tails.
      13. A turkey tail.
      14. Horned toads (_Phryosoma_ sp.?).
      15. Lizards.
      16. A butterfly.
      17. Snakes.
      18. A rattlesnake.
      19. Deer track.
      20. Three Bird tracks.
      21. Bitterns (wading birds).


These are often of anthropologic interest. A few examples are given as
follows, though other descriptions appear elsewhere in this paper.


This includes etching, pecking, and scratching.

The Hidatsa, when carving upon stone or rocks, as well as upon pieces
of wood, use a sharply pointed piece of hard stone, usually a fragment
of quartz.

The bow-drill was an instrument largely used by the Innuit of Alaska in
carving bone and ivory. The present method of cutting figures and other
characters, to record events and personal exploits, consists in the use
of a small blade, thick, though sharply pointed, resembling a graver.


When in haste, or when the necessary materials are not at hand, the
Hidatsa sometimes prepare notices by drawing upon a piece of wood or
the shoulder blade of a buffalo with a piece of charcoal obtained
from the fire, or with a piece of red chalk, with which nearly every
warrior is at all times supplied.


Painting upon robes or skins is accomplished by means of thin strips
of wood, or sometimes of bone. Tufts of antelope hair are also used,
by tying them to sticks to make a brush. This is evidently a modern
innovation. Pieces of wood, one end of each chewed so as to produce a
loose fibrous brush, are also used at times, as has been observed among
the Titon Dakota.

The Hidatsa, Arikara, and other Northwest Indians usually employ a
piece of buffalo rib, or a piece of hard wood, having somewhat of an
elliptical or lozenge-shaped form. This is dipped in thin glue and a
tracing is made, which is subsequently treated in a similar manner with
a solution, of glue, water, and color.


The Hidatsa say that formerly, when tattooing was practiced, sharp
pieces of bone were used for pricking the skin.

The tribes of Oregon, Washington, and northern California used sharp
pieces of bone, thorns, and the dorsal spines of fish, though at
present needles are employed, as they are more effective and less
painful, and are readily procured by purchase.

Needles are used by the Klamath Indians, according to Mr. Gatschet.

Rev. M. Eells reports (Bull. U. S. Geol. and Geog. Survey II, p.
75) that for tattooing the Twana Indians use a needle and thread,
blackening the thread with charcoal and drawing it under the skin as
deeply as they can bear it.

Stephen Powers says (Contrib. to N. A. Ethnol. III., p. 130) that
tattooing among the Yuki is done with pitch-pine soot, and a
sharp-pointed bone. After the designs have been traced on the skin the
soot is rubbed in dry.

Paul Marcoy mentions in his Travels in South America, N. Y., 1875, Vol.
II, 353, that the Passés, Yuris, Barrés and Chumanas, of Brazil, use a
needle for tattooing.

The following quotation is from Te Ika a Maui, or New Zealand and its
Inhabitants, by Rev. Richard Taylor, London, 1870, pp. 320, 321:

  The substance generally used as coloring matter is the resin of the
  _kauri_ or _rimu_, which, when burnt, is pounded and converted into
  a fine powder.

  The _uhi_ or instrument used was a small chisel, made of the bone of
  an albatross, very narrow and sharp, which was driven by means of
  a little mallet, _he mahoe_, quite through the skin, and sometimes
  completely through the cheek as well, in which case when the person
  undergoing the operation took his pipe, the smoke found its way out
  through the cuttings; the pain was excruciating, especially in the
  more tender parts, and caused dreadful swellings, only a small piece
  could be done at a time; the operator held in his hand a piece of
  _muka_, flax, dipped in the pigment, which he drew over the incision
  immediately it was made; the blood which flowed freely from the wound
  was constantly wiped away with a bit of flax; the pattern was first
  drawn either with charcoal or scratched in with a sharp-pointed
  instrument. To tattoo a person fully was therefore a work of time,
  and to attempt to do too much at once endangered life. I remember a
  poor _porangi_, or insane person, who, during the war, was tattooed
  most unmercifully by some young scoundrels; the poor man’s wounds
  were so dreadfully inflamed, as to occasion his death; whilst any one
  was being operated upon, all persons in the pa were tapu, until the
  termination of the work, lest any evil should befall him; to have
  fine tattooed faces, was the great ambition of young men, both to
  render themselves attractive to the ladies, and conspicuous in war:
  for even if killed by the enemy, whilst the heads of the untattooed
  were treated with indignity and kicked on one side, those which were
  conspicuous by their beautiful moko, were carefully cut off, stuck
  on the _turuturu_, a pole with a cross on it, and then preserved;
  all which was highly gratifying to the survivors, and the spirits of
  their late possessors.

  The person operated upon was stretched all his length on the ground,
  and to encourage him manfully to endure the pain, songs were
  continually sung to him.



Since the establishment of traders’ stores most colors of civilized
manufacture are obtained by the Indians for painting and decoration.
Frequently, however, the primitive colors are prepared and used when
Indians are absent from localities where those may be obtained. The
ferruginous clays of various shade of brown, red, and yellow, occur so
widely distributed in nature that these are the most common and leading
tints. Black is generally prepared by grinding fragments of charcoal
into a very fine powder. Among some tribes, as has been found in some
of the “ancient” pottery from the Arizona ruins, clay had evidently
been mixed with charcoal to give better body. The black color of some
of the Innuit tribes is blood and charcoal intimately mixed, which is
afterwards applied to the incisions made in ivory, bone, and wood.

Among the Dakota, colors for dyeing porcupine quills are obtained
chiefly from plants, or have been until very recently. The vegetable
colors, being soluble, penetrate the substance of the quills more
evenly and beautifully than the mineral colors of eastern manufacture.

The black color of some of the Pueblo pottery is obtained by a special
burning with pulverized manure, into which the vessel is placed as it
is cooling after the first baking. The coloring matter--soot produced
by smoke--is absorbed into the pores of the vessel, and will not wear
off as readily as when colors are applied to the surface with sticks or
primitive brushes.

In decorating skins or robes the Arikara Indians boil the tail of the
beaver, thus obtaining a viscous fluid which is in reality thin glue.
The figures are first drawn in outline with a piece of beef-rib, or
some other flat bone, the edge only being used after having been dipped
into the liquor. The various pigments to be employed in the drawing are
then mixed with some of the same liquid, in separate vessels, when the
various colors are applied to the objects by means of a sharpened piece
of wood or bone. The colored mixture adheres firmly to the original
tracing in glue, and does not readily rub off.

When similar colors are to be applied to wood, the surface is
frequently picked or slightly incised to receive the color more
securely. For temporary purposes, as for mnemonic marks upon a shoulder
blade of a buffalo or upon a piece of wood to direct comrades upon the
course to be pursued to attain a certain object, a piece of red chalk,
or a lump of red ocher of natural production is resorted to. This is
often carried by the Indian for personal decoration.

A small pouch, discovered on the Yellowstone River in 1873, which had
been dropped by some fleeing hostile Sioux, contained several fragments
of black micaceous iron. The latter had almost the appearance and
consistence of graphite, so soft and black was the result upon rubbing
it. It had evidently been used for decorating the face as warpaint.

Mr. Dall, in treating of the remains found in the mammalian layers in
the Amakuak cave, Unalashka, remarks (Contributions to N. A. Ethnology,
I, p. 79) that “in the remains of a woman’s work-basket, found in the
uppermost layer in the cave, were bits of this resin [from the bark of
pine or spruce driftwood], evidently carefully treasured, with a little
birch-bark case (the bark also derived from drift logs) containing
pieces of soft hæmatite, graphite, and blue carbonate of copper, with
which the ancient seamstress ornamented her handiwork.”

The same author reports, _op. cit._ p. 86, “The coloration of wooden
articles with native pigments is of ancient origin, but all the more
elaborate instances that have come to my knowledge bore marks of
comparatively recent origin. The pigments used were blue carbonates of
iron and copper; the green fungus, or _peziza_, found in decayed birch
and alder wood; hæmatite and red chalk; white infusorial or chalky
earth; black charcoal, graphite, and micaceous ore of iron. A species
of red was sometimes derived from pine bark or the cambium of the
ground willow.”

Stephen Powers states in Contributions to N. A. Ethnology, III,
244, that the Shastika women “smear their faces all over daily with
chokecherry juice, which gives them a bloody, corsair aspect.”

Mr. A. S. Gatschet reports that the Klamaths of southwestern Oregon
employ a black color, _lgú_, made of burnt plum seeds and bulrushes,
which is applied to the cheeks in the form of small round spots. This
is used during dances. Red paint, for the face and body, is prepared
from a resin exuding from the spruce tree, _pánam_. A yellow mineral
paint is also employed, consisting probably of ocher or ferruginous
clay. Mr. Gatschet says the Klamath _spál_, yellow mineral paint, is
of light yellow color, but turns red when burned, after which it is
applied in making small round dots upon the face. The white infusorial
earth (?), termed chalk by Mr. Gatschet, is applied in the form of
stripes or streaks over the body. The Klamaths use charcoal, _lgúm_, in

       *       *       *       *       *

The various colors required by a tribe were formerly obtained from
plants as by the Dakota, while some of the earthy compounds consisted
of red and yellow ocher--oxides of iron--and black micaceous ore of
iron and graphite. Some of the California Indians in the vicinity of
Tulare River also used a white color, obtained at that locality, and
consisted of infusorial earth--diatomaceous. The tribes at and near
the geysers, north of San Francisco Bay, obtained their vermilion from
croppings of sulphuret of mercury--cinnabar. The same is said to have
been the case at the present site of the New Almaden mines, where
tribes of the Mutsun formerly lived. Black colors were also prepared
by mixing finely powdered charcoal and clay, this being practiced by
some of the Pueblos for painting upon pottery. Some of the black color
obtained from pictographs in Santa Barbara County, California, proved
to be a hydrous oxide of manganese.

For black color in tattooing the Yuki, of California, use soot. The
juice of certain plants is also used by the Karok, of California, to
color the face.

The Yokuts, of Tule River Agency, California, employ the roots of the
cedar (red) and willow (white) split and rendered uniform in caliber.
During work the materials are kept moistened, so as to permit of easy
manipulation and to prevent fracture of the vegetal fibers.

Rev. J. Owen Dorsey, of the Bureau of Ethnology, reports regarding the
Osages that one mode of obtaining black color for the face consists in
burning a quantity of small willows. When these are charred they are
broken in small pieces and placed in pans, with a little water in each.
The hands are then dipped into the pan and rubbed together, and finally
rubbed over the parts to be colored.

Formerly tattooing was more frequently practiced among the Hidatsa
than at present, the marks being caused by pricking the skin with a
sharp splinter of bone and the application of a paste consisting of
finely-powdered charcoal and water.

The Hualpais, living on the western border of the Colorado Plateau,
Arizona Territory, were found by Dr. Hoffman, in 1871, to decorate
their persons by a disgusting process. Various individuals were
observed who appeared as if their persons had been tattooed in vertical
bands from the forehead to the waist, but upon closer examination it
was found that dark and light bands of the natural skin are produced
in the following manner: When a deer or an antelope has been killed,
the blood is rubbed over the face and breast, after which the spread
and curved fingers--to resemble claws--are scratched downward from
the forehead over the face and over the breast, thus removing some
of the blood; that remaining soon dries, and gives the appearance of
black stripes. The exposed portion of the skin retains the natural
dark-tanned color, while that under the coating of coagulated blood
naturally becomes paler by being protected against the light and air.
These individuals do not wash off such marks of success in the chase,
and after a while the blood begins to drop off by desquamation, leaving
lighter spots and lines, which for a short period of a week or two
appear like tattoo marks.

The Mojave pigments are ocher, clay, and probably charcoal, mingled
with oil. See Pac. R. R. Exped., Vol. III, Pt. III, p. 33.

The colors, at present used by the Indians and obtained from the
traders, consist generally of the following compounds, viz.: vermilion,
red lead, chromate of lead (yellow), Prussian blue, chrome green, ivory
black and lamp black, Chinese white, and oxide of zinc. All of these
are in the form of powder or in crude masses, and are subsequently
prepared for use as required.


Everard F. im Thurn, _op. cit._, p. 316, gives the following details:

  The dyes used by the Indians to paint their own bodies, and
  occasionally to draw patterns on their implements, are red faroah,
  purple caraweera, blue-black lana, white felspathic clay, and, though
  very rarely, a yellow vegetable dye of unknown origin.

  Faroah is the deep red pulp around the seed of a shrub (_Bixa
  orellana_), which grows wild on the banks of some of the rivers, and
  is cultivated by the Indians in their clearings. Mixed with a large
  quantity of oil, it is then either dried and so kept in lumps which
  can be made soft again by the addition of more oil, or is stored in
  a liquid condition in tubes made of hollow bamboo-stems. When it is
  to be used, either a mass of it is taken in the palm of the hand and
  rubbed over the skin or other surface to be painted, or a pattern of
  fine lines is drawn with it by means of a stick used as a pencil. The
  True Caribs also use faroah largely to stain their hammocks.

  Caraweera is a somewhat similar dye, of a more purplish red, and by
  no means so commonly used. It is prepared from the leaves of a yellow
  flowered bignonia (_B. chicka_), together with some other unimportant
  ingredients. The dried leaves are boiled for a few minutes over a
  fire, and then some fresh-cut pieces of the bark of a certain tree
  and a bundle of twigs and fresh leaves of another tree are added to
  the mixture. The whole is then boiled for about twenty minutes, care
  being taken to keep the bark and leaves under water. The pot is then
  taken from the fire, and the contents, being poured into bowls, are
  allowed to subside. The clear water left at the top is poured away,
  and the sediment, of a beautiful purple colour, is put into a cloth,
  on which it is allowed to dry; after this it is scraped off and
  packed in tiny baskets woven of the leaves of the cokerite palm. The
  pigment is used for body-painting, with oil, just as is faroah.

  Lana is the juice of the fruit of a small tree (_Genipa americana_),
  with which, without further preparation, blue-black lines are drawn
  in patterns, or large surfaces are stained on the skin. The dye thus
  applied is for about a week indelible.

  One or more of the three body paints already mentioned is used by
  most Indians and in large quantities. But the white, and still more
  the yellow, pigments are used only rarely, in lines or dots, and very
  sparingly, by some of the Savannah Indians. The white substance is
  simply a very semi-liquid felspathic clay, which occurs in pockets
  in one or two places on the savannah; this is collected and dried in
  lumps, which are then pierced, threaded, and so put aside for future
  use. The nature of the yellow dye I was never able to trace; all that
  the Indians could or would say was that they received it in small
  quantities from a tribe living beyond the Wapianas, who extracted it
  from a tree which only grows in that neighborhood.

Paul Marcoy, in Travels in South America: N. Y., 1875, Vol. II, p.
353, says the Passés, Yuris, Barrés, and Chumanas, of Brazil, employ a
decoction of indigo or genipa in tattooing.


Significance has been attached to the several colors among all
peoples and in all periods of culture. That it is still recognized
in the highest civilizations is shown by the associations of death
and mourning connected with black, of innocence and peace with white,
danger with red, and epidemic disease, officially, with yellow. Without
dwelling upon the modern popular fancies on this subject, some
illustrations from antiquity may be useful for comparison.

The Babylonians represented the sun and its sphere of motion by gold,
the moon by silver, Saturn by black, Jupiter by orange, Mars by red,
Venus by pale yellow, and Mercury by deep blue. Red was anciently and
generally connected with divinity and power both priestly and royal.
The tabernacle of the Israelites was covered with skins dyed red and
the gods and images of Egypt and Chaldea were noticeably of that color,
which to this day is the one distinguishing the Roman Pontiff and the

In ancient art each color had a mystic sense or symbolism, and its
proper use was an important consideration and carefully studied. With
regard to early Christian art, the following extract is given from Mrs.
Clement’s Handbook of Legendary and Mythologic Art, Boston, 1883. The
associations with the several colors therein mentioned differ widely
from those in modern folk-lore--for instance, those with green and
yellow, from the same colors stigmatized in the song produced by Mr.
Black in his Three Feathers, exhibiting the belief in Cornwall that
“green’s forsaken and yellow’s forsworn.”

  White is worn by the Saviour after his resurrection, by the Virgin
  in representations of the Assumption; by women as the emblem of
  chastity; by rich men to indicate humility, and by the judge as the
  symbol of integrity. It is represented sometimes by silver or the
  diamond, and its sentiment is purity, virginity, innocence, faith,
  joy, and light.

  Red, the color of the ruby, speaks of royalty, fire, divine love,
  the holy spirit, creative power, and heat. In an opposite sense it
  symbolized blood, war, and hatred. Red and black combined were the
  colors of Satan, purgatory, and evil spirits. Red and white roses are
  emblems of love and innocence, or love and wisdom, as in the garland
  of St. Cecilia.

  Blue, that of the sapphire, signified heaven, heavenly love and
  truth, constancy and fidelity. Christ and the Virgin Mary wear the
  blue mantle, St. John a blue tunic.

  Green, the emerald, the color of spring, expressed hope and victory.

  Yellow or gold was the emblem of the sun, the goodness of God,
  marriage and fruitfulness. St. Joseph and St. Peter wear yellow.
  Yellow has also a bad signification when it has a dirty, dingy hue,
  such as the usual dress of Judas, and then signifies jealousy,
  inconstancy, and deceit.

  Violet or amethyst signified passion and suffering, or love and
  truth. Penitents, as the Magdalene, wear it. The Madonna wears it
  after the crucifixion, and Christ after the resurrection.

  Gray is the color of penance, mourning, humility, or accused

  Black with white signified humility, mourning, and purity of life.
  Alone, it spoke of darkness, wickedness, and death, and belonged to
  Satan. In pictures of the Temptation Jesus sometimes wears black.

It is probable that, at one time, the several colors, at least in
the same Indian tribe, had each special significance. This general
significance was, however, modified by specific positions of the colors.

Colors are generally applied at this day according to fancy and without
regard to special signification. The warriors make a distinction when
on the warpath, and when mourning a deceased relative or engaged in
dances and religious ceremonies the members of most of the tribes still
exhibit precise care in the selection and arrangement of color.

The Dakota at Grand River Agency, now abandoned, generally painted
the face red from the eyes down to the chin when going to war. The
whole face was blacked with charcoal or ashes when mourning. The women
frequently resorted to this method of expressing grief.

The Absaroka, or Crow Indians, generally paint the forehead red when on
the war-path. This distinction of the Crows is also noted by the Dakota
in recording pictographic narratives of encounters with the Crows. See
page 62, and Figures 124 _et seq._

Haywood, Nat. and Aborig. Hist. of Tennessee, 1823, p. 228, says of the

“When going to war their hair is combed and annointed with bear’s
grease and the red-root [_Sanguinaria canadensis?_], and they adorn it
with feathers of various beautiful colours, besides copper and iron
rings, and sometimes wampum or peak in the ears. And they paint their
faces all over as red as vermillion, making a circle of black about one
eye and another circle of white about the other.”

When a Modoc warrior paints his face black before going into battle
it means victory or death, and he will not survive a defeat. See
Bancroft’s Native Races, I, p. 333.

The Los Angeles County Indian girls paint the cheeks sparingly with red
ocher when in love. (Bancroft, I, 403.) This prevails, to some extent
also, among the northern bands of the Sioux, and among the Arikara at
Fort Berthold, Dakota.

Rev. J. Owen Dorsey reports that when the Osage men go to steal horses
from the enemy they paint their faces with charcoal.

The same authority gives the following description of the Osage paint
for war parties:

Before charging the foe the Osages warriors paint themselves anew. This
is called the death paint. If any of the men die with this paint on
them the survivors do not put on any other paint.

All the gentes on the Tsi[c]u side use the “fire paint” or i[k]ama^n,
which is red. It is applied by them with the left hand all over the
face. And they use prayers about the fire: “As the fire has no mercy,
so should we have none.” Then they put mud on the cheek below the left
eye, as wide as two or more fingers. On the Hañ[k]a side this mud is
put on the cheek, below the right eye. It is the young buffalo bull
decoration (Tse-[t]ú-[c]iñ´[k]a kínŭ^n itáa[p]i aú). With reference to
it, a man says, “My little grandfather (the young buffalo bull) is ever
dangerous, as he makes attempts. Very close do I stand, ready to go to
the attack” (Witsí[k]u [c]iñ´[k]a wáckŭ^n nŭ^n´pewá¢ĕ ehnu^n[p]i aú.
Ecŭ^nqtsita wa[k]a^n´¢a [p]¢é atqa^n´hi aú!) The horse is painted with
some of the mud on the left cheek, shoulder, and thigh.

For the corresponding Hanka decorations, substitute _the right_ for
_the left_ wherever the latter word occurs above.

Some who act like a black bear paint with charcoal alone.

Some paint in the wind style, some in the lightning style, and others
in the panther or puma style.

See also pages 85 and 162.

When a Thlinkit arms himself for war he paints his face and powders
his hair a brilliant red. He then ornaments his head with white
eagle-feathers, a token of stern vindictive determination. See
Bancroft, Native Races, etc., I, page 105.

Blue signifies peace among the Indians of the Pueblo of Tesuque. See
Schoolcraft, III, 306.

In several addresses before the Anthropological Society of Washington,
D. C., and papers yet unpublished, in the possession of the Bureau of
Ethnology, by Mr. James Stevenson, Dr. Washington Matthews, U. S. Army,
and Mr. Thomas V. Keam, the tribes below are mentioned as using in
their ceremonial dances the respective colors designated to represent
the four cardinal points of the compass, viz.:

                        N.      S.      E.      W.
  Stevenson--Zuñi     Yellow.  Red.   White.  Black.
  Matthews--Navajo    Black.   Blue.  White.  Yellow.
  Keam--Moki          White.   Red.   Yellow. Blue.

Capt. John G. Bourke, U. S. Army, in the Snake Dance of the Moquis of
Arizona, etc., New York, 1884, p. 120, says that the Moki employ the
following colors: yellow in prayers for pumpkins, green for corn, and
red for peaches. Black and white bands are typical of rain, while red
and blue bands are typical of lightning.

The Central Californians (north of San Francisco Bay) formerly wore the
down of Asclepias(?) (white) as an emblem of royalty. See Bancroft,
Native Races, I, 387, 388, quoting Drake’s World Encomp. pp. 124-126.

The natives of Guatemala wore red feathers in their hats, the nobles
only wearing green ones. _Ibid_, p. 691.

See with reference to the Haidas, Mr. J. G. Swan’s account, page 66,

The following extract relative to the color red among the New
Zealanders is from Taylor’s Te Ika a Maui, etc., pp. 209-210.

  Closely connected with religion, was the feeling they entertained
  for the Kura, or Red Paint, which was the sacred color; their
  idols, _Pataka_, sacred stages for the dead, and for offerings or
  sacrifices, _Urupa_ graves, chief’s houses, and war canoes, were all
  thus painted.

  The way of rendering anything tapu was by making it red. When a
  person died, his house was thus colored; when the tapu was laid on
  anything, the chief erected a post and painted it with the kura;
  wherever a corpse rested, some memorial was set up, oftentimes the
  nearest stone, rock, or tree served as a monument; but whatever
  object was selected, it was sure to be made red. If the corpse were
  conveyed by water, wherever they landed a similar token was left;
  and when it reached its destination, the canoe was dragged on shore,
  thus distinguished, and abandoned. When the hahunga took place,
  the scraped bones of the chief, thus ornamented, and wrapped in a
  red-stained mat, were deposited in a box or bowl, smeared with the
  sacred color, and placed in a tomb. Near his final resting-place a
  lofty and elaborately carved monument was erected to his memory; this
  was called _he tiki_, which was also thus colored.

  In former times the chief annointed his entire person with red ochre;
  when fully dressed on state occasions, both he and his wives had red
  paint and oil poured upon the crown of the head and forehead, which
  gave them a gory appearance, as though their skulls had been cleft

A large number of examples occur in the present paper where the use
and significance of color is mentioned. Among these see pages 64,
165-’6-’7, and 183.


These may be divided into:

1st. Natural objects other than the human person.

2d. The human person.

3d. Artificial objects.


Under the first head, the most important division is that of rocks and
stones, many examples of which have already been presented. In addition
to those respecting stone, Mr. Gilbert furnishes some data relating to
the sacred stone kept by the Indians of the village of Oraibi, on the
Moki mesas. This stone was seen by Messrs. John W. Young and Andrew S.
Gibbon, and the notes were made by Mr. Gilbert from those furnished to
him by Mr. Young. Few white men have had access to this sacred record,
and but few Indians have enjoyed the privilege.

Mr. Gilbert remarks that “the stone was evidently squared by the eye
and not by any instrument. The engraving seems to have been done with
some rude instrument, but executed with some degree of skill, like an
ancient art faded into dim remembrance of the artist or writer of the
characters. The stone is a red clouded marble, entirely different from
anything found in the region, so I learn by the Indians. The stone is
badly worn, and some of the characters are difficult to determine.”

According to the notes accompanying the rude drawings of this stone,
it is an oblong rectangle, measuring 11-3/4 inches long, 7-1/4 inches
wide, and 1-1/2 inches thick. On one side there is an interior space,
also an oblong rectangle measuring about three-fourths of the size of
the whole tablet, between which and the outer margin are six nude human
figures resembling one another, one at either end and two on each of
the two sides. The interior space may have contained characters, though
no traces are now visible.

On the other side are drawings of the sun, clouds with rain descending
therefrom, lightning, stars, arrows, foot-prints of the bear, and
several other undeterminable characters.

No history of the origin and import of this tablet has been obtained.

Other materials may be mentioned as follows:


For instances of the use of bone, refer to several Alaska ivory
carvings in this paper, _e. g._, Figure 111, page 192; Comanche buffalo
shoulder blade, Figure 137, page 216; Hidatsa shoulder blade, page 151;
New Zealand human bone, Figure 34, page 74.


An example is to be found in Schoolcraft, IV, p. 253; Pl. 33, Fig. A,
where it is stated that Mr. Richard H. Kern furnished a copy of an
Indian drawing, which was “found on the trunk of a cottonwood tree in
the valley of King’s River, California, and evidently represents the
manner of catching different wild animals with the lasso.”

The use of the lasso, and the characters being upon the bark of a
living tree, show sufficient reason to believe that this record was of
modern workmanship.


The Indians of the Northwest Coast generally employ wood upon which to
depict objects of various kinds. These appear to partake of a mythical
nature, sometimes becoming absurdly grotesque. Totem posts (Plate
LXXXIII, page 199), boats, boat paddles, the boards constituting the
front wall of a house, and masks are among the objects used upon which
to display artistic skill.

Ottawa drawings are also found upon pipe-stems made of wood, usually
ash. Figure 120, page 204, is an example of this.

Among the Arikara boat paddles are used upon which marks of personal
distinction are reproduced, as shown in Figure 80, page 182.

Wooden dancing ornaments, such as fanciful representations of the human
figure, idols, etc., are generally ornamented with a variety of colors,
having them sometimes arranged to represent designs closely related to,
if not actually signifying, marks of gentile distinction.

In Alaska, mortuary records are drawn upon slabs of wood. See Figures
113 and 114, page 198. Mnemonic devices, notices of departure,
distress, etc., are also drawn upon thin narrow slips of wood,
averaging an inch in width, and of sufficient length. See Figures 58
and 59, page 154. A circular piece of wood or board is sometimes drawn
upon, showing the human face, and placed upon a pole, and facing in
a certain direction, to show the course taken by the survivors of a
settlement which has been attacked by an enemy. See Figure 50, page 152.


The Ojibwa have, until very recently, been in the habit of tracing
characters of various kinds upon the inner surface of birch bark.
These records are usually mnemonic, though many pertain to personal
exploits. An illustration is given in Figure 139, page 218. The lines
appear to have been traced with a sharply-pointed instrument, probably
bone, and in some examples the drawings are made by simple puncturing.
Sometimes color is applied to the objects delineated, and apparently
with reference to specific signification. The strips of bark, varying
from an inch to several feet in length, roll up upon drying, and are
straightened out for examination by heating near the fire.


This includes scalps. A large number of records upon the hides
of animals are mentioned in the present paper. Plate VI with its
description in the Dakota Winter Counts is one instance.


The Sacramento tribes of California are very expert in weaving blankets
of feathers, many of them having really beautiful figures worked upon
them. This is reported by Edward M. Kern in Schoolcraft, V, 649, 650.

The feather work in Mexico, Central America and the Hawaiian Islands
is well known, often having designs properly to be considered among
pictographs, though in general not, at least in modern times, passing
beyond ornamentation.


After gourds have dried the contents are removed and handles are
attached; they serve as rattles in dances, and in religious and
shamanistic rites. The representations of natural or mythical objects
for which the owner may have special reverence are often depicted upon
their surfaces. This custom prevails among the Pueblos generally, and,
also, among many other tribes, notably those constituting the Siouan
linguistic stock.


The Hidatsa, Arikara, Dakota, and several other tribes of the Northwest
plains, use horse hair dyed red as appendages to feathers worn as
personal marks of distinction. Its arrangement is significant.


The illustrated and exhaustive paper of Mr. W. H. Holmes, in the Second
Annual report of the Bureau of Ethnology, removes all necessity for
present extended mention under this head.


Papers by Dr. Washington Matthews, U. S. A., Dr. W. H. Corbusier, U. S.
A., and Mr. James Stevenson were read in the Anthropological Society
of Washington during the season of 1884-5, giving account of important
and entirely novel paintings by the Navajo, Yuman, and Zuni Indians.
These paintings were made upon the ground by means of sand, ashes,
and powdered vegetable matter of various colors. These were highly
elaborate, made immediately preceding certain ceremonies, at the close
of which they were obliterated.

Dr. W. J. Hoffman states that when the expedition under command of
Capt. G. M. Wheeler, U. S. A., passed through Southern Nevada in
1871, the encampment for one night was at Pai-Uta Charlie’s rancheria,
where it was visited by many of the Pai-Uta Indians of that vicinity.
On leaving camp the following morning representations of many mounted
men, the odometer cart and pack animals were found depicted upon the
hard, flat surface of the sand. The Indians had drawn the outlines in
life size with sticks of wood, and the work was very artistically done.
A mounted expedition was a new thing in that part of the country and
amused them not a little.

The well-known animal mounds, sometimes called effigy mounds, of
Wisconsin come in this category.


Pictographs upon the human person may be divided into, 1st, paint on
the face; 2d, paint on the body; and, 3d, tattooing, which is also
divided into tattoo marks upon the head and tattoo marks upon the body.


Dr. Hoffman, who visited the Hualpai Indians of northern Arizona in
1871, gives an account (see _ante_, p. 52) of their habit of besmearing
their bodies and faces with the blood of game killed.

A colored plate, facing page 33 of the report of the Pacific Railroad
Expedition, 1856, pt. III, shows the designs adopted by the Mojave
Indians for painting the body. These designs consist of transverse
lines extending around the body, arms, and legs, or horizontal lines,
or different parts may partake of different designs. Clay is now
generally used, as was observed by Dr. Hoffman, who visited Camp Mojave
in 1871.

For other notices of paint on head and body and the significance of
color see _ante_, page 53 _et seq._

Everard F. im Thurn, in his work before cited, page 196, describes the
painting of the Indians of Guiana as follows:

  The paint is applied either in large masses or in patterns. For
  example, a man, when he wants to dress well, perhaps entirely coats
  both his feet up to the ankles with a crust of red; his whole trunk
  he sometimes stains uniformly with blue-black, more rarely with red,
  or covers it with an intricate pattern of lines of either colour;
  he puts a streak of red along the bridge of his nose; where his
  eyebrows were till he pulled them out he puts two red lines; at the
  top of the arch of his forehead he puts a big lump of red paint, and
  probably he scatters other spots and lines somewhere on his face. The
  women, especially among the Ackawoi, who use more body-paint than
  other ornament, are more fond of blue-black than of red; and one very
  favorite ornament with them is a broad band of this, which edges the
  mouth, and passes from the corners of that to the ears. Some women
  especially affect certain little figures, like Chinese characters,
  which look as if some meaning were attached to them, but which the
  Indians are either unable or unwilling to explain.

The Serranos, near Los Angeles, California, formerly cut lines upon the
trees and posts, marking boundaries of land, these lines corresponding
to those adopted by the owner as facial decorations. See page 182.

During his connection with the Yellowstone expedition of 1873, under
the command of General Stanley, Dr. Hoffman found elaborate narratives
of hostile encounters between the Absaroka and Dakota Indians incised
upon the bark of cotton-wood trees, in the valley of the Musselshell
River. The Absaroka were shown by having the bark in the forehead
removed, thus corresponding to their war custom of painting that
portion of the face red, while the Dakota were denoted by having only
the part of the face from the eyes down to the chin removed, referring
to their custom of painting that part of the face. The number of
individuals was shown by the outline of one individual of either tribe,
with added short lines. The total number of arms was shown by drawing
one gun and the requisite number of spots. The number of horses was
indicated in a similar manner.

See also with reference to paint on the human person, pages 165 and 167.

The present writer, when reading the magnificent work of Conte Giovanni
Gozzadini, Di Ulteriori Scoperte Nell’ Antica Necropoli a Marzabotto
nel Bolognese, Bologna, 1870, noticed in Plate XII, Figure 1, the
representation of a human head in bronze of great antiquity, and that
it shows incised lines over the superior malar region, below and
outward from the outer canthus of the eye. To any one recently familiar
with tattooing and the lines of face painting this gives a decided
suggestion, and is offered as such.

The head is reproduced in Figure 22.

[Illustration: FIG. 22.--Bronze head from the Necropolis of Marzabotto,

A less distinct suggestion arose from the representation of a “Fragment
of a lustrous black bowl, with an incised decoration filled with white
chalk,” pictured in Troja, etc., by Dr. Henry Schliemann, New York,
1884, p. 31, No. 1, and here presented, Figure 23. In the absence
of knowledge as to the connection of the two sets of parallel lines
on each side of the face, with the remainder of the bowl, it is not
possible to form any decision as to whether there was any intention to
portray face painting or tattooing, or whether the lines merely partook
of the general pattern of the bowl. The lines, however, instantly
caught the present writer’s eye as connected with the subject now under

[Illustration: FIG. 23.--Fragment of bowl from Troja.]


Tattooing, a permanent marking of the skin as distinguished from
the temporary painting, and accomplished by the introduction of
coloring matter under the cutaneous epidermis, was formerly practiced
extensively among the Indians of North America. Some authorities for
this statement are here quoted, as also some descriptions of the custom
where still practiced.

Capt. John Smith, in “The True Travels, Adventures, etc.,” Richmond,
1819, Vol. I, page 130, is made to say of the Virginia Indians:

“They adorne themselues most with copper beads and paintings. Their
women, some haue their legs, hands, breasts and face cunningly
imbrodered with divers workes, as beasts, serpents, artificially
wrought into their flesh with blacke spots.”

The Innuit, according to Cook, practiced tattooing perpendicular lines
upon the chin of women, and sometimes similar lines extending backward
from near the outer portions of the eyes.

Mr. Gatschet reports that very few Klamath men now tattoo their faces,
but such as are still observed have but a single line of black running
from the middle of the lower lip to the chin. The women have three
lines, one from each corner of the mouth and one down over the center
of the chin.

The Modoc women tattoo three blue lines, extending perpendicularly
from the center and corners of the lower lip to the chin. See Bancroft,
Native Races, I, p. 332.

Stephen Powers says (Contrib. N. A. Ethnol., III, p. 20) that the
Karol, California, squaws tattoo in blue three narrow fern leaves
perpendicularly on the chin, one falling from each corner of the mouth
and one in the middle. For this purpose, they are said to employ soot
gathered from a stone, mingled with the juice of a certain plant.

The same author reports, page 76: “Nearly every (Hupâ, California) man
has ten lines tattooed across the inside of the left arm, about half
way between the wrist and the elbow; and in measuring shell-money,
he takes the string in his right hand, draws one end over his left
thumbnail, and if the other end reaches to the uppermost of the tattoo
lines, the five shells are worth $25 in gold or $5 a shell. Of course
it is only one in ten thousand that is long enough to reach this high

The same author, on page 96, says: The squaws (Pat´awāt, Cal.) tattoo
in blue three narrow pinnate leaves perpendicularly on their chins, and
also lines of small dots on the backs of their hands.

He reports, page 148, of the Kas´tel Pomo: The women of this and other
tribes of the Coast Range frequently tattoo a rude representation of a
tree or other object, covering nearly the whole abdomen and breast.

Of the Wintūns of California the same author says (page 233) that the
squaws all tattoo three narrow lines, one falling from each corner of
the mouth, and one between.

See also page 167 _infra_.

Rev. M. Eells says (Bull. U. S. Geol. and Geog. Survey, III, p. 75) of
the Twana Indians: A little of this tattooing is done, but much less
than formerly, and chiefly now among the children.

Blue marks tattooed upon a Mojave woman’s chin denotes that she is
married. See Pacific R. R. Exped., III, 1856, p. 33.

The only remarkable instance of tattooing now among the Hidatsa is that
of Lean-Wolf, the present second chief of the tribe. The ornamentation
consists of horizontal stripes, from one-third to one-half an inch
broad, running from the middle of the breast around the right side of
the body to the spinal column. The right arm and the right leg are
encircled by similar bands, between which there are spaces of equal
width. Lean-Wolf professed not to be able to give the origin and
history of this ornamentation, although, he represents himself with it
upon pictographs relating to personal events of warfare and the chase.

Bancroft (Native Races, Vol. I, p. 48) says of the Eskimo, that the
females tattoo lines on their chins; the plebeian female of certain
bands has one vertical line in the center and one parallel to it on
either side. The higher classes mark two vertical lines from each
corner of the mouth. On page 72 he says that young Kadiak wives tattoo
the breast and adorn the face with black lines. The Kuskoquim women
sew into their chin two parallel blue lines. This color is applied by
drawing a thread under the skin or pricking it with a needle. On page
117 he says that the Chippewyans have tattooed cheeks and foreheads.
Both sexes have blue or black bars or from one to four straight lines
to distinguish the tribe to which they belong; they tattoo by entering
an awl or needle under the skin and on drawing it out, immediately
rubbing powdered charcoal into the wounds. On page 127 he states that
on the Yukon River among the Kutchins, the men draw a black stripe down
the forehead and the nose, frequently crossing the forehead and cheeks
with red lines and streaking the chin, alternately with red and black,
and the women tattoo the chin with a black pigment.

It will be observed that these statements by Bancroft, about tattooing
among the Hyperboreans, seem to be confined to the face, except as is
mentioned among the Kadiak, where the women tattoo the breast, and that
these tattoo marks seem to be simple straight lines, either vertical or

       *       *       *       *       *

In this place is properly inserted the following report of original
research among the Haidas on this subject, by Mr. James G. Swan, of
Port Townsend, Washington, for which the thanks of this Bureau are
tendered to him.



H. H. Bancroft, in his “Native Races, Pacific States,” Vol. I, p.
155, includes in the Haida family the nations occupying the coast and
islands from the southern extremity of Prince of Wales Archipelago to
the Bentinck Arms in about 52° N.

Their territory is bounded on the north and east by the Thlinkeet and
Carrier nations of the Hyperboreans, and on the south by the Nootka
family of the Columbians.

Its chief nations, or, more correctly speaking, bands, whose
boundaries, however, can rarely be fixed with precision, are the
Massets, Skiddegates, Cumshawas, Laskeets, and the Skringwai, of Queen
Charlotte Islands: the Kaigani, Howkan, Klemakoan, and Kazan, of Prince
of Wales Archipelago; the Chimsyans, about Fort Simpson and on Chatham
Sound; the Nass and the Skenas, on the rivers of the same name; the
Sebasses, on Pitt Archipelago and the shores of Gardiner Channel, and
the Millbank Sound Indians, including the Hailtzas, Bella Bella, Bella
Coola, etc.

Among all the tribes or bands belonging to the Haida family, the
practice of tattooing the person in some manner is common; but the
most marked are the Haidas proper, or those living on Queen Charlotte
Islands, and the Kaiganis, of Prince of Wales Archipelago, Alaska.
Of the Haida tribe, H. H. Bancroft says (Works 1882, Vol. I, p.
159), “Besides the regular lip piece, ornaments various in shape and
material, of shell, bone, wood, or metal, are worn, stuck in the lips,
nose, and ears, apparently according to the caprice or taste of the
wearer, the skin being sometimes, though more rarely, tattooed to
correspond.” The authors quoted by Bancroft for this information are
Mayne’s British Columbia, p. 282; Barrett-Lennard’s Travels, pp. 45,
46; Poole’s Queen Charlotte Islands, pp. 75-311; Dunn’s Oregon, pp.
279, 285, and Reed, who says, “The men habitually go naked, but when
they go off on a journey they wear a blanket.”

How this latter writer, presuming he speaks from personal experience,
could have seen naked Haida men without noticing tattoo marks, I cannot
understand. On page 182 of the same volume of Bancroft, footnote, is
the following: “‘The habit of tattooing the legs and arms is common to
all the women of Vancouver’s Island; the men do not adopt it.’ Grant,
in Lond. Geog. Soc. Jour., Vol. XXVII, p. 307. ‘No such practice as
tattooing exists among these natives.’ Sproat’s Scenes, p. 27.”

What Grant says applies not to the women of Vancouver’s Island, but to
those of Queen Charlotte Islands. Sproat seems to have given more of
his attention to some fancied terminal in their language, upon which
he builds his theory of the “Aht” nation, than to the observance of
their personal peculiarities. I am of the opinion, judging from my own
observation of over twenty years among the coast tribes, that but few
females can be found among the Indians, not only on Vancouver’s Island,
but all along the coast to the Columbia River, and perhaps even to
California, that are _not_ marked with some device tattooed on their
hands, arms, or ankles, either dots or straight lines; but of all the
tribes mentioned, the Haidas stand pre-eminent for tattooing, and seem
to be excelled only by the natives of the Fiji Islands or the King’s
Mills Group in the South Seas. The tattoo marks of the Haidas are
heraldic designs or the family totem, or crests of the wearers, and are
similar to the carvings depicted on the pillars and monuments around
the homes of the chiefs, which casual observers have thought were idols.

In a memoir written by me on the Haida Indians, for the Smithsonian
Institution, and published as No. 267 of Contributions to Knowledge,
I have given illustrations of various tattoo designs and heraldic
carvings in wood and stone, but did not attempt to delineate the
position or appearance of those designs upon their bodies or limbs,
although all the tattoo marks represented in that memoir were copied
by me directly from the persons of the Haidas, as stated in the

The publication of this memoir, with its illustrations, which I showed
to the Haidas and Kaiganis in 1875, during my cruise to Alaska in the
United States revenue steamer Wolcott, gave them confidence in me that
I had not made the drawings from idle curiosity, and in February, 1879,
I was fortunate enough to meet a party of Haida men and women in Port
Townsend, Washington, who permitted me to copy their tattoo marks again.

These designs are invariably placed on the men between the shoulders,
just below the back of the neck, on the breast, on the front part of
both thighs, and on the legs below the knee. On the women they are
marked on the breast, on both shoulders, on both fore-arms, from the
elbow, down over the back of the hands, to the knuckles, and on both
legs below the knee to the ankle.

When the Haidas visit Victoria or the towns on Puget Sound they
are dressed in the garb of white people and present a respectable
appearance, in marked contrast with the Indians from the west coast
of Vancouver’s Island, or the vicinity of Cape Flattery, who dress in
a more primitive manner, and attract notice by their more picturesque
costumes than do the Haidas, about whom there is nothing outwardly of
unusual appearance, except the tattoo marks on the hands of the women,
which show their nationality at a glance of the most careless observer.

As I before remarked, almost all of the Indian women of the northwest
coast have tattoo marks on their hands and arms, and some on the face;
but as a general thing these marks are mere dots or straight lines,
having no particular significance. With the Haidas, however, every mark
has its meaning; those on the hands and arms of the women indicate
the family name, whether they belong to the bear, beaver, wolf, or
eagle totems, or any of the family of fishes. As one of them quaintly
remarked to me, “If you were tattooed with the design of a swan, the
Indians would know your family name.”

Although it is very easy to distinguish the Haida women from those of
other tribes by seeing the tattoo marks on the backs of their hands,
yet very few white persons have cared to know the meaning of these
designs, or are aware of the extent of the tattoo marks on the persons
of both sexes.

In order to illustrate this tattooing as correctly as possible, I
inclose herewith a view (Figure 24) taken at Massett, Queen Charlotte
Island, of the carved columns in front of the chief’s residence; and
also sketches of the tattoo marks on two women and their husbands taken
by me at Port Townsend.

[Illustration: FIG. 24.--Haida Totem Post.]

It should be borne in mind that during their festivals and masquerade
performances the men are entirely naked and the women have only a
short skirt reaching from the waist to the knee; the rest of their
persons are exposed, and it is at such times that the tattoo marks show
with the best effect, and the rank and family connection known by the
variety of designs.

Like all the other coast tribes, the Haidas are careful not to permit
the intrusion of white persons or strangers to their Tomanawos
ceremonies, and as a consequence but few white people, and certainly
none of those who have ever written about those Indians, have been
present at their opening ceremonies when the tattoo marks are shown.

My information was derived from the Haidas themselves, who explained
to me while I was making the drawings, and illustrated some of the
positions assumed in their dances by both sexes.

Fig. 25 represents a man. On his breast is the cod (kahatta) split from
the head to the tail and laid open; on each thigh is the octopus (noo),
and below each knee is the frog (flkamkostan).

[Illustration: FIG. 25.--Haida man, tattooed.

FIG. 26.--Haida woman, tattooed.]

Figure 26 represents a woman. On her breast is the head with forepaws
of the beaver (tsching); on each shoulder is the head of the eagle
or thunder-bird (skamskwin); on each arm, extending to and covering
the back of the hand, is the halibut (hargo); on the right leg is the
sculpin (kull); on the left leg is the frog (flkamkostan).

Figure 27 is a woman with the bear’s head (hoorts) on her breast. On
each shoulder is the eagle’s head, and on her arms and legs are figures
of the bear.

[Illustration: FIG. 27.--Haida woman, tattooed.

FIG. 28.--Haida man, tattooed.]

Figure 28 shows the back of a man with the wolf (wasko) split in halves
and tattooed between his shoulders, which is shown enlarged in Figure
33. Wasko is a mythological being of the wolf species similar to the
chu-chu-hmexl of the Makah Indians, an antediluvian demon supposed to
live in the mountains.

[Illustration: FIG. 33.--Wolf.]

The skulpin on the right leg of the woman in Figure 26 is shown
enlarged in Figure 29; the frog on the left leg in Figure 30.

[Illustration: FIG. 29.--Skulpin.]

[Illustration: FIG. 30.--Frog.]

The codfish on the man in Figure 25 is shown enlarged in Figure 31, the
octopus or squid in Figure 32.

[Illustration: FIG. 31.--Cod.]

[Illustration: FIG 32.--Squid or octopus.]

As the Haidas, both men and women, are very light colored, some of
the latter, full blooded Indians too, having their skins as fair
as Europeans, the tattoo marks show very distinct. These sketches
are not intended as portraits of persons, but simply to illustrate
the positions of the various tattoo marks. To enter into a detailed
description would require more space and study than is convenient at
this time. Enough is given, it is hoped, to convey to you an idea of
this interesting subject, which will require much study to properly
elaborate, or understand.

This tattooing is not all done at one time nor is it every one who can
tattoo. Certain ones, almost always men, have a natural gift which
enables them to excel in this kind of work. One of the young chiefs,
named Geneskelos, was the best designer I knew, and ranked among his
tribe as a tattooer. He belonged to Laskeek village on the east side of
Moresby’s Island, one of the Queen Charlotte group. I employed him to
decorate the great canoe which I sent to the Centennial Exposition at
Philadelphia in 1876, for the National Museum. I was with him a great
deal of the time both at Victoria and Port Townsend. He had a little
sketch book in which he had traced designs for tattooing, which he gave
to me. He subsequently died in Victoria of small-pox, soon after he had
finished decorating the canoe.

He told me the plan he adopted was first to draw the design carefully
on the person with some dark pigment, then prick it in with needles and
then rub over the wound with some more coloring matter till it acquired
the proper hue. He had a variety of instruments composed of needles
tied neatly to sticks. His favorite one was a flat strip of ivory or
bone, to which he had firmly tied five or six needles, with their
points projecting beyond the end just far enough to raise the skin
without inflicting a dangerous wound, but these needle points stuck out
quite sufficiently to make the operation very painful, and although he
applied some substance to deaden the sensation of the skin, yet the
effect was on some to make them quite sick for a few days; consequently
the whole process of tattooing was not done at one time. As this
tattooing is a mark of honor, it is generally done at or just prior to
a Tomanawos performance and at the time of raising the heraldic columns
in front of the chief’s houses. The tattooing is done in open lodge and
is witnessed by the company assembled. Sometimes it takes several years
before all the tattooing is done, but when completed and the person
well ornamented, then they are happy and can take their seats among the

It is an interesting question, and one worthy of careful and patient
investigation, Why is it that the Haida Nation alone of all the coast
tribes tattoo their persons to such an extent, and how they acquire the
art of carving columns which bear such striking similarity to carving
in wood and stone by the ancient inhabitants of Central America, as
shown by drawings in Bancroft’s fourth volume of Native Races and in
Habel’s investigation in Central and South America?

Some of these idols in design, particularly on pages 40 to 58, and
notably on pages 49-50 (Bancroft, _op. cit._), are very like some small
carvings I have in Port Townsend which I received from Alaska, showing
a similarity of idea which could not be the result of an accident.

The tattoo marks, the carvings, and heraldic designs of the Haida are
an exceedingly interesting study, and I hope what I have thus hastily
and imperfectly written may be the means of awakening an interest to
have those questions scientifically discussed, for they seem to me to
point to a key which may unlock the mystery which for so many ages has
kept us from the knowledge of the origin of the Pacific tribes.

       *       *       *       *       *


The following quotations and illustrations of tattooing in the islands
of the Pacific Ocean are presented for comparison, and in hopes that
the discussion of the subject may afford further information upon the
significance of tattoo marks. It is by no means probable that they were
originally altogether or chiefly for ornamentation.

The accompanying illustration, Figure 34, is taken from a bone obtained
from a mound in New Zealand, by Mr. I. C. Russell, of the United States
Geological Survey, several years ago. Mr. Russell says that the Maori
formerly tattooed the bones of enemies, though the custom now seems to
have been abandoned. The work consists of sharp, shallow lines, as if
made with a sharp-pointed steel instrument, into which some blackish
pigment has been rubbed, filling up some of the markings, while in
others scarcely a trace remains.

[Illustration: FIG. 34.--Tattoo designs on bone, New Zealand.]

In connection with the use of the tattoo marks as reproduced on
artificial objects see also, Figure 37, page 76, and Figure 116, page

The following is extracted from Te Ika a Maui, or New Zealand and its
inhabitants, by Rev. Richard Taylor, London, 1870, p. 320, etc.

  Before they went to fight, the youth were accustomed to mark their
  countenance with charcoal in different lines, and their traditions
  state that this was the beginning of the tattoo, for their wars
  became so continuous, that to save the trouble of thus constantly
  painting the face, they made the lines permanent by the moko; it is
  however a question whether it did not arise from a different cause;
  formerly the grand mass of men who went to fight were the black
  slaves, and when they fought side by side with their lighter colored
  masters, the latter on those occasions used charcoal to make it
  appear they were all one.

  Whilst the males had every part of the face tattooed, and the
  thighs as well, the females had chiefly the chin and the lips,
  although occasionally they also had their thighs and breasts,
  with a few smaller marks on different parts of the body as well.
  There were regular rules for tattooing, and the artist always
  went systematically to work, beginning at one spot and gradually
  proceeding to another, each particular part having its distinguishing
  name. Thus,

   1. _Te kawe_, which are four lines on each side of the chin.
   2. _Te pukawae_, six lines on the chin.
   3. _Nga rere hupe_, the lines below the nostrils, six in number.
   4. _Nga kohiri_, a curved line on the cheek-bone.
   5. _Nga koroaha_, lines between the cheek-bone and ear.
   6. _Nga wakarakau_, lines below the former.
   7. _Nga pongiangia_, the lines on each side of the lower extremity
        of the nose.
   8. _Nga pae tarewa_, the lines on the cheek-bone.
   9. _Nga rerepi_, and _Nga ngatarewa_, lines on the bridge of the nose.
  10. _Nga tiwana_, four lines on the forehead.
  11. _Nga rewha_, three lines below the eyebrows.
  12. _Nga titi_, lines on the center of the forehead.
  13. _Ipu rangi_, lines above the former.
  14. _Te tonokai_, the general names for the lines on the forehead.
  15. _He ngutu pu rua_, both lips tattooed.
  16. _Te rape_, the higher part of the thighs.
  17. _Te paki paki_, the tattooing on the seat.
  18. _Te paki turi_, the lower thigh.
  19. _Nga tata_, the adjoining part.

  The following are female tattoos:--

  1. _Taki taki_, lines from the breast to the navel.
  2. _Hope hope_, the lines on the thighs.
  3. _Waka te he_, the lines on the chin.

Figure 35 is a copy of a tattooed head carved by Hongi, and also of the
tattooing on a woman’s chin, taken from the work last quoted.

[Illustration: FIG. 35.--New Zealand tattooed head and chin mark.]

Figure 36 is a copy of a photograph obtained in New Zealand by Mr.
Russell. It shows tattooing upon the chin.

[Illustration: FIG. 36.--New Zealand tattooed woman.]

Two beautifully tattooed heads are in the collection of the Army
Medical Museum at Washington, D. C., of which illustrations are
presented in the accompanying Plate, III. No history of these heads
can be obtained. The skin is almost perfect, and has become much
brighter in tint than the original color. The tattooing is a blue
black, and in certain lights becomes almost bright indigo. In many of
the markings there appear slight grooves, which add greatly to the
general ornamentation, breaking the monotony of usually plain surfaces.
Whether any mechanical work was performed upon the heads after death
is not positively known, though from the general appearance of the
work it would be suggested that the sharp creases or grooves was
done subsequent to the death of the individual. The tattooing shows
sub-cutaneous coloring, which indicates that at least part of the
ornamentation was done in life.




Figure 37 is an illustration from Te Ika a Maui, etc., _op. cit._,
facing page 378. It shows the “grave of an Australian native, with his
name, rank, tribe, etc., cut in hieroglyphics on the trees,” which
“hieroglyphics” are supposed to be connected with his tattoo marks.

[Illustration: FIG. 37.--Australian grave and carved trees.]

Mr. I. C. Russell, in his sketch of New Zealand, published in the
American Naturalist, Volume XIII, p. 72, February, 1879, remarks, that
the desire of the Maori for ornament is so great that they covered
their features with tattooing, transferring indelibly to their faces
complicated patterns of curved and spiral lines, similar to the designs
with which they decorated their canoes and their houses.

In Mangaia, of the Hervey Group, the tattoo is said to be in imitation
of the stripes on the two kinds of fish, avini and paoro, the color
of which is blue. The legend of this is kept in the song of Ina´. See
Myths and songs from the South Pacific, London, 1876, p. 94.

Mr. Everard F. im Thurn, in his work previously cited, pages 195-’96
among the Indians of Guiana, says:

  Painting the body is the simplest mode of adornment. Tattooing or any
  other permanent interference with the surface of the skin by way of
  ornament is practiced only to a very limited extent by the Indians;
  is used, in fact, only to produce the small distinctive tribal mark
  which many of them bear at the corners of their mouths or on their
  arms. It is true that an adult Indian is hardly to be found on whose
  thighs and arms, or on other parts of whose body, are not a greater
  or less number of indelibly incised straight lines; but these are
  scars originally made for surgical, not ornamental purposes.

The following extracts are taken from Samoa, by George Turner, LL.D.,
London, 1884:

  Page 55. Taema and Tilafainga, or Tila the _sportive_, were the
  goddesses of the tattooers. They swam from Fiji to introduce the
  craft to Samoa, and on leaving Fiji were commissioned to sing all the
  way, “Tattoo the women, but not the men.” They got muddled over it in
  the long journey, and arrived at Samoa singing, “Tattoo the _men_ and
  not the women.” And hence the universal exercise of the blackening
  art on the men rather than the women.

  Page 88. “Herodotus found among the Thracians that the barbarians
  could be exceedingly foppish after their fashion. The man who was not
  tattooed among them was not respected.” It was the same in Samoa.
  Until a young man was tattooed, he was considered in his minority.
  He could not think of marriage, and he was constantly exposed to
  taunts and ridicule, as being poor and of low birth, and as having no
  right to speak in the society of men. But as soon as he was tattooed
  he passed into his majority, and considered himself entitled to the
  respect and privileges of mature years. When a youth, therefore,
  reached the age of sixteen, he and his friends were all anxiety that
  he should be tattooed. He was then on the outlook for the tattooing
  of some young chief with whom he might unite. On these occasions, six
  or a dozen young men would be tattooed at one time; and for these
  there might be four or five tattooers employed.

  Tattooing is still kept up to some extent, and is a regular
  profession, just as house-building, and well paid. The custom is
  traced to Taēmā and Tilafainga; and they were worshipped by the
  tattooers as the presiding deities of their craft.

  The instrument used in the operation is an oblong piece of human bone
  (_os ilium_), about an inch and a half broad and two inches long.
  A time of war and slaughter was a harvest for the tattooers to get
  a supply of instruments. The one end is cut like a small-toothed
  comb, and the other is fastened to a piece of cane, and looks like
  a little serrated adze. They dip it into a mixture of candle-nut
  ashes and water, and, tapping it with a little mallet, it sinks
  into the skin, and in this way they puncture the whole surface over
  which the tattooing extends. The greater part of the body, from the
  waist down to the knee is covered with it, variegated here and there
  with neat regular stripes of the untattooed skin, which when they
  are well oiled, make them appear in the distance as if they had on
  black silk knee-breeches. Behrens, in describing these natives in his
  narrative of Roggewein’s voyage of 1772, says: “They were clothed
  from the waist downwards with fringes and a kind of silken stuff
  artificially wrought.” A nearer inspection would have shown that
  the fringes were a bunch of red _ti_ leaves (_Dracæna terminalis_)
  glistening with cocoa-nut oil, and the “kind of silken stuff,” the
  tattooing just described. As it extends over such a large surface
  the operation is a tedious and painful affair. After smarting and
  bleeding for awhile under the hands of the tattooers, the patience of
  the youth is exhausted. They then let him rest and heal for a time,
  and, before returning to him again, do a little piece on each of the
  party. In two or three months the whole is completed. The friends of
  the young men are all the while in attendance with food. They also
  bring quantities of fine mats and native cloth, as the hire of the
  tattooers; connected with them, too, are many waiting on for a share
  in the food and property.

Among the fellahs, as well as among the laboring people of the cities,
the women tattoo their chin, their forehead, the middle of the breast,
a portion of their hands and arms, as well as feet, with indelible
marks of blue and green. In Upper Egypt most females puncture their
lips to give them a dark bluish hue. See Featherman, Social Hist. of
the Races of Mankind, V, 1881, p. 545.

       *       *       *       *       *

Professor Brauns, of Halle, reports (Science, III, No. 50, p. 69) that
among the Ainos of Yazo the women tattoo their chins to imitate the
beards of the men.

       *       *       *       *       *

The antiquity of tattooing in the eastern hemisphere is well
established. With reference to the Hebrews, and the tribes surrounding
them, the following Biblical texts may be in point:

“Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print
any marks upon you.” Lev., XIX, 28.

* * * “Though thou rentest thy face with painting, in vain shalt thou
make thyself fair.” Jer., IV. 30.


The objects of this character, on which pictographs are found, may be
mentioned as follows:

   1. Lances.
   2. Arrows.
   3. Shields.
   4. Canoes.
   5. Paddles.
   6. Habitations.
   7. Utensils.
   8. Pottery.
   9. Sinews or thread.
  10. Artificial beads.

It is believed that examples showing the use of each of these objects
are presented in various parts of the present paper, but the following
do not appear under other headings:

Many of the California tribes are expert workers in grass and roots in
the manufacture of baskets, upon which designs are frequently worked,
other than mere ornamentation, in geometric forms. The Yokuts, at
Tule River Agency, in the southeastern part of the State, frequently
incorporate various forms of the human body, in which the arms are
suspended at the sides of the body with the hands directed outward
to either side. Above the head is a heavy horizontal line. In the
manufacture of these vessels grass is taken, carefully cleaned, and
soaked, so as to become smooth and uniform in size.

Among the Thlinkit, boats as well as paddles are ornamented with
painted figures, and the family coat of arms. See Bancroft’s Native
Races, etc., I, 106.

There is no need to give evidence concerning the designs upon pottery,
after the numerous illustrations in the Second Annual Report of this
Bureau, from Zuñi, etc.


This has been the most apparent, and probably the most ancient,
purpose for which pictographs have been made. It commenced by the use
of material objects which afterwards were reproduced graphically in
paintings, etchings, and carvings.

In the present paper many examples appear of objects known to have
been so used, the graphic representations of which, made with the same
purpose, are explained by knowledge of the fact. Other instances are
mentioned as connected with the evolution of pictographs, and possibly
to interpret some of the latter which are not yet understood.

The quipu of the Peruvians is one of the most instructive devices
for the general aid of memory, and as applicable to a variety of
subjects, also having value for comparison with and reference to all
other objects of this character. A good account of the quipu, quoted
from Travels in Peru, during the years 1838-1842, * * by Dr. J. J. von
Tschudi [Wiley and Putnam’s Library, Vols. XCIII-XCIV.], New York,
1847, Pt. II, pp. 344, 345, is as follows:


  The ancient Peruvians had no manuscript characters for single sounds;
  but they had a method by which they composed words and incorporated
  ideas. This method consisted in the dexterous intertwining of knots
  on strings, so as to render them auxiliaries to the memory. The
  instrument consisting of these strings and knots was called the
  QUIPU. It was composed of one thick head or top string, to which,
  at certain distances, thinner ones were fastened. The top string
  was much thicker than these pendent strings, and consisted of two
  doubly twisted threads, over which two single threads were wound.
  The branches, if I may apply the term to these pendent strings, were
  fastened to the top ones by a single loop; the knots were made in the
  pendent strings, and were either single or manifold. The length of
  the strings used in making the quipu were various. The transverse or
  top string often measures several yards, and sometimes only a foot
  long; the branches are seldom more than two feet long, and in general
  they are much shorter.

  The strings were often of different colors; each having its own
  particular signification. The color for soldiers was red; for gold,
  yellow; for silver, white; for corn, green, &c. This writing by knots
  was especially employed for numerical and statistical tables; each
  single knot representing ten; each double knot stood for one hundred;
  each triple knot for one thousand, &c.; two single knots standing
  together made twenty; and two double knots, two hundred.

  This method of calculation is still practiced by the shepherds of the
  Puna. They explained it to me, and I could, with very little trouble,
  construe their quipus. On the first branch or string they usually
  place the numbers of the bulls; on the second, that of the cows;
  the latter being classed into those which were milked, and those
  which were not milked; on the next string were numbered the calves,
  according to their ages and sizes. Then came the sheep, in several
  subdivisions. Next followed the number of foxes killed, the quantity
  of salt consumed, and, finally, the cattle that had been slaughtered.
  Other quipus showed the produce of the herds in milk, cheese, wool,
  &c. Each list was distinguished by a particular color, or by some
  peculiarity in the twisting of the string.

  In this manner the ancient Peruvians kept the accounts of their
  army. On one string were numbered the soldiers armed with slings; on
  another, the spearmen; on a third, those who carried clubs, &c. In
  the same manner the military reports were prepared. In every town
  some expert men were appointed to tie the knots of the quipu, and to
  explain them. These men were called _quipucamayocuna_ (literally,
  officers of the knots). Imperfect as was this method, yet in the
  flourishing period of the Inca government the appointed officers had
  acquired great dexterity in unriddling the meaning of the knots. It,
  however, seldom happened that they had to read a quipu without some
  verbal commentary. Something was always required to be added if the
  quipu came from a distant province, to explain whether it related to
  the numbering of the population, to tributes, or to war, &c. Through
  long-continued practice, the officers who had charge of the quipus
  became so perfect in their duties that they could with facility
  communicate the laws and ordinances, and all the most important
  events of the kingdom, by their knots.

  All attempts made in modern times to decipher Peruvian quipus have
  proved unsatisfactory in their results. The principal obstacle to
  deciphering those found in graves consists in the want of the oral
  communication requisite for pointing out the subjects to which they
  refer. Such communication was necessary, even in former times, to
  the most learned quipucamayocuna. Most of the quipus here alluded
  to seems to be accounts of the population of particular towns or
  provinces, tax-lists, and information relating to the property of
  the deceased. Some Indians in the southern provinces of Peru are
  understood to possess a perfect knowledge of some of the ancient
  quipus, from information transmitted to them from their ancestors.
  But they keep that knowledge profoundly secret, particularly from the

That the general idea or invention for mnemonic purposes appearing in
the quipus, was used pictorially is indicated in the illustrations
given by Dr. S. Habel in The Sculptures of Santa Lucia Cosumalwhuapa
in Guatemala, etc., Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge, [No. 269],
1878, Vol. XXII, page 85. Upon these he remarks:

  It has been frequently affirmed that the aborigines of America had
  nowhere arisen high enough in civilization to have characters for
  writing and numeral signs; but the sculptures of Santa Lucia exhibit
  signs which indicate a kind of cipher writing, higher in form than
  mere hieroglyphics. From the mouth of most of the human beings,
  living or dead, emanates a staff variously bent, to the sides of
  which nodes are attached. These nodes are of different sizes and
  shapes, and variously distributed on the sides of the staff, either
  singly or in twos and threes,--the last named either separated or
  in shape of a trefoil. This manner of writing not only indicates
  that the person is speaking, or praying, but also indicates the very
  words, the contents of the speech or prayer. It is quite certain that
  each staff, as bent and ornamented, stood for a well-known petition
  which the priest could read as easily as those acquainted with a
  cipher dispatch can know its purport. Further, one may be allowed to
  conjecture that the various curves of the staves served the purpose
  of strength and rhythm, just as the poet chooses his various meters
  for the same purpose.

In connection with the quipu, Dr. Hoffman reports a corresponding
device among the Indians formerly inhabiting the mountain valleys north
of Los Angeles, California, who frequently came to the settlements to
dispose of native blankets, skins, and robes. The man delegated by the
tribe to carry away and sell these articles was provided with a number
of strings, made of some flexible vegetable fiber, one string for each
class of goods, which were attached to his belt. Every one contributing
articles mentioned the prices to be asked therefor, and when the
salesman disposed of a blanket the proper cord was taken, and a single
knot was tied for each _real_ received, or a double knot for each
_peso_. Thus any particular string indicated the kind of goods disposed
of, as well as the whole sum realized, which was finally distributed
among the original contributors.


The use of these mnemonically was very frequent. A few instances only
of this obvious expedient need be given.

The Dakotas formerly residing at Grand River Agency, the Hidatsa, and
the Shoshoni from Idaho were observed to note the number of days during
which they journeyed from one place to another, by cutting lines or
notches upon a stick of wood.

The coup sticks carried by Dakota warriors are often found bearing a
number of small notches, which refer to the number of individuals the
owners may have hit after they had been shot or wounded.

The young men and boys of the several tribes at Fort Berthold, Dakota,
frequently carry a stick, upon which they cut a notch for every bird
killed during a single expedition.

Dr. Hoffman states that he found in the collection of the Hon. A.
F. Coronel, of Los Angeles, California, a number of notched sticks,
which had been invented and used by the Indians at the Mission of San
Gabriel. The history of them is as follows: Immediately after the
establishment of the mission the Franciscan father appointed major
domos, who had under their charge corporals or overseers of the several
classes of laborers, herders, etc. The chief herder was supplied with
a stick of hard wood, measuring about one inch in thickness each way,
and from twenty to twenty-four inches long. The corners were beveled at
the handle. Upon each of these facets were marks to indicate the kinds
of cattle herded, thus: one cut or notch, a bull; two cuts, a cow; one
cross, a heifer; and a >-shaped character, an ox. Similar characters
were also used for horses, respectively, for stallion, mare, colt, and
gelding. Where only cattle were owned no difference was made in the
upper end of the stick; but when both kinds of animals were owned near
the same localities, or by the same settler, the stick referring to
cattle was notched v-shaped at the head end, and reversed or pointed
to denote horses. Sticks were also marked to denote the several kinds
of stock, and to record those which had been branded. In all of these
sticks numbers were indicated by cutting notches into the corners,
each tenth cut extending across the face of the stick. For instance,
if the herder had thirteen oxen in charge, he selected that edge of
the stick which bore upon the handle the >-shape, and cut nine short
notches, one long one, and three short ones.

Labor sticks were also used by the Indians. On one side was a circle
intersected with cross lines to denote _money_, and on the opposite
side, which was reserved for time, either nothing or some character,
according to the fancy of the owner. Short notches on the money side
indicated _reals_, long cuts _pesos_. On the opposite side short cuts
indicated days, and long cuts weeks.

For further reference to this subject, see Reliquiæ Aquitanicæ; etc.,
by Edouard Lartet and Henry Christy, * * London, 1875, p. 183 _et seq._


Many instances have been published in regard to the use of mnemonic
characters to preserve the remembrance of songs. The words of these
are invariable as well as the notes to which they are chanted. Both
words and notes must have been previously memorized by the singers.
Ideographic characters might give the general interpretation, but would
not suggest the exact words.

Schoolcraft, I, 361, remarks: Sounds are no further preserved by these
mnemonic signs, than is incident, more or less, to all pure figurative
or representative pictures. The simple figure of a quadruped, a man,
or a bird, recalls the _name_ of a quadruped, a man or a bird. * * We
may thus recall something of the living language from the oblivion of
the past, by the pictorial method. Mnemonic symbols are thus at the
threshold of the hieroglyphic.




One of the best examples of this mnemonic device is one of the Ojibwas,
found in Schoolcraft, _op. cit._, I, page 362 _et seq._, and called by
him Songs of the Meda. His illustration is reproduced as Plate IV, and
his explanation, much condensed, is as follows:

No. 1. A medicine lodge filled with the presence of the Great Spirit,
who, it is affirmed, came down with wings to instruct the Indians in
these ceremonies. The meda, or priest, sings, “The Great Spirit’s
lodge--you have heard of it. I will enter it.” While this is sung, and
repeated, the priest shakes his shi-shi-gwun, and each member of the
society holds up one hand in a beseeching manner. All stand, without
dancing. The drum is not struck during this introductory chant.

No. 2. A candidate for admission crowned with feathers, and holding,
suspended to his arm, an otter-skin pouch, with the wind represented
as gushing out of one end. He sings, repeating after the priest, all
dancing, with the accompaniment of the drum and rattle: * * “I have
always loved that that I seek. I go into the new green leaf lodge.”

No. 3 marks a pause, during which the victuals prepared for the feast
are introduced.

No. 4. A man holding a dish in his hand, and decorated with magic
feathers on his wrists, indicating his character as master of the
feast. All sing, “I shall give you a share, my friend.”

No. 5. A lodge apart from that in which the meda-men are assembled,
having a vapor-bath within it. The elder men go into this lodge, and
during the time of their taking the bath, or immediately preceding
it, tell each other certain secrets relative to the arts they employ
in the Medá-win. The six heavy marks at the top of the lodge indicate
the steam escaping from the bath. There are three orders of men in
this society, called 1. meda; 2. sangemau; and 3. ogemau. And it is in
these secret exchanges of arts, or rather the communication of unknown
secrets from the higher to the lower orders, that they are exalted from
one to another degree. The priest sings, “I go into the bath--I blow my
brother strong.”

No. 6. The arm of the priest, or master of ceremonies, who conducts the
candidate, represented in connection with the next figure.

No. 7. The goods, or presents given, as a fee of admission, by the
novitiate. “I wish to wear this, my father, my friend.”

No. 8. A meda-tree. The recurved projection from the trunk denotes the
root that supplies the medicine. “What! my life, my single tree!--we
dance around you.”

No. 9. A stuffed crane-skin, employed as a medicine-bag. By shaking
this in the dance, plovers and other small birds are made, by a
sleight-of-hand trickery, to jump out of it. These, the novitiates are
taught, spring from the bag by the strong power of the operator. This
is one of the prime acts of the dance. “I wish them to appear--that
that has grown--I wish them to appear.”

No. 10. An arrow in the supposed circle of the sky. Represents a
charmed arrow, which, by the power of the meda of the person owning
it, is capable of penetrating the entire circle of the sky, and
accomplishing the object for which it is shot out of the bow. “What are
you saying, you mee dá man? This--this is the meda bone.”

No. 11. The Ka Kaik, a species of small hawk, swift of wing, and
capable of flying high into the sky. The skin of this bird is worn
round the necks of warriors going into battle. “My kite’s skin is

No. 12. The sky, or celestial hemisphere, with the symbol of the Great
Spirit looking over it. A Manito’s arm is raised up from the earth in a
supplicating posture. Birds of good omen are believed to be in the sky.
“All round the circle of the sky I hear the Spirit’s voice.”

No. 13. The next figure denotes a pause in the ceremonies.

No. 14. A meda-tree. The idea represented is a tree animated by magic
or spiritual power. “The Wabeno tree--it dances.”

No. 15. A stick used to beat the Ta-wa-e-gun or drum. “How rings aloud
the drum-stick’s sound.”

No. 16. Half of the celestial hemisphere--an Indian walking upon it.
The idea symbolized is the sun pursuing his diurnal course till noon.
“I walk upon half the sky.”

No. 17. The Great Spirit filling all space with his beams, and
enlightening the world by the halo of his head. He is here depicted as
the god of thunder and lightning. “I sound all around the sky, that
they can hear me.”

No. 18. The Ta-wa-e-gun, or single-headed drum. “You shall hear the
sound of my Ta-wa-e-gun.”

No. 19. The Ta-wa-e-gonse, or tambourine, ornamented with feathers,
and a wing, indicative of its being prepared for a sacred use. “Do you
understand my drum?”

No. 20. A raven. The skin and feathers of this bird are worn as head
ornaments. “I sing the raven that has brave feathers.”

No. 21. A crow, the wings and head of which are worn as a head-dress.
“I am the crow--I am the crow--his skin is my body.”

No. 22. A medicine lodge. A leader or master of the Meda society,
standing with his drum stick raised, and holding in his hands the
clouds and the celestial hemisphere. “I wish to go into your lodge--I
go into your lodge.”

In connection with this topic reference may be made to the Lenâpé and
their Legends: with the complete text and symbols of The Walam Olum,
by Daniel G. Brinton, A. M., M. D., Phila., 1885. 8vo. pp. 262, with
numerous illustrations.


[Illustration: FIG. 38--Osage chart.]

As an example of a chart used to assist in the exact repetition of
traditions, Figure 38 is presented with the following explanation by
Rev. J. Owen Dorsey:

“The chart accompanies a tradition chanted by members of a secret
society of the Osage tribe. It was drawn by an Osage, Ha[p]a
[c]ü[t][s]e, Red Corn, who was adopted in childhood by a white man
named Matthews; hence he is also known as Wm. P. Matthews, or “Bill
Nix.” He is one of the tribal lawyers. He obtained his version of
the tradition from a member of his gens, Sa[p]eki¢ĕ. Another version
of the same tradition was obtained by him from Pahü-skă, White Hair,
the chief of the Bald Eagle sub-gens of the Tsi[c]u gens. [K]ahi[k]e
wa[t]ayiñ[k]e, Saucy Chief, gave me other parts of the tradition, which
Ha[p]a [c]ü[t][s]e had forgotten.

He also chanted a few lines of the tradition of the Wa[c]a[c]e gens.
Wayüts`a[k]a[c]ĭ, of the Black Bear gens, told me a little of his
tradition; and I obtained part of the Wa[c]a[c]e tradition from
Hu¢ak¢i^n, Good Voice, of the Mi^nk’i^n gens.

The tree at the top represents the tree of life. By this flows a river.
The tree and the river are described later in the degrees. When a woman
is initiated she is required by the head of her gens to take four sips
of water (symbolizing the river), then he rubs cedar on the palms of
his hands, with which he rubs her from head to foot. If she belongs
to a gens on the left side of the tribal circle, her chief begins on
the left side of her head, making three passes, and pronouncing the
sacred name of Deity three times. Then he repeats the process from her
forehead down; then on the right side of her head; then at the back of
her head; four times three times, or twelve passes in all.

Beneath the river are the following objects: The Watse [t]u[k]a, male
slaying animal(?), or morning star, which is a red star. 2. Six stars
called the “Elm rod” by the white people in the Indian Territory. 3.
The evening star. 4. The little star. Beneath these are the moon,
seven stars, and sun. Under the seven stars are the peace pipe and
war hatchet, the latter is close to the sun, and the former and the
moon are on the same side of the chart. Four parallel lines extending
across the chart, represent four heavens or upper worlds through which
the ancestors of the Tsi[c]u people passed before they came to this
earth. The lowest heaven rests on an oak tree: the ends of the others
appear to be supported by pillars or ladders. The tradition, according
to Sa[p]eki¢ĕ, begins below the lowest heaven, on the left side of the
chart, under the peace pipe. Each space on the pillar corresponds with
a line of the chant; and each stanza (at the opening of the tradition)
contains four lines. The first stanza precedes the arrival of the first
heaven, pointing to a time when the children of the “former end” of
the race were without human bodies as well as human souls. The bird
hovering over the arch denotes an advance in the condition of the
people; then they had human souls in the bodies of birds. Then followed
the progress from the fourth to the first heaven, followed by the
descent to earth. The ascent to four heavens and the descent to three,
makes up the number seven.

The tree on which the Tsi[c]u was called pü-sü-hü, jack oak, or a
sort of a red oak. When they alighted, it was on a beautiful day when
the earth was covered with luxuriant vegetation. From that time the
paths of the Osages separated; some marched on the right, being the
war gentes, while those on the left were peace gentes, including the
Tsi[c]u, whose chart this is.

Then the Tsi[c]u met the black bear, called Káxe-wáhü-sa^n´ in the
tradition. Káxe-wáhü-sa^n´, Crow-bone-white in the distance. He offered
to become their messenger, so they sent him to the different stars for
aid. According to the chart he went to them in the following order:
Morning star, sun, moon, seven stars, evening star, little star; but,
according to the chant related, they were as follows: Watse [t]u[k]a
(morning star); Watse mi^n[k]a (female animal that slays another
star); Ha^n-pa[t]a^n-Wakan[t]a (Wakanda or Deity during the day,
the sun); Wakan[t]aha^n ¢iñkce (Deity of the night, moon); Mikak’e
pe¢ŭ^n[p]a, Seven Stars; Ta a[p]¢i^n, Three Deer; Mikak’e tañ[k]a, Big
Star; Mikak’e [c]iñ[k]a, Little Star. Then the Black bear went to the
Wa[c]iñ[k]a-[c]ü[t][s]e, a female red bird sitting on her nest. This
grandmother granted his request. She gave them human bodies, making
them out of her own body.

The earth lodge at the end of the chart denotes the village of the
Hañ[k]a uta¢a^n[t][s]i, who were a very warlike people. Buffalo skulls
were on the tops of the lodges, and the bones of the animals on which
they subsisted, whitened on the ground. The very air was rendered
offensive by the decaying bodies and offal. The Hañ[k]a uta¢a^n[t][s]i
made a treaty of peace with the Wa[c]ace and Tsi[c]u gentes, and from
the union of the three resulted the present nation of the Osages.

The Bald Eagle account of the tradition begins very abruptly. The
stars were approached thus: Ha^n[p]a[t]a^n-Wakan[t]a (sun), Watse
[t]u[k]a (morning star), Wa[p]aha (Great Dipper), Tapa (Pleiades),
Mikak’e-ha^n-[p]a[t]a^n (Day Star). This version gives what is wanting
in the other, the meeting of other gentes, Hañkā [c]iñ[k]a, Wa[c]a[c]e,
Hañ[k]a-uta¢a^n[t][s]i, etc., and the decisions of the chief of the

The people on the war side had similar adventures, but the accurate
account has not yet been obtained.

The whole of the chart was used mnemonically. Parts of it, such as the
four heavens and ladders, were tattooed on the throat and chest of the
old men belonging to the order.”


The most familiar example of the recording of treaties is the
employment of wampum belts for that purpose. An authority on the
subject says: “The wampum belts given to Sir William Johnson, of
immortal Indian memory, were in several rows, black on each side,
and white in the middle; the white being placed in the center was to
express peace, and that the path between them was fair and open. In the
center of the belt was a figure of a diamond made of white wampum,
which the Indians call the council fire.” See Voyages and Travels of an
Indian interpreter and trader, etc., by J. Long, London, 1791, p. 47.




More minute statements regarding wampum is made superfluous after
its full discussion by Mr. W. H. Holmes in his work, “Art in Shell
of the ancient Americans,” in the Second Annual Report of the Bureau
of Ethnology, pages 253 _et seq._ One of his illustrations specially
in point for the present purpose is here reproduced in Plate V. His
remarks upon it are as follows:

  The remarkable belt shown has an extremely interesting, although a
  somewhat incomplete, history attached to it. It is believed to be
  the original belt delivered by the Leni-Lenape sachems to William
  Penn at the celebrated treaty under the elm tree at Shackamaxon in
  1682. Although there is no documentary evidence to show that this
  identical belt was delivered on that occasion, it is conceded on
  all hands that it came into the possession of the great founder
  of Pennsylvania at some one of his treaties with the tribes that
  occupied the province ceded to him. Up to the year 1857 this belt
  remained in the keeping of the Penn family. In March, 1857, it was
  presented to the Pennsylvania Historical Society by Granville John
  Penn, a great-grandson of William Penn. Mr. Penn, in his speech on
  this occasion, states that there can be no doubt that this is the
  identical belt used at the treaty, and presents his views in the
  following language:

  “In the first place, its dimensions are greater than of those used
  on more ordinary occasions, of which we have one still in our
  possession--this belt being composed of eighteen strings of wampum,
  which is a proof that it was the record of some very important
  negotiation. In the next place, in the center of the belt, which is
  of white wampum, are delineated in dark-colored beads, in a rude but
  graphic style, two figures--that of an Indian grasping with the hand
  of friendship the hand of a man evidently intended to be represented
  in the European costume, wearing a hat; which can only be interpreted
  as having reference to the treaty of peace and friendship which was
  then concluded between William Penn and the Indians, and recorded by
  them in their own simple but descriptive mode of expressing their
  meaning, by the employment of hieroglyphics. Then the fact of its
  having been preserved in the family of the founder from that period
  to the present time, having descended through three generations,
  gives an authenticity to the document which leaves no doubt of its
  genuineness; and as the chain and medal which were presented by the
  parliament to his father the admiral, for his naval services, have
  descended among the family archives unaccompanied by any written
  document, but is recorded on the journals of the House of Commons,
  equal authenticity may be claimed for the wampum belt confirmatory of
  the treaty made by his son with the Indians; which event is recorded
  on the page of history, though, like the older relic, it has been
  unaccompanied in its descent by any document in writing.”


Material objects were often employed in challenge to and declaration of
war, some of which may assist in the interpretation of pictographs. A
few instances are mentioned:

Arrows, to which long hairs are attached, were stuck up along the
trail or road, by the Florida Indians, to signify a declaration of war.
See Captain Laudonnière in Hakluyt, III, 415.

Challenging by heralds obtained. Thus the Shumeias challenged the
Ponios [in central California] by placing three little sticks, notched
in the middle and at both ends, on a mound, which marked the boundary
between the two tribes. If the Ponios accept, they tie a string round
the middle notch. Heralds then meet and arrange time and place, and the
battle comes off as appointed. See Bancroft, Native Races, I, p. 379.

       *       *       *       *       *

A few notices of the foreign use of material objects in connection with
this branch of the subject may be given.

It appears in the Bible: Ezek., XXXVII, 16-20, and Numbers, XVII, 2.

Lieutenant-Colonel Woodthorp says (Jour. Anth. Inst. Gr. Brit., Vol.
XLI, 1882, p. 211): “On the road to Niao we saw on the ground a curious
mud figure of a man in slight relief presenting a gong in the direction
of Senna; this was supposed to show that the Fiao men were willing
to come to terms with Senna, then at war with Niao. Another mode of
evincing a desire to turn away the wrath of an approaching enemy, and
induce him to open negotiations, is to tie up in his path a couple of
goats, sometimes also a gong, with the universal symbol of peace, a
palm leaf planted in the ground hard by.”

The Maori had neither the quipus nor wampum, but only a board shaped
like a saw, which was called _he rakau wakapa-paranga_, or genealogical
board; it was in fact a tally, having a notch for each name, and a
blank space to denote where the male line failed and was succeeded
by that of the female; youths were taught their genealogies by
repeating the names of each to which the notches referred. See Te Ika
a Maui.--Rev. Richard Taylor, London, 1870, p. 379.


Dr. William H. Corbusier, assistant surgeon, U. S. Army, gives the
following information:

[Illustration: FIG. 39.--Device denoting succession of time. Dakota.]

The Dakotas make use of the circle as the symbol of a cycle of time;
a small one for a year and a large one for a longer period of time,
as a life-time, one old man. Also a round of lodges, or a cycle of 70
years, as in Battiste Good’s Winter Count. The continuance of time
is sometimes indicated by a line extending in a direction from right
to left across the page, when on paper, and the annual circles are
suspended from the line at regular intervals by short lines, as in
Figure 39, and the ideograph for the year is placed beneath each
one. At other times the line is not continuous, but is interrupted at
regular intervals by the yearly circle, as in Figure 40.

[Illustration: FIG. 40.--Device denoting succession of time. Dakota.]

The large amount of space taken up by the Dakota Winter Counts, now
following, renders it impracticable to devote more to the graphic
devices regarding time. While these Winter Counts are properly under
the present head, their value is not limited to it, as they suggest,
if they do not explain, points relating to many other divisions of the
present paper.


The existence among the Dakota Indians of continuous designations of
years, in the form of charts corresponding in part with the orderly
arrangement of divisions of time termed calendars, was first made
public by the present writer in a paper entitled “A Calendar of the
Dakota Nation,” which was issued in April, 1877, in Bulletin III, No.
1, of the United States Geological and Geographical Survey. Later
consideration of the actual use of such charts by the Indians has
induced the change of their title to that adopted by themselves, viz.,
Winter Counts, in the original, waníyetu wówapi.

The lithographed chart published with that paper, substantially the
same as Plate VI, now presented, was ascertained to be the Winter Count
used by or at least known to a large portion of the Dakota people,
extending over the seventy-one years commencing with the winter of A.
D. 1800-’01.




The copy from which the lithograph was taken, is traced on a strip of
cotton cloth, in size one yard square, which the characters almost
entirely fill, and was made by Lieut. H. T. Reed, First United States
Infantry, an accomplished officer of the present writer’s former
company and regiment, in two colors, black and red, used in the
original, of which it is a _fac simile_.

The general design of the chart and the meaning of most of its
characters were ascertained by Lieutenant Reed, at Fort Sully, Dakota,
and afterwards at Fort Rice, Dakota, in November, 1876, by the present
writer; while further investigation of records and authorities at
Washington elicited additional details used in the publication
mentioned and many more since its issue.

After exhibition of the copy to a number of military and civil officers
connected with the Departments of War and of the Interior, it appeared
that those who, from service on expeditions and surveys or from special
study of American ethnology, were most familiar with the Indian tribes
west of the Mississippi, had never heard of this or any other similar
attempt among them to establish a chronological system. Bragging
biographies of chiefs and partisan histories of particular wars
delineated in picture writing on hides or bark are very common. Nearly
every traveler on the plains has obtained a painted robe, on which
some aboriginal artist has stained rude signs purporting to represent
tribal or personal occurrences, or often the family connections of the
first owner. Some of these in the possession of the present writer have
special significance and are mentioned under appropriate heads in the
present work.

It is believed that, in the pictographs of all of these peoples
discovered before the chart mentioned, the obvious intention was
either historical or biographical, or more generally was to chronicle
occurrences as such, and that there was not an apparent design to
portray events selected without exclusive reference to their intrinsic
interest or importance, but because they severally occurred within
regular successive intervals of time, and to arrange them in an orderly
form, specially convenient for use as a calendar and valuable for no
other purpose.

The copy made by Lieutenant Reed was traced over a duplicate of the
original, which latter was drawn on a buffalo robe by Lone-Dog, an
aged Indian, belonging to the Yanktonai tribe of the Dakotas, who in
the autumn of 1876 was near Fort Peck, Montana, and was reported to be
still in his possession. His Dakota name is given him by correspondents
who knew him, as in the ordinary English literation, Shunka-ishnala,
the words respectively corresponding very nearly with the vocables in
Riggs’s lexicon for dog-lone. Others have, however, identified him as
Chi-no-sa, translated as “a lone wanderer,” and asserted that he was at
the time mentioned with the hostile Dakotas under Sitting Bull. There
appear to have been several Dakotas of the present generation known to
the whites as Lone-Dog.

Plate VI is a representation of the chart as it would appear on the
buffalo robe, but it is photographed from the copy on linen cloth, not
directly from the robe.

The duplicate from which the copy was immediately taken was in the
possession of Basil Clément, a half-breed interpreter, living at
Little Bend, near Fort Sully, Dakota, who professed to have obtained
information concerning the chart from personal inquiries of many
Indians, and whose dictated translation of them, reduced to writing
in his own words, forms the basis of that given in the present paper.
The genuineness of the document was verified by separate examination,
through another interpreter, of the most intelligent Indians accessible
at Fort Rice, and at a considerable distance from Clément, who could
have had no recent communication with those so examined. One of the
latter, named Good-Wood, a Blackfoot Dakota and an enlisted scout
attached to the garrison at Fort Rice, immediately recognized the copy
now in possession of the writer as “the same thing Lone-Dog had,” and
also stated that he had seen another copy at Standing Rock Agency
in the hands of Blue-Thunder, a Blackfoot Dakota. He said it showed
“something put down for every year about their nation.” He knew how
to use it as a calendar, beginning from the center and counting from
right to left, and was familiar with the meaning of many of the later
characters and the events they commemorated, in which he corroborated
Clément’s translation, but explained that he had forgotten the
interpretation of some of the earlier signs, which were about those
things done before his birth.

All the investigations that could be made elicited the following
account, which, whether accurate or not, the Indians examined certainly
believed: Probably with the counsel of the old men and authorities
of his tribe, Lone-Dog ever since his youth has been in the habit of
deciding upon some event or circumstance which should distinguish each
year as it passed, and when such decision was made he marked what was
considered to be its appropriate symbol or device upon a buffalo robe
kept for the purpose. The robe was at convenient times exhibited to
other Indians of the nation, who were thus taught the meaning and use
of the signs as designating the several years, in order that at the
death of the recorder the knowledge might not be lost. A similar motive
as to the preservation of the record led to its duplication in 1870 or
1871, so that Clément obtained it in a form ending at that time. It
was also reported by several Indians that other copies of the chart in
its various past stages of formation had been known to exist among the
several tribes, being probably kept for reference, Lone-Dog and his
robe being so frequently inaccessible.

Although Lone-Dog was described as a very old Indian, it was not
supposed that he was of sufficient age in the year 1800 to enter upon
the duty as explained. Either there was a predecessor from whom he
received the earlier records or obtained copies of them, or, his work
being first undertaken when he had reached manhood, he gathered the
traditions from his elders and worked back so far as he could do so
accurately, the object either then or before being to establish some
system of chronology for the use of the tribe, or more probably in the
first instance for the use of his particular band.

Present knowledge of the Winter Count systems renders it improbable
that Lone-Dog was their inventor or originator. They were evidently
started, at the latest, before the present generation, and have
been kept up by a number of independent recorders. The idea was one
specially appropriate to the Indian genius, yet the peculiar mode of
record was an invention, and is not probably a very old invention,
as it has not, so far as known, spread beyond a definite district
or been extensively adopted. If an invention of that character had
been of great antiquity it would probably have spread by inter-tribal
channels beyond the bands or tribes of the Dakotas, where alone the
copies of such charts have been found and are understood. Yet the
known existence of portable pictographs of this ascertained character
renders it proper to examine rock etchings and other native records
with reference to their possible interpretation as designating events

A query is naturally suggested, whether intercourse with missionaries
and other whites did not first give the Dakotas some idea of dates and
awaken a sense of want in that direction. The fact that Lone-Dog’s
winter count, the only one known at the time of its first publication,
begins at a date nearly coinciding with the first year of the present
century by our computation, awakened a suspicion that it might be
due to civilized intercourse, and was not a mere coincidence. If the
influence of missionaries or traders started any plan of chronology, it
is remarkable that they did not suggest one in some manner resembling
the system so long and widely used, and the only one they knew, of
counting in numbers from an era, such as the birth of Christ, the
Hegira, the Ab Urbe Conditâ, the First Olympiad, and the like. But the
chart shows nothing of this nature. The earliest character (the one in
the center or beginning of the spiral) merely represents the killing
of a small number of Dakotas by their enemies, an event of frequent
occurrence, and neither so important nor interesting as many others of
the seventy-one shown in the chart, more than one of which, indeed,
might well have been selected as a notable fixed point before and after
which simple arithmetical notation could have been used to mark the
years. Instead of any plan that civilized advisers would naturally have
introduced, the one actually adopted--to individualize each year by
a specific recorded symbol, or totem, according to the decision of a
competent person, or by common consent acted upon by a person charged
with or undertaking the duty whereby confusion was prevented--should
not suffer denial of its originality merely because it was ingenious,
and showed more of scientific method than has often been attributed to
the northern tribes of America. The ideographic record, being preserved
and understood by many, could be used and referred to with sufficient
ease and accuracy for ordinary purposes. Definite signs for the first
appearance of the small-pox and for the first capture of wild horses
may be dates as satisfactory to the Dakotas as the corresponding
expressions A. D. 1802 and 1813 to the Christian world, and far more
certain than much of the chronological tables of Regiomontanus and
Archbishop Usher in terms of A. M. and B. C. The careful arrangement
of distinctly separate characters in an outward spiral starting from
a central point is a clever expedient to dispense with the use of
numbers for noting the years, yet allowing every date to be determined
by counting backward or forward from any other that might be known;
and it seems unlikely that any such device, so different from that
common among the white visitors, should have been prompted by them.
The whole conception seems one strongly characteristic of the Indians,
who in other instances have shown such expertness in ideography. The
discovery of the other charts presented or referred to in this paper,
which differ in their times of commencement and ending from that of
Lone-Dog and from each other, removed any inference arising from the
above-mentioned coincidence in beginning with the present century.

Copies of the paper publishing and explaining Lone-Dog’s record were
widely circulated by the present writer among Army officers, Indian
agents, missionaries, and other persons favorably situated, in hopes
of obtaining other examples and further information. The result was a
gratifying verification of all the important statements and suggestions
in the publication, with the correction of some errors of detail and
the supply of much additional material. The following copies of the
chart, substantially the same as that of Lone-Dog, are now, or have
been, in the possession of the present writer:

1. A chart made and kept by Bo-í-de, The-Flame (otherwise translated
The-Blaze), who, in 1877, lived at Peoria Bottom, 18 miles south of
Fort Sully, Dakota. He was a Dakota and had generally dwelt with the
Sans Arcs, though it was reported that he was by birth one of the Two
Kettles. The interpretation was obtained (it is understood originally
at the instance of Lieutenant Maus, First United States Infantry)
directly from The-Flame by Alex. Laravey, official interpreter at Fort
Sully, in the month of April, 1877.

The fac-simile copy in the writer’s possession, also made by
Lieutenant Reed, is on a cotton cloth about a yard square and in
black and red--thus far similar to his copy of Lone-Dog’s chart,
but the arrangement is wholly different. The character for the
first year mentioned appears in the lower left-hand corner, and the
record proceeds toward the right to the extremity of the cloth, then
crossing toward the left and again toward the right at the edge of the
cloth--and so throughout in the style called boustrophedon; and ending
in the upper left-hand corner. The general effect is that of seven
straight lines of figures, but those lines are distinctly connected at
their extremities with others above and below, so that the continuous
figure is serpentine. It thus answers the same purpose of orderly
arrangement, allowing constant additions, like the more circular spiral
of Lone-Dog. This record is for the years 1786-’7 to 1876-’7, thus
commencing earlier and ending later than that of Lone-Dog.

2. The-Swan’s chart was kindly furnished to the writer by Dr. Charles
Rau, of the Smithsonian Institution. It was sent to him in 1872 by
Dr. John R. Patrick, of Belleville, Saint Clair County, Illinois, who
received it from Dr. Washington West, of Belleville, Illinois, who
became an acting assistant surgeon, U. S. Army, November 2, 1868, and
was assigned to duty at Cheyenne Agency, Dakota, established by General
Harney, as one of a number of agencies to become useful as rendezvous
for Dakotas to keep them from disturbing the line of the Union Pacific
Railroad. He remained there from November, 1868, to May, 1870. The
agency was specially for the Two Kettles, Sans Arcs, and Minneconjous.
A Minneconjou chief, The-Swan, elsewhere called The-Little-Swan, kept
this record on the dressed skin of an antelope or deer, claiming that
it had been preserved in his family for seventy years. The title of
the written interpretation of this chart was called the History of the
Minneconjou Dakotas, its true use not being then understood. In return
for favors, Dr. West obtained permission to have some copies made on
common domestic cotton cloth and employed an Indian expert of the Two
Kettle band to do the work in fac-simile. From one of these he had a
photograph taken on a small plate, and then enlarged in printing to
about two-thirds of the original size and traced and touched up in
India ink and red paint to match the original, which was executed in
some black pigment and ruddle.

The characters are arranged in a spiral similar to those in Lone-Dog’s
chart, but more oblong in form. The course of the spiral is from left
to right, not from right to left. The interpretation of this chart
was made at Cheyenne Agency in 1868 for Dr. Washington West by Jean
Premeau, interpreter at that agency.

A useful note is given in connection with the interpretation, that in
it all the names are names given by the Minneconjous, and not the names
the parties bear themselves, _e. g._, in the interpretation for the
year 1829-’30, (see Plate XVIII, and page 114,) Bad Arrow Indian is a
translation of the Dakota name for a band of Blackfeet. The owner and
explainer of this copy of the chart was a Minneconjou, and therefore
his rendering of names might differ from that of another person equally
familiar with the chart.

3. Another chart examined was kindly loaned to the writer by Brevet
Maj. Joseph Bush, captain Twenty-second United States Infantry. It was
procured by him in 1870 at the Cheyenne Agency, from James C. Robb,
formerly Indian trader, and afterwards post trader. This copy is one
yard by three-fourths of a yard, spiral, beginning in the center from
right to left. The figures are substantially the same size as those
in Lone-Dog’s chart, with which it coincides in time, except that it
ends at 1869-’70. The interpretation differs from that accompanying the
latter in a few particulars.

4. The chart of Mato Sapa, Black-Bear. He was a Minneconjou warrior,
residing in 1868 and 1869 on the Cheyenne Agency Reservation, on
the Missouri River, near Fort Sully, Dakota, near the mouth of the
Cheyenne River. In order to please Lieut. O. D. Ladley, Twenty-second
United States Infantry, who was in charge of the reservation, he drew
or copied on a piece of cotton cloth what he called, through the
interpreter, the History of the Minneconjous, and also gave through
the same interpreter the key or translation to the figures. Lieutenant
Ladley loaned them to an ex-army friend in Washington, who brought them
to the notice of the present writer.

This copy is on a smaller scale than that of Lone-Dog, being a flat and
elongated spiral, 2 feet 6 inches by 1 foot 6 inches. The spiral reads
from right to left. This chart, which begins as does that of Lone-Dog,
ends with the years 1868-’69.

The present writer has had conversation and correspondence concerning
other copies and other translated interpretations of what may be
called for convenience and with some right, on account of priority in
publication, the Lone-Dog system of winter counts. But it also was
discovered that there were other systems in which the same pictographic
method was adopted by the Dakotas. An account of the most important of
these, viz.: the charts of Baptiste or Battiste Good, American-Horse,
Cloud-Shield, and White-cow-killer has been communicated by Dr. William
H. Corbusier, assistant surgeon, United States Army, and is presented
_infra_, page 127, under the title of The Corbusier Winter Counts.

The study of all the charts, with their several interpretations,
renders plain some points remaining in doubt while the Lone-Dog chart
was the only example known. In the first place, it became clear
that there was no fixed or uniform mode of exhibiting the order of
continuity of the year-characters. They were arranged spirally or
lineally, or in serpentine curves, by boustrophedon or direct, starting
backward from the last year shown, or proceeding uniformly forward
from the first year selected or remembered. Any mode that would
accomplish the object of continuity with the means of regular addition
seemed to be equally acceptable. So a theory advanced that there was
some symbolism in the right to left circling of Lone-Dog’s chart was
aborted, especially when an obvious reproduction of that very chart was
made by an Indian with the spiral reversed. It was also obvious that
when copies were made, some of them probably from memory, there was
no attempt at Chinese accuracy. It was enough to give the graphic or
ideographic character, and frequently the character is better defined
on one of the charts than on the others for the corresponding year. One
interpretation or rather one translation of the interpretation would
often throw light on the others. It also appeared that while different
events were selected by the recorders of the different systems, there
was sometimes a selection of the same event for the same year and
sometimes for the next, such as would be natural in the progress of a
famine or epidemic, or as an event gradually became known over a vast
territory. To exhibit these points more clearly, the characters on the
charts of The-Flame, Lone-Dog, and The-Swan have been placed together
on Plates VII-XXXIII, and their interpretations, separately obtained
and translated, have also been collated, commencing on page 100. Where
any information was supplied by the charts of Mato Sapa or of Major
Bush and their interpretation, or by other authorities, it is given in
connection with the appropriate year. Reference is also made to some
coincidences or explanatory manner noticed in the Corbusier system.

With regard to the Lone-Dog system, with which the present writer is
more familiar, and upon which he has examined a large number of Indians
during the last eight years, an attempt was made to ascertain whether
the occurrences selected and represented were those peculiar to the
clan or tribe of the recorder or were either of general concern or of
notoriety throughout the Dakota tribes. This would tend to determine
whether the undertaking was of a merely individual nature, limited
by personal knowledge or special interests, or whether the scope was
general. All inquiries led to the latter supposition. The persons
examined were of different tribes, and far apart from each other, yet
all knew what the document was, _i. e._, that “some one thing was put
down for each year;” that it was the work of Lone-Dog, and that he
was the only one who “could do it,” or perhaps was authority for it.
The internal evidence is to the same effect. All the symbols indicate
what was done, experienced, or observed by the nation at large or by
its tribes without distinction--not by that of which Lone-Dog is a
member, no special feat of the Yanktonais, indeed, being mentioned--and
the chiefs whose deaths or deeds are noted appear to have belonged
indifferently to the several tribes, whose villages were generally at
great distance each from the other and from that of the recorder. It
is, however, true that the Minneconjous were more familiar than other
of the Dakotas with the interpretation of the characters on Lone-Dog’s
chart, and that a considerable proportion of the events selected relate
to that division of the confederacy.

In considering the extent to which Lone-Dog’s chart is understood and
used among his people, it may be mentioned that the writer has never
shown it to an intelligent Dakota of full years who has not known what
it was for, and many of them knew a large part of the years portrayed.
When there was less knowledge, there was the amount that may be likened
to that of an uneducated person or child who is examined about a map
of the United States, which had been shown to him before, with some
explanation only partially apprehended or remembered. He would tell
that it was a map of the United States; would probably be able to point
out with some accuracy the State or city where he lived; perhaps the
capital of the country; probably the names of the States of peculiar
position or shape, such as Maine, Delaware, or Florida. So the Indian
examined would often point out in Lone-Dog’s chart the year in which he
was born or that in which his father died, or in which there was some
occurrence that had strongly impressed him, but which had no relation
whatever to the character for the year in question. It had been pointed
out to him before, and he had remembered it, though not the remainder
of the chart.

With the interpretations of the several charts given below some
explanations are furnished, but it may be useful to set forth in
advance a few facts relating to the nomenclature and divisions of the
tribes frequently mentioned. In the literature on the subject the
great linguistic stock or family embracing not only the Sioux or
Dakotas proper, but the Missouris, Omahas, Ponkas, Osages, Kansas,
Otos, Assiniboines, Gros Ventres or Minnitaris, Crows, Iowas, Mandans,
and some others, has been frequently styled the Dakota Family. Major
Powell, the Director of the Bureau of Ethnology, from considerations
of priority, has lately adopted the name Siouan for the family, and
for the grand division of it popularly called Sioux has used the
term Dakota, which the people claim for themselves. In this general
respect it is possible to conform in this paper to Major Powell’s
classification, but, specially in the details of the Winter Counts,
the form of the titles of the tribes is that which is generally used,
but with little consistency, in literature, and is not given with the
accurate philologic literation of special scholars, or with reference
to the synonomy determined by Major Powell, but not yet published. The
reason for this temporary abandonment of scientific accuracy is that
another course would require the correction or annotation of the whole
material contributed from many sources, and would be cumbrous as well
as confusing prior to the publication, by the Bureau of Ethnology, of
the synonomy mentioned.

The word “Dakota” is translated in Riggs’s Dictionary of that language
as “leagued, or allied.” Dr. J. Hammond Trumbull, the distinguished
ethnographer and glossologist, gives the meaning to be more precisely
“associated as comrades,” the root being found in other dialects of the
same group of languages for instance, in the Minitari, where _dáki_ is
the name for the clan or band, and _dakóe_ means friend or comrade. In
the Sioux (Dakota) dialect, _cota_, or _coda_ means friend, and Dakota
may, literally translated, signify “our friends.”

The title Sioux, which is indignantly repudiated by the nation, is
either the last syllable or the two last syllables, according to
pronunciation, of “Nadowesioux,” which is the French plural of the
Algonkin name for the Dakotas, “Nadowessi,” “enemy,” though the English
word is not so strong as the Indian, “hated foe” being nearer. The
Chippeways called an Iroquois “Nadowi,” which is also their name for
rattlesnake (or, as others translate, adder); in the plural, Nadowek. A
Sioux they called Nadowessi, which is the same word with a contemptuous
or diminutive termination; plural, Nadowessiwak or Nadawessyak. The
French gave the name their own form of the plural, and the voyageurs
and trappers cut it down to “Sioux.”

The more important of existing tribes and organized bands into which
the nation is now divided are given below, being the dislocated remains
of the “Seven Great Council Fires,” not only famed in tradition, but
known to early white pioneers:

Yankton and Yanktonai or Ihañkto^nwa^n, both derived from a root
meaning “at the end,” alluding to the former locality of their villages.

Sihasapa, or Blackfeet.

Oheno^npa, or Two Kettles.

Itaziptco, Without Bow. The French translation, Sans Arc, is, however,
more commonly used.

Minneconjou, translated Those who plant by the water, the physical
features of their old home.

Sitca^ngu, Burnt Hip or Brulé.

Santee, subdivided into Wahpeton, Men among Leaves, _i. e._, forests,
and Sisseton, Men of Prairie Marsh. Two other bands, now practically
extinct, formerly belonged to the Santee, or, as it is more correctly
spelled, Isanti tribe, from the root _Issan_, knife. Their former
territory furnished the material for stone knives, from the manufacture
of which they were called the “knife people.”

Ogallalla, Ogalala, or Oglala. The meaning and derivation of this name,
as well as the one next mentioned (Uncpapa), have been the subjects of
much controversy.

Uncpapa, Unkpapa, or Hunkpapa, the most warlike and probably the most
powerful of all the bands, though not the largest.

Hale, Gallatin, and Riggs designate a “Titon tribe” as located west
of the Missouri, and as much the largest division of the Dakotas, the
latter authority subdividing into the Sichangu, Itazipcho, Sihasapa,
Minneconjou, Oheno^npa, Ogallalla, and Huncpapa, seven of the tribes
specified above, which he calls bands. The fact probably is that
“Titon” (from the word _ti^ntan_, meaning, “at or on land without
trees, or prairie”) was the name of a tribe, but it is now only an
expression for all those tribes whose ranges are on the prairie,
and that it has become a territorial and accidental, not a tribular
distinction. One of the Dakotas at Fort Rice spoke to the writer of the
“hostiles” as “Titons,” with obviously the same idea of locality, “away
on the prairie;” it being well known that they were a conglomeration
from several tribes.

It is proper here to remark that throughout the charts the totem of the
clan of the person indicated is not generally given, though it is often
used in other kinds of records, but instead, a pictorial representation
of his name, which their selection of proper names rendered
practicable. The clans are divisions relating to consanguinity, and
neither coincide with the political tribal organizations nor are
limited by them. The number of the clans, or distinctive totemic
groups, of the Dakota is less than that of their organized bands, if
not of their tribes, and considerably less than that of the totems
appearing on the charts. Although it has been contended that the
clan-totem alone was used by Indians, there are many other specimens of
picture-writings among the Dakota where the name-totem appears, notably
the set of fifty-five drawings in the library of the Army Medical
Museum narrating the deeds of Sitting-Bull. A pictured message lately
sent by a Dakota at Fort Rice to another at a distant agency, and
making the same use of name-signs, came to the writer’s notice. Captain
Carver, who spent a considerable time with these Indians (called by him
Nadowessies) in 1766-’77, explains that “besides the name of the animal
by which every nation or tribe [clan] is denominated, there are others
that are personal, which the children receive from their mother. * * *
The chiefs are distinguished by a name that has either some reference
to their abilities or to the hieroglyphic of their families, and these
are acquired after they have arrived at the age of manhood. Such as
have signalized themselves either in their war or hunting parties, or
are possessed of some eminent qualification, receive a name that serves
to perpetuate the fame of their actions or to make their abilities
conspicuous.” The common use of these name-signs appears in their being
affixed to old treaties, and also to some petitions in the office
of Indian Affairs. Their similarity in character, use, and actual
design, either with or without clan designation, affords an instructive
comparison with the origin of heraldry and of modern surnames. Further
remarks about the name system of Indians appear on page 169.

With reference to the Winter Counts, it is well known that the Dakotas
count their years by winters (which is quite natural, that season
in their high levels and latitudes practically lasting more than
six months), and say a man is so many snows old, or that so many
snow seasons have passed since an occurrence. They have no division
of time into weeks, and their months are absolutely lunar, only
twelve, however, being designated, which receive their names upon the
recurrence of some prominent, physical phenomenon. For example, the
period partly embraced by February is intended to be the “raccoon
moon”; March, the “sore-eye moon”; and April, that “in which the
geese lay eggs.” As the appearance of raccoons after hibernation, the
causes inducing inflamed eyes, and oviposition by geese vary with the
meteorological character of each year, and as the twelve lunations
reckoned do not bring back the point in the season when counting
commenced, there is often dispute in the Dakota tipis toward the end
of winter as to the correct current date. In careful examination of
the several Counts it does not appear to be clear whether the event
portrayed occurred in the winter months or was selected in the months
immediately before or in those immediately after the winter. No
regularity or accuracy is noticed in these particulars.

The next following pages give the translated interpretation of the
above-mentioned charts of The-Flame, designated as No. I; of Lone-Dog,
designated as No. II; and of The-Swan as No. III; and are explanations
of Plates VII to XXXIII. As The-Flame’s count began before the other
two and ended later than those, Plates VII, VIII, and XXXIII are
confined to that count, the others showing the three in connection. The
red color frequently mentioned appears in the corresponding figures in
Plate VI of Lone-Dog’s chart as reproduced, but black takes its place
in the series of plates now under consideration. Mention of the charts
of Mato Sapa and of Major Bush is made where there seems to be any
additional information or suggestion in them. When those charts are not
mentioned they agree with that of Lone-Dog. Reference is also made to
the counts in the Corbusier system when correspondence is to be noted.

       *       *       *       *       *











1786-’87.--No. I represents an Uncpapa chief who wore an “iron” shield
over his head. It is stated that he was a great warrior, killed by
the Rees. This word is abbreviated from the word Arikaree, a corrupt
form of Arikara. This year in the Anno Domini style is ascertained by
counting back from several well-known historical events corresponding
with those on the charts.

Battiste Good’s count for the same year says:
“Iron-hand-band-went-on-war-path winter,” and adds, “They formerly
carried burdens on their backs hung from a band passed across their
forehead. This man had a band of iron which is shown on his head.”

1787-’88.--No. I. A clown, well known to the Indians; a mischief-maker.
A Minneconjou. The interpreter could not learn how he was connected
with this year. His accoutrements are fantastic. The character is
explained by Battiste Good’s winter count for the same year as follows:

“Left-the-heyoka-man-behind winter.” A certain man was heyoka, that
is, in a peculiar frame of mind, and went about the village bedecked
with feathers singing to himself, and, while so, joined a war party. On
sighting the enemy the party fled, and called to him to turn back also,
but as he was heyoka, he construed everything that was said to him as
meaning the very opposite, and, therefore, instead of turning back he
went forward and was killed. The interpreter remarked if they had only
had sense enough to tell him to go on, he would then have run away, but
the idiots talked to him just as if he had been an ordinary mortal,
and, of course, were responsible for his death.

The figure by Battiste Good strongly resembles that in this chart,
giving indications of fantastic dress with the bow. The independent
explanations of this figure and of some on the next page referring to
dates so remote have been of interest to the present writer.

1788-’89.--No. I. Very severe winter and much suffering among the
Indians. Crows were frozen to death, which is a rare occurrence. Hence
the figure of the crow.

Battiste Good says: “Many-crows-died winter.”

Cloud Shield says: The winter was so cold that many crows froze to

White-Cow-Killer calls the preceding year, 1787-’88,
“Many-black-crows-died winter.”

For the year 1789-’90, American-Horse says: “The cold was so intense
that crows froze in the air and dropped dead near the lodges.”

This is an instance of where three sets of accounts refer to the same
severe cold, apparently to three successive years; it may really not
have been three successive years, but that all charts referred to
the same season, the fractions of years not being regarded, as above

1789-’90.--No. I. Two Mandans killed by Minneconjous. The peculiar
arrangement of the hair distinguishes the tribe.

The Mandans were in the last century one of the most numerous and
civilized tribes of the Siouan stock. Lewis and Clarke, in 1804, say
that the Mandans settled forty years before, _i. e._, 1764, in nine
villages, 80 miles below their then site (north of Knife River), seven
villages on the west, and two on the east side of the Missouri. Two
villages, being destroyed by the small-pox and the Dakotas, united and
moved up opposite to the Arickaras, who probably occupied the same site
as exhibited in the counts for the year 1823-’24.

Battiste Good says: “Killed-two-Gros-Ventres-on-the ice winter.”

1790-’91.--No. I. The first United States flag in the country brought
by United States troops. So said the interpreter. No special occasion
or expedition is noted.

Battiste Good says: “Carried-flag-about-with-them winter,” and
explains; they went to all the surrounding tribes with the flag, but
for what purpose is unknown.

White-Cow-Killer says: “All-the-Indians-see-the-flag winter.”

1791-’92.--No. I. A Mandan and a Dakota met in the middle of the
Missouri; each swimming half way across, they shook hands, and made

Mulligan, post interpreter at Fort Buford, says that this was at Fort
Berthold, and is an historic fact; also that the same Mandan, long
afterwards, killed the same Dakota.

Cloud-Shield says: The Sioux and Omahas made peace.

1792-’93.--No. I. Dakotas and Rees meet in camp together, and are at

The two styles of dwellings, viz., the tipi of the Dakotas, and the
earth lodge of the Arickaras, are apparently depicted.

Battiste Good says: “Camp-near-the-Gros-Ventres winter,” and adds:
“They were engaged in a constant warfare during this time.” The Gros
Ventres’ dirt-lodge, with the entry in front, is depicted in Battiste
Good’s figure, and on its roof is the head of a Gros Ventre.

See Cloud-Shields’s explanations of his figure for this year, page 133.











1793-’94.--No. I. Thin-Face, a noted Dakota chief, was killed by Rees.

Battiste Good says: “Killed-a-long-haired-man-at-Raw-Hide-Butte
winter,” adding that the Dakotas attacked a village of fifty-eight
lodges, of a tribe [called by a correspondent the Cheyennes], and
killed every soul in it. After the fight they found the body of a man
whose hair was done up with deer-hide in large rolls, and on cutting
them open, found it was all real hair, very thick, and as long as a
lodge-pole. (Mem.: Catlin tells of a Crow called Long-Hair, whose
hair, by actual measurement, was 10 feet 7 inches long.) The fight
was at Raw-Hide Butte, now so-called by the whites, which they named
Buffalo-Hide Butte because they found so many buffalo hides in the

According to Cloud-Shield, Long-Hair was killed in 1786-’87; and,
according to American-Horse, Long-Hair (a Cheyenne) was killed in

White-Cow-Killer says: “Little-Face-kill winter.”

Battiste Good says in his count for the succeeding year, 1794-’95,
“Killed-little-face-Pawnee winter.” The Pawnee’s face was long, flat,
and narrow like a man’s hand, but he had the body of a large man.

1794-’95--No. I. A Mandan chief killed a noted Dakota chief with
remarkably long hair, and took his scalp.

White-Cow-Killer says: “Long-Hair-killed winter.”

1795-’96--No. I. While surrounded by the enemy (Mandans) a Blackfeet
Dakota Indian goes at the risk of his life for water for the party.

The interpreter states that this was near the present Cheyenne Agency,
Dakota Territory. In the original character there is a bloody wound at
the shoulder showing that the heroic Indian was wounded. He is shown
bearing a water vessel.

Battiste Good gives a figure for this year recognizably the same
as that in The-Flame’s chart, but with a different explanation.
He calls it “The Rees-stood-the-frozen-man-up-with-the-buffalo
stomach-in-his-hand winter,” and adds: “The body of a Dakota who had
been killed in an encounter with the Rees, and had been left behind,
froze. The Rees dragged it into their village, propped it up with a
stick, and hung a buffalo stomach filled with ice in one hand to make
sport of it. The buffalo stomach was in common use at that time as a

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Water-stomach-killed winter.”

1796-’97--No. I. A Mandan chief, “The-Man-with the-Hat,” becomes noted
as a warrior. The character is precisely the same as that often given
for white man. Some error in the interpretation is suggested in the
absence of knowledge whether there actually was a Mandan chief so
named, in which case the pictograph would be consistent.

Battiste Good says: “Wears-the-war-bonnet-died winter,” adding: He did
not die this winter, but received a wound in the abdomen from which the
arrow head could not be extracted, but he died of the belly-ache years

White-Cow-Killer says: “War-Bonnet-killed winter.”

The translated expression, “killed,” has been noticed to refer often to
a fatal wound, though the death did not take place immediately.

1797-’98.--No. I. A Ree woman is killed by a Dakota while gathering
“pomme-blanche,” a root used for food. Pomme-blanche, or Navet de
prairie, is a white root somewhat similar in appearance to a white
turnip, botanically _Psoralea esculenta_ (Nuttal), sometimes _P.
argophylla_. It is a favorite food of the Indians, eaten boiled down
to a sort of mush or hominy. A forked stick is used in gathering these

It will be noticed that this simple statement about the death of the
Arikara woman is changed by other recorders or interpreters into one of
a mythical character.

Battiste Good says: “Took-the-god-woman-captive winter,” adding: a
Dakota war party captured a woman of a tribe unknown, who, in order to
gain their respect, cried out, “I am a ‘Waukan-Tanka’ woman,” meaning
that she feared or belonged to God, the Great Spirit, whereupon they
let her go unharmed.

A note is added: This is the origin of their name for God
[Waka^n-Tañka], the Great Holy, or Supernatural One, they having never
heard of a Supreme Being, but had offered their prayers to the sun,
earth, and many other objects, believing they were endowed with spirits.

White-Cow-Killer says: “Caught-a-medicine-god-woman winter.”

1798-’99.--No. I. Blackfeet Dakotas kill three Rees.

1799-1800.--No. I. Uncpapas kill two Rees. The figure over the heads
of the two Rees is a bow, showing the mode of death. The hair of the
Arickaras in this and the preceding character is represented in the
same manner.







1800-’01.--No. I. Thirty-one Dakotas killed by Crows.

No. II. Thirty Dakotas were killed by Crow Indians.

The device consists of thirty parallel black lines in three columns,
the outer lines being united. In this chart, such black lines always
signify the death of Dakotas killed by their enemies.

The Absaroka or Crow tribe, although classed by ethnographers as
belonging to the Siouan family, has nearly always been at war with the
Dakotas proper since the whites have had any knowledge of either. The
official tables of 1875 give the number of Crows then living as 4,200.
They are tall, well-made, bold, and noted for the extraordinary length
of their hair.

No. III. Thirty Dakotas killed by the Gros Ventres Indians between
Forts Berthold and Union, Dakota.

Mato Sapa’s record has nine inside strokes in three rows, the
interpretation being that thirty Dakotas were killed by Gros Ventres
between Forts Berthold and Union, Dakota.

Major Bush says the same, adding that it was near the present site of
Fort Buford.

1801-’02.--No. I. Many died of small-pox.

No. II. The small-pox broke out in the nation. The device is the head
and body of a man covered with red blotches.

No. III. All the Dakotas had the small-pox very bad; fatal.

Battiste Good’s record says: “Small-pox-used-them-up-again winter.”

White-Cow-Killer says: “All-sick winter.”

Major Bush adds “very badly” to “small-pox broke out.”

1802-’03.--No. I. First shod horses seen by Indians.

No. II. A Dakota stole horses with shoes on, _i. e._, stole them either
directly from the whites or from some other Indians who had before
obtained them from whites, as the Indians never shoe their horses. The
device is a horseshoe.

No. III. Blackfeet Dakotas stole some American horses having shoes on.
Horseshoes seen for the first time.

Mato Sapa says: Blackfeet Dakota stole American horses with shoes on,
then first seen by them.

Major Bush agrees with Mato Sapa.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Brought-in-horseshoes winter.”

Battiste Good says: “Brought-home-Pawnee-horses-with-iron shoes-on







1803-’04.--No. I. A Blackfeet steals many curly horses from the

No. II. They stole some “curly horses” from the Crows. Some of
these horses are still seen on the plains, the hair growing in
closely-curling tufts, resembling in texture the negro’s woolly pile.
The device is a horse with black marks for the tufts. The Crows are
known to have been early in the possession of horses.

No. III. Uncpapa Dakotas stole five woolly horses from the Ree Indians.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Plenty-woolly-horses winter.”

Mato Sapa says: Uncpapa stole from the Rees five horses having curly

Major Bush same as last, using “woolly” instead of “curly.”

Battiste Good says:
“Brought-home-Pawnee-horses-with-their-hair-rough-and-curly winter.”

1804-’05.--No. I. Calumet dance. Tall-Mandan born.

No. II. The Dakotas had a calumet dance and then went to war. The
device is a long pipe-stem, ornamented with feathers and streamers.
The feathers are white, with black tips, evidently the tail feathers
of the adult golden eagle (_Aquila chrysaëtos_), highly prized by
all Indians. The streamers anciently were colored strips of skin or
flexible bark; now gayly colored strips of cloth are used. The word
calumet is a corruption of the French _chalumeau_, and the pipe among
all the Mississippi tribes was a symbol of peace. Captain Carver, in
his Three Years’ Travels Through the Interior Parts of North America,
Philadelphia, 1796, which travels began in 1766, after puzzling over
the etymology of the word calumet (that honest “captain of Provincial
troops” obviously not understanding French), reports it as “about 4
feet long, bowl of red marble, stem of a light wood curiously painted
with hieroglyphics in various colors and adorned with feathers. Every
nation has a different method of decorating these pipes and can
tell at once to what band it belongs. It is used as an introduction
to all treaties, also as a flag of truce is among Europeans.” The
event commemorated in the figure was probably a council of some of
the various tribes of the nation for settlement of all internal
difficulties, so as to act unitedly against the common enemy. J. C.
Beltrami, who visited the Dakotas not long after this date, describes
them in his Pilgrimage, London, 1828, as divided into independent
tribes, managing their separate affairs each by its own council,
and sometimes coming into conflict with each other, but uniting in a
general council on occasions affecting the whole nation.

No. III. Danced calumet dance before going to war.

Battiste Good says: “Sung-over-each-other-while-on-the-war-path
winter.” He adds: “The war party while out made a large pipe and sang
each other’s praises.” A memorandum is also added that the pipe here
seems to indicate peace made with some other tribe assisting in the
war. But see pages 118 and 139.

1805-’06.--No. I. Eight Dakotas killed by Crows.

No. II. The Crows killed eight Dakotas. Again the short parallel
black lines, this time eight in number, united by a long stroke. The
interpreter, Fielder, says that this character with black strokes is
only used for grave marks.

No. III. Eight Minneconjou Dakotas killed by Crow Indians at the mouth
of Powder River.

Battiste Good says: “They-came-and-killed-eight winter.” The enemy
killed eight Dakotas.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Eight-Dakotas-killed winter.”

Mato Sapa says: Eight Minneconjous killed by Crows at mouth of Powder

Major Bush same as last.







1806-’07.--No. I. Many eagles caught. This is done by digging a hole
and baiting the eagles to the hole in which the Indian is concealed,
who then catches the eagle.

No. II. A Dakota killed an Arikara as he was about to shoot an eagle.
The sign gives the head and shoulders of a man with a red spot of blood
on his neck, an arm being extended, with a line drawn to a golden
eagle. The Arickaras, a branch of the Pawnee (Pani) family, were at the
date given a powerful body, divided into ten large bands. They migrated
in recent times from southeast to northwest along the Missouri River.

No. III. A Ree Indian hunting eagles from a hole in the ground killed
by the Two Kettle Dakotas.

Battiste Good says: “Killed-them-while-hunting-eagles winter.” Some
Dakota eagle-hunters were killed by enemies.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Killed-while-hunting-eagles winter.”

Mato Sapa says: A Ree hunting eagles from a hole in the ground was
killed by Two Kettles.

Major Bush says the same without the words “hole in the ground.”

There is no doubt that the drawing represents an Indian in the act
of catching an eagle by the legs, as the Arickaras were accustomed
to catch eagles in their earth-traps. They rarely or never shot war
eagles. The enemies probably shot the Arikara in his trap just as he
put his hand up to grasp the bird.

1807-’08.--No. I. Red-Shirt killed by Rees.

No. II. Red-Coat, a chief, was killed. The figure shows the red coat
pierced by two arrows, with blood dropping from the wounds.

No. III. Uncpapa Dakota, named Red-Shirt, killed by Ree Indians.

Battiste Good says: “Came-and-killed-man-with-red-shirt-on winter.”

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Red-shirt-killed winter.”

Mato Sapa says: Red-shirt, an Uncpapa Dakota, was killed by Rees.

Major Bush same as last.

1808-’09.--No. I. Broken-Leg (Dakota) killed by Rees.

No. II. The Dakota who had killed the Ree shown in this record for
1806-’07 was himself killed by the Rees. He is represented running,
and shot with two arrows; blood dripping. These two figures, taken
in connection, afford a good illustration of the method pursued in
the chart, which was not intended to be a continuous history, or even
to record the most important event of each year, but to exhibit some
one of special peculiarity. War then raging between the Dakotas and
several tribes, probably many on both sides were killed in each of the
years; but there was some incident about the one Ree who was shot as
in fancied security he was bringing down an eagle, and whose death was
avenged by his brethren the second year afterward. Hence the selection
of those occurrences. It would, indeed, have been impossible to have
graphically distinguished the many battles, treaties, horse-stealings,
big hunts, etc., so most of them were omitted and other events of
greater individuality and better adapted for portrayal were taken
for the calendar, the criterion being not that they were of national
moment, but that they were of general notoriety, or perhaps of special
interest to the recorders.

No. III. A Blackfeet Dakota, named Broken-Leg, killed by Ree Indians.

Mato Sapa says: Broken-Leg, a Blackfeet Dakota, was killed by Rees.

Major Bush same as last.







1809-’10.--No. I. Little-Beaver, a white trapper, is burnt to death by
accident in his house on the White River. He was liked by Indians.

No. II. A chief, Little-Beaver, set fire to a trading store, and
was killed. The character is simply his name-totem. The other
interpretations say that he was a white man, but he probably had gained
a new name among the Indians.

No. III. White French trader, called Little-Beaver, was blown up by
powder on the Little Missouri River.

Battiste Good says: “Little-Beaver’s-house-burned winter.”
Little-Beaver was an English trader, and his trading house was a log

White-Cow-Killer says: Little-Beaver’s house was burned.

1810-’11.--No. I. Black-Rock, a Minneconjou chief, killed. See page 135.

No. II. Black-Stone made medicine. The “medicine men” have no
connection with therapeutics, feel no pulses, and administer no drugs,
or, if sometimes they direct the internal or external use of some
secret preparation, it is as a part of superstitious ceremonies, and
with main reliance upon those ceremonies they “put forth the charm,
of woven paces and of waving hands,” utter wild cries, and muddle in
blood and filth until they sometimes work themselves into an epileptic
condition. Their incantations are not only to drive away disease,
but for many other purposes, such as to obtain success in war, avert
calamity, and very frequently to bring within reach the buffalo, on
which the Dakotas depended for food. The rites are those known as
Shamanism, noticeable in the ethnic periods of savagery and barbarism.
In the ceremonial of “making medicine,” a buffalo head, and especially
that of an albino, held a prominent place among the plains tribes. Many
references to this are to be found in the Prince of Wied’s Travels in
the interior of North America; London, 1843; also see _infra_, pages
118, 122 and 195.

The device in the chart is the man-figure, with the head of an albino
buffalo held over his own.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Little-Tail, first made “medicine”
with white buffalo cow-skin.

Mato Sapa says: A Minneconjou, named Little-Tail, first made medicine
with white buffalo cow-skin.

Major Bush same as last.

American-Horse gives for the preceding year, 1809-’10: Black-Rock was
killed by the Crows.

1811-’12.--No. I. Twenty-seven Mandans surrounded and killed by Dakotas.

No. II. The Dakotas fought a battle with the Gros Ventres, and killed
a great many. Device, a circle inclosing three round objects with flat
bases, resembling heads severed from trunks, which latter the copy
shows too minute in this device for suggestion of what they probably
represent; but they appear more distinct in the record for 1864-’65
as the heads of enemies slain in battle. In the sign-language of the
plains, the Dakotas are always denoted by drawing a hand across the
throat, signifying that they cut the throats of their enemies. The
Dakotas count by the fingers, as is common to most peoples, but with
a peculiarity of their own. When they have gone over the fingers and
thumbs of both hands, one finger is temporarily turned down for _one
ten_. At the end of the next ten another finger is turned, and so on
to a hundred. _Opawinge_ [_Opawi^nxe_], one hundred, is derived from
_pawinga_ [_pawi^nxa_], to go around in circles, to make gyrations,
and contains the idea that the round of all the fingers has again been
made for their respective tens. So the circle is never used for less
than one hundred, but sometimes signifies an indefinite number greater
than a hundred. The circle, in this instance, therefore, was at first
believed to express the killing in battle of many enemies. But the
other interpretations remove all symbolic character, leaving the circle
simply as the rude drawing of a dirt lodge, being an instance in which
the present writer, by no means devoted to symbolism, had supposed a
legitimate symbol to be indicated, which supposition full information
on the subject did not support.

There are two wholly distinct tribes called by the Canadians Gros
Ventres. One, known also as Hidatsa and Minnetari, is classed in the
Siouan family, and numbered, in 1804, according to Lewis and Clarke,
2,500 souls. The other “Big Bellies,” properly called Atsina, are the
northern division of the Arapahos, an Algonkin tribe, from which they
separated in the early part of this century, and, wandering eastward,
met the Dakotas, by whom they were driven off to the north. It is
probable that this is the conflict recorded, though the Dakotas have
also often been at feud with their linguistic cousins, the Minnetari.

No. III. Twenty of the Gros Ventres killed by Dakotas in a dirt lodge.
They were chased into a deserted Ree dirt lodge and killed there.

Mato Sapa says: Twenty Gros Ventres were killed by the Dakotas in a
dirt lodge. In this record there is a circle with only one head.

Major Bush’s interpretation is the same as the last.







1812-’13.--No. I. Many wild horses caught.

No. II. The wild horses were first run and caught by the Dakotas.
The device is a lasso. The date is of value, as showing when the
herds of prairie horses, descended from those animals introduced by
the Spaniards in Mexico, or those deposited by them on the shores of
Texas and at other points, had multiplied so as to extend into the far
northern regions. The Dakotas undoubtedly learned the use of the horse
and perhaps also that of the lasso from southern tribes, with whom
they were in contact; and it is noteworthy that notwithstanding the
tenacity with which they generally adhere to ancient customs, in only
two generations since they became familiar with the horse they have
been so revolutionized in their habits as to be utterly helpless, both
in war and the chase, when deprived of that animal.

No. III. Dakotas first used lariat (_sic_) for catching wild horses.

Battiste Good says for the preceding year, 1811-’12:
“First-hunted-horses winter.” He adds: “The Dakotas caught wild horses
in the sand-hills with braided lariats.”

American-Horse also, for 1811-’12, says: They caught many wild horses
south of the Platte River.

White-Cow-Killer calls 1811-’12 “Catching-wild-horses winter.”

Major Bush says: Dakotas first made use of lariat in catching wild

1813-’14--No. I. Many Indians died of cold (consumption).

No. II. The whooping-cough was very prevalent and fatal. The sign is
ludicrously suggestive of a blast of air coughed out by the man-figure.

No. III. Dakotas had whooping-cough, very fatal.

The interruption in the cough is curiously designed. An attempt at the
same thing is made in Chart 1, and a less marked attempt appears in No.

1814-’15--No. I. Hunchback, a Brulé, killed by Utes.

No. II. A Dakota killed an Arapaho in his lodge. The device
represents a tomahawk or battle-ax, the red being blood from the
cleft skull.

The Arapahos long dwelt near the head-waters of the Arkansas and Platte
Rivers, and in 1822 numbered by report 10,000.

No. III. A Wetapahata (a stranger Indian, whose nationality was not
identified by the interpreter) Indian killed by a Brulé Dakota, while
on a visit to the Dakota.

Mato Sapa says: a Wetopahata Indian was killed by a Brulé Sioux while
on a visit to the Dakotas.

Major Bush says the same, but spells the word Watahpahata.

Riggs gives Wí-ta-pa-ha, the Kiowas, and Ma-qpí-ya-to, the Arapahos, in
the Dakota Dictionary.







1815-’16.--No. I. Large dirt lodge made by Sans Arcs. The figure at the
top of the lodge is a bow.

No. II. The Sans Arcs made the first attempt at a dirt lodge. This
was at Peoria Bottom, Dakota Territory. Crow-Feather was their chief,
which fact, in the absence of the other charts, seemed to explain the
fairly-drawn feather of that bird protruding from the lodge top, but
the figure must now be admitted to be a badly drawn bow, in allusion
to the tribe Sans Arc, without, however, any sign of negation. As
the interpreter explained the figure to be a crow feather, and as
Crow-Feather actually was the chief, Lone-Dog’s chart with its
interpretation may be independently correct.

No. III. Sans Arc Dakotas built dirt lodges at Peoria Bottom. A dirt
lodge is considered a permanent habitation. The mark on top of the
lodge is evidently a strung bow, not a feather.

Battiste Good says: “The-Sans-Arcs-made-large-house winter.”

White-Cow-Killer calls it: “Made-a-house winter.”

Major Bush’s copy also shows a clearly drawn figure of a bow, strung.

1816-’17.--No. I. Buffalo very plenty.

No. II. “Buffalo belly was plenty.” The device rudely portrays a side
or perhaps hide of buffalo.

No. III. Dakotas had unusual quantities of buffalo.

1817-’18.--No. I. Trading store built at Fort Pierre.

No. II. La Framboise, a Canadian, built a trading store with dry
timber. The dryness is shown by the dead tree. La Framboise was an old
trader among the Dakotas. He once established himself in the Minnesota
Valley. His name is mentioned by various travelers.

No. III. Trading post built on the Missouri River 10 miles above Fort

Battiste Good says: “Chozé-built-a-house-of-dead-logs winter.”

Mato Sapa says: A trading house was built on the Missouri River 10
miles above Fort Thompson.

Major Bush says the same as last, but that it was built by Louis La







1818-’19.--No. I. Many Indians died of cholera [_sic_].

No. II. The measles broke out and many died. The device in the copy is
the same as that for 1801-’02, relating to the small-pox, except a very
slight difference in the red blotches; and though Lone-Dog’s artistic
skill might not have been sufficient to distinctly vary the appearance
of the two patients, both diseases being eruptive, still it is one of
the few serious defects in the chart that the sign for the two years
is so nearly identical that, separated from the continuous record,
there would be confusion between them. Treating the document as a mere
_aide-de-mémoire_, no inconvenience would arise, it probably being well
known that the small-pox epidemic preceded that of the measles; but
such care is generally taken to make some, however minute, distinction
between the characters, that possibly the figures on Lone-Dog’s robe
show a more marked difference between the spots indicating the two
eruptions than is reproduced in the copy. It is also to be noticed
that the Indian diagnosis makes little distinction between small-pox
and measles, so that no important pictographic variation could be
expected. The head of this figure is clearly distinguished from that in

No. III. All the Dakotas had measles, very fatal.

Battiste Good says: “Small-pox-used-them-up-again winter.” They at this
time lived on the Little White River, about 20 miles above the Rosebud
Agency. The character in Battiste Good’s chart is presented here in
Figure 41, as a variant from those in the plates.

[Illustration: FIG. 41.--Measles or small-pox.]

Cloud-Shield says: Many died of the small-pox.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Little-small-pox winter.”

In Mato Sapa’s drawing the head of the figure is distinguished from
that of 1801-’02.

1819-’20.--No. I. Another trading store built.

No. II. Another trading store was built; this time by Louis La Conte,
at Fort Pierre, Dakota. His timber, as one of the Indians consulted
specially mentioned, was rotten.

No. III. Trading post built on the Missouri River above Farm Island
(near Fort Pierre).

Battiste Good says: “Chozé-built-a-house-of-rotten-wood winter.”

White-Cow-Killer calls it: “Made-a-house-of-old-wood winter.”

1820-’21.--No. I. Large dirt lodge made by Two-Arrow. The projection at
the top extends downward from the left, giving the impression of red
and black cloth streamers.

No. II. The trader, La Conte, gave Two-Arrow a war-dress for his
bravery. So translated an interpreter, and the sign shows the two
arrows as the warrior’s totem; likewise the gable of a house,
which brings in the trader; also a long strip of black tipped with
red streaming from the roof, which possibly may be the piece of
parti-colored material out of which the dress was fashioned. This strip
is not intended for sparks and smoke, as at first sight suggested, as
the red would in that case be nearest the roof, instead of farthest
from it.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Two-Arrows, built himself a dirt
medicine-lodge. This the interpreter calls, rather inaccurately, a
headquarters for dispensing medicines, charms, and nostrums to the
different bands of Dakotas. The black and red lines above the roof are
not united and do not touch the roof.

White-Cow-Killer calls it: “Two-Arrows-made-a-war-bonnet winter.”

Battiste Good says: They made bands of strips of blankets in the winter.

Major Bush says: A Minneconjou, named Two-Arrow, made medicine in a

It will be observed that the interpreters vary in the details.







1821-’22.--No. I. Large ball of fire with hissing noise (aërolite).

No. II. The character represents the falling to earth of a very
brilliant meteor, and though no such appearance is on record, there
were in 1821 few educated observers near the Upper Mississippi and
Missouri who would take the trouble to notify scientific societies of
the phenomenon.

No. III. Dakota Indians saw an immense meteor passing from southeast to
northwest which exploded with great noise (in Dakota Territory).

Red-Cloud said he was born in that year.

Battiste Good says: “Star-passed-by-with-loud-noise winter.” His device
is shown in Figure 42, showing the meteor, its pathway, and the clouds
from which it came.

[Illustration: FIG. 42--Meteor.]

White-Cow-Killer calls it “One-star-made-a-great-noise winter.” See
also Cloud-Shield’s count, page 136.

1822-’23.--No. I. Trading store built at Little Missouri, near Fort

No. II.--Another trading house was built, which was by a white man
called Big-Leggings, and was at the mouth of the Little Missouri or Bad
River. The drawing is distinguishable from that for 1819-’20.

No. III. Trading post built at the mouth of Little Missouri River.

1823-’24--No. I. Whites and Dakotas fight Rees.

No. II. White soldiers made their first appearance in the region. So
said the interpreter, Clément, but from the unanimous interpretation of
others the event portrayed is the attack of the United States forces,
accompanied by Dakotas, upon the Arikara villages, the historic account
of which is as follows, abstracted from the annual report of J. C.
Calhoun, Secretary of War, November 29, 1823:

General William H. Ashley, lieutenant-governor of the State of
Missouri, a licensed trader, was treacherously attacked by the Arickara
Indians at their village on the west bank of the Missouri River, about
midway between the present Fort Sully and Fort Rice, on June 2, 1823.
Twenty-three of the trading party were killed and wounded, and the
remainder retreated in boats a considerable distance down the river,
whence they sent appealing for succor to the commanding officer at Fort
Atkinson, the present site of Council Bluffs. This officer was Col. H.
Leavenworth, Sixth United States Infantry, who marched June 22, with
220 men of that regiment, 80 men of trading companies, and two 6-pound
cannon, a 5-1/2-inch brass howitzer, and some small swivels, nearly
700 miles through a country filled with hostile or unreliable Indians
to the Ree villages, which, after much hardship and some losses, he
reached on the 9th of August. The Dakotas were at war with the Arickara
or Rees, and 700 to 800 of their warriors had joined the United States
forces on the way; of these Dakotas 500 are mentioned as Yanktons, but
the tribes of the remainder are not designated in the official reports.
The Rees were in two villages, the lower one containing seventy-one
dirt lodges and the upper seventy, both being inclosed with palisades
and a ditch, and the greater part of the lodges having a ditch
around the bottom on the inside. The enemy, having knowledge of the
expedition, had fortified and made every preparation for resistance.
Their force consisted of over 700 warriors, most of whom were armed
with rifles procured from British traders. On the 9th of August the
Dakotas commenced the attack, and were driven back until the regular
troops advanced, but nothing decisive resulted until the artillery was
employed on the 10th, when a large number of the Rees, including their
chief, Grey-Eyes, were killed, and early in the afternoon they begged
for peace. They were much terrified and humbled by the effect of the
cannon, which, though small, answered the purpose. During the main
engagement the Dakotas occupied themselves in gathering and carrying
off all the corn to be found, and before the treaty was concluded,
which, at the supplication of the Rees, Colonel Leavenworth agreed to,
the Dakotas all left in great disgust at not being allowed to kill and
scalp the surrendered warriors with their squaws and pappooses, take
possession of the villages, horses, etc., and in fact to exterminate
their hereditary foes. However, the Rees, having become panic-stricken
after the treaty and two days of peaceful intercourse with the
soldiers, deserted their homes, and the troops, embarking on the 15th
to descend the river, shortly saw the villages in flames, which was the
work either of the Dakotas or of inimical traders.

The device is believed to represent an Arickara palisaded village and
attacking soldiers. Not only the remarkable character and triumphant
result of this expedition, but the connection that the Dakotas
themselves had with it, made it a natural subject for the year’s totem.

All the winter counts refer to this expedition.

No. III. United States troops fought Ree Indians.

Battiste Good says: “General-----
winter,” also “Much-corn winter.” For his character see Figure 69, page
166. The gun and the arrow in contact with the ear of corn show that
both whites and Indians fought the Rees.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Old-corn-plenty winter.”

Mato Sapa’s chart gives the human figure with a military cap, beard,
and goatee.







1824-’25.--No. I. All the horses of Little-Swan’s father are killed by
Indians through spite.

No. II. Swan, chief of the Two Kettle tribe, had all of his horses
killed. Device, a horse pierced by a lance, blood flowing from the

No. III. Swan, a Minneconjou Indian, had twenty horses killed by a
jealous Indian.

Mato Sapa says: Swan, a Minneconjou chief, lost twenty horses killed by
a jealous Indian.

Major Bush says the same.

1825-’26.--No. I. River overflows the Indian camp; several drowned.
The-Flame, the recorder of this count, born. In the original drawing
the five objects above the line are obviously human heads.

No. II. There was a remarkable flood in the Missouri River, and a
number of Indians were drowned. With some exercise of fancy, the symbol
may suggest heads appearing above a line of water, or it may simply be
the severed heads, several times used, to denote Indians other than
Dakotas, with the uniting black line of death.

No. III. Thirty lodges of Dakota Indians drowned by a sudden rise of
the Missouri River about Swan Lake Creek, which is in Horsehead Bottom,
15 miles below Fort Rice. The five heads are more clearly drawn than in
No. II.

Battiste Good says: “Many-Yanktonais-drowned winter;” adding: The river
bottom on a bend of the Missouri River where they were encamped was
suddenly submerged, when the ice broke and many women and children,
were drowned. This device is presented in Figure 43.

[Illustration: FIG. 43.--River freshet.]

All the winter counts refer to this flood.

1826-’27.--No. I. All of the Indians who ate of a buffalo killed on a
hunt died of it, a peculiar substance issuing from the mouth.

No. II. “An Indian died of the dropsy.” So Basil Clément was
understood, but it is not clear why this circumstance should have been
noted, unless the appearance of the disease was so unusual in 1826
as to excite remark. Baron de La Hontan, a good authority concerning
the Northwestern Indians before they had been greatly affected by
intercourse with whites, although showing a tendency to imitate another
baron--Munchausen--as to his personal adventures, in his Nouveaux
Voyages dans l’Amérique Septentrionale specially mentions dropsy as one
of the diseases unknown to them. Carver also states that this malady
was extremely rare. Whether or not the dropsy was very uncommon, the
swelling in this special case might have been so enormous as to render
the patient an object of general curiosity and gossip, whose affliction
thereby came within the plan of the count. The device merely shows a
man-figure, not much fatter than several others, but distinguished
by a line extending sidewise from the top of the head and inclining
downward. The other records cast doubt upon the interpretation of

No. III. Dakota war party killed a buffalo; having eaten of it they all

Battiste Good says: “Ate-a-whistle-and-died winter,” and adds: “Six
Dakotas, on the war-path, had nearly perished with hunger, when they
found and ate the rotting carcass of an old buffalo, on which the
wolves had been feeding. They were seized soon after with pains in the
stomach, their abdomens swelled and gas poured from the mouth, and they
died of a whistle, or from eating a whistle.” The sound of gas escaping
from, the mouth is illustrated in his figure which see in Figure 146,
page 221.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Long-whistle-sick winter.”







1827-’28.--No. I. A Minneconjou is stabbed by a Gros Ventre, and his
arm shrivels up.

No. II. Dead-Arm was stabbed with a knife or dirk by a Mandan. The
illustration is quite graphic, showing the long-handled dirk in the
bloody wound and the withered arm. Though the Mandans are also of the
great Siouan family, the Dakotas have pursued them with special hatred.
In 1823, their number, much diminished by wars, still exceeded 2,500.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota wounded with a large knife by a Gros
Ventre. The large knife was a sword, and the Indian who was wounded was
named, afterwards, Lame-Shoulder. This is an instance of a change of
name after a remarkable event in life.

1828-’29.--No. I. Chardran, a white man, builds a house at forks of
Cheyenne River. This name should probably be spelled Chadron, with whom
Catlin hunted in 1832, in the region mentioned.

No. II. A white man named Shardran, who lately (as reported in 1877)
was still living in the same neighborhood, built a dirt lodge. The
hatted head appears under the roof.

III. Trading post opened in a dirt lodge on the Missouri a little below
the mouth of the Little Missouri River.

1829-’30.--No. I. A Dakota found dead in a canoe.

No. II. Bad-Spike killed another Indian with an arrow.

No. III. A Yanktonai Dakota killed by Bad-Arrow Indians.

The Bad-Arrow Indians is a translation of the Dakota name for a certain
band of Blackfeet Indians.

Mato Sapa says: a Yanktonai was killed by the Bad-Arrow Indians.

Major Bush says the same as Mato Sapa.







1830-’31.--No. I. Mandans kill twenty Crows at Bear Butte.

No. II. Bloody battle with the Crows, of whom it is said
twenty-three were killed. Nothing in the sign denotes number, it
being only a man-figure with red or bloody body and red war bonnet.

No. III. Twenty Crow and one Cheyenne Indians killed by Dakotas at Bear

Mato Sapa says: One Cheyenne and twenty Crows were killed by Dakotas at
Bear Butte.

Major Bush says the same as Mato Sapa.

1831-’32.--No. I. Two white men killed by a white man at Medicine
Creek, below Fort Sully.

No. II. Le Beau, a white man, killed another named Kermel. Another copy
reads Kennel. Le Beau was still alive at Little Bend, 30 miles above
Fort Sully, in 1877.

No. III. Trader named Le Beau killed one of his employés on Big
Cheyenne River, below Cherry Creek.

1832-’33.--No. I. Lone-Horn’s father broke his leg.

No. II. Lone-Horn had his leg “killed,” as the interpretation gave it.
The single horn is on the figure, and a leg is drawn up as if fractured
or distorted, though not unlike the leg in the character for 1808-’09,
where running is depicted.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, Lone-Horn’s father, had his leg broken
while running buffalo.

Mato Sapa and Major Bush also say Lone-Horn’s father.

Battiste Good says: “Stiff-leg-With-war-bonnet-on-died winter.” He was
killed in an engagement with the Pawnees on the Platte River.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “One-Horn’s-leg-broken winter.”

In Catlin’s “North American Indians,” New York, 1844, Vol. I, page 211,
the author, writing from the mouth of Teton River, Upper Missouri, site
of Fort Pierre, described Ha-won-je-tah, The One-Horn, head chief of
all the bands of the Dakotas, which were about twenty. He was a bold,
middle-aged man of medium stature, noble countenance, and figure almost
equalling an Apollo. His portrait was painted by Catlin in 1832. He
took the name of One-Horn, or One-Shell, from a simple small shell that
was hanging on his neck, which descended to him from his father, and
which he valued more than anything else which he possessed, and he kept
that name in preference to many others more honorable which he had a
right to have taken, from his many exploits.

On page 221, the same author states, that after being the accidental
cause of the death of his only son, Lone-Horn became at times partially
insane. One day he mounted his war-horse, vowing to kill the first
living thing he should meet, and rode to the prairies. The horse came
back in two hours afterwards, with two arrows in him covered with
blood. His tracks were followed back, and the chief was found mangled
and gored by a buffalo bull, the carcass of which was stretched beside
him. He had driven away the horse with his arrows and killed the bull
with his knife.

Another account in the catalogue of Catlin’s cartoons gives the
portrait of The One-Horn as number 354, with the statement that having
killed his only son accidentally, he became deranged, wandered into the
prairies, and got himself killed by an infuriated buffalo bull’s horns.
This was at the mouth of Little Missouri River, in 1834.







1833-’34.--No. I. Many stars fell (meteors). The character shows six
black stars above the concavity of the moon.

No. II. “The stars fell,” as the Indians all agreed. This was the great
meteoric shower observed all over the United States on the night of
November 12th of that year. In this chart the moon is black and the
stars are red.

No. III. Dakotas witnessed magnificent meteoric-showers; much terrified.

Battiste Good calls it “Storm-of-stars winter,” and gives as the device
a tipi, with stars falling around it. This is presented in Figure 44.
The tipi is colored yellow in the original, and so represented in the
figure according to the heraldic scheme.

[Illustration: FIG. 44.--Meteoric shower.]

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Plenty-stars winter.”

All the winter counts refer to this meteoric display. See page 138.

1834-’35.--No. I. A Ree killed by a Dakota.

No. II. The chief, Medicine-Hide, was killed. The device shows the body
as bloody, but not the war bonnet, by which it is distinguished from
the character for 1830-’31.

No. III. An Uncpapa Dakota Medicine-man killed by the Ree Indians.

Mato Sapa says: An Uncpapa medicine-man was killed by Rees. There is no
red on the figure.

1835-’36.--No. I. Lame-Deer killed by a Dakota. The Dakota had only one
arrow. He pulled it out and shot Lame-Deer many times.

No. II. Lame-Deer shot a Crow Indian with an arrow; drew it out and
shot him again with the same arrow. The hand is drawing the arrow from
the first wound. This is another instance of the principle on which
events were selected. Many fights occurred of greater moment, but with
no incident precisely like this.

No. III. Minneconjou chief named Lame-Deer shot an Assiniboine three
times with the same arrow. He kept so close to his enemy that he never
let the arrow slip away from the bow, but pulled it out and shot it in

Mato Sapa says a Minneconjou named Lame-Deer shot an Assiniboine three
times running with the same arrow.







Lame-Deer was a distinguished chief among the hostiles in 1876. His
camp of five hundred and ten lodges was surprised and destroyed
by General Miles, and four hundred and fifty horses, mules, and ponies
were captured.

1836-’37.--No. I. Father-of-the-Mandans died.

No. II. Band’s-Father, chief of the Two Kettles, died. The device is
nearly the same as that for 1816-’17, denoting plenty of buffalo belly;
and the question might be raised, what the buffalo belly had to do with
the demise of the lamented chieftain, unless he suffered from a fatal
indigestion after eating too much of that delicacy.

Interpreter Fielder, however, throws light on the subject by saying
that this character was used to designate the year when The-Breast,
father of The-Band, a Minneconjou, died. The-Band himself died in 1875,
on Powder River. His name was O-ye-a-pee. The character was therefore
the buffalo breast, a name-totem.

No. III. Two Kettle, Dakota, named The-Breast, died.

Mato Sapa says: A Two Kettle, named The-Breast, died.

Major Bush same as Mato Sapa.

1837-’38.--No. I. Many elk and deer killed. The figure does not show
the split hoof.

No. II. Commemorates a remarkably successful hunt, in which it is said
one hundred elk were killed. The drawing of the elk is good enough to
distinguish it from the other quadrupeds in this chart.

No. III. The Dakotas killed one hundred elk at the Black Hills.

Mato Sapa says: The Dakotas killed one hundred elk at the Black Hills.
His figure does not show the split hoof.

1838-’39.--No. I. Indians built a lodge on White Wood Creek, in the
Black Hills, and wintered there.

No. II. A dirt lodge was built for Iron-Horn. The other dirt lodge
(1815-’16) has a mark of ownership, which this has not. Perhaps it was
not so easy to draw an iron horn as a crow feather, and the distinction
was accomplished by omission. A chief of the Minneconjous is mentioned
in General Harney’s report in 1856, under the name of The-One-Iron-Horn.

No. III. A Minneconjou chief, named Iron-Horn, built dirt lodge
(medicine lodge) on Moreau River (same as Owl River).

This Minneconjou chief, Iron-Horn, died a few years ago and was buried
near Fort Sully. He was father-in-law of Dupuis, a French Canadian.







1839-’40.--No. I. Dakotas killed twenty lodges of Arapahos.

No. II. The Dakotas killed an entire village of Snake Indians.
The character is the ordinary tipi pierced by arrows. The Snakes,
or Shoshoni, were a numerous and wide-spread people, inhabiting
Southeastern Oregon, Idaho, Western Montana, and portions of Utah and
Nevada, extending into Arizona and California.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named The-Hard (with band), killed seven
lodges of the Blue Cloud Indians.

The Blue Clouds are the Arapahos, so styled by the Dakotas, original

Mato Sapa says: A Minneconjou Dakota named The-Hard killed seven lodges
of the Blue Cloud Indians.

Major Bush same as Mato Sapa.

1840-’41.--No. I. Red-Arm, a Cheyenne, and Lone-Horn, a Dakota, make

No. II. The Dakotas made peace with the Cheyennes, a well-known tribe
belonging to the Algonkin family. The symbol of peace is the common one
of the approaching palms of two persons. The different coloration of
the two arms distinguishes them from the approximation of the palms of
one person.

No. III. Dakotas made peace with Cheyenne Indians.

1841-’42.--No. I. Feather-in-the-Ear steals horses from the Crows.

No. II. Feather-in-the-Ear stole thirty spotted ponies. The spots are
shown red, distinguishing them from those of the curly horse in the
character for 1803-’04.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Feather-in-his-Ear, stole nineteen
spotted horses from the Crow Indians.

Mato Sapa says: A Minneconjou named Feather-in-the-Ear stole nineteen
spotted horses from the Crows.

Major Bush, says the same, except that he gives the number as nine
instead of nineteen.

A successful theft of horses, demanding skill, patience, and daring,
is generally considered by the plains Indians to be of equal merit
with the taking of scalps. Indeed, the successful horse-thief is more
popular than a mere warrior on account of the riches gained by the
tribe, wealth until lately being generally estimated in ponies as the
unit of value.







1842-’43.--No. I. A Minneconjou chief tries to make war. The tip of the
feather is black. No red in it.

No. II. One-Feather raised a large war party against the Crows. This
chief is designated by his long solitary red eagle feather, and holds
a pipe with black stem and red bowl, alluding to the usual ceremonies
before starting on the war path. For further information on this
subject see page 139. The Red-War-Eagle-Feather was at this time a
chief of the Sans Arcs.

No. III. Feather-in-the-Ear made a feast, to which he invited all the
young Dakota braves, wanting them to go with him. A memorandum is added
that he failed to persuade them. See Corbusier Winter Counts for same
year, page 141.

Mato Sapa says: The same man (referring to last year),
Feather-in-the-Ear, made a feast inviting all Dakota young men to go to

Major Bush says same as Mato Sapa.

1843-’44.--No. I. Buffalo is scarce; an Indian makes medicine and
brings them to the suffering.

No. II. The Sans Arcs made medicine to bring the buffalo. The medicine
tent is denoted by a buffalo’s head drawn on it.

No. III. No buffalo; Indians made medicine to the Great Spirit by
painting a buffalo’s head on lodge; plenty came.

Mato Sapa says: Dakotas were starving; made medicine to Great Spirit by
painting buffalo head on their lodges; plenty came.

Major Bush substantially same as Mato Sapa.

1844-’45.--No. I. Mandans wintered in Black Hills.

No. II. The Minneconjous built a pine fort. Device: A pine tree
connected with a tipi.

No. III. Unusually heavy snow; had to build corrals for ponies.

Major Bush says: Heavy snow, in which many of their ponies perished.

Probably the Indians went into the woods and erected their tipis there
as protection from the snow, thus accounting for the figure of the tree.







1845-’46--No. I. Dakotas have much feasting at Ash Point, 20 miles
above Fort Sully.

No. II. Plenty of buffalo meat, which is represented as hung upon
poles and trees to dry.

No. III. Immense quantities of buffalo meat.

1846-’47.--No. I. Broken-Leg dies.

No. II. Broken-Leg died. Rev. Dr. Williamson says he knew him. He was
a Brulé. There is enough difference between this device and those for
1808-’09 and 1832-’33 to distinguish each.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota named Broken-Leg died.

Battiste Good calls this: “The-Teal-broke-his-leg winter.” The arm in
his character, given in Figure 45, is lengthened so as nearly to touch
the broken leg, which is shown distorted, instead of indicating the
injury by the mere distortion of the leg itself as in the charts on
Plate XXIV. The bird over the head and connected by a line with it,
probably represents the teal as a name-totem. He was perhaps called
Broken-Leg after the injury, or perhaps the other interpreters did not
remember his name, only the circumstance.

[Illustration: FIG. 45.--The-Teal-broke-his-leg.]

Mato Sapa says: A Minneconjou named Broken-Leg died.

The Corbusier records for 1847-’48 refer to a number of accidents by
which legs were broken. See page 142.

1847-’48--No. I. Mandans kill two Minneconjous.

No. II. Two-Man was killed. His totem is drawn--two small man-figures
side by side.

No. III. Two Minneconjou Dakotas killed by the Assiniboine Indians.

Major Bush says: the wife of an Assiniboine chief named Big-Thunder had







1848-’49.--No. I. Humpback, a Minneconjou, killed.

No. II. Humpback was killed. An ornamented lance pierces the distorted

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota named Broken-Back was killed by the Crow
Indians at Black Hills.

Major Bush says: A Minneconjou, Broken-Back, was killed by Crows.

1849-’50.--No. I. Crows steal all the Dakotas’ horses.

No. II. The Crows stole a large drove of horses (it is said eight
hundred) from the Brulés. The circle may denote multitude, at least
one hundred, but probably is a simple design for a camp or corral from
which a number of horse-tracks are departing.

No. III. Crow Indians stole two hundred horses from the Minneconjou
Dakotas near Black Hills.

Interpreter A. Lavary says: Brulés were at the headwaters of White
River, about 75 miles from Fort Laramie, Wyoming. The Dakotas surprised
the Crows in 1849, killed ten, and took one prisoner, because he was
a man dressed in woman’s clothes, and next winter the Crows stole six
hundred horses from the Brulés. See page 142.

1850-’51.--No. I. Cow with old woman in her belly. Cloven hoof not

No. II. The character is a distinct drawing of a buffalo containing
a human figure. Clément translated that “a buffalo cow was killed in
that year, and an old woman found in her belly”; also that all the
Indians believed this. Good-Wood, examined through another interpreter,
could or would give no explanation, except that it was “about their
religion.” At first the writer suspected that the medicine men
had manufactured some pretended portent out of a fœtus taken from
a real cow, but the Dakotas have long believed in the appearance
from time to time of a monstrous animal that swallows human beings.
This superstition was perhaps suggested by the bones of mastodons,
often found in the territory of those Indians; and the buffalo being
the largest living animal known to them, its name was given to the
legendary monster, in which nomenclature they were not wholly wrong,
as the horns of the fossil _Bison latifrons_ are 10 feet in length.
The medicine men, perhaps, announced, in 1850, that a squaw who had
disappeared was swallowed by the mammoth, which was then on its
periodical visit, and must be propitiated.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, having killed a buffalo cow, found an
old woman inside of her.

Memorandum from interpreter: A small party of Dakotas, two or three
young men, returning unsuccessful from a buffalo hunt, told this story,
and it is implicitly believed by the Dakotas.

Major Bush suggests that perhaps some old squaw left to die sought the
carcass of a buffalo for shelter and then died. He has known that to







1851-’52.--No. I. Peace made with the Crows.

No. II. Peace with the Crows. Two Indians, with differing arrangement
of hair, showing two tribes, are exchanging pipes for a peace-smoke.

No. III. Dakotas made peace with the Crow Indians. It was, as usual,
broken immediately.

The treaty of Fort Laramie was in 1851.

1852-’53.--No. I. A Crow chief, Flat-Head, comes into the tipi of a
Dakota chief, where a council was assembled, and forces them to smoke
the pipe of peace. This was a daring act, for he was in danger of
immediate death if he failed.

No. II. The Nez Percés came to Lone-Horn’s lodge at midnight. The
device shows an Indian touching with a pipe a tipi, the top of which is
black or opaque, signifying night. The Nez Percés are so styled by a
blunder of the early travelers, as they never have been known to pierce
their noses, although others of their family, the Sahaptin, do so. The
tribe was large, dwelling chiefly in Idaho.

No. III. An enemy came into Lone-Horn’s lodge during a medicine feast
and was not killed. (The enemy numbered about fourteen and had lost
their way in a snow-storm.) The pipe is not in the man’s hand, and the
head only is drawn with the pipe between it and the tipi.

Mato Sapa says: Several strange Indians came into the Dakota camp, were
saved from being killed by running into Lone-Horn’s lodge.

Major Bush says: An enemy came into Lone-Horn’s lodge during a feast
and was not killed.

Touch-the-Clouds, a Minneconjou, son of Lone-Horn, on being shown
Chart No. II by the present writer, designated this character as being
particularly known to him from the fact of its being his father’s
lodge. He remembers all about it from talk in his family, and said it
was the Nez Percés who came.

1853-’54.--No. I. Spanish blankets introduced by traders. The blanket
is represented without the human figure.

No. II. Spanish blankets were first brought to the country. A fair
drawing of one of those striped blankets, held out by a white trader.

No. III. Dakotas first saw the Spanish blankets.

See Corbusier records for 1851-’52, page 142.







1854-’55.--No. I. Brave-Bear killed by Blackfeet.

No. II. Brave-Bear was killed. It does not appear certain whether
he had already invested in the new style of blanket or whether the
extended arms are ornamented with pendent stripes. The latter is more

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota named Brave-Bear was killed by the Upper
Blackfeet. [Satsika?]

See Corbusier winter-counts for the same year, page 143.

1855-’56.--No. I. General Harney (Putin ska) makes a treaty.

No. II. General Harney made peace with a number of the tribes or bands
of the Dakotas. This was at Fort Pierre, Dakota. The figure shows an
officer in uniform shaking hands with an Indian.

Executive document No. 94, Thirty-fourth Congress, first session,
Senate, contains the “minutes of a council held at Fort Pierre,
Nebraska, on the 1st day of March, 1856, by Brevet Brig.-Gen. William
S. Harney, U. S. Army, commanding the Sioux expedition, with the
delegations from nine of the bands of the Sioux, viz., the Two-Kettle
band, Lower Yankton, Oncpapas, Blackfeet Sioux, Minneconjous, Sans
Arcs, Yanctonnais (two bands), Brulés of the Platte.”

No. III. Dakotas made peace with General Harney (called by them
Putinska, white beard or moustache) at Fort Pierre, Dakota.

1856-’57.--No. I. Four-Horns, a great warrior.

No. II. Four-Horn was made a calumet or medicine-man. This was probably
the result of an important political struggle, as there is much rivalry
and electioneering for the office, which, with its triple character
of doctor, priest, and magician, is one of far greater power than
the chieftainship. A man with four horns holds out the same kind of
ornamented pipe-stem shown in the character for 1804-’05, it being his
badge of office. Four-Horn was one of the subchiefs of the Uncpapas,
and was introduced to General Harney at the council of 1856 by
Bear-Rib, head chief of that tribe.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Red-Fish’s-Son, danced calumet

Mato Sapa says the same as last.

Major Bush says, “A Minneconjou, Red-Fish’s-Son, The-Ass, danced the
Four-Horn calumet.”

Interpreter Clément, in the spring of 1874, said that Four-Horn and
Sitting-Bull were the same person, the name Sitting-Bull being given
him after he was made a calumet man. No other authority tells this.







1857-’58.--No. I. White-Robe kills a Crow woman. There is but one arrow
and one blood spot in the character.

No. II. The Dakotas killed a Crow squaw. The stripes on the blanket are
shown horizontally, Brave-Bear’s, 1854-’55, and Swan’s, 1866-’67, being
vertical. She is pierced by four arrows, and the peace made with the
Crows in 1851-’52 seems to have been short lived.

No. III. A party of Crow Indians, while on a visit to the Dakotas, had
one of their number killed by a young Dakota. The figure has blood from
the four arrows running down each side of the body.

Mato-Sapa says: A Crow was killed by a Dakota while on a visit to the

Major Bush says substantially the same as Mato Sapa.

1858-’59.--No. I. Lone-Horn makes medicine. “At such times Indians
sacrifice ponies, etc., and fast.” In this character the buffalo-head
is black.

No. II. Lone-Horn, whose solitary horn appears, made buffalo medicine,
probably on account of the scarcity of that animal. Again the
head of an albino bison. One-Horn, doubtless the same individual, is
recorded as the head chief of the Minneconjous at this date.

No. III. A Minneconjou chief, named Lone-Horn, made medicine with white
buffalo-cow skin.

Lone-Horn, chief of Minneconjous, died in 1874, in his camp on the Big

1859-’60.--No. I. Big-Crow killed.

No. II. Big-Crow, a Dakota chief, was killed by the Crows. The crow,
transfixed by an arrow, is drawn so as to give quite the appearance of
an heraldic crest.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Big-Crow, was killed by the Crow
Indians. He had received his name from killing a Crow Indian of unusual

Mato Sapa says: Big-Crow, a Minneconjou, was killed by Crows.

Major Bush says same as Mato Sapa.







1860-’61.--No. I. The-Elk-who-shows himself-when-he-walks makes

No. II. Device, the head and neck of an elk, like that part of the
animal in 1837-’38, with a line extending from its mouth, at the
extremity of which is the albino buffalo-head. “The elk made you
understand his voice while he was walking.” The interpreter persisted
in this oracular rendering, probably not being able to fully catch the
Indian explanation from want of thorough knowledge of the language.
The ignorance of professed interpreters, who easily get beyond their
philological depth, but are ashamed to acknowledge it, has occasioned
many official blunders. This device and its interpretation were
unintelligible to the writer until examination of General Harney’s
report above referred to showed the name of a prominent chief of the
Minneconjous, set forth as “The-Elk-that-Hollows-Walking.” It then
became probable that the device simply meant that the aforesaid chief
made buffalo medicine, which conjecture, published in 1877, the other
records subsequently discovered verified.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota, named Red-Fish’s-Son, made medicine with
white buffalo-cow skin.

Mato Sapa’s record agrees with No. III.

Major Bush says the same, adding, after the words “Red-Fish’s-Son,”

Interpreter A. Lavary said, in 1867, that The-Elk-that-Hollows-Walking,
then chief of the Minneconjous, was then at Spotted-Tail’s camp. His
father was Red-Fish. He was the elder brother of Lone-Horn. His name
is given as A-hag-a-hoo-man-ie, translated The Elk’s-Voice-Walking,
compounded of He-ha-ka, elk, and Omani, walk--this according to
Lavary’s literation. The correct literation of the Dakota word meaning
elk is _heqaka_; voice _ho_; and to walk, walking, _mani_. Their
compound would be _Heqaka ho mani_, the translation being the same as
above given.

1861-’62.--No. I. Buffalo very plenty.

No. II. Buffalo were so plenty that their tracks came close to the
tipis. The cloven hoof-mark is cleverly distinguished from the tracks
of horses in the character for 1849-’50.

No. III. Dakotas had unusual abundance of buffalo.

1862-’63.--No. I. Red-Plume kills an enemy.

No. II. Red-Feather, a Minneconjou, was killed. His feather is shown
entirely red, while the “one-feather” in 1842-’43 has a black tip.

No. III. A Minneconjou Dakota killed an Assiniboine named Red-Feather.

Mato Sapa says: Minneconjous kill an Assiniboine named Red-Feather.

Major Bush agrees with Mato Sapa.

It is to be noted that there is no allusion to the great Minnesota
massacre, which commenced in August, 1862, and in which many of
the Dakotas belonging to the tribes familiar with these charts,
were engaged. Little-Crow was the leader. He escaped to the British
possessions, but was killed in July, 1863. Perhaps the reason of the
omission of any character to designate the massacre, was the terrible
retribution that followed it, beginning with the rout by Colonel
Sibley, on September 23, 1862. The Indian captives amounted in all
to about eighteen hundred. A military commission sentenced three
hundred and three to be hanged and eighteen to imprisonment for life.
Thirty-eight were actually hanged, December 26, 1862, at Camp Lincoln.







1863-’64.--No. I. Crows kill eight Dakotas on the Yellowstone.

No. II. Eight Dakotas were killed. Again the short parallel black lines
united by a long stroke. In this year Sitting Bull fought General Sully
in the Black Hills.

Interpreter Lavary says General Sully killed seven or eight Crows at
The-Place-They-Shot-The-Deer, Ta-cha-con-té, about 90 miles southwest
of Fort Rice, Dakota. Mulligan says that General Sully fought the
Yanktonnais and the Santees at that place.

No. III. Eight Minneconjou Dakotas killed by Crow Indians.

See Corbusier Winter Counts for same year, page 144.

1864-’65.--No. I. Four Crows caught stealing horses from the Dakotas
were tortured to death. Shoulders shown.

No. II. The Dakotas killed four Crows. Four of the same rounded
objects, like several heads, shown in 1825-’26, but these are bloody,
thus distinguishing them from the cases of drowning.

No. III. Four Crow Indians killed by the Minneconjou Dakotas. Necks

1865-’66.--No. I. Many horses died.

No. II. Many horses died for want of grass. The horse here drawn is
sufficiently distinct from all others in the chart.

No. III. Dakotas lost many horses in the snow.

See Corbusier’s Winter Counts, No. II for same year, page 144.







1866-’67.--No. I. Little Swan, a great warrior.

No. II. Swan, father of Swan, chief of the Minneconjous in 1877,
died. With the assistance of the name the object intended for his
totem may be recognized as a swan swimming on the water.

No. III. Minneconjou Dakota chief, named Swan, died.

Mato Sapa’s record has a better representation of a swan.

Interpreter Lavary says: Little-Swan died in this year on Cherry Creek,
75 miles northwest of Fort Sully.

Major Bush says this is historically correct.

1867-’68.--No. I. Much medicine made.

No. II. Many flags were given them by the Peace Commission. The flag
refers to the visit of the Peace Commissioners, among whom were
Generals Sherman, Terry, and other prominent military and civil
officers. Their report appears in the Annual Report of the Commissioner
of Indian Affairs for 1868. They met at Fort Leavenworth, August 13,
1867, and between August 30 and September 13 held councils with the
various bands of the Dakota Indians at Forts Sully and Thompson, and
also at the Yankton, Ponka, and Santee Reservations. These resulted in
the great Dakota treaty of 1868.

No. III. Made peace with General Sherman and others at Fort Laramie.

Mato Sapa says: Made peace with General Sherman and others at Fort

Major Bush agrees with Mato Sapa.

See Corbusier’s Winter Counts, No. II, page 144.

1868-’69.--No. I. First issue of beef by Government to Indians.

No. II. Texas cattle were brought into the country. This was done by
Mr. William A. Paxton, a well-known business man, resident in Dakota in

No. III. Dakotas had plenty of white men’s cattle (the result of the

Mato Sapa agrees with No. III.






1869-’70.--No. I. Eclipse of the moon.

No. II. An eclipse of the sun. This was the solar eclipse of August 7,
1869, which was central and total on a line drawn through the Dakota
country. This device has been criticised because the Indians believe an
eclipse to be occasioned by a dragon or aerial monster swallowing the
sun, and it is contended that they would so represent it. An answer is
that the design is objectively good, the sun being painted black, as
concealed, while the stars come out red, _i. e._, bright, and graphic
illustration prevails throughout the charts where it is possible to
employ it. In addition, it is learned that Prof. Cleveland Abbé, who
was famed as an astronomer before he became so as a meteorologist,
was at Sioux Falls, with a corps of assistants, to observe this very
eclipse, and explained the subject to a large number of Indians there
at that time, so that their attention was not only directed specially
to that eclipse, but also to the white men as interested in it, and to
its real appearance as apart from their old superstition.

In addition to this fact, Dr. Washington Matthews, assistant surgeon
United States Army, communicates the statement that the Indians had
numberless other opportunities all over their country of receiving the
same information. He was at Fort Rice during the eclipse and remembers
that long before the eclipse occurred the officers, men, and citizens
around the post told the Indians of the coming event and discussed it
with them so much that they were on the tip-toe of expectancy when
the day came. Two-Bears and his band were then encamped at Fort Rice,
and he and several of his leading men watched the eclipse along with
the whites and through their smoked glass, and then and there the
phenomenon was thoroughly explained to them over and over again. There
is no doubt that similar explanations were made at all the numerous
posts and agencies along the river that day. The path of the eclipse
coincided nearly with the course of the Missouri for over a thousand
miles. The duration of totality at Fort Rice was nearly two minutes
(1^m 48^{s}.)

No. III. Dakotas witnessed eclipse of the sun; frightened terribly.

It is remarkable that the Corbusier Winter Counts do not mention this

1870-’71.--No. I. The-Flame’s son killed by Rees. The recorder,
The-Flame, evidently considered his family misfortune to be of more
importance than the battle referred to by the other recorders.

No. II. The Uncpapas had a battle with the Crows, the former losing,
it is said, 14 and killing 29 out of 30 of the latter, though nothing
appears to show those numbers. The central object in the symbol is not
a circle denoting multitude, but an irregularly rounded object, clearly
intended for one of the wooden inclosures or forts frequently erected
by the Indians, and especially the Crows. The Crow fort is shown as
nearly surrounded, and bullets, not arrows or lances, are flying. This
is the first instance in which any combat or killing is portrayed where
guns explicitly appear to be used by Indians, though nothing in the
chart is at variance with the fact that the Dakotas had for a number of
years been familiar with fire arms. The most recent indications of any
weapon were those of the arrows piercing the Crow squaw in 1857-’58 and
Brave-Bear in 1854-’55, while the last one before them was the lance
used in 1848-’49, and those arms might well have been employed in all
the cases selected for the calendar, although rifles and muskets were
common. There is also an obvious practical difficulty in picturing by
a single character killing with a bullet, not arising as to arrows,
lances, dirks, and hatchets, all of which can be and are in the chart
shown projecting from the wounds made by them. Pictographs in the
possession of the Bureau of Ethnology show battles in which bullets
are denoted by continuous dotted lines, the spots at which they take
effect being sometimes indicated. It is, however, to be noted that the
bloody wound on the Ree’s shoulder (1806-’07) is without any protruding
weapon, as if made by a bullet.

No. III. A Crow war party of 30 were surprised and surrounded in the
Black Hills by the Dakotas and killed. Fourteen of the Dakotas were
killed in the engagement.










1871-’72.--No. I. The-Flame’s second son killed by Rees.

1872-’73.--No. I. Sans-Arc-John killed by Rees.

1873-’74.--No. I. Brulés kill a number of Pawnees.

Cloud-Shield says they killed many Pawnees on the Republican River.

1874-’75.--No. I. A Dakota kills one Ree.

1875-’76.--No. I. Council at Spotted Tail Agency.

1876-’77.--No. I. Horses taken by United States Government.

White-Cow-Killer calls it

In the account of Lone-Dog’s chart, published in 1877, as above
mentioned, the present writer, on the subject of the recorder’s
selection of events, remarked as follows:

“The year 1876 has furnished good store of events for his choice,
and it will be interesting to learn whether he has selected as the
distinguishing event the victory over Custer, or, as of still greater
interest, the general seizure of ponies, whereat the tribes, imitating
Rachel, weep and will not be comforted, because they are not.”

It now appears that two of the counts have selected the event of the
seizure of the ponies, and none of them yet seen make any allusion to
the defeat of Custer.

After examination of the three charts it will be conceded that, as
above stated, the design is not narrative, the noting of events being
subordinated to the marking of the years by them, and the pictographic
serial arrangements of sometimes trivial, though generally notorious,
incidents, being with special adaptation for use as a calendar. That in
a few instances small personal events, such as the birth or death of
the recorder or members of his family, are set forth, may be regarded
as in the line of interpolations in or unauthorized additions to the
charts. If they had exhibited a complete national or tribal history
for the years embraced in them, their discovery would have been, in
some respects, more valuable, but they are the more interesting to
ethnologists because they show an attempt, before unsuspected among the
tribes of American Indians, to form a system of chronology.


While the present paper was in preparation, a valuable and elaborate
communication was received from Dr. William H. Corbusier, assistant
surgeon, United State Army, styled by him the Dakota Winter Counts,
which title was adopted for the whole subject-matter, including the
charts with their interpretations which had before been known to
the present writer, and those from Dr. Corbusier, which furnish a
different system, are distinguished by his name. It is necessary to
explain that all references in the text to colors, other than black,
must be understood as applicable to the originals. Other colors could
not be reproduced in the plates without an expense disproportionate to
the importance of the colors for significance and comprehension.

A more important explanation is due on account of the necessity to
omit from Dr. Corbusier’s contribution the figures of Battiste Good’s
count and their interpretation. This count is in some respects the most
important of all those yet made known. As set down by Battiste Good, it
begins in a peculiar cyclic computation with the year A. D. 900, and
in thirteen figures includes the time to A.D. 1700, all these figures
being connected with legends and myths, some of which indicate European
influence. From 1700-’01 to 1879-’80 a separate character for each
year is given, with its interpretation, in a manner generally similar
to those in the other charts. Unfortunately all of these figures are
colored, either in whole or in large part, five colors being used
besides black, and the drawing is so rude that without the colors it is
in many cases unintelligible. The presentation at this time of so large
a number of colored figures--in all one hundred and ninety-three--in
addition to the other illustrations of the present paper, involved
too great expense. It is hoped that this count can be so far revised,
with the elimination of unessential coloration and with more precision
in the outlines, as to allow of its publication. Several of its
characters, with references also to its interpretation when compared
with that of other counts, are given in various parts of the present
paper. Where it was important to specify their coloration the heraldic
scheme has been used.

The pages immediately following contain the contribution of Dr.
Corbusier, diminished by the extraction of the parts comprising
Battiste Good’s count. Its necessary omission, as above explained,
is much regretted, not only on account of its intrinsic value, but
because without it the work of Dr. Corbusier does not appear to all the
advantage merited by his zeal and industry.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Dakotas reckon time by winters, and apply names to them instead of
numbering them from an era. Each name refers to some notable occurrence
of the winter or year to which it belongs, and has been agreed upon
in council on the expiration of the winter. Separate bands have often
fixed upon different events, and it thus happens that the names are
not uniform throughout the nation. Ideographic records of these
occurrences have been kept in several bands for many years, and they
constitute the Dakota Winter-Counts (waníyetu wówapi) or Counts Back
(hékta yawapi). They are used in computing time, and to aid the memory
in recalling the names and events of the different years, their places
in the count, and their order of succession. The enumeration of the
winters is begun at the one last recorded and carried backward. Notches
on sticks, war-shirts, pipes, arrows, and other devices also serve a
mnemonic purpose. The Counts were formerly executed in colors on the
hides of animals, but the present recorders make use of paper, books,
pens, pencils, and paints obtained from the whites. The alignment of
the ideographs depends to some extent upon the material on which they
are depicted. On robes it is spiral from right to left and from the
center outward, each year being added to the coil as the snail adds to
its whorl. The spiral line, frequently seen in etchings on rocks, has
been explained to me as indicating a snail shell. On paper they are
sometimes carried from right to left, sometimes from left to right, and
again the two methods are combined as in Battiste Good’s winter-count,
which begins at the back of the book and is carried forward, _i. e._,
from right to left, but in which the alignment on each page is from
left to right. The direction from right to left is that followed in
many of their ceremonies, as when tobacco is smoked as incense to the
sun and the pipe is passed around, and when the devotees in the dance
to the sun enter and leave the consecrated lodge in which they fulfill
their vows.

Among the Oglálas and the Brulés there are at least five of these
counts kept by as many different men, each man seeming to be the
recorder for his branch of the tribe. I obtained copies of three of
them in 1879 and 1880, while stationed at Camp Sheridan, Nebraska, near
the Pine Ridge Agency, Dakota. One winter count was made for me by
Battiste Good, a Brulé Dakota, at the Rosebud Agency, Dakota, being a
copy of the one of which he is the recorder. He explained the meaning
of the pictographs to the Rev. William J. Cleveland, of the Rosebud
Agency, to whom I am indebted for rendering his explanations into
English. Several Indians and half-breeds had informed me that his count
formerly embraced about the same number of years as the other two, but
that Battiste Good gathered the names of many years from the old people
and placed them in chronological order as far back as he was able to
learn them.

Another winter count is a copy of the one in the possession of
American-Horse, an Oglála Dakota, at the Pine Ridge Agency, who asserts
that his grandfather began it, and that it is the production of his
grandfather, his father, and himself. I received the explanations from
American-Horse through an interpreter.

A third winter count is a copy of one kept by Cloud-Shield. He is
also an Oglála Dakota at the Pine Ridge Agency, but of a different
band from American-Horse. I also received his explanations through an
interpreter. The last two counts embrace nearly the same number of
years. I have added the dates to both of them, beginning at the last
year, the date of which was known, and carrying them back. Two dates
belong to each figure, as a Dakota year covers a portion of two of our
calendar years.

I have seen copies of a fourth winter count which is kept by
White-Cow-Killer at the Pine Ridge Agency. I did not obtain a copy of
it, but learned most of the names given to the winters.

On comparing the winter counts, it is found that they often correspond,
but more frequently differ. In a few instances the differences are in
the succession of the events, but in most instances they are due to
an omission or to the selection of another event. When a year has the
same name in all of them, the bands were probably encamped together or
else the event fixed upon was of general interest; and, when the name
is different, the bands were scattered or nothing of general interest
occurred. Differences in the succession may be due to the loss of
a record and the depiction of another from memory, or to errors in
copying an old one.

The explanations of the counts are far from complete, as the recorders
who furnished them could in many instances recall nothing except the
name of the year, and in others were loth to speak of the events or
else their explanations were vague and unsatisfactory, and, again,
the interpreters were sometimes at fault. Many of the recent events
are fresh in the memory of the people, as the warriors who strive to
make their exploits a part of the tribal traditions proclaim them
on all occasions of ceremony--count their _coups_, as it is called.
Declarations of this kind partake of the nature of affirmations made in
the presence of God. War-shirts on which scores of the enemies killed
are kept, and which are carefully transmitted from one generation
to another, help to refresh their memories in regard to some of the
events. By testing many Indians I learned that but few could interpret
the significance of the figures; some of them could point out the year
of their birth and that of some members of their families; others could
not do so, or pretended that they could not, but named the year and
asked me to point it out and tell their age.

In the following explanation of the winter counts, [figured on Plates
XXXIV-LI,] No. I refers to that of American-Horse and No. II to that of










1775-’76.--No. I. Standing-Bull, the great-grandfather of the present
Standing-Bull, discovered the Black Hills. He carried home with him a
pine tree of a species he had never seen before. (In this count the
Dakotas are usually distinguished by the braided scalp-lock and the
feather they wear at the crown of the head, or by the manner in which
they brush back and tie the hair. It will be noticed that the profile
of most of the faces is given, whereas Battiste Good gives the full
face. The Dakotas have of late years claimed the Black Hills, probably
by right of discovery in 1775-’76; but the Crows were the former

This is also the first winter of White-Cow-Killer’s count and is called
“Two-warriors-killed winter.”

1776-’77.--No. I. Many of their horses were killed by some of their own
people, who were jealous because they were fatter than their own.

1777-’78.--No. I. It was an intensely cold winter, and the
Man-who-has-no-skin-on-his-penis froze to death. The sign for snow or
winter, i. e., a cloud with snow falling from it, is above his head.
A haka-stick, which, in playing that game, they cast after a ring, is
represented in front of him.

Battiste Good’s record is that a Dakota named Skinned-Penis was killed
in a fight with the Pawnees, and his companions left his body where
they supposed it would not be found, but the Pawnees found it, and as
it was frozen stiff, they dragged it into their camp and played haka
with it.

No. II. A war party brought in the lone pine tree from the enemy’s
country. They met no enemies while out. This event is also the first in
No. I, in which it marks the winter of 1775-’76.

1778-’79.--No. I. The Ponkas came and attacked a village,
notwithstanding peace had just been made with them. The people repulsed
and followed them, killing sixty. Some elk-hair and a feather represent
Ponka. Horse tracks are used for horses. Attack is indicated by signs
which were said to represent bullet marks, and which convey the
idea that the bullet struck. The sign seems to be derived from the
gesture-sign for “it struck.”

No. II. Many of their horses were killed, but by whom is not known. The
same event is recorded in No. I, 1776-’77.

1779-’80.--No. I. Long-Pine was killed in a fight with the Crows. The
absence of his scalp denotes that he was killed by an enemy. The wound
was made with the bow and arrow.

No. II. Skinned-his-penis was used in the ring-and-pole game.

1780-’81.--No. I. Many died of small-pox.

No. II. “The policeman” was killed by the enemy.










1781-’82--No. I. Many died of small-pox.

No. II. Many people died of small-pox. They all record two successive
winters of small-pox, but No. I makes the first year of the epidemic
one year later than that of Battiste Good, and No. II makes it two
years later.

1782-’83.--No. I. A Dakota named Stabber froze to death. The sign for
winter is the same as before.

No. II. Many people died of small-pox again.

1783-’84--No. I. The Mandans and Rees made a charge on a Dakota
village. The Dakotas drove them back, killed twenty five of them, and
captured a boy. An eagle’s tail, which is worn on the head, stands for
Mandan and Ree.

No. II. The-Stabber froze to death. The man’s name is suggested by the
spear in the body over his head, which is connected with his mouth by
a line.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Big-fire winter,” possibly because big fires
were required to keep them warm.

1784-’85.--No. I. A young man who was afflicted with the small-pox,
and was in his tipi, off by himself, sang his death-song and shot
himself. Suicide is more common among Indians than is generally
suspected, and even boys sometimes take their own lives. A Dakota boy
at one of the agencies shot himself rather than face his companions
after his mother had whipped him, and a Pai-Ute boy at Camp McDermit,
Nevada, tried to poison himself with the wild parsnip because he was
not well and strong like the other boys. The Pai-Utes usually eat the
wild parsnip when bent on suicide.

No. II. An Omaha woman who was living with the Oglálas attempted to run
away from them, and they killed her. A war between the two tribes was
the result.

1785-’86.--No. I. Bear’s-Ears, a Brulé, was killed in an Oglála village
by the Crows.

No. II. The Oglálas killed three lodges of Omahas.

1786-’87.--No. I. Broken-Leg-Duck, an Oglála, went to a Crow village to
steal horses and was killed. A line connects the name with the mouth.

No. II. Long-Hair was killed. To what tribe he belonged is not known.










1787-’88.--No. I. They went out in search of the Crows in order to
avenge the death of Broken-Leg-Duck. They did not find any Crows, but,
chancing on a Mandan village, captured it and killed all the people in

No. II. A year of famine. They lived on roots, which are represented in
front of the tipi.

1788-’89.--No. I. Last-Badger, an Oglála, was killed by the Rees.

No. II. The winter was so cold that many crows froze to death.

White-Cow-Killer calls 1787-’88 “Many-black-crows-died winter.”

1789-’90.--No. I. The cold was so intense that crows froze in the air
and dropped dead near the lodges.

No. II. White-Goose was killed in an attack made by some enemies.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Goose-Feather-killed winter.”

1790-’91.--No. I. They could not hunt on account of the deep snow, and
were compelled to subsist on anything they could get, as herbs (pézi)
and roots.

No. II. Picket-Pin went against the Cheyennes. A picket-pin is
represented in front of him and is connected with his mouth by the
usual line. The black band across his face denotes that he was brave
and had killed enemies. The cross is the symbol for Cheyenne. The
mark used for Cheyenne stands for the scars on their arms, or stripes
on their sleeves, which also gave rise to the gesture sign for this
tribe, given in Sign Language among the North American Indians, etc.,
First Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology, p. 465, viz.: Draw the
extended right index, or the inner edge of the open right hand, several
times across the base of the extended left index or across the left
forearm at different heights.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “All-the-Indians-see-the-flag winter.”

1791-’92.--No. I. Glue, an Oglála, froze to death on his way to a Brulé
village. A glue-stick is represented back of his head. Glue, made from
the hoofs of buffalo, is used to fasten arrow-heads on, and is carried
about on sticks.

No. II. The Dakotas and Omahas made peace.

1792-’93.--No. I. Many women died in child-birth.

No. II. The Dakotas camped on the Missouri River near the Gros Ventres
and fought with them a long time. The Dakota tipi and the Gros Ventre
lodge are shown in the figure.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Rees-house-winter.”










1793-’94.--No. I. A Ponka who was captured when a boy by the Oglálas
was killed while outside the village by a war party of Ponkas.

No. II. Bear’s-Ears was killed in a fight with the Rees.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Little-Face-killed winter.”

1794-’95.--No. I. The-Good-White-Man came with two other white men. He
promised that if they would let him and his companions go undisturbed
he would return and bring with him weapons with which they could kill
game with but little labor. They gave them buffalo robes and dogs to
pack them on and sent the party off. The sign for white man is a hat,
either by itself or on a head, and the gesture-sign indicates one who
wears a hat. Draw the open right hand horizontally from left to right
across the forehead a little above the eyebrows, the back of the hand
to be upward and the fingers pointing toward the left, or draw the
index across the forehead in the same manner.

No. II. Bad-Face, a Dakota, was shot in the face.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Long-Hair-killed winter.”

1795-’96.--No. I. The-Man-Who-Owns-the-Flute was killed by the
Cheyennes. His flute is represented in front of him with sounds coming
from it. A bullet mark is on his neck.

No. II. The Dakotas camped near the Rees and fought with them.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Water-Stomach-killed winter.”

1796-’97.--No. I. They killed the long-haired man in a fight
with the Cheyennes while on an expedition to avenge the death of
The-Man-Who-Owns-the-Flute, who was killed by the Cheyennes the year

No. II. Badger, a Dakota, was killed by enemies, as shown by the
absence of his scalp.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “War-Bonnet-killed winter.”

1797-’98.--No. I. Little-Beaver and three other white men came to
trade, having been sent by the Good-White-Man. Their goods were loaded
on three sleds, each drawn by six dogs.

No. II. The-Wise-Man was killed by enemies.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Caught-the-medicine-god-woman winter.”

1798-’99.--No. I. Owns-the-Pole, the leader of an Oglála war party,
brought home many Cheyenne scalps. The cross stands for Cheyenne.

No. II. Many women died in child-birth.

White-Cow-Killer says, “Many-squaws-died winter.”










1799-1800.--No. I. The-Good-White-Man returned and gave guns to the
Dakotas. The circle of marks represents the people sitting around him,
the flint-lock musket the guns.

No. II. A woman who had been given to a white man by the Dakotas was
killed because she ran away from him. [See No. I, 1804-’05.]

White-Cow-Killer says, “The-Good-White-Man-came winter.”

1800-’01.--No. I. Nine white men came to trade with them. The covered
head with short hair stands for a white man and also intimates that the
eight dots over it are for white men. According to this count the first
whites came in 1794-’95.

No. II. The Good-White-Man came. He was the first white man to trade
and live with the Dakotas.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Don’t-Eat-Heart-makes-a-god-house winter.”

1801-’02.--No. I. The Oglálas, Brulés, Minneconjous, Sans Arcs, and
Cheyennes united in an expedition against the Crows. They surprised and
captured a village of thirty lodges, killed all the men, and took the
women and children prisoners. The three tipis stand for thirty; the red
spots are for blood.

No. II. A trader brought them their first guns.

White-Cow-Killer says, “All-sick-winter.”

1802-’03.--No. I. The Ponkas attacked two lodges of Oglálas, killed
some of the people, and made the rest prisoners. The Oglálas went to
the Ponka village a short time afterward and took their people from the
Ponkas. In the figure an Oglála has a prisoner by the arm leading him
away. The arrow indicates that they were ready to fight.

No. II. The Omahas made an assault on a Dakota village. Arrows and
bullets are flying back and forth.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Brought-in-horse-shoes winter.”

1803-’04--No. I. They made peace with the Gros Ventres.

No. II. Little-Beaver, a white trader, came.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Plenty-of-woolly-horses winter.”

1804-’05.--No. I. An Indian woman who had been unfaithful to a white
man to whom she was married was killed by an Indian named Ponka. The
symbol for Ponka indicates the name.

No. II. The Omahas came and made peace to get their people, whom the
Dakotas held as prisoners.










1805-’06.--No. I. The Dakotas had a council with the whites on the
Missouri River, below the Cheyenne Agency, near the mouth of Bad Creek
(the Lewis and Clarke Expedition?). They had many flags, which the
Good-White-Man gave them with their guns, and they erected them on
poles to show their friendly feelings. The curved line is to represent
the council lodge, which they made by opening several tipis and uniting
them at their sides to form a semicircle. The marks are for the people.
American-Horse’s father was born this year.

No. II. Nine white men came to trade. The three covered heads represent
the white men.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Eight-Dakotas-killed winter.”

1806-’07.--No. I. Black-Rock, a Dakota, was killed by the Crows. A rock
is represented above his head. He was killed with a bow and arrow and
was scalped.

No. II. The Dakotas killed an Omaha in the night.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Killed-while-hunting-eagles winter.”

1807-’08.--No. I. Broken-Leg was killed by the Pawnees. His leg had
been broken by a bullet in a previous fight with the Pawnees.

No. II. Many people camped together and had many flags flying.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Red-shirt-killed Winter.”

1808-’09.--No. I. Little-Beaver’s trading house was burned down.

No. II. A Brulé was found dead under a tree which had fallen on him.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Blue-Blanket’s-father-dead winter.”

1809-’10.--No. I. Black-Rock was killed by the Crows. His brother,
whose name he had taken, was killed by the Crows three years before.

No. II. Little-Beaver’s house was burned.

White-Cow-Killer says, “Little-Beaver’s (the white man)
house-burned-down winter.”

1810-’11.--No. I. Red-Shirt, a Dakota, was killed by the Crows while
looking for his ponies near Old Woman’s Fork.

No. II. They brought in a fine horse with feathers tied to his tail.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Came-with-medicine-on-horse’s-tail winter.”










1811-’12.--No. I. They caught many wild horses south of the Platte

No. II. They had very little buffalo meat, as the empty drying pole
indicates, but plenty of ducks in the fall.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Catching-wild-horses winter.”

1812-’13.--No. I. Big-Waist’s father killed.

No. II. Big-Owl killed.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Big-Belly’s-father-killed winter.”

1813-’14.--No. I. Many had the whooping-cough. The cough is represented
by the lines issuing from the man’s mouth.

No. II. Food was very scarce and they had to live on acorns. The tree
is intended for an oak and the marks beneath it for acorns.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Six-Rees-killed winter.”

1814-’15.--No. I. The Dakotas went to a Kaiowa village, about 6 miles
from Scott’s Bluff, and near the mouth of Horse Creek, to treat for
peace; but their intentions were frustrated by one of their number, who
drove his hatchet into a Kaiowa’s head.

No. II. They made peace with the Pawnees. The man with the blue
forehead is a Pawnee, the other is a Dakota, whose body is smeared with
clay. The four arrows show that they had been at war, and the clasped
hands denote peace.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Kaiowa-hit-on-head-with-axe winter.”

Young-Man’s-Horses-Afraid, _i. e._, whose horses are afraid, was
born this year. He is now called “Old-Man-afraid-of-his-Horses” by
the whites, and his son, the present chief of the Oglálas, is known
as “Young-Man-afraid-of-his-Horses.” [The present writer has heard
another interpretation about “afraid-of-his-horses,” _i. e._, that the
man valued his horses so much that he was afraid of losing them. The
present representative of the name, however, stated to the writer that
the true meaning was “The-young-man-whose-horses-they-fear.”]

1815-’16.--No. I. The figure is intended to represent a white man’s

No. II. Some of the Dakotas built a large house and lived in it during
the winter.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Made-a-house winter.”

1816-’17.--No. I. They made peace with the Crows at Pine Bluff. The
arrow shows they had been at war.

No. II. They lived in the same house that they did last winter.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Made-a-house winter.”










1817-’18.--No. I. The Oglálas had an abundance of buffalo meat and
shared it with the Brulés, who were short of food. The buffalo hide
hung on the drying pole, with the buffalo head above it, indicates an
abundance of meat.

No. II. The-Brave-Man was killed in a great fight. The fight is shown
by the arrows flying to and from him. Having been killed by an enemy,
he is scalped.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Plenty-of-meat winter.”

1818-’19.--No. I. A large house was built.

No. II. Many died of the small-pox.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Little-small-pox winter.”

1819-’20.--No. I. Another house was built. The Dakotas made medicine in

No. II. In an engagement with the Crows, both sides expended all of
their arrows, and then threw dirt at each other. A Crow is represented
on the right, and is distinguished by the manner in which the hair is

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Made-a-house-of-old-wood winter.”

1820-’21.--No. I. The Dakotas assaulted and took a Crow village of a
hundred lodges. They killed many and took many prisoners.

No. II. A Dakota, named Glue, froze to death.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Two-arrows-made-a-war-bonnet winter.”

1821-’22.--No. I. They had all the _mini wakan_ (spirit water or
whisky) they could drink. They never had any before. A barrel with a
waved or spiral line running from it represents the whisky, the waved
line signifying spirit.

No. II. A large roaring star fell. It came from the east, and shot out
sparks of fire along its course. Its track and the sparks are shown in
the figure. See also page 111.

White-Cow-Killer says, “One-star-made-a-great-noise winter.”

Battiste Good, alias Wa-po-ctan-qi (Brown-Hat), historian and chief,
designated this year as that of his birth. Omaha bullets were whizzing
through the village and striking and piercing his mother’s lodge as she
brought him forth. Red-Cloud also was born.

1822-’23.--No. I. Dog, an Oglála, stole seventy horses from the Crows.
Each of the seven tracks stands for ten horses. A lariat, which serves
the purpose of a long whip, and is usually allowed to trail on the
ground, is shown in the man’s hand.

No. II. A Brulé, who had left the village the night before, was found
dead in the morning outside the village, and the dogs were eating his
body. The black spot on the upper part of the thigh shows he was a

White-Cow-Killer says,
“White-man-peels-the-stick-in-his-hand-broke-his-leg winter.”










1823-’24.--No. I. They had an abundance of corn, which they got at the
Ree villages.

No. II. They joined the whites in an expedition up the Missouri River
against the Rees.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Old-corn-plenty winter.” For further
explanation of the record of this year, see page 111.

1824-’25.--No. I. Cloud-Bear, a Dakota, killed a Dakota, who was a long
distance off, by throwing a bullet from his hand and striking him in
the heart. The spiral line is again used for _wakan_. The gesture-sign
for _wakan_ (holy, supernatural) is: With its index-finger extended and
pointing upward, or all the fingers extended, back of hand outward,
move the right hand from just in front of the forehead spirally upward
nearly to arm’s length from left to right. [See “Sign Language N. A.
Indians,” p. 380, by the present writer, in the First Annual Report of
the Bureau of Ethnology.]

No. II. Cat-Owner was killed with a spider-web thrown at him by a
Dakota. The spider-web is shown reaching to his heart from the hand
of the man who threw it. The blood issuing from his mouth and nose
indicates that he bled to death. It is a common belief among them that
certain medicine men possess the power of taking life by shooting
needles, straws, spider-webs, bullets, and other objects, however
distant the person may be against whom they are directed.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Killed-the-women-picking-cherries winter.”

1825-’26.--No. I. Some of the Dakotas were living on the bottom-lands
of the Missouri River, below the Whetstone, when the river, which was
filled with broken ice, unexpectedly rose and flooded their village.
Many were drowned or else killed by the floating ice. Many of those
that escaped climbed on cakes of ice or into trees.

No. II. Many of the Dakotas were drowned in a flood caused by a rise of
the Missouri River, in a bend of which they were camped. The curved
line is the bend in the river; the waved line is the water, above which
the tops of the tipis are shown.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Great-flood-and-many-Indians-drowned
winter.” [See page 113.]

1826-’27.--No. I. The brother of the Good-White-Man came.

No. II. Held a commemoration of the dead. The pipe-stem and the skull
indicate this.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Long-Whistle-sick winter.”

1827-’28.--No. I. The snow was very deep.

No. II. In a fight with the Mandans, Crier was shot in the head with a

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Snow-shoe-making winter.”

1828-’29.--No. I. They provided themselves with a large supply of
antelope meat by driving antelope into a corral, in which they were
easily killed.

No. II. They drove many antelope into a corral and then killed them.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Many-Rees-killed winter.”










1829-’30.--No. I. Striped-Face stabbed and killed his son-in-law for
whipping his wife.

No. II. Spotted-Face stabs his son-in-law for whipping his wife.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Spotted-Face-held-on-long winter.”

1830-’31.--No. I. They saw wagons for the first time. Red-Lake, a white
trader, brought his goods in them.

No. II. The Crows were approaching a village at a time when there was a
great deal of snow on the ground and intended to surprise it, but some
herders discovering them the Dakotas went out, laid in wait for the
Crows, surprised them, and killed many. A Crow’s head is represented in
the figure.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Killed-many-white-buffalo winter.”

1831-’32.--No. I. Red-Lake’s house, which he had recently built, was
destroyed by fire, and he was killed by the accidental explosion of
some powder.

No. II. A white man, whom they called Gray-Eyes, shot and killed a man
who was working for him.

1832-’33.--No. I. They killed many Gros Ventres in a village which they

No. II. All of Standing-Bull’s horses were killed, but by whom is
unknown. Hoof-prints, blood-stains, and arrows are shown under the

White-Cow-Killer calls it “One-Horn’s-leg-broken winter.”

1833-’34.--No. I. The stars moved around.

No. II. It rained stars.

White Cow-Killer calls it “Plenty-stars winter.”

The records [see page 116] all undoubtedly refer to the magnificent
meteoric display of the morning of November 13th, 1833, which was
witnessed throughout North America, and which they have correctly
assigned to the winter corresponding with that of 1833-’34. All of
them represent stars as having four points.

1834-’35.--No. I. They were at war with the Cheyennes. The Cheyenne is
the one with the stripes on his arm.

No. II. They fought with the Cheyennes. The stripes on the arm are for
Cheyenne as before.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Cheyennes-came-and-one-killed winter.”










1835-’36.--No. I. They killed a very fat buffalo bull.

No. II. They killed a very fat buffalo bull.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Two warriors-killed winter.”

1836-’37.--No. I. The Dakotas and the Pawnees fought on the ice on the
North Platte River. The former were on the north side, the right-hand
side in the figure, the latter on the south side, the left in the
figure. Horsemen and footmen on the right are opposed to footmen on the
left. Both sides have guns and bows, as shown by the bullet-marks and
the arrows. The red marks are for blood-stains on the ice.

No. II. They fought the Pawnees across the ice on the North Platte. The
man on the left is a Pawnee.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Fight-on-ice winter.”

1837-’38.--No. I. Paints-His-Cheeks-Red and his family, who were
camping by themselves, were killed by Pawnees.

No. II. Paints-His-Face-Red, a Dakota, was killed in his tipi by the

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Five-Fingers-died winter.”

1838-’39.--No. I. Spotted-Horse carried the pipe around and took
the war path against the Pawnees, to avenge the death of his uncle,

No. II. Crazy-Dog, a Dakota, carried the pipe around and took the war
path. The waved or spiral lines denote crazy.

White-Cow-Killer says, “Paints-his-Chin’s-lodge-all-killed winter.”

When a warrior desires to make up a war party he visits his friends and
offers them a filled pipe, as an invitation to follow him, and those
who are willing to go accept the invitation by lighting and smoking
it. Any man whose courage has been proved may become the leader of a
war party. Among the Arapahos the would-be leader does not invite any
one to accompany him, but publicly announces his intention of going to
war. He fixes the day for his departure and states where he will camp
the first night, naming some place not far off. The morning on which
he starts, and before leaving the village, he invokes the aid of the
sun, his guardian by day, and often, to propitiate him, secretly vows
to undergo penance, or offer a sacrifice on his return. He rides off
alone, carrying his bare pipe in his hand, with the bowl carefully tied
to the stem to prevent it from slipping off. If the bowl should at any
time accidentally fall to the ground, he considers it an evil omen,
and immediately returns to the village, and nothing could induce him
to proceed, as he thinks that only misfortune would attend him if he
did. Sometimes he ties eagle or hawk plumes to the stem of his pipe,
and, after quitting the village, repairs to the top of some hill and
makes an offering of them to the sun, taking them from his pipe and
tying them to a pole, which he erects in a pile of stones. (Some of the
stone-heaps seen on the hills in the Arapaho country originated in this
way, but most of them were made by dreamers, who withdraw from their
people to devote themselves in solitude to contemplation, fasting, and
prayer, in order to work themselves into a state of rapture, hoping
to have visions and receive messages from spirits.) Those who intend
to follow him usually join him at the first camp, equipped for the
expedition; but often there are some who do not join him until he has
gone further on. He eats nothing before leaving the village, nor as
long as the sun is up; but breaks his fast at his first camp, after
the sun sets. The next morning he begins another fast, to be continued
until sunset. He counts his party, saddles his horse, names some place
six or seven miles ahead, where he says he will halt for awhile, and
again rides off alone with his pipe in his hand. After awhile the party
follow him in single file. When they have reached his halting place
he tells them to dismount and let their horses graze. They all then
seat themselves on the ground on the left of the leader, forming a
semicircle, facing the sun. The leader fills his pipe, all bow their
heads, and, pointing the stem of the pipe upward, he prays to the sun,
asking that they may find an abundance of game, that dead-shots may be
made, so that their ammunition will not be wasted, but reserved for
their enemies; that they may easily find their enemies and kill them;
that they may be preserved from wounds and death. He makes his petition
four times, then lights his pipe, and after sending a few whiffs of
smoke skyward as incense to the sun, hands the pipe to his neighbor,
who smokes and passes it on to the next. It is passed from one to
another, toward the left, until all have smoked, the leader refilling
it as often as necessary. They then proceed to their next camp, where
probably others join them. The same programme is carried out for three
or four days before the party is prepared for action.

1839-’40.--No. I. Left-Handed-Big-Nose was killed by the Shoshoni. His
left arm is represented extended, and his nose is very conspicuous.
American-Horse was born in the spring of 1840.

No. II. They killed a Crow and his squaw, who were found on a trail.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Large-war-party-hungry-eat-Pawnee-horses

1840-’41.--No. I. Sitting-Bear, American-Horse’s father, and others,
stole two hundred horses from the Flat Heads. A trailing lariat is in
the man’s hand.

No. II. They stole one hundred (many) horses from the Snakes.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Little-Thunder’s-brothers-killed winter.”










1841-’42.--No. I. The Oglálas engaged in a drunken brawl, which
resulted in a division of the tribe, the Kiyuksas (Cut-Offs)
separating from the others.

No. II. The Oglálas got drunk on Chug Creek, and engaged in a quarrel
among themselves, in which Red-Cloud’s brother was killed, and
Red-Cloud killed three men. Cloud-Shield (Mahpiya-Wahacanka) was born.

1842-’43.--No. I. Feather-Ear-Rings was killed by the Shoshoni. The
four lodges and the many blood-stains intimate that he was killed at
the time the four lodges of Shoshoni were killed.

No. II. Lone-Feather said his prayers, and took the war path to avenge
the death of some relatives.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Crane’s-son-killed winter.”

1843-’44.--No. I. The great medicine arrow was taken from the Pawnees
by the Oglálas and Brulés, and returned to the Cheyennes, to whom it
rightly belonged.

No. II. In a great fight with the Pawnees they captured the great
medicine arrow which had been taken from the Cheyennes, who made it, by
the Pawnees. The head of the arrow projects from the bag which contains
it. The delicate waved lines (intended probably for spiral lines) show
that it is sacred.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “The Great-medicine-arrow-comes-in winter.”

Battiste Good’s record gives the following for the same year:

“Brought-home-the-magic-arrow winter. This arrow originally belonged
to the Cheyennes, from whom the Pawnees stole it. The Dakotas captured
it this winter from the Pawnees, and the Cheyennes then redeemed it
for one hundred horses.” His sign for the year is somewhat different,
as shown in Figure 46. As before mentioned, an attempt is made to
distinguish colors by the heraldic scheme, which in this instance may
require explanation. The upper part of the body is sable or black, the
feathers on the arrow are azure or blue, and the shaft, gules or red.
The remainder of the figure is of an undecided color not requiring

[Illustration: FIG. 46.--Magic arrow.]

1844-’45.--No. I. Male-Crow, an Oglála, was killed by the Shoshoni.

No. II. Crazy-Horse says his prayers and goes on the war path. The
waved lines are used again for crazy.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “White-Buffalo-Bull-killed by-the-Crows

1845-’46.--No. I. White-Bull and thirty other Oglálas were killed by
the Crows and Shoshoni.

No. II. White-Bull and many others were killed in a fight with the

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Many-sick winter.”

1846-’47.--No. I. Big-Crow and Conquering-Bear had a great feast and
gave many presents.

No. II. Long-Pine, a Dakota, was killed by Dakotas. He was not killed
by an enemy, as he has not lost his scalp.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Diver’s-neck-broken winter.”










1847-’48.--No. I. There were a great many accidents and some legs were
broken, the ground being covered with ice.

No. II. Many were thrown from their horses while surrounding buffalo in
the deep snow, and some had their legs-broken.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Many-legs-broken winter.”

1848-’49.--No. I. American-Horse’s father captured a Crow who was
dressed as a woman, but who was found to be an hermaphrodite and was

No. II. American-Horse’s father captured a Crow woman and gave her to
the young men, who discovered that she was an hermaphrodite and killed

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Half-man-and-half-woman-killed winter.”

It is probable that this was one of those men, not uncommon among the
Indian tribes, who adopt the dress and occupation of women. [This is
sometimes compulsory, _e. g._, on account of failure to pass an ordeal.]

1849-’50.--No. I. Many died of the cramps. The cramps were those of
Asiatic cholera, which was epidemic in the United States at that time,
and was carried to the plains by the California and Oregon emigrants.
The position of the man is very suggestive of cholera.

No. II. Making-the-Hole stole many horses from a Crow tipi. The index
points to the hole, which is suggestive of the man’s name.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “The-people-had-the-cramps winter.”

1850-’51.--No. I. Wolf-Robe was killed by the Pawnees.

No. II. Many died of the small-pox.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “All-the-time-sick-with-the-big-small-pox

1851-’52.--No. I. They received their first annuities at the mouth of
Horse Creek. A one-point blanket is depicted and denotes dry-goods. It
is surrounded by a circle of marks which represent the people.

No. II. Many goods were issued to them at Fort Laramie. They were the
first they received. The blanket which is represented stands for the

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Large-issue-of-goods-on-the-Platte-River

1852-’53.--No. I. The Cheyennes carry the pipe around to invite all the
tribes to unite with them in a war against the Pawnees.

No. II. A white man made medicine over the skull of Crazy-Horse’s
brother. He holds a pipe-stem in his hand. This probably refers to the
custom of gathering the bones of the dead that have been placed on
scaffolds and burying them.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Great-snow winter.”










1853-’54.--No. I. Antelope-Dung broke his neck while surrounding

No. II. Antelope-Dung broke his neck while running antelope. His
severed head is the only part of his body that is shown.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Oak-wood-house winter.”

1854-’55.--No. I. Conquering-Bear was killed by white soldiers, and
thirty white soldiers were killed by the Dakotas 9 miles below Fort
Laramie. The thirty black dots in three lines stand for the soldiers,
and the red stains for killed. The head covered with a fatigue-cap
further shows they were white soldiers. Indian soldiers are usually
represented in a circle or semicircle. The gesture-sign for soldier
means all in line, and is made by placing the nearly closed hands with
palms forward, and thumbs near together, in front of the body and then
separating them laterally about two feet.

No. II. Brave-Bear was killed in a quarrel over a calf. He was killed
by enemies; hence his scalp is gone.

White-Cow-Killer says, “Mato-wayuhi (or Conquering-Bear)
killed-by-white-soldiers winter.”

1855-’56.--No. I. A war party of Oglálas killed one Pawnee--his scalp
is on the pole--and on their way home froze their feet.

No. II. Torn-Belly and his wife were killed by some of their own people
in a quarrel.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “A-medicine-man-made-buffalo-medicine winter.”

1856-’57.--No. I. They received annuities at Raw-Hide Butte. The house
and the blanket represent the agency and the goods.

No. II. They have an abundance of buffalo meat. This is shown by the
full drying pole.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “White-hill-house winter.”

1857-’58.--No. I. Little-Gay, a white trader, was killed by the
explosion of a can of gunpowder. He was measuring out powder from the
can in his wagon while smoking his pipe.

No. II. They surrounded and killed ten Crows.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Bull-hunting winter.”

1858-’59.--No. I. They made peace with the Pawnees. The one on the left
is a Pawnee.

No. II. They bought Mexican blankets of John Richard, who bought many
wagon-loads of the Mexicans.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Yellow-blanket-killed winter.”










1859-’60.--No. I. Broken-Arrow fell from his horse while running
buffalo and broke his neck.

No. II. Black-Shield says prayers and takes the war path to avenge the
death of two of his sons who had been killed by the Crows.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Black-Shield’s-two
boys-go-hunting-and-are-killed-by-the-Crows winter.”

1860-’61.--No. I. Two-Face, an Oglála, was badly burnt by the explosion
of his powder-horn.

No. II. They capture a great many antelope by driving them into a pen.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Babies-all-sick-and-many-die winter.”

1861-’62.--No. I. Spider was killed (stabbed) in a fight with the

No. II. Young-Rabbit, a Crow, was killed in battle by Red-Cloud.

White-Cow-Killer calls it
“Crow-Indian-Spotted-Horse-stole-many-horses-and-was-killed winter.”

1862-’63.--No. I. The Crows scalped an Oglála boy alive.

No. II. Some Crows came to their camp and scalped a boy.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Crows-scalp-boy winter.”

1863-’64.--No. I. The Oglálas and Minneconjous took the war path
against the Crows and stole three hundred Crow horses. The Crows
followed them and killed eight of the party.

No. II. Eight Dakotas were killed by the Crows. Here eight long marks
represent the number killed.

White-Cow-Killer calls it
“Dakotas-and-Crows-have-a-big-fight-eight-Dakotas-killed winter.”

1864-’65.--No. I. Bird, a white trader, went to Powder River to trade
with the Cheyennes. They killed him and appropriated his goods.

No. II. Bird, a white trader, was burned to death by the Cheyennes. He
is surrounded by flames in the picture.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Big-Lips-died-suddenly winter.”










1865-’66.--No. I. General Maynadier made peace with the Oglálas and
Brulés. His name, the sound of which resembles the words “many deer,”
is indicated by the two deers’ heads connected with his mouth by the

No. II. Many horses were lost by starvation, as the snow was so deep
they couldn’t get at the grass.

1866-’67.--No. I. They killed one hundred white men at Fort Phil.
Kearny. The hats and the cap-covered head represent the whites; the
red spots, the killed; the circle of characters around them, rifle or
arrow shots; the black strokes, Dakota footmen; and the hoof-prints,
Dakota horsemen. The Phil. Kearny massacre occurred December 21, 1866,
and eighty-two whites were killed, including officers, citizens, and
enlisted men. Capt. W. J. Fetterman was in command of the party.

No. II. Lone-Bear was killed in battle.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “One-hundred-white-men-killed winter.”

1867-’68.--No. I. They captured a train of wagons near Tongue River.
The men who were with it got away. The blanket represents the goods
found in the wagons.

No. II. Blankets were issued to them at Fort Laramie.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Seven-Pawnees-killed winter.”

1868-’69.--No. I. They were compelled to sell many mules and
horses to enable them to procure food, as they were in a starving
condition. They willingly gave a mule for a sack of flour. The mule’s
halter is attached to two sacks of flour.

No. II. They had to sell many mules and horses to get food, as they
were starving.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Mules-sold-by-hungry-Sioux winter.”

1869-’70.--No. I. Tall-Bull was killed by white soldiers and Pawnees on
the south side of the South Platte River.

No. II. John Richard shot a white soldier at Fort Fetterman, Wyoming,
and fled north, joining Red-Cloud.

White-Cow-Killer calls it
“Tree-fell-on-woman-who-was-cutting-wood-and-killed-her winter.”

1870-’71.--No. I. High-Back-Bone, a very brave Oglála, was killed by
the Shoshoni. They also shot another man, who died after he reached

No. II. High-Back-Bone was killed in a fight with the Snakes (Shoshoni).

White-Cow-Killer calls it “High-Back-Bone-killed-by-Snake-Indians










1871-’72.--No. I. John Richard shot and killed an Oglála named
Yellow-Bear, and the Oglálas killed Richard before he could get out of
the lodge. This occurred in the spring of 1872. As the white man was
killed after the Indian, he is placed behind him in the figure.

No. II. Adobe houses were built by Maj. J. W. Wham, Indian agent (now
paymaster, United States Army), on the Platte River, about 30 miles
below Fort Laramie.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Major-Wham’s-house-built-on-Platte-River

1872-’73.--No. I. Whistler, also named Little-Bull, and two other
Oglálas, were killed by white hunters on the Republican River.

No. II. Antoine Janis’s two boys were killed by Joe (John?) Richard.

White Cow-Killer calls it “Stay-at-plenty-ash-wood winter.”

1873-’74.--No. I. The Oglálas killed the Indian agent’s (Seville’s)
clerk inside the stockade of the Red Cloud Agency, at Fort Robinson,

No. II. They killed many Pawnees on the Republican River.

1874-’75.--No. I. The Oglálas at the Red Cloud Agency, near Fort
Robinson, Nebraska, cut to pieces the flag staff which their agent had
had cut and hauled, but which they would not allow him to erect, as
they did not wish to have a flag flying over their agency. This was in
1874. The flag which the agent intended to hoist is now at the Pine
Ridge Agency, Dakota.

No. II. The Utes stole all of the Brulé horses.

1875-’76.--No. I. The first stock cattle were issued to them. The
figure represents a cow or spotted buffalo, surrounded by people. The
gesture-sign also signifies spotted buffalo.

No. II. Seven of Red-Cloud’s band were killed by the Crows.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Five-Dakotas-killed winter.”

1876-’77.--No. I. The Oglálas helped General Mackenzie to whip the
Cheyennes. The Indian’s head represents the man who was the first to
enter the Cheyenne village. The white man holding up three fingers
is General Mackenzie, who is placed upon the head of the Dakota to
indicate that the Dakotas backed or assisted him. The other white man
is General Crook, or Three Stars, as indicated by the three stars above

[This designation might be suggested from the uniform, but General
Crook did not probably wear during the year mentioned or for a long
time before it the uniform either of his rank as major-general of
volunteers or as brevet major-general in the Army, and by either of
those ranks he was entitled to but two stars on his shoulder-straps.]

No. II. Three-Stars (General Crook) took Red-Cloud’s young men to help
him fight the Cheyennes. A red cloud, indicating the chief’s name, is
represented above his head.

White-Cow-Killer calls it






1877-’78.--No. I. A soldier ran a bayonet into Crazy-Horse, and killed
him in the guard-house, at Fort Robinson, Nebraska (September 5, 1877).

No. II. Crazy-Horse’s band left the Spotted Tail Agency (at Camp
Sheridan, Nebraska), and went north, after Crazy-Horse was killed
at Fort Robinson, Nebraska. Hoof-prints and lodge-pole tracks run
northward from the house, which represents the Agency. That the horse
is crazy is shown by the waved or spiral lines on his body, running
from his nose, foot, and forehead.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Crazy-Horse-killed winter.”

1878-’79.--No. I. Wagons were given to them.

No. II. The Cheyenne who boasted that he was bullet and arrow proof
was killed by white soldiers, near Fort Robinson, Nebraska, in the
intrenchments behind which the Cheyennes were defending themselves
after they had escaped from the fort.

White-Cow-Killer calls it “Wagons-given-to-the-Dakota-Indians


This is an important division of the purposes for which pictographs
are used. The pictographs and the objective devices antecedent to
pictographs under this head that have come immediately to the writer’s
attention, may be grouped as follows: 1st. Notice of departure,
direction, etc. 2d. Notice of condition, suffering, etc. 3d. Warning
and guidance. 4th. Charts of geographic features. 5th. Claim or demand.
6th. Messages or communications. 7th. Record of expedition.


[Illustration: FIG. 47.--Alaskan notice of hunt.]

Dr. W. J. Hoffman obtained the original of the accompanying drawing,
Fig. 47, from Naumoff an Alaskan native, in San Francisco, California,
in 1882, also the interpretation, with text in the Kiatexamut dialect
of the Innuit language.

The drawing was in imitation of similar ones made by the natives, to
inform their visitors or friends of their departure for a certain
purpose. They are depicted upon strips of wood which are placed in
conspicuous places near the doors of the habitations.

Dr. Hoffman has published a brief account of this drawing as well as
the succeeding one, in the Trans. Anthrop. Soc. Washington, II, 1883,
p. 134, Fig. 3, and p. 132, Fig 2.

The spelling adopted in the Innuit text, following in each case the
explanation of characters, is in accordance with the system now used by
the Bureau of Ethnology.

The following is the explanation of the characters:

1. The speaker, with the right hand indicating himself, and with the
left pointing in the direction to be taken.

2. Holding a boat paddle--going by boat.

3. The right hand to the side of the head, to denote _sleep_, and the
left elevated with one finger elevated to signify _one_--one night.

4. A circle with two marks in the middle, signifying an island with
huts upon it.

5. Same as No. 1.

6. A circle to denote another island.

7. Same as No. 3, with an additional finger elevated, signifying
_two_--two nights.

8. The speaker with his harpoon, making the sign of a sea lion with the
left hand. The flat hand is held edgewise with the thumb elevated, then
pushed outward from the body in a slightly downward curve.

9. A sea lion.

10. Shooting with bow and arrow.

11. The boat with two persons in it, the paddles projecting downward.

12. The winter, or permanent habitation of the speaker.

The following is the text in the Aigaluxamut dialect, with an
interlinear translation:

  Hui  ta-wá-ut      ai-wí-xa-na  kui-gí-qta-mŭn a-xi-lú-mŭk ka-wá-xa-lú-a,
   I    there      go (with boat)  that island       one      sleep there,
     (to that place)

  tca-lí hui ai-wí-lu-a a-xá-mŭn kui-gí-qta-mŭn, ta-wá-ni ma-lú-qnŭk
   then   I      go     another    that island,   there      two

  ka-wá-xa-lú-a, hui pĭ-qlú-a a-xĭ-lú-mŭk’ wi-na-mŭk tca-lí a-ni-xlú-a
      sleeps      I    catch     one       sea lion   then    return

    nú-nan   m’nun.
  (to) place  mine.

The following is of a similar nature, and was obtained under
circumstances similar to the preceding.

[Illustration: FIG. 48.--Alaskan notice of departure.]

The explanation of the above characters is as follows:

1, 3, 5, 7, represent the person spoken to.

2. Indicates the speaker with his right hand to the side or breast,
indicating _self_, the left hand pointing in the direction in which he
is going.

4. Both hands elevated, with fingers and thumbs signifies many,
according to the informant. When the hands are thus held up, in
sign-language, it signifies _ten_, but when they are brought toward and
backward from one another, _many_.

6. The right hand is placed to the head to denote sleep--_many sleeps_,
or, in other words, _many nights and days_; the left hand points
downward, _at that place_.

8. The right hand is directed toward the starting point, while the left
is brought upward toward the head--_to go home, or whence he came_.

The following is the text in the same dialect last mentioned, with,

  Hui a-qtcí-kua a-xlá mŭn  nu-ná-mŭn,  am-lić-ka-mŭ´-ik ha-wá-xa-lu-a,
   I       go     (to) another   place,          many         sleeps
                             (settlement)                    (nights)

  ta-wá-nĭ,  tca-lĭ´  hui  a-ni-qlú-a.
     there,   then     I    return.

The drawing presented in Figure 49 was made by a native Alaskan, and
represents information to the effect that the artist contemplates
making a journey to hunt deer. The drawing is made upon a narrow strip
of wood, and placed somewhere about the door of the house, where
visitors will readily perceive it.

[Illustration: FIG. 49.--Alaskan notice of hunt.]

1. Represents the contour lines of the country and mountain peaks.

2. Native going away from home.

3. Stick placed on hill-top, with bunch of grass attached, pointing in
the direction he has taken.

4. Native of another settlement, with whom the traveler remained over

5. Lodge.

6. Line representing the end of the first day, _i. e._, the time
between two days; rest.

7. Traveler again on the way.

8. Making signal that on second day (right hand raised with two
extended fingers) he saw game (deer, 9) on a hill-top, which he
secured, so terminating his journey.

9. Deer.

Figures 50, 51, and 52 were drawn by Naumoff, under the circumstances
above mentioned, and signify “Have gone home.”

[Illustration: FIG. 50.--Alaskan notice of direction.]

His explanation of Figure 50 is as follows:

When one of a hunting party is about to return home and wishes to
inform his companions that he has set out on such return, he ascends
the hill-top nearest to which they became separated, where he ties a
bunch of grass or other light colored material to the top of a long
stick or pole. The lower end of the stick is placed firmly in the
ground, leaning in the direction taken. When another hill is ascended,
another stick with similar attachment is erected, again leaning in
the direction to be taken. These sticks are placed at proper intervals
until the village is sighted. This device is employed by Southern
Alaskan Indians.

[Illustration: FIG. 51.--Alaskan notice of direction.]

He also explained Figure 51 as follows:

Seal hunters adopt the following method of informing their comrades
that they have returned to the settlement. The first to return to
the regular landing place sometimes sticks a piece of wood into the
ground, leaning toward the village, upon which is drawn or scratched
the out-line of a baidarka, or skin canoe, heading toward one or more
outlines of lodges, signifying that the occupants of the boat have gone
toward their homes. This is resorted to when the voyage has been a
dangerous one, and is intended to inform their companions of the safe
arrival of some of the party.

This device is used by coast natives of Southern Alaska and Kadiak.

[Illustration: FIG. 52.--Alaskan notice of direction.]

He also explained Figure 52 as follows:

When hunters become separated, the one first returning to the forks
of the trail puts a piece of wood in the ground, on the top of which
he makes an incision, into which a short piece of wood is secured
horizontally, so as to point in the direction taken by the individual.

The following instance is taken from the Narrative of an Expedition
to the Source of St. Peter’s River, * * under the command of Stephen
H. Long, major U. S. Top. Eng. [commonly known as Keating’s Long’s
Expedition]. Philadelphia, 1824. Vol. I, p. 217.

  When we stopped, says Major Long, to dine, White Thunder, (the
  Winnebago chief that accompanied me,) suspecting that the rest of his
  party were in the neighborhood, requested a piece of paper, pen and
  ink, to communicate to them the intelligence of his having come up
  with me. He then seated himself and drew three rude figures, which
  at my request he explained to me. The first represented my boat with
  a mast and flag, with three benches of oars and a helmsman; to show
  that we were Americans, our heads were represented by a rude cross,
  indicating that we wore hats.

  The representation of himself was a rude figure of a bear over a
  kind of cypher representing a hunting ground. The second figure was
  designed to show that his wife was with him; the device was a boat
  with a squaw seated in it; over her head lines were drawn in a zigzag
  direction, indicating that she was the wife of White Thunder. The
  third was a boat with a bear sitting at the helm, showing that an
  Indian of that name had been seen on his way up the river, and had
  given intelligence where the party were. This paper he set up at the
  mouth of Kickapoo Creek, up which the party had gone on a hunting

The following is extracted from an Account of an Expedition from
Pittsburgh to the Rocky Mountains, * * under the command of Major
Stephen H. Long [commonly known as James’ Long’s Expedition].
Philadelphia, 1823. Vol. I, p. 478.

  At a little distance [on the bank of the Platte River], in front of
  the entrance of this breastwork, was a semicircular row of sixteen
  bison skulls, with their noses pointing down the river. Near the
  center of the circle which this row would describe, if continued, was
  another skull marked with a number of red lines.

  Our interpreter informed us that this arrangement of skulls and other
  marks here discovered, were designed to communicate the following
  information, namely, that the camp had been occupied by a war party
  of the Skeeree or Pawnee Loup Indians, who had lately come from an
  excursion against the Cumancias, Ietans, or some of the western
  tribes. The number of red lines traced on the painted skull indicated
  the number of the party to have been thirty-six; the position in
  which the skulls were placed, that they were on their return to their
  own country. Two small rods stuck in the ground, with a few hairs
  tied in two parcels to the end of each, signified that four scalps
  had been taken.

When a hunting party of the Hidatsa has arrived at any temporary
camping ground, from which point a portion of the members might leave
on a short reconnoitering expedition, the remainder, upon leaving for
a time, will erect a pole and cause it to lean in the direction taken.
At the foot of this pole a buffalo shoulder-blade or other flat bone
is placed, upon which is depicted the object causing departure. For
instance, should buffalo or antelope be discovered, an animal of the
character sighted is rudely drawn with a piece of charred wood or red
lead, the latter being a substance in the possession of nearly every
warrior to use in facial decoration, etc.

When a Hidatsa party has gone on the war path, and a certain number is
detailed to take another direction, the point of separation is taken as
the rendezvous. After the return of the first party to the rendezvous,
should the second not come up in a reasonable length of time, they
will set sticks in the ground leaning in the direction to be taken,
and notches are cut into the upper ends of the sticks to represent the
number of nights spent there by the waiting party.

A party of Hidatsa who may be away from home for any purpose whatever
often appoint a rendezvous, from which point they return to their
respective lodges. Should an individual return to the rendezvous before
any others and wish to make a special trip for game or plunder, he
will, for the information of the others, place a stick of about 3 or 4
feet in length in the ground, upon the upper end of which a notch is
cut, or perhaps split, for the reception of a thinner piece of twig or
branch having a length of about a foot. This horizontal top piece is
inserted at one end, so that the whole may point in the direction to
be taken. Should the person wish to say that the trail would turn at
a right angle, to either side, at about one-half the distance of the
whole journey in prospect, the horizontal branch is either bent in that
direction or a naturally-curved branch is selected having the turn at
the middle of its entire length, thus corresponding to the turn in the
trail. Any direction can be indicated by curves in the top branch.


According to Masta, chief of the Abnaki, members of that tribe remove
the bark of trees in prominent places to denote that the inhabitants of
the nearest lodge are in a starving condition.

The Ottawa and the Potawatomi Indians indicate hunger and starvation by
drawing a black line across the breast or stomach of the figure of a
man. (See Fig. 145, page 221.) This drawing is placed upon a piece of
wood, either incised or with a mixture of powdered charcoal and glue
water, or red ocher. This is then attached to a tree or fastened to a
piece of wood, and erected near the lodge on a trail, where it will be
observed by passers by, who are expected to alleviate the sufferings of
the native who erected the notice.

Figure 53 illustrates information with regard to distress in another
village, which occasioned the departure of the party giving the
notification. The drawing was made for Dr. W. J. Hoffman, in 1882,
by Naumoff, in imitation of drawings prepared by Alaska natives. The
designs are traced upon a strip of wood, which is then stuck upon the
roof of the house belonging to the recorder.

[Illustration: FIG. 53.--Alaskan notice of distress.]

1. The summer habitation, showing a stick leaning in the direction to
be taken.

2. The baidarka, containing the residents of the house. The first
person is observed pointing forward, indicating that they “go by boat
to the other settlement.”

3. A grave stick, indicating a death in the settlement.

4, 5. Summer and winter habitations, denoting a village.

The drawing, Figure 54, made for Dr. Hoffman in 1882, by a native,
in imitation of originals in Alaska, is intended to be placed in a
conspicuous portion of a settlement which has been attacked by a
hostile force and finally deserted. The last one to leave prepares the
drawing upon a strip of wood to inform friends of the resort of the

[Illustration: FIG. 54.--Alaskan notice of departure and refuge.]

1. Represents three hills or ranges, signifying that the course taken
would carry them beyond that number of hills or mountains.

2. The recorder, indicating the direction, with the left hand pointing
to the ground, _one_ hill, and the right hand indicating the number
_two_, the number still to be crossed.

3. A circular piece of wood or leather, with the representation of a
face, placed upon a pole and facing the direction to be taken from the
settlement. In this instance the drawing of the character denotes a
hostile attack upon the town, for which misfortune such devices are
sometimes erected.

4, 5. Winter and summer habitations.

6. Store-house, erected upon upright poles.

This device is used by Alaska coast natives generally.

In connection with these figures reference may be made to a paper
by the present writer in the First Annual Report of the Bureau of
Ethnology, p. 369, showing the devices of the Abnaki.

Dr. George Gibbs (Contributions to N. A. Ethnology, Vol. I, p. 222)
says of “symbolic writing” of the northwest tribes:

  I am not aware how far this may be carried among the Sound tribes.
  Probably there is no great essential difference between them and
  their neighbors of the plains in this art. It may perhaps be best
  explained by an example given me by a veteran mountaineer, Dr. Robert
  Newell, of Champoeg. A party of Snakes are going to hunt strayed
  horses. A figure of a man, with a long queue, or scalp lock, reaching
  to his heels, denoted Shoshonee; that tribe being in the habit of
  braiding horse- or other hair into their own in that manner. A number
  of marks follow, signifying the strength of the party. A foot-print,
  pointed in the direction they take, shows their course, and a
  hoof-mark turned backward, that they expect to return with animals.
  If well armed, and expecting a possible attack, a little powder mixed
  with sand tells that they are ready, or a square dotted about the
  figures indicates that they have fortified.

The design shown in Figure 55 is in imitation of etchings made by
natives of Southern Alaska to convey to the observer the information
that the recorder had gone away to another settlement the inhabitants
of which were in distress. The drawings were put on a strip of wood and
placed at the door of the house where it might be seen by visitors or

[Illustration: FIG. 55.--Notice of departure to relieve distress.

Naumoff gave the following explanation:

1. A native making the gesture of indicating _self_ with the right
hand, and with the left indicating direction and _going_.

2. The native’s habitation.

3. Scaffold used for drying fish. Upon the top of the pole is placed a
piece of wood tied so that the longest end points in the direction to
be taken by the recorder.

4. The baidarka conveying the recorder.

5. A native of the settlement to be visited.

6. Summer habitation.

7. “Shaman stick” or grave stick, erected to the memory of a recently
deceased person, the cause of which has necessitated the journey of the

8. Winter habitation. This, together with No. 6, indicates a settlement.

Fig. 56, also drawn by Naumoff, means “ammunition wanted.”

[Illustration: FIG. 56.--Ammunition wanted. Alaska.]

When a hunter is tracking game, and exhausts his ammunition, he returns
to the nearest and most conspicuous part of the trail and sticks his
ihú^nŭk in the ground, the top leaning in the direction taken. The
ihú^nŭk is the pair of sticks arranged like the letter A, used as a
gun-rest. This method of transmitting the request to the first passer
is resorted to by the greater number of coast natives of Southern

Fig. 57, also drawn by Naumoff, means “discovery of bear; assistance

[Illustration: FIG. 57.--Assistance wanted in hunt. Alaska.]

When a hunter discovers a bear, and requires assistance, he ties
together a bunch of grass, or other fibrous matter, in the form of an
animal with legs, and places it upon a long stick or pole which is
erected at a conspicuous point to attract attention. The head of the
effigy is directed toward the locality where the animal was last seen.

This device is also used at times by most of the Southern Alaskan

Figure 58 was also drawn by Naumoff, and signifies “starving hunters.”

[Illustration: FIG. 58.--Starving hunters. Alaska.]

Hunters who have been unfortunate, and are suffering from hunger,
scratch or draw upon a piece of wood characters similar to those
figured, and place the lower end of the stick in the ground on the
trail where the greatest chance of its discovery occurs. The stick
is inclined toward the locality of the habitation. The accompanying
explanation will serve to illustrate more fully the information
contained in the drawing.

1. A horizontal line denoting a canoe, showing the persons to be

2. An individual with both arms extended signifying _nothing_,
corresponding with the gesture for negation.

3. A person with the right hand to the mouth, signifying _to eat_, the
left hand pointing to the house occupied by the hunters.

4. The habitation.

The whole signifies that there is _nothing to eat_ in the _house_. This
is used by natives of Southern Alaska.

[Illustration: FIG. 59.--Starving hunters. Alaska.]

Figure 59, with the same signification, and from the same hand, is
similar to the preceding in general design. This is placed in the
ground near the landing place of the canoemen, so that the top points
toward the lodge.

The following is the explanation of the characters:

1. Baidarka, showing double projections at bow, as well as the two
individuals, owners, in the boat.

2. A man making the gesture for _nothing_. (See in this connection
Figure 155, page 235.)

3. Gesture drawn, denoting _to eat_, with the right hand, while the
left points to the lodge.

4. A winter habitation.

This is used by the Alaskan coast natives.


An amusing instance of the notice or warning of “No thoroughfare” is
given on page 383 of the present writer’s paper, Sign Language among
North American Indians, in the First Annual Report of the Bureau of
Ethnology. It was taken from a rock-etching in Cañon de Chelly, New
Mexico. A graphic warning against trespass appears in Schoolcraft, Vol.
I, Plate 48, Figure B, op. page 338.

During his connection with the geographic surveys west of the one
hundredth meridian under the direction of Capt. G. M. Wheeler, U.
S. Army, Dr. Hoffman observed a practice which prevailed among the
Tivátikai Shoshoni, of Nevada, in which heaps of stones were erected
along or near trails to indicate the direction to be taken and followed
to reach springs of water.

Upon slight elevations of ground, or at points where a trail branched
into two or more directions, or at the intersection of two trails, a
heap of stones would be placed, varying from 1 to 2 or more feet in
height, according to the necessity of the case, to attract attention.
Upon the top of this would be fixed an elongated piece of rock so
placed that the most conspicuous point projected and pointed in the
course to be followed. This was continued sometimes at intervals of
several miles unless indistinct portions of a trail or intersections
demanded a repetition at shorter distances.

A knowledge of the prevalence of this custom proved very beneficial to
the early prospectors and pioneers.

Stone circles and stone heaps of irregular form were also met with,
which to a casual observer might be misleading. These resulted from
previous deposits of edible pine nuts, which had been heaped upon the
ground and covered over with stones, grass, and earth to prevent their
destruction by birds and rodents. These deposits were placed along the
trails in the timbered regions to afford sustenance to Indians who had
failed in the hunt, or who might not reach camp in time to prevent
suffering from hunger.




Plate LXXX (A, B, C) represents colored pictographs found by Dr.
Hoffman in 1884 on the North Fork of the San Gabriel River, also known
as the Azuza Cañon, Los Angeles County, California. Its description is
as follows:

A and B are copies, one-sixteenth natural size, of rock painting found
in the Azuza Cañon, 30 miles northeast of Los Angeles, California.

The bowlder upon which the paintings occur measures 8 feet long, about
4 feet high, and the same in width. The figures occur on the eastern
side of the rock, so that the left arm of the human figure on the right
points toward the north.

The map (C) at the bottom of the plate presents the topography of the
immediate vicinity and the relative positions of the rocks bearing the
two illustrations. The map is drawn on a scale of 1,000 yards to the

The stream is the North Fork of the San Gabriel River, and is hemmed in
by precipitous mountains, with the exception of two points marked _c_,
_c_, over which the old Indian trail passed in going from the Mojave
Desert on the north to the San Gabriel Valley below, this course being
the nearest for reaching the mission settlements at San Gabriel and Los
Angeles. In attempting to follow the water-course the distance would
be greatly increased and a rougher trail encountered. The pictograph
A, painted on the rock marked _b_ on the map C, shows characters in
pale yellow, upon a bowlder of almost white granite, which are partly
obliterated by weathering and annual floods, though still enough
remains to indicate that the right-hand figure is directing the
observer to the northeast, although upon taking that course it would
be necessary to round the point a short distance to the west. It may
have been placed as a notification of direction to those Indians who
might have come up the cañon instead of on the regular trail. Farther
west, at the spot marked _a_ on the map, is a granite bowlder bearing a
large number of paintings part of which have become almost obliterated.
These were drawn with red ocher (ferric oxide). A selection of these
is shown in B on the plate. This is on the western face of the rock,
almost vertical. This also appears to refer to the course of the trail,
which might readily be lost on account of the numerous mountain ridges
and spurs. The left-hand figure appears to place the left hand upon a
series of ridges, as if showing pantomimically the rough and ridged
country over the mountains.

The middle figure represents gesture, which in its present connection
may indicate direction, of the trail, _i. e._, toward the left, or
northward in an up-hill course, as indicated by the arm and leg, and
southward, or downward, as suggested by the lower inclination of the
leg, and lower forearm and hand on the right of the illustration.

The right-hand figure, although similar in manner of delineating
gesture and general resemblance to the Shoshonian method, is not yet
determined in that connection.

These illustrations, as well as other pictographs on the same rock, not
at present submitted, bear remarkable resemblance to the general type
of Shoshonian drawing, and from such evidence as is now attainable it
appears more than probable that they are of Chemehuevi origin, as that
tribe at one time ranged thus far west, though north of the mountains,
and also visited the valley and settlements at Los Angeles at stated
intervals to trade. It is also known that the Mojaves came at stated
periods to Los Angeles as late as 1845, and the trail indicated at
point _a_ of the map would appear to have been their most practicable
and convenient route. There is strong evidence that the Mokis sometimes
visited the Pacific coast and might readily have taken this same
course, marking the important portion of the route by drawings in the
nature of guide boards.


Dr. W. J. Hoffman states that when at Grapevine Springs, Nevada, in
1871, the Pai-Uta living at that locality informed the party of the
exact location of Las Vegas, the objective point. The Indian sat upon
the sand, and with the palms of his hands formed an oblong ridge to
represent Spring Mountain, and southeast of this ridge another gradual
slope, terminating on the eastern side more abruptly; over the latter
he passed his fingers to represent the side valleys running eastward.
He then took a stick and showed the direction of the old Spanish trail
running east and west over the lower portion of the last-named ridge.

When this was completed the Indian looked at the members of the
party, and with a mixture of English, Spanish, Pai-Uta, and gesture
signs, told them that from where they were now they would have to go
southward, east of Spring Mountain, to the camp of Pai-Uta Charlie,
where they would have to sleep; then indicating a line southeastward
to another spring (Stump’s) to complete the second day; then he
followed the line representing the Spanish trail to the east of the
divide of the second ridge above named, where he left it, and passing
northward to the first valley, he thrust the short stick into the
ground and said, “Las Vegas.”

It is needless to say that the information was found to be correct and
of considerable value to the party.

Schoolcraft (Vol. I, p. 334, Pl. 47, Fig. B) mentions that the
discovery, on one of the tributaries of the Susquehanna River, “of an
Indian map drawn on stone, with intermixed devices, a copy of which
appears in the first volume of the collections of the Historical
Committee of the American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, proves,
although it is thus far isolated, that stone was also employed in that
branch of inscription. This discovery was in the area occupied by the
Lenapees, who are known to have practiced the art, which they called
Ola Walum.”

The Tegua Pueblos, of New Mexico, “traced upon the ground a sketch of
their country, with the names and locations of the pueblos occupied in
New Mexico,” a copy of which, “somewhat improved,” is given in Vol.
III, Pacific R. R. Explorations, 1856, Part III, pp. 9, 10.

A Yuma map of the Colorado River, with the names and locations of
tribes within its valley, is also figured in the last mentioned volume,
page 19. The map was originally traced upon the ground.

A Pai-Uta map of the Colorado River is also figured in the same
connection, which was obtained by Lieutenant Whipple and party.

[Illustration: FIG. 60.--Lean-Wolf’s map. Hidatsa.]

Lean-Wolf, of the Hidatsa, who drew the picture of which Figure 60
is a fac-simile, made a trip on foot from Fort Berthold to Fort
Buford, Dakota, to steal a horse from the Dakotas encamped there. The
returning horse tracks show that he attained the object in view, and
that he rode home. The following explanation of characters was made to
Dr. Hoffman, at Fort Berthold, in 1881:

1. Lean-Wolf, the head only of a man to which is attached the outline
of a wolf.

2. Hidatsa earth lodges, circular in form, the spots representing the
pillars supporting the roof. Indian village at Fort Berthold, Dakota.

3. Human footprints; the course taken by the recorder.

4. The Government buildings at Fort Buford (square).

5. Several Hidatsa lodges (round), the occupants of which had
inter-married with the Dakotas.

6. Dakota lodges.

7. A small square--a white man’s house--with a cross marked upon it, to
represent a Dakota lodge. This denotes that the owner, a white man, had
married a Dakota woman who dwelt there.

8. Horse tracks returning to Fort Berthold.

9. The Missouri River.

10. Tule Creek.

11. Little Knife River.

12. White Earth River.

13. Muddy Creek.

14. Yellowstone River.

15. Little Missouri River.

16. Dancing Beard Creek.


Stephen Powers states that the Nishinam of California have a curious
way of collecting debts. “When an Indian owes another, it is held to be
in bad taste, if not positively insulting, for the creditor to dun the
debtor, as the brutal Saxon does; so he devises a more subtle method.
He prepares a certain number of little sticks, according to the amount
of the debt, and paints a ring around the end of each. These he carries
and tosses into the delinquent’s wigwam without a word and goes his
way; whereupon the other generally takes the hint, pays the debt, and
destroys the sticks.” See Contrib. to N. A. Ethnology, Vol. III, 321.

Dr. W. J. Hoffman says, “When a patient has neglected to remunerate
the Shaman [Wĭktcŏm´nĭ´ of the Yokŏtsan linguistic division] for his
services, the latter prepares short sticks of wood, with bands of
colored porcupine quills wrapped around them, at one end only, and
every time he passes the delinquent’s lodge a certain number of them
are thrown in as a reminder of the indebtedness.” See San Francisco
(Cal.) Western Lancet, XI, 1882, p. 443.


[Illustration: FIG. 61.--Letter to Little-Man from his father.

Figure 61 is a letter sent by mail from a Southern Cheyenne, named
Turtle-following-his-Wife, at the Cheyenne and Arapaho Agency, Indian
Territory, to his son, Little-Man, at the Pine Ridge Agency, Dakota
Territory. It was drawn on a half-sheet of ordinary writing paper,
without a word written. It was inclosed in an envelope, which was
addressed to “Little-Man, Cheyenne, Pine Ridge Agency,” in the ordinary
manner, written by some one at the first-named agency. The letter
was evidently understood by Little-Man, as he immediately called
upon Dr. V. T. McGillycuddy, Indian agent at Pine Ridge Agency, and
was aware that the sum of $53 had been placed to his credit for the
purpose of enabling him to pay his expenses in going the long journey
to his father’s home in Indian Territory. Dr. McGillycuddy had, by
the same mail, received a letter from Agent Dyer, inclosing $53, and
explaining the reason for its being sent, which enabled him also to
understand the pictographic letter. With the above explanation it very
clearly shows, over the head of the figure to the left, the turtle
following the turtle’s wife united with the head of the figure by a
line, and over the head of the other figure, also united by a line to
it, is a little man. Also over the right arm of the last-mentioned
figure is another little man in the act of springing or advancing
toward Turtle-following-his-Wife, from whose mouth proceed two lines,
curved or hooked at the end, as if drawing the little figure towards
him. It is suggested that the last-mentioned part of the pictograph
is the substance of the communication, _i. e._, “come to me,” the
larger figures with their name totems being the persons addressed and
addressing. Between and above the two large figures are fifty-three
round objects intended for dollars. Both the Indian figures have on
breech-cloths, corresponding with the information given concerning
them, which is that they are Cheyennes who are not all civilized or

The illustration, Figure 62, was made by a native Alaskan, and
represents a native of the Teninahs making a smoke signal to the people
of the village on the opposite shore of a lake, so that a boat may be
sent to carry the signalist across. The K’niqamūt band of the Tenina
have no boats, as they live inland, and therefore resort to signaling
with smoke when desiring transportation. On account of this custom they
are termed “Signal People.” If the pictograph could be transmitted in
advance of the necessity, the actual use of the smoke signal, with
consequent delay in obtaining the boat, would be avoided.

[Illustration: FIG. 62.--Drawing of smoke signal. Alaska.]

1. Represents the mountain contour of the country.

2. A Tenina Indian.

3. Column of smoke.

4. Bird’s-eye view of the lake.

5. The settlement on opposite shore of lake.

6. Boat crossing for the signalist.

Under this head of messages and communications may be included
the material objects sent as messages, many accounts of which are
published. It is to be expected that graphic representations of the
same or similar objects, with corresponding arrangement, should have
similar significance. Among the Indians painted arrows, bearing
messages when discharged, are familiar. The Turkish Selam, or flower
letters, are in the same category.

The following account of a “diplomatic packet” is extracted from
Schoolcraft, Vol. III, p. 306, _et seq._:

  In the month of August, 1852, a message reached the President of
  the United States, by a delegation of the Pueblos of Tesuque in New
  Mexico, offering him friendship and intercommunication; and opening,
  symbolically, a road from the Moqui country to Washington. * * *

  This unique diplomatic packet consists of several articles of
  symbolic import. The first is the official and ceremonial offer of
  the peace-pipe. This is symbolized by a joint of the maize, five and
  a half inches long, and half an inch in diameter. The hollow of the
  tube is filled by leaves of a plant which represents tobacco. It is
  stopped to secure the weed from falling out, by the downy yellow
  under plumage of some small bird. Externally, around the center of
  the stalk, is a tie of white cotton twisted string of four strands,
  (not twisted by the distaff,) holding, at its end, a small tuft of
  the before-mentioned downy yellow feathers, and a small wiry feather
  of the same species. The interpreter has written on this, “The pipe
  to be smoked by the President.” * * The object is represented in the
  cut, A, [represented in Figure 63.]

  [Illustration: FIG. 63.--Part of diplomatic packet.]

  The second symbol consists of two small columnar round pieces of
  wood, four and a half inches long, and four-tenths in diameter,
  terminating in a cone. The cone is one and a half inches long, and
  is colored black; the rest of the pieces are blue; a peace color
  among the Indians south, it seems, as well as north. This color has
  the appearance of being produced by the carbonate of copper mixed
  with aluminous earth; and reminds one strongly of the blue clays
  of the Dacotahs. The wood, when cut, is white, compact, and of a
  peculiar species. A notch is cut at one end of one of the pieces,
  and colored yellow. A shuck of the maize, one end of which, rolled
  in the shape of a cone, is bound up by cotton strings, with a small
  bird’s feather, in the manner of the symbolic pipe. There is also
  tied up with the symbolic sticks, one of the secondary feathers and
  bits of down of a bird of dingy color. The feather is naturally
  tipped with white. Together with this, the tie holds a couple of
  sticks of a native plant or small seed of the prairie grass, perhaps.
  It may, together with the husk of the maize, be emblematic of
  their cultivation. The whole of the tie represents the Moquis. The
  following cut, B, [reproduced in Figure 64,] represents this symbol:

  [Illustration: FIG. 64.--Part of diplomatic packet.]

  [Illustration: FIG. 65.--Part of diplomatic packet.]

  The third object is, in every respect, like B, [reproduced in Figure
  64,] and symbolizes the President of the United States. A colored
  cotton cord, four feet long, unites these symbols. Six inches of
  this cord is small and white. At the point of its being tied to the
  long colored cord there is a bunch of small bird’s feathers. This
  bunch, which symbolizes the geographical position of the Navajoes,
  with respect to Washington, consists of the feathers of six species,
  the colors which are pure white, blue, brown, mottled, yellow, and
  dark, like the pigeon-hawk, and white, tipped with brown. (See the
  preceding cut, C.)

  The interpreter appends to these material effigies or devices [which
  are arranged as in D, reproduced in Figure 66] the following remarks.

  [Illustration: FIG. 66.--Part of diplomatic packet.]

  “These two figures represent the Moqui people and the President;
  the cord is the road which separates them; the feather tied to the
  cord is the meeting point; that part of the cord which is white is
  intended to signify the distance between the President and the place
  of meeting; and that part which is stained is the distance between
  the Moqui and the same point. Your Excellency will perceive that the
  distance between the Moqui and place of meeting is short, while the
  other is very long.

  “The last object of this communication from the high plains of New
  Mexico, is the most curious, and the most strongly indicative of the
  wild, superstitious notions of the Moqui mind. It consists of a
  small quantity of wild honey, wrapped up in a wrapper or inner fold
  of the husk of the maize, as represented in E, [reproduced in Figure
  67.] It is accompanied by these remarks:

  “A charm to call down rain from heaven.--To produce the effect
  desired, the President must take a piece of the shuck which contains
  the wild honey, chew it, and spit it upon the ground which needs
  rain; and the Moquis assure him that it will come.”

[Illustration: FIG. 67.--Part of diplomatic packet.]

The Maori used a kind of hieroglyphical or symbolical way of
communication; a chief inviting another to join in a war party sent
a tattooed potato and a fig of tobacco bound up together, which was
interpreted to mean that the enemy was a Maori and not European by the
tattoo, and by the tobacco that it represented smoke; he therefore
roasted the one and eat it, and smoked the other, to show he accepted
the invitation, and would join him with his guns and powder. Another
sent a water-proof coat with the sleeves made of patchwork, red, blue,
yellow, and green, intimating that they must wait until all the tribes
were united before their force would be water-proof, _i. e._, able to
encounter the European. Another chief sent a large pipe, which would
hold a pound of tobacco, which was lighted in a large assembly, the
emissary taking the first whiff, and then passing it round; whoever
smoked it showed that he joined in the war. See Te Ika a Maui, by Rev.
Richard Taylor, London, 1870.


Under this head, many illustrations of which might be given besides
several in this paper, see account of colored pictographs in Santa
Barbara County, California, page 34 _et seq._, Plates I and II, also
Lean-Wolf’s trip, Figure 60, page 158. Also, Figures 135 and 136, pages
214 and 215.


This is one of the most striking of the special uses to which
pictography has been applied by the North American Indians. For
convenience, the characters may be divided into: First, tribal; Second,
gentile; and Third, personal designations.


A large number of these graphic distinctions are to be found in the
Dakota Winter Counts.

Rev. J. Owen Dorsey reports that the Tsi[c]u side of the Osage tribe,
when on a war party, have the face painted red, with mud upon the
cheek, below the left eye, as wide as two or more fingers.

The Hañka side of the tribe paint the face red, with a spot of mud upon
the right cheek, below the eye, as wide as two or more fingers.

For an ingenious method of indicating by variation of incisions on
trees, the tribal use of paint by the Absaroka and Dakota respectively,
see page 62.

Figure 68 shows the tribal designation of the Kaiowa by the Dakota,
taken from the winter count of Battiste Good, 1814-’15. He calls the
winter “Smashed-a-Kaiowa’s-head-in winter.” The tomahawk with which it
was done is in contact with the Kaiowa’s head.

[Illustration: FIG. 68.--Kaiowa.]

The sign for Kaiowa is made by passing the hands--naturally
extended--in short horizontal circles on either side of the head, and
the picture is probably drawn to represent the man in the attitude of
making this gesture, and not the involuntary raising of the hands upon
receiving the blow, such attitudes not appearing in Battiste Good’s

Figure 69 is the tribal sign of the Arikara made by the
Dakotas, taken from the winter count of Battiste Good
for the year 1823-’24, which he calls “General- ----
-first-appeared-and-the-Dakotas-aided-in-an-attack-on-the-Rees winter”;
also “Much-corn winter.”

[Illustration: FIG. 69.--Arikara.]

The gun and the arrow in contact with the ear of corn show that both
whites and Indians fought the Rees.

The ear of corn signifies “Ree” or Arikara Indians, who are designated
in gesture language as “Corn Shellers.”

Figure 70 is the tribal designation of the Omahas by the Dakotas, taken
from the winter count of Battiste Good.

[Illustration: FIG. 70. Omaha.]

A human head with cropped hair and red cheeks signifies Omaha. This
tribe cuts the hair short and uses red paint upon the cheeks very
extensively. This character is of frequent occurrence in Battiste
Good’s count.

Figure 71 is the tribal designation of the Pani by the Dakotas, taken
from Battiste Good’s winter count for the year 1704-’05.

[Illustration: FIG. 71.--Pani.]

He says: The lower legs are ornamented with slight projections
resembling the marks on the bottom of an ear of corn [husks], and
signifies Pani.

A pictograph for Cheyenne is given in Figure 78, page 173, with some

Figure 72 is the tribal designation for Assiniboine by the Dakotas from
winter count of Battiste Good for the year 1709-’10.

[Illustration: FIG. 72.--Assiniboine.]

The Dakota pictorial sign for Assiniboine or Hohe, which means the
voice, or, as some say, the voice of the musk-ox, is the outline of the
vocal organs, as they conceive them, and represents the upper lip and
roof of the mouth, the tongue, the lower lip, and chin and neck. The
view is lateral, and resembles the sectional aspect of the mouth and

Figure 73 is the tribal designation of the Gros Ventres, by the same
tribe and on the same authority.

[Illustration: FIG. 73.--Gros Ventre.]

Two Gros Ventres were killed on the ice by the Dakotas in 1789-’90.
The two are designated by two spots of blood on the ice, and _killed_
is expressed by the blood-tipped arrow against the figure of the man
above. The long hair, with the red forehead, denotes the Gros Ventre.
The red forehead illustrates the manner of applying war paint, and
applies, also, to the Arikara and Absaroka Indians, in other Dakota
records. The horizontal blue band signifies ice.

Stephen Powers says (Contrib. to N. A. Ethnology, III, p. 109) the
Mattoal, of California, differ from other tribes in that the men
tattoo. “Their distinctive mark is a round blue spot in the center of
the forehead.”

He adds: Among the Mattoal--

  The women tattoo pretty much, all over their faces.

  In respect to this matter of tattooing there is a theory entertained
  by some old pioneers which may be worth the mention. They hold that
  the reason why the women alone tattoo in all other tribes is that
  in case they are taken captives their own people may be able to
  recognize them when there comes an opportunity of ransom. There are
  two facts which give some color of probability to this reasoning.
  One is that the California Indians are rent into such infinitesimal
  divisions, any one of which may be arrayed in deadly feud against
  another at any moment, that the slight differences in their dialects
  would not suffice to distinguish the captive squaws. A second is that
  the squaws almost never attempt any ornamental tattooing, but adhere
  closely to the plain regulation mark of the tribe.

Paul Marcoy, in Travels in South America, N. Y., 1875, Vol. II, page
353, says of the Passés, Yuris, Barrés, and Chumanas, of Brazil, that
they mark their faces (in tattoo) with the totem or emblem of the
nation to which they belong. It is possible at a few steps distant to
distinguish one nation from another.


Rev. J. Owen Dorsey reports of the Osages that all the old men who have
been distinguished in war are painted with the decorations of their
respective gentes. That of the Tsi[c]u wactake is as follows: The face
is first whitened all over with white clay; then a red spot is made on
the forehead, and the lower part of the face is reddened; then with the
fingers the man scrapes off the white clay, forming the dark figures,
by letting the natural color of the face show through.

In Schoolcraft, V, 73, 74, it is stated that by totemic marks the
various families of the Ojibwa denote their affiliation. A guardian
spirit has been selected by the progenitor of a family from some object
in the zoological chain. The representative device of this is called
the totem. A warrior’s totem never wants honors in their reminiscences,
and the mark is put on his grave-post, or _adjedatig_, when he is dead.
In his funeral pictograph he invariably sinks his personal name in that
of his totem or family name. These marks are, in one sense, the surname
of the clan. The personal name is not indicative of an Indian’s totem.

The same custom, according to Rev. J. Owen Dorsey, prevails among the
Omahas; and with the exception of that portion which relates to the
drawing of the totemic mark upon the grave post the above remarks
apply also to the Dakotas, of Northern Dakota, according to the
observations of Dr. Hoffman. The Pueblos, remarked Mr. James Stevenson
in a conversation with the writer, depict the gens totems upon their
various forms and styles of ceramic manufacture. The peculiar forms
of secondary decoration also permit the article to be traced to any
particular family by which it may have been produced.


This head may be divided into (1) Insignia, or tokens of authority. (2)
Connected with personal name. (3) Property marks. (4) Status of the
individual. (5) Signs of particular achievement.


A large number of examples are presented in connection with other
divisions of this paper. Many more are noted in Schoolcraft, especially
in Vol. I, plates 58 and 59, following page 408. In addition the
following may be mentioned:

Figure 74 is a copy of a drawing made by Lean-Wolf, second chief of
the Hidatsa, to represent himself. The horns on his head-dress show
that he is a chief. The eagle feathers on his war-bonnet, arranged in
the special manner portrayed, also show high distinction as a warrior.
His authority as “partisan,” or leader of a war party is represented
by the elevated pipe. His name is also added with the usual line drawn
from the head. He explained the outline character of the wolf, having
a white body with the mouth unfinished, to show that it was hollow,
nothing there, _i. e._, lean. The animal’s tail is drawn in detail and
dark to distinguish it from the body.

[Illustration: FIG. 74.--Lean-Wolf. Partisan.]

The character for “partisan” is also shown in the Dakota winter counts
for the year 1842-’43. See Plate XXIII.

Figure 75 (extracted from the First Annual Report Bureau of Ethnology,
Fig. 227), drawn and explained by an Oglala Dakota, exhibits four erect
pipes to show that he had led four war parties.

[Illustration: FIG. 75.--Two-Strike as Partisan.]


The names of Indians as formerly adopted or bestowed among themselves
were and still remain connotive, when not subjected to white influence.
They very often refer to some animal, predicating an attribute or
position of that animal. On account of their objective, or at least
ideographic, character, they almost invariably admit of being expressed
in sign-language; and for the same reason they can with the same ease
be portrayed in pictographs. Abundant proof of this is given in two
collections _infra_, viz., the Ogalala Roster and the Red-Cloud Census.
The device generally adopted by the Dakotas to signify that an object
drawn in connection with a human head or figure was a name totem or a
personal name of the individual, is to connect that object with the
figure by a line drawn to the head or more frequently to the mouth of
the latter. The same tribes make a distinction in manifesting that the
gesture-sign for the object gestured is intended to be the name of an
individual, by passing the index forward from the mouth in a direct
line after the conclusion of the sign for the object. This signifies,
“that is his name,”--the name of the person referred to.

A similar designation of an object as a name by means of a connected
line is mentioned in Kingsborough’s Mexico, Vol. I, Plate 33, part 4,
and text, Vol. VI, page 150. Pedro de Alvarado, one of the companions
of Cortez, was red-headed. Because of this the Mexicans called him
_Tonatihu_, the “Sun,” and in their picture-writing his name was
represented by a picture of that luminary attached to his person by a

As a general rule Indians are named at first according to a clan or
gentile system, but in later life one generally acquires a new name,
or perhaps several names in succession, from some special exploits or
adventures. Frequently a sobriquet is given which is not complimentary.
All of the names subsequently acquired as well as the original names
are so connected with material objects or with substantive actions as
to be expressible in a graphic picture, and also in a pictorial sign.
The determination to use names of this connotive character is shown
by the objective translation, whenever possible, of such European
names as it became necessary for them to introduce frequently into
their speech. William Penn was called _Onas_, that being the word for
feather-quill in the Mohawk dialect. The name of the second French
governor of Canada was Montmagny, erroneously translated to be “great
mountain,” which words were correctly translated by the Iroquois into
_Onontio_, and this expression becoming associated with the title
has been applied to all successive Canadian governors, though the
origin having been generally forgotten, it has been considered to be a
metaphorical compliment. Governor Fletcher was named by the Iroquois
_Cajenquiragoe_, “the great swift arrow,” not because of his speedy
arrival at a critical time, as has been supposed, but because they had
somehow been informed of the etymology of his name, “arrow-maker” (_Fr.
fléchier_). A notable example of the adoption of a graphic illustration
from a similarity in the sound of the name to known English words is
given in the present paper in the Winter Count of American-Horse for
the year 1865-’66, page 144, where General Maynadier is made to figure
as “many deer.”

While, as before said, some tribes give names to children from
considerations of birth and kinship according to a fixed rule, others
confer them after solemn deliberation. They are not necessarily
permanent. A diminutive form is frequently bestowed by the affection
of the parent. On initiation a warrior always assumes or receives a
name. Until this is established he is liable to change his name after
every fight or hunt. He will generally only acknowledge the name he
has himself assumed, perhaps from a dream or vision, though he may be
habitually called by an entirely different name. From that reason the
same man is sometimes known under several different epithets. Personal
peculiarity, deformity, or accident is sure to fix a name, against
which it is vain to struggle. Girls do not habitually change names
bestowed in their childhood. It may also be remarked that the same
precise name is often given to different individuals in the same tribe,
but not so frequently in the same band, whereby the inconvenience would
be increased. For this reason it is often necessary to specify the
band, sometimes also the father. For instance, when the writer asked an
Indian who Black-Stone, a chief mentioned in the Dakota winter counts,
was, the Indian asked, first, what tribe was he; then, what band; then,
who was his father; and, except in the case of very noted persons,
the identity is not proved without an answer to these questions. A
striking instance of this plurality of names among the Dakotas was
connected with the name Sitting-Bull, belonging to the leader of the
hostile band, while one of that name was almost equally noted as being
the head soldier of the friendly Dakotas at Red-Cloud Agency. The
present writer also found a number of Dakotas named Lone-Dog when in
search of the recorder of the winter count above explained. The case
may be illustrated by christian names among civilized people. At the
time when a former President of the United States was the leading
topic of conversation, nearly any one being asked who bore the name
of Ulysses would be able to refer to General Grant, but few other
christian names would convey any recognized identity. Indeed, the
surname may be added and multiplicity with confusion still remain.
Very few men have names so peculiar as not to find them with exact
literation in the directories of the large cities.

Among the many peculiarities connected with Indian personal names, far
too many for discussion here, is their avoidance of them in direct
address, terms of kinship or relative age taking their place. Major
J. W. Powell, in some remarks before the Anthropological Society of
Washington, on the functions performed by kinship terms among Indian
tribes, stated that at one time he had the Kaibab Indians, a small
tribe of northern Arizona, traveling with him. The young chief was
called by white men “Frank.” For several weeks he refused to give his
Indian name, and Major Powell endeavored to discover it by noticing the
term by which he was addressed by the other Indians; but invariably
some kinship term was employed. One day in a quarrel his wife called
him “Chuarumpik (Yucca-heart.)” Subsequently Major Powell questioned
the young chief about the matter, who explained and apologized for
the great insult which his wife had given him by stating that she was
excused by great provocation. The insult consisted in calling the man
by his real name.

The following is quoted for comparison with the name-system of the
Indians of Guiana, from Everard F. im Thurn, _op. cit._, p. 219, _et

  The system under which the Indians have their personal names is
  intricate, and difficult to explain. In the first place, a name,
  which may be called the proper name, is always given to a young
  child soon after birth. It is said to be proper that the peaiman,
  or medicine-man, should choose and give this name; but, at any rate
  now, the naming seems more often left to the parents. The word
  selected is generally the name of some plant, bird, or other natural
  object. Among Arawak proper names may be mentioned _Yambenassi_
  (night-monkey) and _Yuri-tokoro_ (tobacco-flower), and among Macusi
  names _Ti-ti_ (owl), _Cheripung_ (star?), and _Simiri_ (locust-tree).
  But these names seem of little use, in that owners have a very strong
  objection to telling or using them, apparently on the ground that the
  name is part of the man, and that he who knows the name has part of
  the owner of that name in his power.

  To avoid any danger of spreading knowledge of their names, one
  Indian, therefore, generally addresses another only according to
  the relationship of the caller and the called, as brother, sister,
  father, mother, and so on; or, when there is no relationship, as
  boy, girl, companion, and so on. These terms, therefore, practically
  form the names actually used by Indians amongst themselves. But an
  Indian is just as unwilling to tell his proper name to a white man
  as to an Indian; and, of course, between the Indian and the white man
  there is no relationship the term for which can serve as a proper
  name. An Indian, therefore, when he has to do with a European, asks
  the latter to give him a name, and if one is given to him, always
  afterwards uses this. The names given in this way are generally
  simple enough--John, Peter, Thomas, and so on. But sometimes they are
  not sufficiently simple to be comprehended and remembered by their
  Indian owners, who therefore, having induced the donor to write the
  name on a piece of paper, preserve this ever after most carefully,
  and whenever asked for their name by another European, exhibit the
  document as the only way of answering. Sometimes, however, an Indian,
  though he cannot pronounce his English names, makes it possible by
  corruption. For instance, a certain Macusi Indian was known to me for
  a long time as Shassapoon, which I thought was his proper name, until
  it accidentally appeared that it was his ‘English name,’ he having
  been named by and after one Charles Appun, a German traveler.

The original of Figure 76 was made by Lean-Wolf, second chief of the
Hidatsa, for Dr. W. J. Hoffman in 1881, and represents the method
which this Indian has employed to designate himself for many years
past. During his boyhood he had another name. This is a current, or
perhaps it may be called cursive, form of the name, which is given more
elaborately in Figure 74.

[Illustration: FIG. 76.--Lean-wolf.]

Figure 77 is taken from the winter count of Battiste Good for the year
1841-’42. He calls the year “Pointer-made-a-commemoration-of-the-dead
winter.” Also “Deep-snow winter.”

[Illustration: FIG. 77.--Pointer.]

The extended index denotes the man’s name, “Pointer,” the ring and
spots, deep snow.

The spots denoting snow occur also in other portions of this count,
and the circle, denoting _quantity_, is also attached in Figure 141,
p. 219, to a forked stick and incloses a buffalo head to signify _much
meat_. That the circle is intended to signify quantity is probable,
as the gesture for “much” or “quantity” is made by passing the hands
upward from both sides and together before the body, describing the
upper half of a circle, _i. e._, showing a heap.

Figure 78 is also from the winter count of Battiste Good for the year
1785-’86. This year he calls “The-Cheyennes-killed-Shadow’s-father

[Illustration: FIG. 78.--Shadow.]

The umbrella signifies Shadow; the three marks under the arrow,
Cheyenne; the blood-stained arrow in the man’s body, killed; Shadow’s
name and the umbrella in the figure intimates that he was the first
Dakota to carry an umbrella. The advantages of the umbrella were soon
recognized by the Dakotas, and the first they obtained from the whites
were highly prized.

In the record prepared by Battiste Good this is the only instance
where the short vertical lines below the arrow signify Cheyenne. In
all others these marks are numerical, and denote the number of persons
killed. That these short lines signify Cheyenne may be attributable to
a practice of that tribe, to make transverse cuts in the forearm after
or before going into a conflict, as an offering or vow to the Great
Spirit for success. Cheyennes are thus represented in the winter count
of Cloud-Shield for 1834-’35 (see page 139) and 1878-’79 (see page 146.)

Mr. P. W. Norris has presented a buffalo robe containing a record of
exploits, which was drawn by Black-Crow, a Dakota warrior, several
years ago. The peculiarity of the drawings is, that the warrior is
represented in each instance in an upright position, the accompanying
figure being always in a recumbent posture, representing the enemy who
was slain. Instead of depicting the personal name above the fallen
personage with a line connecting the two, the name of the enemy is
placed above the head of the victor in each instance, a line extending
between the character and the speaker or warrior whose exploits the
characters represent. The latter seems to proclaim the name of his
victim. A pipe is also figured between the victor and the vanquished,
showing that he is entitled to smoke a pipe of celebration.

A copy of the whole record was shown to the Mdewakantawan Dakotas,
near Fort Snelling, Minnesota, in 1883, and the character reproduced
in Figure 79, about which there was the most doubt, was explained as
signifying “many tongues,” _i. e._, Loud-Talker, being the name of the
person killed.

[Illustration: FIG. 79.--Loud-Talker.]

The circle at the end of the line running from the mouth contains a
number of lanceolate forms, the half of each of which is black, the
other white. They have the appearance of feathers. These figures
signify voice, the sounds as issuing from the mouth, and correspond in
some respect to those drawn by the Mexicans with that significance. The
considerable number of these figures, signifying intensity, denotes
loud voice, or, as given literally, “loud talker,” that being the name
of the victim.

It is however to be noted that “Shield,” an Oglala Dakota, says the
character signifies Feather-Shield, the name of a warrior formerly
living at the Pine Ridge Agency, Dakota.


Plates LII to LVIII represent a pictorial roster of the heads of
families, eighty-four in number, in the band or perhaps clan of Chief
Big-Road, and were obtained by Rev. S. D. Hinman at Standing Rock
Agency, Dakota, in 1883, from the United States Indian agent, Major
McLaughlin, to whom the original was submitted by Chief Big-Road when
brought to that agency and required to give an account of his followers.




Chief Big-Road and his people belong to the Northern Ogalala
(accurately Oglala), and were lately hostile, having been associated
with Sitting-Bull in various depredations and hostilities against both
settlers and the United States authorities. Mr. Hinman states that the
translations of the names were made by the agency interpreter, and
although not as complete as might be, are, in the whole, satisfactory.
Chief Big-Road “is a man of fifty years and upwards, and is as ignorant
and uncompromising a savage, in mind and appearance, as one could well
find at this late date.”

The drawings in the original are on a single sheet of foolscap paper,
made with black and colored pencils, and a few characters are in yellow
ocher--water-color paint. On each of the seven plates, into which
the original is here divided from the requirements of the mode of
publication, the first figure in the upper left-hand corner represents,
as stated, the chief of the sub-band, or perhaps, “family” in the
Indian sense.

On five of the plates the chief has before him a decorated pipe and
pouch, the design of each being distinct from the others. On Plates LIV
and LV the upper left hand figure does not have a pipe, which leads to
the suspicion that, contrary to the information so far received, the
whole of the figures from Nos. 11 to 45 inclusive, on Plates LIII, LIV,
and LV, constitute one band under the same chief, viz., No. 11. In that
case Nos. 23 and 36 would appear to be leaders of subordinate divisions
of that band. Each of the five chiefs has at least three transverse
bands on the cheek, with differentiation of the pattern.










It will be noticed that each figure throughout the plates, which
carries before it a war club, is decorated with three red transverse
bands, but that of No. 30, on Plate LIV, and No. 48 on Plate LVI, have
the three bands without a war club.

The other male figures seem in some instances to have each but a single
red band; in others two bands, red and blue, but the drawing is so
indistinct as to render this uncertain.

It will be observed, also, that in four instances (Nos. 14, 44, 45,
and 72) women are depicted as the surviving heads of families. Their
figures do not have the transverse bands on the cheek.

Also that the five chiefs do not have the war club, their rank being
shown by pipe and pouch. Those men who are armed with war clubs, which
are held vertically before the person, indicate (in accordance with a
similar custom among other branches of the Dakota Nation, in which,
however, the pipe is held instead of the club) that the man has at some
time led war parties on his own account. See pages 118 and 139.










_English names of the figures in the Ogalala Roster._

  No.  1. Big-road.
       2. Bear-looking-behind.
       3. Brings-back-plenty.
       4. White buffalo.
       5. The-real-hawk.
       6. Shield-boy.
       7. The-bear-stops.
       8. Wears-the-feather.
       9. Dog-eagle.
      10. Red-horn-bull.
      11. Low-dog.
      12. Charging-hawk.
      13. White-tail.
      14. Blue-cloud (woman).
      15. Shield.
      16. Little-eagle.
      17. Spotted-skunk.
      18. White-bear.
      19. White-hair.
      20. His-fight.
      21. Center-feather.
      22. Kills-Crows (Indians).
      23. The-bear-spares-him.
      24. White-plume.
      25. Fears-nothing.
      26. Red-crow.
      27. The-last-bear.
      28. Bird-man.
      29. Horse-with-horns.
      30. Fast-elk.
      31. Chief-boy.
      32. Spotted-elk.
      33. Carries-the-badger.
      34. Red-earth-woman.
      35. Eagle-clothing.
      36. Has-a-war-club.
      37. Little-buffalo.
      38. Has-a-point (weapon.)
      39. Returning-scout.
      40. Little-killer.
      41. Whistler.
      42. Tongue.
      43. Black-elk.
      44. Lone-woman.
      45. Deaf-woman.
      46. Long-dog. Erroneously printed Wall dog on Plate LVI.
      47. Iron-hawk.
      48. Pretty-weasel.
      49. Short-buffalo.
      50. Bull-with-bad-heart.
      51. Four-crows.
      52. Tall-white-man.
      53. Eagle-hawk.
      54. Lone-man.
      55. Causes-trouble-ahead.
      56. Makes-dirt (“foul”).
      57. Black-road.
      58. Shot-close.
      59. Iron-crow.
      60. Running-horse.
      61. Owns-an-animal-with-horns.
      62. Blue-cloud-man.
      63. Fingers.
      64. Sacred-teeth.
      65. Searching-cloud.
      66. Female-elk-boy.
      67. Little-owl.
      68. Pretty-horse.
      69. Running-eagle.
      70. Makes-enemy.
      71. Prairie-chicken.
      72. Red-flute-woman.
      73. Little-hawk.
      74. Standing-buffalo.
      75. Standing-bear.
      76. Iron-white-man.
      77. Bear-whirlwind.
      78. Sacred-crow.
      79. Blue-hawk.
      80. Hard-to-kill.
      81. Iron-boy.
      82. Painted-rock.
      83. Yellow-wolf.
      84. Made-an-enemy.

The information yet obtained from the author of the pictograph
concerning its details is meager, and as it will probably be procured
no unimportant conjectures are now hazarded. It is presented for the
ideography shown, which may in most cases be understood from the
translation of the several names into English as given in the preceding
list. A few remarks of explanation, occurring to the writer, may be

No. 34, on plate LIV, with the translation Red-earth-woman, appears
from the scalp-lock and the warrior’s necklace to be a man, and
Red-earth-woman to be his name.

No. 62 on Plate LVII, probably refers to an Ogalala who was called
Arapaho, the interpretation, as well as the blue cloud, being in the
Dakota language “Blue cloud,” a term by which the Arapaho Indians are
known to the Dakotas, as several times mentioned in this paper. In
No. 65, Plate LVII, the cloud is drawn in blue, the _searching_ being
derived from the expression of that idea in gesture by passing the
extended index of one hand (or both) forward from the eye, then from
right to left, as if indicating various uncertain localities before the
person, _i. e._, searching for something. The lines from the eyes are
in imitation of this gesture.

In No. 77, Plate LVIII, is a reproduction of the character given in
Red-Cloud’s Census, No. 133. See Plate LXVII. The figure appears,
according to the explanation given by several Ogalala Dakota Indians,
to signify the course of a whirlwind, with the transverse lines in
imitation of the circular movement of the air, dirt, leaves, etc.,
observed during such aërial disturbances.

In No. 78 of the same plate the lines above the bird’s head again
appear to signify _sacred_, _mystic_, usually termed “medicine” in
other records. Similar lines are in No. 64, Plate LVII.


The pictorial census, shown in Plates LIX to LXXIX, was prepared under
the direction of Red-Cloud, chief of the Dakota at Pine Ridge Agency,
Dakota Territory, about two years ago. The individuals referred to
and enumerated are the adherents of Red-Cloud, and do not represent
all the Indians at that Agency. Owing to some disagreement the agent
refused to acknowledge that chief as head of the Indians at the agency,
and named another as the official chief. The Indians under Red-Cloud
exhibited their allegiance to him by attaching, or having their names
attached, to seven sheets of ordinary manilla paper, which were sent to
Washington and, while in the custody of Dr. T. A. Bland, of that city,
were kindly loaned by him to the Bureau of Ethnology to be copied by
photography. The different sheets were apparently drawn by different
persons, as the drawings of human heads vary enough to indicate
































































The first sheet of the original series contains in the present series
of plates Nos. 1-130; the second sheet, Nos. 131-174; third sheet, Nos.
175-210; fourth sheet, Nos.
211-235; fifth sheet, Nos. 236-253; sixth sheet, Nos. 254-277; seventh
sheet, Nos. 278-289. This arrangement seems to imply seven bands or,
perhaps, gentes.

Dr. V. T. McGillycuddy, Indian agent at Pine Ridge Agency, Dakota, in
correspondence, gives the impression that the several pictographs,
representing names, were attached as signatures by the several
individuals to a subscription list for Dr. T. A. Bland, before
mentioned, the editor of The Council Fire, in support of that
publication, and with an agreement that each should give twenty-five
cents. The subscribers were, in fact, the adherents of Red-Cloud. The
motive for the collection of pictured names is of little consequence,
its interest, as that of the foregoing Ogalala Roster, being in the
mode of their portrayal, together with the assurance that they were the
spontaneous and genuine work of the Indians concerned.

Many suggestions regarding the origin of heraldry and that of proper
names can be obtained from this and the preceding series of plates.

The translation of the names corresponding with the figures is as

  _English names of the figures in Red-Cloud’s census._

  No.   1. Chief Red-Cloud.
        2. Top-Man.
        3. Slow-Bear.
        4. He-Dog.
        5. Little Chief.
        6. Red-Shirt.
        7. White-Hawk.
        8. Cloud Shield.
        9. Good-Weasel.
       10. Afraid-Eagle.
       11. Bear-Brains.
       12. War-Bonnet.
       13. Little-Soldier.
       14. Little-Dog.
       15. Call-for.
       16. Short-Bull.
       17. White-Bird.
       18. Painted-Face.
       19. Iron-Beaver.
       20. Big-Leggings.
       21. Only-Man.
       22. Mad-Hearted-Bull.
       23. Running-Eagle.
       24. Ring-Cloud.
       25. White-Bird.
       26. Arapaho.
       27. Steals-Horses.
       28. Kills-by-the-Camp.
       29. Iron-Hawk.
       30. Knock-a-hole-in-the-head.
       31. Runs-around.
       32. Kills-in-tight-place.
       33. Scratch-the-Belly.
       34. Singer.
       35. Walking-Bull-Track.
       36. War-Eagle.
       37. Tree-in-the-Face.
       38. Kills-the-Enemy-at-Night.
       39. Wears-the-Bonnet.
       40. War-Bonnet.
       41. Shot-in-front-the-Lodge.
       42. Kills-in-Lodge.
       43. Kills-at-Night.
       44. Tall-White-Man.
       45. Strike-First.
       46. Smoking-Bear.
       47. Hump.
       48. Shot-Close.
       49. Blue-Horse.
       50. Red-Elk.
       51. Only-Man.
       52. Bear-comes-out.
       53. Poor-Elk.
       54. Blue-Handle.
       55. Bad-Yellow-Hair.
       56. Runs-by-the-Enemy.
       57. Torn-Belly.
       58. Roman-Nose.
       59. Old-Cloud.
       60. High-Cloud.
       61. Bear-Looks-Back.
       62. Shield-Bear.
       63. Sees-the-Enemy.
       64. Biting-Bear.
       65. Cut-Through.
       66. Red-Owl.
       67. Good-Bird.
       68. Red-Fly.
       69. Kills-Enemy-at-Night.
       70. Flat-Iron.
       71. White-Horse.
       72. Cheyenne-Butcher.
       73. Red-Eagle.
       74. Kills-Back.
       75. Red-Bear.
       76. Poor-Bear.
       77. Runs-off-the-Horse.
       78. Bald-Eagle.
       79. Shot-at.
       80. Little-Ring.
       81. Runs-off-the-Horses.
       82. Hard-Ground.
       83. Shot-at-his-horse.
       84. Red-Deer.
       85. Yellow-Fox.
       86. Feather-on-his-head.
       87. Little-Bear.
       88. Spotted-Horse.
       89. Takes-the-Gun.
       90. Spotted-Face.
       91. Got-there-first.
       92. Leaves.
       93. Big-Voice.
       94. Poor-Dog.
       95. Goes-through-the-Camp.
       96. Big-Road.
       97. Brings-lots-of-horses.
       98. Little-Shell.
       99. Gap.
      100. Fills-the-Pipe.
      101. Lodge-Roll.
      102. Red-Bull.
      103. Runs-his-Horse.
      104. Licks-with-his-tongue.
      105. Old-Horse.
      106. Tracks.
      107. Bob-tail-Horse.
      108. White-Elk.
      109. Little-Sun.
      110. Keeps-the-Battle.
      111. High-Cloud.
      112. Bone-Necklace.
      113. Goes-Walking.
      114. Iron-Horse.
      115. Blue-Hatchet.
      116. Eagle-Bird.
      117. Iron-Bird.
      118. Long-Panther.
      119. Bull-Lance.
      120. Black-Horse.
      121. Pook-Skunk.
      122. Own-the-Arrows.
      123. Shot.
      124. Red-Boy.
      125. Bear-Head.
      126. Hard.
      127. Eagle-Horse.
      128. Blue-Bird.
      129. Good-Bird.
      130. Caught-the-Enemy.
      131. Leafing.
      132. Horned-Horse.
      133. White-Whirlwind.
      134. Wolf-Ear.
      135. Afraid-of-Elk.
      136. Feathers.
      137. Tall-Man.
      138. Elk-Head.
      139. Ring-Owl.
      140. Standing-Bear.
      141. Small-Ring.
      142. Charging-Hawk.
      143. Afraid-of-Bull.
      144. Medicine-Horse.
      145. Two-Eagles.
      146. Red-Shirt.
      147. Bear-Nostrils.
      148. Spotted-Horse.
      149. Afraid-of-Bear.
      150. Little-Bull.
      151. Red-Hawk.
      152. Bear-Paw.
      153. Eagle-Horse.
      154. Red-Beaver.
      155. Spotted-Eagle.
      156. Little-Crow.
      157. Black-Horse.
      158. Mouse.
      159. Count-the-Nights.
      160. White-Eagle.
      161. Five-Thunders.
      162. White-Horse.
      163. Killed-First.
      164. Scout.
      165. Yellow-Horse.
      166. Charge-After.
      167. Black-Bear.
      168. Kills-the-Enemy.
      169. Wolf-stands on-a-Hill.
      170. Eagle-Bear.
      171. Little-Wolf.
      172. Spotted-Elk.
      173. Elk-walking-with-his-Voice.
      174. Weasel-Bear.
      175. Black-Elk.
      176. Takes-Enemy.
      177. Poor-Bull.
      178. Eagle-Elk.
      179. Thunder-Pipe.
      180. Horse-comes-out.
      181. Old-Mexican.
      182. Shield.
      183. Keeps-the-Battle.
      184. Wolf-stands on-Hill.
      185. Bear-Comes-Out.
      186. Good-Bull.
      187. Fog.
      188. Bear-that-growls.
      189. Drags-the-rope.
      190. White-tail.
      191. Feathers.
      192. Fighting-Cuss.
      193. Horned-Horse.
      194. Enemies-hit-him.
      195. Black-Bear.
      196. Red-War-Bonnet.
      197. Black-Weasel.
      198. Smokes-at-Night.
      199. Little-Cloud.
      200. Good-Bull.
      201. Medicine.
      202. Stone-Necklace.
      203. Bad-Horn.
      204. High-Eagle.
      205. Black-Bull.
      206. Man-with-heart.
      207. Little-Ring.
      208. Goes-in-Front.
      209. Little-Fighter.
      210. Mean-Boy.
      211. Red-Hawk.
      212. White-Bear.
      213. Many-Shells.
      214. Yellow-Knife.
      215. Crazy-Head.
      216. Shoots-the-Animal.
      217. Kills-two.
      218. Fast-Horse.
      219. Big-Turnip.
      220. Yellow-Owl.
      221. Red-Bull.
      222. Garter.
      223. Black-Fox.
      224. Kills-two.
      225. Grasp.
      226. Medicine.
      227. Leaves.
      228. Big-Hand.
      229. Gun.
      230. Bad-Boy.
      231. Warrior.
      232. Afraid-of-Him.
      233. Cloud-Ring.
      234. Kills-the-Bear.
      235. Comes-in-Sight.
      236. Sits-like-a-Woman.
      237. Surrounds-them.
      238. High-Bear.
      239. Don’t-turn.
      240. Black-Bird.
      241. Swallow.
      242. Little-Elk.
      243. Little-Bird.
      244. Bear-Back.
      245. Little-Back.
      246. Buffalo-Horn.
      247. Iron-Bird.
      248. Bull.
      249. Eagle-Track.
      250. Medicine-Bird.
      251. Fox.
      252. White-Bear.
      253. Tall-Panther.
      254. Gun.
      255. Ring.
      256. Beads.
      257. Wolf.
      258. Black-Horse.
      259. White-Horse.
      260. Spotted-Owl.
      261. Don’t-turn.
      262. Red-Star.
      263. Big-Voiced-Eagle.
      264. White-Elk.
      265. Porcupine.
      266. Noon.
      267. Warrior.
      268. Eagle-Feather.
      269. Round.
      270. Big-Thunder.
      271. Shot-His-Horse.
      272. Red-Bear.
      273. Little-Moon.
      274. Feather-Necklace.
      275. Fast-Elk.
      276. Black-Bull.
      277. Light.
      278. Black-Deer.
      279. White-Cow-Man.
      280. Horse----the-Clothing.
      281. Stabber.
      282. Eagle-Swallow.
      283. Afraid-of-him.
      284. Red-Boy.
      285. Dog-with-good-voice.
      286. Tall-Pine.
      287. Pipe.
      288. Few-Tails.
      289. Medicine-man.

The remark made above (page 176) in connection with the Ogalala
Roster, acknowledging the paucity of direct information as to details
while presenting the pictographs as sufficiently interpreted for the
present purposes by the translation of the personal names, may be
here repeated. The following notes are, however, subjoined as of some
assistance to the reader:

No. 2. Top-man, or more properly “man above,” is drawn a short distance
above a curved line, which represents the character for sky inverted.
The gesture for sky is sometimes made by passing the hand from east to
west describing an arc. The Ojibwa pictograph for the same occurs in
Plate IV, No. 1, beneath which a bird appears.

No. 9. The character is represented with two waving lines passing
upward from the mouth, in imitation of the gesture-sign _good talk_,
_spiritual talk_, as made by passing two extended and separated fingers
(or all fingers separated) upward and forward from the mouth. This
gesture is made when referring either to a shaman or to a christian
clergyman, or to a house of worship, and the name seems to have been
translated here as “good,” without sufficient emphasis, being probably
more with the idea of “mystic.”

No. 15. The gesture for _come_ or _to call to one’s self_ is shown in
this figure.

No. 24. The semicircle for cloud is the reverse in conception to that
shown above in No. 2.

No. 26. Arapaho, in Dakota, magpiyato--_blue cloud_--is here shown by
a circular cloud, drawn in blue in the original, inclosing the head of
a man.

No. 38. Night appears to be indicated by the black circle around the
head, suggested by the _covering over with darkness_, as shown in the
gesture for night by passing both flat hands from their respective
sides inwards and downwards before the body. The sign for _kill_ is
denoted here by the bow in contact with the head, a custom in practice
among the Dakota of striking the dead enemy with the bow or _coup_
stick. See also Figure 130, page 211.

No. 43. Night is here shown by the curve for _sky_, and the suspension,
beneath it, of a star, or more properly in Dakota signification, a
_night sun_--the moon.

No. 59. Cloud is drawn in blue in the original; _old_ is signified by
drawing a staff in the hand of the man. The gesture for old is made in
imitation of walking with a staff.

No. 69. This drawing is similar to No. 38. The differentiation is
sufficient to allow of a distinction between the two characters, each
representing the same name, though two different men.

No. 131. The uppermost character is said to be drawn in imitation of a
number of fallen leaves lying against one another, and has reference to
the season when leaves fall--autumn.

No. 161. The thunder-bird is here drawn with five
lines--voices--issuing from the mouth.

No. 201. The waving lines above the head signify _sacred_, and are made
in gesture in a similar manner as that for _prayer_ and _voice_ in No.

No. 236. This person is also portrayed in a recent Dakota record, where
the character is represented by the “woman seated” only. The name of
this man is not “Sits-like-a-Woman,” but High-Wolf--Shúnka mánita
wa^ngátia. This is an instance of giving one name in a pictograph and
retaining another by which the man is known in camp to his companions.

No. 250. The word medicine is in the Indian sense, before explained,
and would be more correctly expressed by the word _sacred_, or
_mystic_, as is also indicated by the waving lines issuing from the

No. 289. The character for _sacred_ again appears, attached to the end
of the line issuing from the mouth.


The Serrano Indians in the vicinity of Los Angeles, California,
formerly practiced a method of marking trees to indicate the corner
boundaries of patches of land. According to Hon. A. F. Coronel, of the
above-named city, the Indians owning areas of territory of whatever
size would cut lines upon the bark of the tree corresponding to certain
cheek lines drawn on their own faces, _i. e._, lines running outward
and downward over the cheeks or perhaps over the chin only, tattooed
in color. These lines were made on the trees on the side facing the
property, and were understandingly recognized by all. The marks were
personal and distinctive, and when adopted by land owners could not be
used by any other person. This custom still prevailed when Mr. Coronel
first located in Southern California, about the year 1843. So is the
account, but it may be remarked that the land was probably owned or
claimed by a gens rather than by individuals, the individual ownership
of land not belonging to the stage of culture of any North American
Indians. Perhaps some of the leading members of the gens were noted in
connection with the occupancy of the land, and their tattoo marks were
the same as those on the trees. The correspondence of these marks is of
special importance. It is also noteworthy that the designations common
to the men and the trees were understood and respected.

[Illustration: FIG. 80.--Boat paddle. Arikara.]

Among the Arikara Indians a custom prevails of drawing upon the blade
of a canoe or bull-boat paddle such designs as are worn by the chief
and owner to suggest his personal exploits. This has to great extent
been adopted by the Hidatsa and the Mandans. The marks are chiefly
horseshoes and crosses (see Figure 80), referring to the capture of the
enemy’s ponies and to _coups_ in warfare or defense against enemies.

The squaws being the persons who generally use the boats during the
course of their labors in collecting wood along the river banks,
or in ferrying their warriors across the water, have need of this
illustration of their husbands’ prowess as a matter of social status,
it being also a matter of pride. The entire tribe being intimately
acquainted with the courage and bravery of any individual, imposition
and fraud in the delineation of any character are not attempted, as
such would surely be detected and the impostor would be ridiculed if
not ostracised. See in connection with the design last figured, others
under the heading of Signs of Particular Achievements, page 186.

The brands upon cattle in Texas and other regions of the United States
where ranches are common, illustrate the modern use of property marks.
A collection of these brands made by the writer compares unfavorably
for individuality and ideography with the marks of Indians for similar

The following translation from Kunst and Witz der Neger (Art and
Ingenuity of the Negro) is inserted for the purpose of comparison
between Africa and America. The article was published at Munich,
Bavaria, in Das Ausland, 1884, No. 1, p. 12.

“Whenever a pumpkin of surprisingly fine appearance is growing, which
promises to furnish a desirable water-vase, the proprietor hurries to
distinguish it by cutting into it some special mark with his knife,
and probably superstitious feelings may co-operate in this act. I have
reproduced herewith the best types of such property marks which I have
been able to discover.”

These property marks are reproduced in Figure 81.

[Illustration: FIG. 81.--African property mark.]


Several notices of pictographs under this head appear in other parts
of this paper; among others, designations of chiefs, sub-chiefs,
partisans, medicine men or shamans, horse thieves, and squaw men,
are shown in the Winter Counts and in the Ogalala Roster. See also
Figure 120, page 204. Captives are drawn in Figure 180, page 242. With
reference to the status of women as married or single see pages 64 and
232. For widow, see page 197. Marks for higher and lower classes are
mentioned on page 64.

To these may be added the following, contributed by Mr. Gatschet:
Half-breed girls among the Klamaths of Oregon appear to have but one
perpendicular line tattooed down over the chin, while the full-blood
women have four perpendicular lines on the chin. Tattooing, when
practiced at this day, is performed with needles, the color being
prepared from charcoal.


Eagle feathers are worn by the Hidatsa Indians to denote acts of
courage or success in war. The various markings have different
significations, as is shown in the following account, which, with
sketches of the features made from the original objects, were obtained
by Dr. Hoffman from the Hidatsa at Fort Berthold, Dakota, during 1881.

[Illustration: FIG. 82.--First to strike enemy. Hidatsa.]

A feather, to the tip of which is attached a tuft of down or several
strands of horse-hair, dyed red, denotes that the wearer has killed an
enemy and that he was the first to touch or strike him with the coup
stick. Figure 82.

[Illustration: FIG. 83.--Second to strike enemy. Hidatsa.]

A feather bearing one red bar, made with vermilion, signifies the
wearer to have been the second person to strike the fallen enemy with
the coup stick. Figure 83.

[Illustration: FIG. 84.--Third to strike enemy. Hidatsa.]

A feather bearing two red bars signifies that the wearer was the third
person to strike the body. Figure 84.

[Illustration: FIG. 85.--Fourth to strike enemy. Hidatsa.]

A feather with three bars signifies that the wearer was the fourth to
strike the fallen enemy. Figure 85. Beyond this number honors are not

[Illustration: FIG. 86.--Wounded by an enemy. Hidatsa.]

A red feather denotes that the wearer was wounded in an encounter with
an enemy. Figure 86.

[Illustration: FIG. 87.--Killed a woman. Hidatsa.]

A narrow strip of rawhide or buckskin is wrapped from end to end with
porcupine quills dyed red, though sometimes a few white ones are
inserted to break the monotony of color; this strip is attached to
the inner surface of the rib or shaft of the quill by means of very
thin fibers of sinew. This signifies that the wearer killed a woman
belonging to a hostile tribe. The figure so decorated is shown in
Figure 87. In very fine specimens it will be found that the quills are
directly applied to the shaft without resorting to the strap of leather.

[Illustration: FIG. 88.--Killed an enemy. Dakota.]

The following scheme, used by the Dakotas, is taken from Dahcotah,
or Life and Legends of the Sioux around Fort Snelling, by Mrs. Mary
Eastman. New York, 1849. Colors are not given, but red undoubtedly
predominates, as is known from personal observation.

A spot upon the larger web denotes that the wearer has killed an enemy.
Figure 88.

[Illustration: FIG. 89.--Cut throat and scalped. Dakota.]

Figure 89 denotes that the wearer has cut the throat of his enemy, and
taken his scalp.

[Illustration: FIG. 90.--Cut enemy’s throat. Dakota.]

Figure 90 denotes that the wearer has cut the throat of his enemy.

[Illustration: FIG. 91.--Third to strike. Dakota.]

Figure 91 denotes that the wearer was the third that touched the body
of his enemy after he was killed.

[Illustration: FIG. 92.--Fourth to strike. Dakota.]

Figure 92 denotes that the wearer was the fourth that touched the body
of his enemy after he was killed.

[Illustration: FIG. 93.--Fifth to strike. Dakota.]

Figure 93 denotes that the wearer was the fifth that touched the body
of his enemy after he was killed.

Figure 94 denotes the wearer has been wounded in many places by his

[Illustration: FIG. 94.--Many wounds. Dakota.]

The following variations in the scheme were noticed in 1883 among the
Mdewakantawan Dakotas near Fort Snelling, Minnesota.

In personal ornamentation, and for marks of distinction in war,
feathers of the eagle are used as among the other bands of Dakotas.

A plain feather is used to signify that the wearer has killed an enemy,
without regard to the manner in which he was slain.

When the end is clipped transversely, and the edge colored red, it
signifies that the throat of the enemy was cut.

A black feather denotes that an Ojibwa woman was killed. Enemies
are considered as Ojibwas, the latter being the tribe with whom the
Mdewakantawan Dakotas have had most to do.

When a warrior has been wounded a red spot is painted upon the broad
side of a feather. If the wearer has been shot in the body, arms, or
legs, a similar spot, in red, is painted upon his clothing or blanket,
immediately over the locality. These red spots are sometimes worked in
porcupine quills, or in cotton fiber as obtained from the traders.

Marks denoting similar exploits are used by the Hidatsa, Mandan, and
Arikara Indians. The Hidatsa claim to have been the originators of the
devices, which were subsequently adopted by the Arikara with slight
variation. All of the information with reference to the following
figures, 95 to 103, was obtained by Dr. W. J. Hoffman, from chiefs of
the several tribes at Fort Berthold, Dakota, during the summer of 1881.

The following characters are marked upon robes and blankets, usually
in red or blue colors, and often upon the boat paddles. Frequently an
Indian may be seen who has them even painted upon his thighs, though
this is generally resorted to only on festal occasions, or for dancing:

[Illustration: FIG. 95.--Successful defense. Hidatsa, etc.]

Figure 95 denotes that the wearer successfully defended himself against
the enemy by throwing up a ridge of earth or sand to protect the body.

[Illustration: FIG. 96.--Two successful defenses. Hidatsa, etc.]

Figure 96 signifies that the wearer has upon two different occasions
defended himself by hiding his body within low earthworks. The
character is merely a compound of two of the preceding marks placed

Figure 97 signifies that the one who carries this mark upon his
blanket, leggings, boat paddle, or any other property, or his person,
has distinguished himself by capturing a horse belonging to a hostile

[Illustration: FIG. 97.--Captured a horse. Hidatsa, etc.]

[Illustration: FIG. 98.--First to strike an enemy. Hidatsa.]

Figure 98 signifies among the Hidatsa and Mandans that the wearer
was the first person to strike a fallen enemy with a coup stick. It
signifies among the Arikara simply that the wearer killed an enemy.

[Illustration: FIG. 99.--Second to strike an enemy. Hidatsa.]

Figure 99 represents among the Hidatsa and Mandans the second person to
strike a fallen enemy. It represents among the Arikara the first person
to strike the fallen enemy.

[Illustration: FIG. 100.--Third to strike an enemy. Hidatsa.]

Figure 100 denotes the third person to strike the enemy, according to
the Hidatsa and Mandan; the second person to strike him, according to
the Arikara.

[Illustration: FIG. 101.--Fourth to strike an enemy. Hidatsa.]

Figure 101 shows among the Hidatsa and Mandan the fourth person to
strike the fallen enemy. This is the highest and last number; the fifth
person to risk the danger is considered brave for venturing so near the
ground held by the enemy, but has no right to wear the mark.

The same mark among the Arikara represents the person to be the third
to strike the enemy.

[Illustration: FIG. 102.--Fifth to strike an enemy. Hidatsa.]

Figure 102, according to the Arikara, represents the fourth person to
strike the enemy.

[Illustration: FIG. 103.--Struck four enemies. Hidatsa.]

According to the Hidatsa, the wearer of the accompanying mark, Figure
103, would have figured in four encounters; in the two lateral ones,
each, he was the second to strike the fallen enemy, and in the upper
and lower spaces it would signify that he was the third person upon two

The mark of a black hand, sometimes made by the impress of an actually
blackened palm, or drawn natural size or less, was found upon articles
of Ojibwa manufacture in the possession of Hidatsa and Arikara Indians
at Fort Berthold, Dakota, in 1881. These Indians say it is an old
custom, and signifies that the person authorized to wear the mark has
killed an enemy. The articles upon which the designs occurred came from
Red Lake Reservation, Minnesota, the Indians of the latter locality
frequently going west to Fort Berthold to trade bead and other work for

Further signs of particular achievements are given in Figures 174, 175,
176, 177, and 179, and others may be noticed frequently in the Dakota
Winter Counts.


Under this head pictographs already known may be divided into those
relating to--

1. Mythic personages.

2. Shamanism.

3. Dances and ceremonies.

4. Mortuary practices.

5. Charms and fetiches.


Reference may be made to the considerable number of pictographs of
this character in Schoolcraft, more particularly in his first volume;
also to the Walum-Olum or Bark-Record of the Lenni-Lenape, which was
published in Beach’s “Indian Miscellany,” Albany, 1877; and since in
The Lenâpé and their Legends: By Dr. D. G. Brinton. Several examples
are also to be found in other parts of the present paper.

Some forms of the Thunder-Bird are here presented, as follows:

[Illustration: FIG. 104.--Thunder-Bird. Dakota.]

[Illustration: FIG. 105.--Thunder-bird. Dakota.]

Figures 104 and 105 are forms of the thunder-bird found in 1883 among
the Dakotas near Fort Snelling, drawn and interpreted by themselves.
They are both winged and have waving lines extending from the mouth
downward, signifying lightning. It is noticeable that Figure 105
placed vertically, then appearing roughly as an upright human figure,
is almost identically the same as some of the Ojibwa meda or spirit
figures represented in Schoolcraft, and also on a bark Ojibwa record in
the possession of the writer.

Figure 106 is another and more cursive form of the thunder-bird
obtained at the same place and time as those immediately preceding. It
is wingless, and, with changed position or point of view, would suggest
a headless human figure.

[Illustration: FIG. 106.--Thunder-Bird. Wingless. Dakota.]

The blue thunder-bird, Figure 107, with red breast and tail, is a copy
of one worked in beads, found at Mendota, Minnesota. At that place
stories were told of several Indians who had presentiments that the
thunder-bird was coming to kill them, when they would so state the case
to their friends that they might retire to a place of safety, while the
victim of superstition would go out to an elevated point of land or
upon the prairie to await his expected doom.

[Illustration: FIG. 107.--Thunder-bird. Dakota.]

Frequently, no doubt on account of the isolated and elevated position
of the person in a thunder storm, accidents of this kind do occur, thus
giving notoriety to the presentiment above mentioned.

A still different form of the Dakota thunder-bird is reproduced in Mrs.
Eastman’s Dahcotah, _op. cit._, page 262. See also page 181 _supra_.

Figure 108 is “Skam-son,” the thunder-bird, a tattoo mark copied from
the back of an Indian belonging to the Laskeek village of the Haida
tribe, Queen Charlotte’s Island, by Mr. James G. Swan.

[Illustration: FIG. 108.--Thunder-bird. Haida.]

Figure 109 is a Twana thunder-bird, as reported by Rev. M. Eells in
Bull. U. S. Geol. and Geog. Survey, III, p. 112.

[Illustration: FIG. 109.--Thunder-bird. Twana.]

  There is at Eneti, on the reservation [Washington Territory], an
  irregular basaltic rock, about 3 feet by 3 feet and 4 inches, and a
  foot and a half high. On one side there has been hammered a face,
  said to be the representation of the face of the thunder bird, which
  could also cause storms.

  The two eyes are about 6 inches in diameter and 4 inches apart and
  the nose about 9 inches long. It is said to have been made by some
  man a long time ago, who felt very badly, and went and sat on the
  rock, and with another stone hammered out the eyes and nose. For a
  long time they believed that if the rock was shaken it would cause
  rain, probably because the thunder bird was angry.

  Graphic representations of Atotarko and of the Great Heads are shown
  in Mrs. Erminnie A. Smith’s Myths of the Iroquois, in the Second
  Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology. Mythic Personages are also
  presented in aboriginal drawing by Mr. Charles G. Leland in his work,
  the Algonquin Legends of New England, etc. Boston, 1884.


  The term Shamanism is a corrupted form of the Sanscrit word for
  ascetic. Its original application was to the religion of certain
  tribes of northern Asia, but in general it expresses the worship of
  spirits with magic arts and fetich-practices. The Shaman or priest
  pretends to control by incantations and ceremonies the evil spirits
  to whom death, sickness, and other misfortunes are ascribed. This
  form or stage of religion is so prevalent among the North American
  Indians that the adoption of the term Shaman here is substantially
  correct, and it avoids both the stupid expression “medicine-man” of
  current literature and the indefinite title priest, the associations
  with which are not appropriate to the Indian religious practitioner.
  The statement that the Indians worship one “Great Spirit” or single
  overruling personal god is erroneous. That philosophical conception
  is beyond the stage of culture reached by them and was not found in
  any tribe previous to missionary influence. Their actual philosophy
  can be expressed far more objectively and therefore pictorially.

  Many instances of the “Making Medicine” are shown in the Dakota
  Winter Counts; also graphic expressions regarding magic. Especial
  reference may be made to American-Horse’s count for the years
  1824-’25 and 1843-’44, in the Corbusier Winter Counts.

  Figure 110 was copied from a piece of walrus ivory in the museum of
  the Alaska Commercial Company, of San Francisco, California, by Dr.
  Hoffman, and the interpretation is as obtained from an Alaskan native.

  [Illustration: FIG. 110.--Shaman exorcising Demon. Alaska.]

  1, 2. The Shaman’s summer habitations, trees growing in the vicinity.

  3. The Shaman, who is represented in the act of holding one of his
  “demons.” These “evil spirits” are considered as under the control of
  the Shaman, who employs them to drive other “evil beings” out of the
  bodies of sick men.

  4. The demon or aid.

  5. The same Shaman exorcising the demons causing the sickness.

  6, 7. Sick men, who have been under treatment, and from whose bodies
  the “evil beings” or sickness has been expelled.

  8. Two “evil spirits” which have left the bodies of Nos. 6 and 7.

  Fig. 111 represents a record of a Shamanistic nature, and was
  copied by Dr. Hoffman from an ivory bow in the museum of the Alaska
  Commercial Company in 1882. The interpretation was also obtained at
  the same time from an Alaskan native, with text in the Kiatexamut
  dialect of the Innuit language.

  The rod of the bow upon which the characters occur is here
  represented in three sections, A, B, and C. A bears the beginning of
  the narrative, extending over only one-half of the length of the rod.
  The course of the inscription is then continued on the adjacent side
  of the rod at the middle, and reading in both directions (section B
  and C), towards the two files of approaching animals. B and C occupy
  the whole of one side.

  [Illustration: FIG. 111.--Supplication for success. Alaska.]

  The following is the explanation of the characters.

  A. No.  1. Baidarka or skin boat resting on poles.
          2. Winter habitation.
          3. Tree.
          4. Winter habitations.
          5. Store-house.
          6. Tree. Between this and the store-house is placed a piece of
               timber, from which are suspended fish for drying.
          7. Store-house. From 1 to 7 represents an accumulation of
               dwellings, which signifies a settlement, the home of the
               person to whom the history relates.
          8. The hunter sitting on the ground, asking for aid, and making
               the gesture for supplication.
          9. The Shaman to whom application is made by the hunter
               desiring success in the chase. The Shaman has just finished
               his incantations, and while still retaining his left
               arm in the position for that ceremony, holds the right
               toward the hunter, giving him the success requested.
         10. The Shaman’s winter lodge.
         11. Trees.
         12. Summer habitation of the Shaman.
         13. Trees in vicinity of the Shaman’s residence.
  B. No. 14. Tree.
         15. A Shaman standing upon his lodge, driving back game
               which had approached a dangerous locality. To this
               Shaman the hunter had also made application for success
               in the chase, but was denied, hence the act of the Shaman.
         16. Deer leaving at the Shaman’s order.
         17. Horns of a deer swimming a river.
         18. Young deer, apparently, from the smaller size of the body
               and unusually long legs.
  C. No. 19. A tree.
         20. The lodge of the hunter (A. 8), who, after having been
               granted the request for success, placed his totem upon the
               lodge as a mark of gratification and to insure greater luck
               in his undertaking.
         21. The hunter in the act of shooting.
      22-23. The game killed, consisting of five deer.
         24. The demon sent out by the Shaman (A. 9) to drive the game
               in the way of the hunter.
      25-28. The demon’s assistants.

  The original text above mentioned with interlinear translation, is as

  Nu-nŭm´-cu-a u-xlá-qa, pi-cú-qi-a kú da ku-lú-ni,  ka-xá-qa-lŭk´.
  Settlement man  came,  hunting   go  wanted (to), (and) Shaman (he) asked.

  Ká-xa-qlŭm´ mi-ná-qa   lu-qú ta-xlí-mu-nŭk tu-dú-ia-nŭk. Ká-xlá-lŭk
    Shaman   gave to him            five         deer.       Shaman

  ú-qli-ni     u[n]-i-lum´     kaí-na-nŭn´      ka-xá-hu pi-gú,      í-u-nĭ
  went to        lodge       (where), standing spirits [incantations] devil
  the top (winter habitation)    on top            made he,

       aú-qkua-glu-hu  té-itc-lu-gĭ´  té xle-mĕn´ tun dú-ia-gūt, taú-na-cŭk
  sent to him          brought to him    five       deer,      same man
 [the hunter] (and)

  pi-xlu-nĭ´ ta-xlí-mu-nŭk tun-duĭ´-a-xa-nŭk´ tú-gu-xlí-u-qi. A-xlí-lum
  he caught      five           deer             killed.      Another

  Ká-xla-qlŭm´ tu-mú-qtcu-gí.
    Shaman     not gave them.
   (To whom application had been made previously.)


  Plate LXXXI exhibits drawings of various masks used in dancing, the
  characters of which were obtained by Mr. G. K. Gilbert from rocks at
  Oakley Springs, and were explained to him by Tubi, the chief of the
  Oraibi Pueblos. They probably are in imitation of masks, as used by
  the Moki, Zuñi, and Rio Grande Pueblos.




  Many examples of masks, dance ornaments, and fetiches used in
  ceremonies are reported and illustrated in the several papers of
  Messrs. Cushing, Holmes, and Stevenson in the Second Annual Report of
  the Bureau of Ethnology. Paintings or drawings of many of them have
  been found on pottery, on shells, and on rocks.

  In this connection the following extract from a letter dated Port
  Townsend, Washington, June 1, 1883, from Mr. James G. Swan, will
  be acceptable: “You may remember my calling your attention about a
  year since to the fact that a gentleman who had been employed on a
  preliminary survey for the Mexican National Construction Company had
  called on me and was astonished at the striking similarity between
  the wooden-carved images of the Haida Indians and the terra-cotta
  images he had found in the railroad excavations in Mexico.

  “I have long entertained the belief that the coast tribes originated
  among the Aztecs, and have made it a subject of careful study for
  many years. I received unexpected aid by the plates in Habel’s
  Investigations in Central and South America. I have shown them to
  Indians of various coast tribes at various times, and they all
  recognize certain of those pictures. No. 1, Plate 1, represents a
  priest cutting off the head of his victim with his stone knife.
  They recognize this, because they always cut off the heads of their
  enemies slain in battle; they never scalp. The bird of the sun is
  recognized by all who have seen the picture as the thunder bird of
  the coast tribes. But the most singular evidence I have seen is
  in Cushing’s description of the Zuñi Indian, as published in the
  Century Magazine. The Haidas recognize the scenes, particularly the
  masquerade scenes in the February [1883] number, as similar to their
  own tomanawos ceremonies. I have had at least a dozen Haida men
  and women at one time looking at those pictures and talk and explain
  to each other their meaning. One chief who speaks English said to
  me after he had for a long time examined the pictures, ‘Those are
  our people; they do as we do. If you wish, I will make you just such
  masks as those in the pictures.’

  “These Indians know nothing, and recognize nothing in the Hebrew or
  Egyptian, the Chinese or Japanese pictures, but when I show them any
  Central or South American scenes, if they do not understand them they
  recognize that they are ‘their people.’”

  According to Stephen Powers (in Contrib. to N. A. Ethnol. III, p.
  140), there is at the head of Potter Valley, California, “a singular
  knoll of red earth which the Tátu or Hūchnom believe to have
  furnished the material for the creation of the original coyote-man.
  They mix this red earth into their acorn bread, and employ it for
  painting their bodies on divers mystic occasions.” Mr. Powers
  supposed this to be a ceremonial performance, but having found the
  custom to extend to other tribes he was induced to believe the
  statements of the Indians “that it made the bread sweeter and go

  See also the mnemonic devices relative to Songs, page 82, and to
  Traditions, page 84; also page 237.

  Plate LXXXII represents stone heaps surmounted by buffalo skulls
  found near the junction of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers
  by Prince Maximilian zu Wied, and described in his Reise in das
  Innere Nord-America. Coblenz, 1841, II, p. 435. Atlas plate 29.
  The description by him, as translated in the London edition, is as
  follows: “From the highest points of this ridge of hills, curious
  signals are perceived at certain distances from one another,
  consisting of large stones and granite blocks, piled up by the
  Assiniboins, on the summits of each of which are placed Buffalo
  skulls, and which were erected by the Indians, as alleged, for the
  purpose of attracting the Bison herds, and to have a successful hunt.”




  This objective monument is to be compared with the pictographs above,
  “making buffalo medicine,” frequent in the Dakota Winter Counts.

  Descriptions of ceremonies in medicine lodges and in the initiation
  of candidates to secret associations have been published with and
  without illustrations. The most striking of these are graphic
  ceremonial charts made by the Indians themselves. Figure 38, on
  page 86, is connected with this subject, as is also No. 7 of Figure
  122, page 205. A good illustration is to be found in Mrs. Eastman’s
  Dahcotah, or Life and Legends of the Sioux, page 206. Sketches,
  with descriptions of drawings used in the ceremonials of the Zuñi
  and Navajo, have been made by Messrs. Cushing and Stevenson and Dr.
  Matthews, but cannot be published here.

  Figure 111_a_ was drawn and interpreted by Naumoff, a Kadiak native,
  in San Francisco, California, in 1882.

  It represents the ground plan of a Shaman’s lodge with the Shaman
  curing a sick man.

  The following is the explanation:

  [Illustration: FIG. 111_a_. Shaman’s lodge. Alaska.]

  No. 1. The entrance to the lodge.

  No. 2. The fire place.

  No. 3. A. vertical piece of wood upon which is placed a cross-piece,
  upon each end of which is a lamp.

  No. 4. The musicians seated upon the raised seats furnishing drumming
  and music to the movements of the Shaman during his incantations
  in exorcising the “evil spirit” supposed to have possession of the

  No. 5. Visitors and friends of the afflicted seated around the walls
  of the lodge.

  No. 6. The Shaman represented in making his incantations.

  No. 7. The patient seated upon the floor of the lodge.

  No. 8. Represents the Shaman in another stage of the ceremonies,
  driving out of the patient the “evil being.”

  No. 9. Another figure of the patient; from his head is seen to issue
  a line connecting it with No. 10.

  No. 10. The “evil spirit” causing the sickness.

  No. 11. The Shaman in the act of driving the “evil being” out of the
  room. In his hands are sacred objects, his personal fetish, in which
  the power lies.

  No. 12. The flying “evil one.”

  Nos. 13, 14. Are assistants to the Shaman, stationed at the entrance
  to hit and hasten the departure of the evil being.

  A chart of this character appears to have been seen among the
  natives of New Holland by Mr. James Manning, but not copied or fully
  described in his Notes on the Aborigines of New Holland (Jour. of
  Royal Society, New South Wales, Vol. XVI, p. 167). He mentions it
  in connection with a corrobery or solemn religious ceremony among
  adults, as follows: “It has for its form the most curious painting
  upon a sheet of bark, done in various colors of red, yellow, and
  white ochre, which is exhibited by the priest.” Such objects would be
  highly important for comparison, and their existence being known they
  should be sought for.


  Several devices indicating death are presented under other headings
  of this paper. See, for example, page 103 and the illustrations in
  connection with the text.

  According to Powers, “A Yokaia widow’s style of mourning is peculiar.
  In addition to the usual evidences of grief she mingles the ashes
  of her dead husband with pitch, making a white tar or unguent, with
  which she smears a band about 2 inches wide all around the edge of
  the hair (which is previously cut off close to the head), so that
  at a little distance she appears to be wearing a white chaplet.”
  (See Contrib. to N. A. Ethnol., III, p. 166.) Mr. Dorsey reports
  that mud is used by a mourner in the sacred-bag war party among the
  Osages. Many objective modes of showing mourning by styles of paint
  and markings are known, the significance of which are apparent when
  discovered in pictographs.

  Figure 112 is copied from a piece of ivory in the museum of the
  Alaska Commercial Company, San Francisco, California, and was
  interpreted by an Alaskan native in San Francisco in 1882.

  [Illustration: FIG. 112.--Votive offering. Alaska.]

  No. 1. Is a votive offering or “Shaman stick,” erected to the memory
  of one departed. The “bird” carvings are considered typical of
  “good spirits,” and the above was erected by the remorse-stricken
  individual, No. 3, who had killed the person shown in No. 2.

  No. 2. The headless body represents the man who was killed. In this
  respect the Ojibwa manner of drawing a person “killed” is similar.

  No. 3. The individual who killed No. 2, and who erected the
  “grave-post” or “sacred stick.” The arm is thrown earthward,
  resembling the Blackfeet and Dakota gesture for “kill.”

  The following is the text in Aígalúxamut:

  Nu-ná-mu-quk´ á-x’l-xik´   aí-ba-li     to-qgú-qlu gú  nú-hu tcuk  nac-quí
   Place two   quarrel(with) one another, (one) killed   large knife took head
                                          him (the other)
                                          (with a)

  qlu-gú, i-nó-qtclu-gu; Ka-sá-ha-lik´ na-bŏn´  ca-gú-lŭk a-gú-nŭ-qua-qlu-hŭ’.
    off,  laid him down;    Shaman     stick     bird     to set (or place)
             (buried)                (offering)  (wooden) on the top of

  That portion of the Kauvuya tribe of Indians in Southern California
  known as the Playsanos, or _lowlanders_, formerly inscribed
  characters upon the gravestones of their dead, relating to the
  pursuits or good qualities of the deceased. Dr. W. J. Hoffman
  obtained several pieces or slabs of finely-grained sandstone near
  Los Angeles, California, during the summer of 1884, which had been
  used for this purpose. Upon these were the drawings, in incised
  lines, of the Fin-back whale, with figures of men pursuing them with
  harpoons. Around the etchings were close parallel lines with cross
  lines similar to the drawings made on ivory by the southern Innuit of


  Figures 113 and 114 were procured from a native Alaskan, by Dr.
  Hoffman in 1882, and explained to him to be drawings made upon

  Drawings similar to these are made on slabs of wood by devoted
  friends, or relatives, to present and perpetuate the good qualities
  of a deceased native. The occupation is usually referred to, as
  well as articles of importance of which the departed one was the

  [Illustration: FIG. 113.--Grave-post. Alaska.]

  Figure 113 refers to a hunter, as land animals are shown as the chief
  pursuit. The following is the explanation of the characters:

  1. The baidarka, or boat, holding two persons; the occupants are
  shown, as are also the paddles, which project below the horizontal
  body of the vessel.

  2. A rack for drying skins and fish. A pole is added above it, from
  which are seen floating streamers of calico or cloth.

  3. A fox.

  4. A land otter.

  5. The hunter’s summer habitations. These are temporary dwellings
  and usually constructed at a distance from home. This also indicates
  the profession of a skin-hunter, as the permanent lodges, indicated
  as winter houses, _i. e._, with round or dome-like roof, are located
  near the sea-shore, and summer houses are only needed when at some
  distance from home, where a considerable length of time is spent.

  [Illustration: FIG. 114.--Grave-post. Alaska.]

  The following is the explanation of Figure 114. It is another design
  for a grave-post, but refers to a fisherman:

  1. The double-seated baidarka, or skin canoe.

  2. A bow used in shooting seal and other marine animals.

  3. A seal.

  4. A whale.

  The summer lodge is absent in this, as the fisherman did not leave
  the sea-shore in the pursuit of game on land.

  Figure 115 is a native drawing of a village and neighboring
  burial-ground, prepared by an Alaskan native in imitation of
  originals seen by him among the natives of the mainland of Alaska,
  especially the Aigalúqamut. Carvings are generally on walrus ivory;
  sometimes on wooden slats. In the figure, No. 7 is a representation
  of a grave-post in position, bearing an inscription similar in
  general character to those in the last two preceding figures.

  [Illustration: FIG. 115.--Village and burial-grounds. Alaska.]

  The details are explained as follows:

  No. 1, 2, 3, 4. Various styles of habitations, representing a

  5. An elevated structure used for the storage of food.

  6. A box with wrappings, containing the corpse of a child. The small
  lines, with ball attached, are ornamented appendages consisting of
  strips of cloth or skin, with charms, or, sometimes, tassels.

  7. Grave-post, bearing rude illustrations of the weapons or
  implements used by a person during his life.

  8. A grave scaffold, containing adult. Besides the ornamental
  appendages, as in the preceding, there is a “Shaman stick” erected
  over the box containing the corpse as a mark of good wishes of a
  sorrowing survivor. See object No. 1, in Figure 112.

  The following extract from Schoolcraft (Hist. Indian Tribes of the
  United States, 1851, Vol. I, p. 356, Fig. 46) relates to the burial
  posts used by the Sioux and Chippewas. Plate LXXXIII is after the
  illustration given by this author in connection with the account

  Among the Sioux and Western Chippewas, after the body has been
  wrapped in its best clothes and ornaments, it is then placed on a
  scafford, or in a tree, where it remains until the flesh is entirely
  decayed; after which the bones are buried, and the grave-posts
  fixed. At the head of the grave a tabular piece of cedar, or other
  wood, called the adjedatig, is set. This grave-board contains the
  symbolic or representative figure which records, if it be a warrior,
  his totem; that is to say, the symbol of his family, or surname,
  and such arithmetical or other devices as serve to denote how many
  times the deceased has been in war parties, and how many scalps he
  had taken from the enemy; two facts from which his reputation is
  essentially to be derived. It is seldom that more is attempted in
  the way of inscription. Often, however, distinguished chiefs have
  their war-flag, or, in modern days, a small ensign of American
  fabric, displayed on a standard at the head of their graves, which
  is left to fly over the deceased till it is wasted by the elements.
  Scalps of their enemies, feathers of the bald and black eagle,
  the swallow-tailed falcon, or some carnivorous bird, are also
  placed, in such instances, on the adjedatig, or suspended, with
  offerings of various kinds, on a separate staff. But the latter are
  super-additions of a religious character, and belong to the class of
  the ke-ke-wa-o-win-an-tig. The building of a funeral fire on recent
  graves, is also a rite which belongs to the consideration of their
  religious faith.




The following quotations and illustrations are taken from Dr. Ferdinand
von Hochstetter’s New Zealand, before cited. That author says on page
437 _et seq._:

  The carved Maori-figures, which are met with on the road, are the
  memorials of chiefs, who, while journeying to the restorative baths
  of Rotorua, succumbed to their ills on the road. Some of the figures
  are decked out with pieces of clothing or kerchiefs; and the most
  remarkable feature in them is the close imitation of the tattooing of
  the deceased, by which the Maoris are able to recognize for whom the
  monument has been erected. Certain lines are peculiar to the tribe,
  others to the family, and again others to the individual. A close
  imitation of the tattooing of the face, therefore, is to the Maori
  the same as to us a photographic likeness; it does not require any
  description of name.

A representation of one of these carved posts is given in Figure 116.

[Illustration: FIG. 116.--New Zealand grave effigy.]

Another carved post of like character is represented in Figure 117,
concerning which the same author says, page 338:

[Illustration: FIG. 117.--New Zealand grave-post.]

“Beside my tent, at Tahuahu, on the right bank of the Mangapu, there
stood an odd half decomposed figure carved of wood; it was designated
to me by the natives as a Tiki, marking the tomb of a chief.”

The same author states, page 423: “The dwellings of the chiefs at
Ohinemutu are surrounded with inclosures of pole-fences; and the
Whares and Wharepunis, some of them exhibiting very fine specimens
of the Maori order of architecture, are ornamented with grotesque
wood-carvings. The annexed wood-cut [here reproduced as Figure 118] is
intended as an illustration of some of them. The gable figure, with the
lizard having six feet and two heads, is very remarkable. The human
figures are not idols, but are intended to represent departed sires of
the present generation.”

[Illustration: FIG. 118.--New Zealand house posts.]


The use of objects as charms and fetiches is well known. Their graphic
representation is not so well understood, although in the attempted
interpretation of pictographs it is to be supposed that objects of
this character would be pictorially represented. The following is an
instance where the use in action of a charm or fetich was certainly
portrayed in a pictograph.

Figure 119, drawn by the Dakota Indians near Fort Snelling, Minnesota,
exhibits the use for a fetichistic purpose of an instrument which is
usually included among war clubs, though this particular object is more
adapted to defense than to offense.

[Illustration: FIG. 119.--Mdewakantawan Fetich.]

The head of the fetich is a grooved stone hammer of moderate size,
measuring from an inch and a half to as much as 5 inches in length. A
withe is tied about the middle of the hammer in the groove provided
for the purpose, having a handle of from 2 to 4 feet in length. The
latter is frequently wrapped with buckskin or raw-hide to strengthen
it, as well as for ornamental purposes. Feathers attached bear mnemonic
marks or designs, indicating marks of distinction, perhaps fetichistic
devices not understood.

These objects are believed to possess the peculiar charm of warding
off an enemy’s missiles when held upright before the body. In the
pictograph made by the Dakota Indian, the manner of holding it, as well
as the act of shooting an arrow by an enemy, is shown with considerable
clearness. The interpretation was explained by the draftsman himself.

Properties are attributed to this instrument similar to those of the
small bags prepared by the Shaman, which are carried suspended from the
neck by means of string or buckskin cords.

Subject-matter connected with this heading appears in several parts of
this paper, _e. g._, Figure 46, on page 141, and the characters for
1824-’25 on plate XLII.


Pictographs in the writer’s possession, to be classed under this
very general heading, in addition to those that are more intimately
connected with other headings, and therefore arranged in other parts
of this paper, may be divided into those relating to Associations and
those exhibiting details of daily life and habits.


It is well known that voluntary associations, generally of a religious
character, have existed among the Indians, the members of which are
designated by special paintings and marks entirely distinct from those
relating to their clan-totems and name-totems. This topic requires too
minute details to be entered upon in this paper after the space taken
by other divisions. That it may become a feature in the interpretation
of pictographs is shown by the following account:

Dr. W. J. Hoffman obtained a copy of drawings on a pipe-stem, which
had been made and used by Ottawa Indians. Both of the flat surfaces
bore incisions of figures, which are represented in Figure 120. On each
side are four spaces, upon each of which are various characters, three
spaces on one side being reserved for the delineation of human figures,
each having diverging lines from the head upward, denoting their social
status as chiefs or warriors and medicine-men.

[Illustration: FIG. 120.--Ottawa pipe-stem.]

Upon the space nearest the mouth is the drawing of a fire, the
flames passing upward from the horizontal surface beneath them. The
blue cross-bands are raised portions of the wood (ash) of which the
pipe-stem is made; these show peculiarly shaped openings which pass
entirely through the stem, though not interfering with the tube
necessary for the passage of the smoke. This indicates considerable
mechanical skill.

Upon each side of the stem are spaces corresponding in length and
position to those upon the opposite side. In the lower space of the
stem is a drawing of a bear, indicating that the two persons in the
corresponding space on the opposite side belong to the Bear gens. The
next upper figure is that of a beaver, showing the three human figures
to belong to the Beaver gens, while the next to this, the eagle,
indicates the opposite persons to be members of the Eagle gens. The
upper figure is that of a lodge, the lodge containing a council fire,
shown on the opposite side.

The signification of the whole is that two members of the Bear gens,
three members of the Beaver gens, and three members of the Eagle gens
have united and constitute a society living in one lodge, around one
fire, and smoke through the same pipe.


Examples of daily life and habits are given in Figures 121 and 122:

[Illustration: FIG. 121.--Walrus hunter. Alaska.]

Figure 121 represents an Alaskan native in the water killing a walrus.
The illustration was obtained from a slab of walrus ivory in the museum
of the Alaska Commercial Company, of San Francisco, California, and
interpreted by a native.

[Illustration: FIG. 122.--Ivory carving with records. Alaska.]

The carving, Figure 122, made of a piece of walrus tusk, was copied
from the original in the museum of the Alaska Commercial Company, San
Francisco, California, during the summer of 1882. Interpretations were
verified by Naumoff, a Kadiak half-breed, in San Francisco at the time.
The special purport of some of the characters and etchings is not

In No. 1 is a native whose left hand is resting against the house,
while the right hangs toward the ground. The character to his right
represents a “Shaman stick” surmounted by the emblem of a bird, a “good
spirit,” in memory of some departed friend. It was suggested that the
grave stick had been erected to the memory of his wife.

No. 2. Represents a reindeer, but the special import in this drawing is

No. 3. Signifies that one man, the recorder, shot and killed another
with an arrow.

No. 4. Denotes that the narrator has made trading expeditions with a

No. 5. Is a sail-boat, although the elevated paddle signifies that that
was the manner in which the voyage was best made.

No. 6. A dog-sled, with the animal hitched up for a journey. The
radiating lines in the upper left hand corner, over the head of the
man, is a representation of the sun.

No. 7. A sacred lodge. The four figures at the outer corners of the
square represent the young men placed on guard, armed with bows and
arrows, to keep away those not members of the band, who are depicted as
holding a dance. The small square in the center of the lodge represents
the fire-place. The angular lines extending from the right side of the
lodge to the vertical partition line are an outline of the subterranean
entrance to the lodge.

No. 8. A pine tree, upon which a porcupine is crawling upward.

No. 9. A pine tree, from which a bird (woodpecker) is extracting larvæ
for food.

No. 10. A bear.

No. 11. The recorder in his boat, holding aloft his double-bladed
paddle to drive fish into a net.

No. 12. An assistant fisherman driving fish into the net.

No. 13. The net.

The figure over the man (No. 12) represents a whale, with harpoon and
line attached, caught by the narrator.

       *       *       *       *       *

It will be understood that all personal customs, such, for instance, as
the peculiar arrangement of hair in any tribe, are embodied in their
pictorial designation by other tribes and perhaps by themselves. See in
this connection, page 230.

Among the many customs susceptible of graphic portrayal which do not
happen to be illustrated in this paper, an example may be given in the
mode in several tribes (_e. g._, Apache, Muskoki, Dakota and Miztec),
of punishing the infidelity of wives, namely, by cutting off the nose.
The picture of a noseless woman would, therefore, when made by those
tribes, have distinct meaning. The unfaithful wife mentioned on page
134 is drawn with a nose, but in her case the greater punishment of
death was inflicted.


It is very difficult, if not impossible, to distinguish in pictographs,
or, indeed, orally, between historical and traditional accounts
obtained from Indians, so that this heading may be connected with
one before presented, having relation to Traditions as mnemonically
pictured. See page 84.

The Walum-Olum, or Bark Record of the Lenni-Lenapè, before mentioned,
as also some of Schoolcraft’s pictographic illustrations, may be, in
accordance with the judgment of the reader, more or less properly
connected with history. The Dakota Winter Counts, including the
Corbusier Winter Counts, in the present paper, while having their
chief value as calendars, contain some material that is absolute
and veritable tribal history, though seldom of more than local and
transient interest. An example from Battiste Good’s count for the year
1862-’63, is given in addition, explaining the origin of the title
“Brulé” Dakota.

He calls the year “The-people-were-burnt winter,” and adds:

They were living somewhere east of their present country, when a
prairie fire destroyed their entire village. Many of their children
and a man and his wife, who were on foot some distance away from the
village, were burned to death. Many of their horses were also burned to
death. All the people that could get to a long lake which was near by
saved themselves by jumping into it. Many of these were badly burned
about the thighs and legs, and this circumstance gave rise to the name,
_si-can gu_, translated as Burnt Thigh, and Brulé, by which they have
since been known. Battiste Good’s character for the year is here given
as Figure 123.

[Illustration: FIG. 123.--Origin of Brulé. Dakota.]

This is of later date than the mythical times, even among Indians, and,
being verified as it is, must be accepted as historical.


The pictographs under this head that have come to the writer’s notice
have been grouped as, _First_, a continuous account of the chief events
in the life of the subject of the sketch; _Second_, separate accounts
of some particular exploit or event in the life of the person referred
to. Pictographs of both of these descriptions are very common.


An example of a continuous record is the following “autobiography” of

The accompanying illustrations, Figures 124 to 134 are copied from a
record of eleven drawings prepared by Running-Antelope, chief of the
Uncpapa Dakota, at Grand River, Dakota, in 1873. The sketches were
painted in a large drawing-book by means of water colors, and were made
for Dr. W. J. Hoffman, to whom the following interpretations were given
by the artist:

The record comprises the most important events in the life of
Running-Antelope as a warrior. Although frequently more than one
person is represented as slain, it is not to be inferred that all were
killed in one day, but during the duration of one expedition, of which
the recorder was a member or chief. The bird (_Falco cooperi?_) upon
the shield refers to the clan or band totem, while the antelope drawn
beneath the horses, in the act of running, signifies the personal name.

Figure 124. Killed two Arikara Indians in one day. The lance held in
the hand, thrusting at the foremost of the enemy, signifies that he
killed the person with that weapon; the left-hand figure was shot, as
is shown, by the discharging gun, and afterwards struck with the lance.
This occurred in 1853.

[Illustration: FIG. 124.--Killed an Arikara.]

Figure 125. Shot and scalped an Arikara Indian in 1853. It appears
that the Arikara attempted to inform Running-Antelope of his being
unarmed, as the right hand is thrown outward with distended fingers, in
imitation of making the gesture for _negation_, _having nothing_.

[Illustration: FIG. 125.--Shot and scalped an Arikara.]

Figure 126. Shot and killed an Arikara in 1853.

[Illustration: FIG. 126.--Shot an Arikara.]

Figure 127. Killed two warriors on one day in 1854.

[Illustration: FIG. 127.--Killed two warriors.]

Figure 128. Killed ten men and three squaws in 1856. The grouping of
persons strongly resembles the ancient Egyptian method of drawing.

[Illustration: FIG. 128.--Killed ten men and three women.]

Figure 129. Killed two Arikara chiefs in 1856. Their rank is shown by
the appendages to the sleeves, which consist of white weasel skins. The
arrow in the left thigh of the recorder shows that he was wounded. The
scars are still distinct upon the person of Running-Antelope, showing
that the arrow passed through the thigh.

[Illustration: FIG. 129.--Killed two chiefs.]

Figure 130. Killed one Arikara in 1857. Striking the enemy with a bow
is considered the greatest insult that can be offered to another. The
act of so doing also entitles the warrior to count one _coup_ when
relating his exploits in the council chamber.

[Illustration: FIG. 130.--Killed one Arikara.]

Figure 131. Killed an Arikara in 1859 and captured a horse.

[Illustration: FIG. 131.--Killed one Arikara.]

Figure 132. Killed two Arikara hunters in 1859. Both were shot, as
is indicated by the figure of a gun in contact with each Indian. The
cluster of lines drawn across the body of each victim represents the
discharge of the gun, and shows where the ball took effect. The upper
one of the two figures was in the act of shooting an arrow when he was

[Illustration: FIG. 132.--Killed two Arikara hunters.]

Figure 133. Killed five Arikara in one day in 1863. The dotted line
indicates the trail which Running-Antelope followed, and when the
Indians discovered that they were pursued, they took shelter in an
isolated copse of shrubbery, where they were killed at leisure. The
five guns within the inclosure represent the five persons armed.

[Illustration: FIG. 133.--Killed five Arikara.]

Figure 134. An Arikara killed in 1865.

[Illustration: FIG. 134.--Killed an Arikara.]

The Arikara are delineated in the above, in nearly all instances,
wearing the top-knot of hair, a custom similar to that practiced by
the Absaroka, though as the latter were the most inveterate enemies
of the Sioux, and as the word Palláni for Arikara is applied to all
enemies, the Crow custom may have been depicted as a generic mark. The
practice of painting the forehead red, also an Absaroka custom, serves
to distinguish the pictures as individuals of one of the two tribes.


A record on ivory shown as Figure 135, was obtained by Dr. W. J.
Hoffman in San Francisco, California, in 1882, and was interpreted to
him by an Alaskan native. The story represents the success of a hunt;
the animals desired are shown, as well as those which were secured.

[Illustration: FIG. 135.--Record of hunt. Alaska.]

The following is the explanation of the characters:

1, 2. Deer.

3. Porcupine.

4. Winter, or permanent, habitation. The cross-piece resting upon two
vertical poles constitutes the rack, used for drying fish.

5. One of the natives occupying the same lodge with the recorder.

6. The hunter whose exploits are narrated.

7, 8, 9. Beavers.

10-14. Martens.

15. A weasel, according to the interpretation, although there are no
specific characters to identify it as different from the preceding.

16. Land otter.

17. A bear.

18. A fox.

19. A walrus.

20. A seal.

21. A wolf.

By reference to the illustration it will be observed that all the
animals secured are turned toward the house of the speaker, while the
heads of those animals desired, but not captured, are turned away from

The following is the text in the Kiatexamut dialect of the Innuit
language as dictated by the Alaskan, with his own literal translation
into English:

  Huí-nu-ná-ga        huí-pu-qtú-a pi-cú-qu-lú-a mus´-qu-lí-qnut. Pa-mú-qtu-līt´
  I, (from) my place.  I went       hunting       (for) skins.     martens
   (settlement.)                                    (animals)

  ta-qí-mĕn, a-mí-da-duk´ a-xla-luk´, á-qui-á-muk pi-qú-a a-xla-luk´;
      five,     weasel      one,      land otter   caught    one;


  a-xla-luk´, tun´-du-muk tú-gu-qlí-u-gú me-lú-ga-nuk´, pé-luk
       one,        deer     (I) killed      two,        beaver

  pi-naí-u-nuk,  nú-nuk   pit´-qu-ní,  ma-klak-muk´   pit´-qu-ní,  a-cí-a-na-muk
     three,    porcupine (I) caught none,  seal    (I) caught none,  walrus

    pit´-qu-ni,  ua-qí-la-muk   pit´-qu-ní,  ta-gú-xa-muk   pit´-qu-ní.
  (I) caught none,    fox    (I) caught none,    bear    (I) caught none.

The following narrative of personal exploit was given to Dr. W. J.
Hoffman by “Pete,” a Shoshoni chief, during a visit of the latter to
Washington, in 1880. The sketch, Figure 136, was drawn by the narrator,
and the following explanation of characters will be sufficient
interpretation to render the figures intelligible.

[Illustration: FIG. 136.--Shoshoni horse raid.]

_a._ Pete, a Shoshoni chief.

_b._ A Nez Percés Indian, one of the party from whom the horses were
stampeded, and who wounded Pete in the side with an arrow.

_c._ Hoof marks, showing course of stampede.

_d._ Lance, which was captured from the Nez Percés.

_e_, _e_, _e_. Saddles captured.

_f._ Bridle captured.

_g._ Lariat captured.

_h._ Saddle-blanket captured.

_i._ Body-blanket captured.

_j._ Pair of leggings captured.

_k._ Three single legs of leggings captured.

Figure 137, copied from Schoolcraft, IV, p. 253, Pl. 32, is taken from
the shoulder-blade of a buffalo, found on the plains in the Comanche
country of Texas. No. 5 is a symbol showing the strife for the buffalo
existing between the Indian and white races. The Indian (1), presented
on horseback, protected by his ornamented shield and armed with a
lance, kills a Spaniard (3), the latter being armed with a gun, after
a circuitous chase (6). His companion (4), armed with a lance, shares
the same fate.

[Illustration: FIG. 137.--Comanche drawing on shoulder-blade.]

Figure 138 is taken from the winter count of Battiste Good for the year

He calls the year Cross-Bear-died-on-the-hunt winter.

[Illustration: FIG. 138.--Cross-Bear’s death.]

The “travail” means, they moved; the buffalo, to hunt buffalo; the bear
with mouth open and paw advanced, cross-bear. The involute character
frequently repeated in Battiste’s record signifies pain in the stomach
and intestines, resulting in death. In this group of characters there
is not only the brief story, an obituary notice, but an ideographic
mark for a particular kind of death, a noticeable name-totem, and a
presentation of the Indian mode of transportation.

The word “travail” appearing above, as given by the interpreter,
requires explanation. It refers to the peculiar sledge which is used by
many tribes of Indians for the purpose of transportation. It is used on
the surface of the ground when not covered with snow, even more than
when snow prevails. The word is more generally found in print in the
plural, where it is spelled “travaux” and sometimes “travois.”

The etymology of this word, which has not yet been found in any Indian
language, has been the subject of considerable discussion. The present
writer considers it to be one of the class of words which descended in
corrupted form from the language of the Canadian voyageurs, and that it
was originally the French word “traineau,” with its meaning of sledge.

Figure 139 is taken from a roll of birch bark obtained from the
Ojibwa Indians at Red Lake, Minnesota, in 1882, known to be more than
seventy years old. The interpretation was given by an Indian from that
reservation, although he did not know the author nor the history of
the record. With one exception, all of the characters were understood
and interpreted to Dr. Hoffman, in 1883 by Ottawa Indians at Harbor
Springs, Michigan. This tribe at one time habitually used similar
methods of recording historic and mythologic data.

[Illustration: FIG. 139.--Bark record from Red Lake, Minnesota.]

No. 1. Represents the person who visited a country supposed to have
been near one of the great lakes. He has a scalp in his hand which he
obtained from the head of an enemy, after having killed him. The line
from the head to the small circle denotes the name of the person, and
the line from the mouth to the same circle signifies (in the Dakota
method), “That is it,” having reference to proper names.

No. 2. The person killed. He was a man who held a position of some
consequence in his tribe, as is indicated by the horns, marks used
by the Ojibwas among themselves for Shaman, Wabeno, etc. It has been
suggested that the object held in the hand of this figure is a rattle,
though the Indians, to whom the record was submitted for examination,
are in doubt, the character being indistinct.

No. 3. Three disks connected by short lines signify, in the present
instance, three nights, _i. e._, three black suns. Three days from
home was the distance the person in No. 1 traveled to reach the
country for which started.

No. 4. Represents a shell, and denotes the primary object of the
journey. Shells were needed for making ornaments and to trade.

No. 5. Two parallel lines are here inserted to mark the end of the
present record and the beginning of another.


The number of instances in this paper in which the picture has been
expressive of an idea, and not a mere portraiture of an object, and has
amounted sometimes to a graphic representation of an abstract idea,
is so great as to render cross-references superfluous. As examples,
attention may be invited to Figure 72, page 166, for the idea of
“voice,” Figure 179, page 241, for that of “war,” and the Corbusier
winter counts for the year 1876-’77--No. I, page 146, for that of
“support.” In addition to them, however, for convenience of grouping
under this special heading, the following illustrations (some of which
would as properly appear under the head of Conventionalizing) are


Figure 140 is taken from the winter count of Battiste Good, and is
drawn to represent the sign for pipe, which it is intended to signify.
The sign is made by placing the right hand near the upper portion
of the breast, the left farther forward, and both held so that the
index and thumb approximate a circle, as if holding a pipe-stem. The
remaining fingers are closed.

[Illustration: FIG. 140.--Sign for pipe. Dakota.]

The point of interest in this character is that instead of drawing a
pipe the artist drew a human figure making the sign for pipe, showing
the intimate connection between gesture-signs and pictographs. The
pipe, in this instance, was the symbol of peace.

Figure 141, taken from the winter count of Battiste Good for the year
1703-’04, signifies plenty of buffalo meat.

[Illustration: FIG. 141.--Plenty Buffalo meat. Dakota.]

The forked stick being one of the supports of a drying-pole or
scaffold, indicates meat. The circle may represent a pit or “cache”
in which buffalo meat was placed during the winter of 1703-’04, or it
may mean “heap”--_i. e._, large quantity, buffalo having been very
plentiful that year. The buffalo head denotes the kind of meat stored.
This is an abbreviated form of the device immediately following,
and being fully understood affords a suggestive comparison with
some Egyptian hieroglyphs and Chinese letters, both in their full
pictographic origin and in their abbreviation.

Figure 142 is taken from the same count for the year 1745-’46, in which
the drying-pole is supported by two forked sticks or poles, only one of
which, without the drying-pole, was indicated in the preceding figure,
which is an abbreviated or conventionalized form of the objective
representation in the pre-present figure, viz., a scaffold or pole upon
which buffalo meat was placed for drying. Buffalo were very plentiful
during the winter of 1745-’46, and the kind of meat is denoted by the
buffalo head placed above the pole, from which meat appears suspended.

[Illustration: FIG. 142.--Plenty Buffalo meat. Dakota.]

Figure 143 is taken from Prince Maximilian’s Travels, _op. cit._ p.
352. The cross signifies, I will barter or trade. Three animals are
drawn on the right hand of the cross; one is a buffalo (probably
albino); the two others, a weasel (_Mustela Canadensis_) and an otter.
The pictographer offers in exchange for the skins of these animals
the articles which he has drawn on the left side of the cross. He has
there, in the first place, depicted a beaver very plainly, behind which
there is a gun; to the left of the beaver are thirty strokes, each ten
separated by a longer line; this means: I will give thirty beaver skins
and a gun for the skins of the three animals on the right hand of the

[Illustration: FIG. 143.--Pictograph for trade. Dakota.]

The ideographic character of the design consists in the use of the
cross--being a drawing of the gesture-sign for “trade”--the arms being
in position interchanged. Of the two things each one is put in the
place before occupied by the other thing--the idea of exchange.

Figure 144, from the record of Battiste Good for the year 1720-’21,
signifies starvation, denoted by the bare ribs.

[Illustration: FIG. 144.--Starvation. Dakota.]

This design survives among the Ottawa and Pottawatomi Indians of
Northern Michigan, but among the latter a single line only is drawn
across the breast, shown in Figure 145. This corresponds, also, with
one of the gesture-signs for the same idea.

[Illustration: FIG. 145.--Starvation. Ottawa and Pottawatomi.]

Figure 146, from the record of Battiste Good for the year 1826-’27,
signifies “pain.” He calls the year “Ate-a-whistle-and-died winter,”
and explains that six Dakotas, on the war path, had nearly perished
with hunger when they found and ate the rotting carcass of an old
buffalo, on which the wolves had been feeding. They were seized soon
after with pains in the stomach, their bellies swelled, and gas poured
from the mouth and the anus, and they died of a whistle, or from eating
a whistle. The sound of gas escaping from the mouth is illustrated
in the figure. The character on the abdomen and on its right may be
considered to be the ideograph for pain in that part of the body.

[Illustration: FIG. 146.--Pain. Died of “whistle.” Dakota.]


The writer has, in a former publication, suggested the distinction to
be made between a pictorial sign, an emblem, and a symbol; but it is
not easy to preserve the discrimination in reference to ideographic
characters which have often become conventionalized. To partly express
the distinction, nearly all of the characters in the Dakota Winter
Counts are regarded as pictorial signs, and the class represented by
tribal signs, personal insignia, etc., is considered to belong to the
category of emblems. There is no doubt, however, that true symbols
exist among the Indians, as they must exist to some extent among all
peoples not devoid of poetic imagination. Some of them are shown in
this paper. The pipe is generally a symbol of peace, although in
certain positions and connections it sometimes signifies preparation
for war, and again subsequent victory. The hatchet is a common symbol
for war, and closed hands or approaching palms denote friendship.
The tortoise has been clearly used as a symbol for land, and many
other examples can be admitted. If Schoolcraft is to be taken as
uncontroverted authority, the symbolism of the Ojibwa rivalled that
of the Egyptians, and the recent unpublished accounts of the Zuñi,
Moki, and Navajo before mentioned indicate the frequent employment of
symbolic devices by those tribes which are notably devoted to mystic
ceremonies. Nevertheless, the writer’s personal experience is, that
often when he has at first supposed a character to be a genuine symbol
it has resulted, with better means of understanding, in being not even
an ideograph but a mere objective representation. In this connection,
the remarks on the circle on page 107, and those on Figure 206, on page
246, may be in point.

Another case for consideration occurs. The impression, real or
represented, of a human hand is used in several regions in the world
with symbolic significance. For instance, in Jerusalem a rough
representation of a hand is reported by Lieutenant Conder (Palestine
Exploration Fund, January, 1873, p. 16) to be marked on the wall of
every house whilst in building by the native races. Some authorities
connect it with the five names of God, and it is generally considered
to avert the evil eye. The Moors generally, and especially the Arabs
in Kairwan, employ the marks on their houses as prophylactics. Similar
hand prints are found in the ruins of El Baird, near Petra. Some of the
quaint symbolism connected with horns is supposed to originate from
such hand marks. Among the North American Indians the mark so readily
applied is of frequent occurrence, an instance, with its ascertained
significance, being given on page 187, _supra_.

It has been recently ascertained that the figure of a hand, with
extended fingers, is very common in the vicinity of ruins in Arizona as
a rock-etching, and is also frequently seen daubed on the rocks with
colored pigments or white clay. This coincidence would seem at first
to assure symbolic significance and possibly to connect the symbolism
of the two hemispheres. But Mr. Thomas V. Keam explains the Arizona
etchings of hands, on the authority of the living Moki, as follows:

“These are vestiges of the test formerly practiced among young men
who aspired for admission to the fraternity of Salyko. The Salyko is
a trinity of two women and a woman from whom the Hopitus [Moki] first
obtained corn. Only those were chosen as novices, the imprints of whose
hands had dried on the instant.”

While the subject-matter is, therefore, ceremonial, there is absolutely
no symbolism connected with it. The etchings either simply perpetuate
the marks made in the several tests or imitate them.

In the present stage of the study no more can be suggested than that
symbolic interpretations should be accepted with caution.

With regard to the symbolic use of material objects, which would
probably be extended into graphic portrayal, the following remarks
maybe given:

The Prince of Wied mentions (_op. cit._, Vol. I, p. 244) that in the
Sac and Fox tribes the rattle of a rattlesnake attached to the end
of the feather worn on the head signifies a good horse stealer. The
stealthy approach of the serpent, accompanied with latent power, is
here clearly indicated.

Mr. Schoolcraft says of the Dakotas that “some of the chiefs had the
skins of skunks tied to their heels to symbolize that they never ran,
as that animal is noted for its slow and self-possessed movements.”
See Personal Memoirs of a Residence of Thirty Years with the Indian
Tribes on the American Frontier, etc., Philadelphia, 1851, p. 214.

This is one of the many customs to be remembered in the attempted
interpretations of pictographs. The present writer does not know that
a skunk skin, or a strip of skin which might be supposed to be a skunk
skin, attached to a human heel, has ever been used pictorially as
the ideograph of courage or steadfastness, but with the knowledge of
this objective use of the skins, if they were found so represented
pictorially, as might well be expected, the interpretation would be
suggested, without any direct explanation from Indians.


The first point in the examination of a pictograph is to determine by
what body of people it was made. This is not only because the marks or
devices made by the artists of one tribe, or perhaps of one linguistic
stock if not disintegrated into separated divisions distant from each
other, may have a different significance from figures virtually the
same produced by another tribe or stock, but because the value of the
record is greatly enhanced when the recorders are known. In arriving
at the identification mentioned it is advisable to study: 1st. The
general style or type. 2d. The presence of characteristic objects. 3d.
The apparent subject-matter. 4th. The localities with reference to the
known habitat of tribes.


Although the collection of pictographs, particularly of petroglyphs,
is not complete, and their study, therefore, is only commenced, it is
possible to present some of the varieties in general style and type.

Figure 147 is presented as a type of the Eastern Algonkian pictographs.
It was copied by Messrs. J. Sutton Wall and William Arison, in 1882,
from a rock opposite Millsborough, in Fayette County, Pennsylvania,
and is mentioned on page 20, _supra_, in connection with the local
distribution of petroglyphs. The locality is within the area once
occupied by the tribes of the Algonkian linguistic family, and there
is apparent a general similarity to the well-known Dighton Rock

[Illustration: FIG. 147.--Algonkian petroglyph. Millsborough,

Mr. J. Sutton Wall, of Monongahela City, Pennsylvania, who has kindly
furnished the drawing of the etchings, states that the outlines of
figures are formed by grooves carved or cut in the rock from an inch
to a mere trace in depth. The footprints are carved depressions. The
character marked Z (near the lower left-hand corner) is a circular
cavity 7 inches deep. The rock is sandstone, of the Waynesburg series.

Mr. Wall has also contributed a copy of the “Hamilton Picture Rock,” of
which Figure 148 is an illustration. The etchings are on a sandstone
rock, on the Hamilton farm, 6 miles southeast from Morgantown, West
Virginia. The turnpike passes over the south edge of the rock.

[Illustration: FIG. 148.--Algonkian petroglyph. Hamilton Farm, West

Mr. Wall furnishes the following interpretation of the figures:

A. Outline of a turkey.

B. Outline of a panther.

C. Outline of a rattlesnake.

D. Outline of a human form.

E. A “spiral or volute.”

F. Impression of a horse foot.

G. Impression of a human foot.

H. Outline of the top portion of a tree or branch.

I. Impression of a human hand.

J. Impression of a bear’s forefoot, but lacks the proper number of toe

K. Impression of two turkey tracks.

L. Has some appearance of a hare or rabbit, but lacks the corresponding
length of ears.

M. Impression of a bear’s hindfoot, but lacks the proper number of toe

N. Outline of infant human form, with two arrows in the right hand.

O, P. Two cup-shaped depressions.

Q. Outline of the hind part of an animal.

R. Might be taken to represent the impression of a horse’s foot were it
not for the line bisecting the outer curved line.

S. Represent buffalo and deer tracks.

The turkey A, the rattlesnake C, the rabbit L, and the “footprints” J,
M, and Q, are specially noticeable as typical characters in Algonkian

Mr. P. W. Sheafer furnishes in his Historical Map of Pennsylvania,
Philadelphia, 1875, a sketch of a pictograph on the Susquehanna
River, Pennsylvania, below the dam at Safe Harbor, part of which is
reproduced in Figure 149. This appears to be purely Algonkian, and has
more resemblance to Ojibwa characters than any other petroglyph yet
noted from the Eastern United States.

[Illustration: FIG. 149.--Algonkian petroglyph. Safe Harbor,

The best type of Western Algonkian petroglyphs known to the writer
is reported as discovered by members of the party of Capt. William
A. Jones, United States Army, in 1873, and published in his report
on Northwestern Wyoming, including the Yellowstone National Park,
Washington, 1875, p. 267, _et seq._, Fig. 50, reproduced in this paper
by Figure 150, in which the greater number of the characters are shown
about one-fifth of their size.

[Illustration: FIG. 150.--Algonkian petroglyph. Wyoming.]

An abstract of his description is as follows:

  * * Upon a nearly vertical wall of the yellow sandstones just back
  of Murphy’s ranch, a number of rude figures had been chiseled,
  apparently at a period not very recent, as they had become much worn.
  * * * No certain clue to the connected meaning of this record was
  obtained, although Pínatsi attempted to explain it when the sketch
  was shown to him some days later by Mr. F. W. Bond, who copied the
  inscriptions from the rocks. The figure on the left, in the upper
  row, somewhat resembles the design commonly used to represent a
  shield, with the greater part of the ornamental fringe omitted,
  perhaps worn away in the inscription. We shall possibly be justified
  in regarding the whole as an attempt to record the particulars of a
  fight or battle which once occurred in this neighborhood. Pínatsi’s
  remarks conveyed the idea to Mr. Bond that he understood the figure
  [the second in the upper line] to signify cavalry, and the six
  figures [three in the middle of the upper line, as also the three to
  the left of the lower line,] to mean infantry, but he did not appear
  to recognize the hieroglyphs as the copy of any record with which he
  was familiar.

Several years ago Dr. W. J. Hoffman showed these (as well as other
pictographs from the same locality) to several prominent Shoshoni
Indians from near that locality, who at once pronounced them the work
of the Pawkees (Satsika, or Blackfeet), who formerly occupied that
country. The general resemblance of many of the drawings from this area
of country is similar to many of the Eastern Algonkin records. The
Satsika are part of the great Algonkian stock.

Throughout the Wind River country of Wyoming many pictographic records
have been found, and others reported by the Shoshoni Indians. These
are said, by the latter, to be the work of the “Pawkees,” as they call
the Blackfeet, or more properly Satsika, and the general style of
many of the figures bears strong resemblance to similar carvings found
in the eastern portion of the United States, in regions known to have
been occupied by other tribes of the same linguistic stock, viz., the

The four specimens of Algonkian petroglyphs presented above in Figures
147-150 show gradations in type. In connection with them reference may
be made to the Ojibwa bark record, Figure 139, page 218; the Ojibwa
grave-posts, Plate LXXXIII; the Ottawa pipe-stem, Figure 120, page 204,
in this paper; and to Schoolcraft’s numerous Ojibwa pictographs; and
they may be contrasted with the many Dakota and Innuit drawings in this

Mr. G. K. Gilbert has furnished a small collection of drawings of
Shoshonian petroglyphs, from Oneida, Idaho, shown in Figure 151. Some
of them appear to be totemic characters, and to record the names of
visitors to the locality.

[Illustration: FIG. 151.--Shoshonian petroglyph. Idaho.]

Five miles northwest from this locality, and one-half mile east from
Marsh Creek, is another group of characters, on basalt bowlders,
apparently totemic, and by Shoshoni. A copy of these, also contributed
by Mr. Gilbert, is given in Figure 152.

[Illustration: FIG. 152.--Shoshonian petroglyph. Idaho.]

All of these drawings resemble the petroglyphs found at Partridge
Creek, northern Arizona, and in Temple Creek Cañon, southeastern Utah,
mentioned _ante_, pages 30 and 26 respectively.

Mr. I. C. Russell, of the United States Geological Survey, has
furnished drawings of rude pictographs at Black Rock Spring, Utah,
represented in Figure 153. Some of the other characters not represented
in the figure consist of several horizontal lines, placed one above
another, above which are a number of spots, the whole appearing like
a numerical record having reference to the figure alongside, which
resembles, to a slight extent, a melon with tortuous vines and stems.
The left-hand upper figure suggests the masks shown on Plate LXXXI.

[Illustration: FIG. 153.--Shoshonian petroglyph. Utah.]

Mr. Gilbert Thompson, of the United States Geological Survey, has
discovered pictographs at Fool Creek Cañon, Utah, shown in Figure
154, which strongly resemble those still made by the Moki of Arizona.
Several characters are identical with those last mentioned, and
represent human figures, one of which is drawn to represent a man,
shown by a cross, the upper arm of which is attached to the perinæum.
These are all drawn in red color and were executed at three different
periods. Other neighboring pictographs are pecked and unpainted, while
others are both pecked and painted.

[Illustration: FIG. 154.--Shoshonian rock-painting. Utah.]

Both of these pictographs from Utah may be compared with the Moki
pictographs from Oakley Springs, Arizona, copied in Figure 1, page 30.

Dr. G. W. Barnes, of San Diego, California, has kindly furnished
sketches of pictographs prepared for him by Mrs. F. A. Kimball, of
National City, California, which were copied from records 25 miles
northeast of the former city. Many of them found upon the faces of
large rocks are almost obliterated, though sufficient remains to permit
tracing. The only color used appears to be red ocher. Many of the
characters, as noticed upon the drawings, closely resemble those in New
Mexico, at Ojo de Benado, south of Zuñi, and in the cañon leading from
the cañon at Stewart’s ranch, to the Kanab Creek Cañon, Utah. This is
an indication of the habitat of the Shoshonian stock apart from the
linguistic evidence with which it agrees.

The power of determining the authorship of pictographs made on
materials other than rocks, by means of their general style and type,
can be estimated by a comparison of those of the Ojibwa, Dakota, Haida,
and Innuit of Alaska presented in various parts of this paper.


With regard to the study of the individual characters themselves to
identify the delineators of pictographs, the various considerations of
fauna, religion, customs, tribal signs, indeed, most of the headings
of this paper will be applicable. It is impracticable now to give
further details in this immediate connection, except to add to similar
particulars before presented the following notes with regard to the
arrangement of hair and display of paint in identification.

A custom obtains among the Absaroka, which, when depicted in
pictographs, as is frequently done, serves greatly to facilitate
identification of the principal actors in events recorded. This
consists in wearing false hair, attached to the back of the head and
allowed to hang down over the back. Horse hair, taken from the tail, is
arranged in 8 or 10 strands, each about as thick as a finger, and laid
parallel with spaces between them of the width of a single strand. Pine
gum is then mixed with red ocher, or vermilion, when the individual can
afford the expense, and by means of other hair, or fibers of any kind
laid cross-wise, the strands are secured, and around each intersection
of hair a ball of gum is plastered to hold it in place. About 4 inches
further down, a similar row of gum balls and cross strings are placed,
and so on down to the end. The top of the tail ornament is then secured
to the hair on the back of the head. The Indians frequently incorporate
the false hair with their own so as to lengthen the latter without
any marked evidence of the deception. Nevertheless the transverse
fastenings with their gum attachments are present. The Arikara have
adopted this custom of late, and they have obtained it from the
Hidatsa, who, in turn, learned it of the Absaroka.

In picture-writing this is shown upon the figure of a man by the
presence of parallel lines drawn downward from the back of the head,
with cross lines, the whole appearing like small squares or a piece of

Dr. George Gibbs mentions a pictograph made by one of the Northwestern
tribes (of Oregon and Washington) upon which “the figure of a man, with
a long queue, or scalp-lock, reached to his heels, denoted a Shoshonee,
that tribe being in the habit of braiding horse- or other hair into
their own in that manner.” See Contrib. to N. A. Ethnol., Vol. I, p.

This may have reference to the Shoshoni Indians among the extreme
Northwestern tribes, but it can by no means be positively affirmed
that the mark of identification could be based upon the custom of
braiding with their own hair that of animals to increase the length
and appearance of the queue, as this custom also prevails among the
Absaroka and Arikara Indians of Montana and Dakota, respectively, as
above described.

Pictures drawn by some of the northern tribes of the Dakota, the Titon,
for instance, show the characteristic and distinctive features for a
Crow Indian to be the distribution of the red war paint, which covers
the forehead. A Dakota upon the same picture is designated by painting
the face red from the eyes down to the end of the chin. Again, the Crow
is designated by a top-knot of hair extending upward from the forehead,
that lock of hair being actually worn by that tribe and brushed
upward and slightly backward. See the seated figure in the record of
Running-Antelope in Fig. 127, page 210.

The Pueblos generally, when accurate and particular in delineation,
designate the women of that tribe by a huge coil of hair over either
ear. This custom prevails also among the Coyotèro Apaches, the women
wearing the hair in a coil to denote a virgin or an unmarried person,
while the coil is absent in the case of a married woman.

The following remarks are extracted from the unpublished “Catalogue of
the Relics of the Ancient Builders of the Southwest Tablelands,” by Mr.
Thomas V. Keam:

“The Maltese cross is the emblem of a virgin; still so recognized by
the Mokis. It is a conventional development of a more common emblem
of maidenhood, the form in which the maidens wear their hair arranged
as a disk of three or four inches in diameter upon each side of the
head. This discoidal arrangement of their hair is typical of the
emblem of fructification, worn by the maiden in the Muingwa festival.
Sometimes the hair, instead of being worn in the complete discoid
form, is dressed from two curved twigs, and presents the form of two
semi-circles upon each side of the head. The partition of these is
sometimes horizontal and sometimes vertical. A combination of both
of these styles presents the form from which the Maltese cross was
conventionalized. The brim decorations are of ornamental locks of hair
which a maiden trains to grow upon the sides of the forehead.”

This strongly marked form of Maltese cross, the origin of which is
above explained, appears frequently in the pottery, and also in the
petroglyphs of the Moki.

       *       *       *       *       *

Regarding the apparent subject matter of pictographs an obvious
distinction may be made between hunting and land scenes such as would
be familiar to interior tribes and those showing fishing and water
transportation common to seaboard and lacustrine peoples. Similar and
more perspicuous modes of discrimination are available. The general
scope of known history, traditions, and myths may also serve in

       *       *       *       *       *

Knowledge of the priscan homes and of the migrations of tribes
necessary to ascertain their former habitat in connection with the
probable age of rock-etchings or paintings is manifestly desirable.


It is obvious that before attempting the interpretation of pictographs,
concerning which no direct information is to be obtained, there should
be a full collection of known characters, in order that through them
the unknown may be learned. When any considerable number of objects in
a pictograph are actually known, the remainder may be ascertained by
the context, the relation, and the position of the several designs, and
sometimes by the recognized principles of the art.

The Bureau of Ethnology has been engaged, therefore, for a considerable
time in collating a large number of characters in a card-catalogue
arranged primarily by similarity in forms, and in attaching to each
character any significance ascertained or suggested. As before
explained, the interpretation upon which reliance is mainly based is
that which has been made known by direct information from Indians
who themselves were actually makers of pictographs at the time of
giving the interpretation. Apart from the comparisons obtained by this
collation, the only mode of ascertaining the meaning of the characters,
in other words, the only key yet discovered, is in the study of the
gesture-sign included in many of them. The writer several years ago
suggested that among people where a system of ideographic gesture-signs
prevailed, it would be expected that their form would appear in any
mode of artistic representation made by the same people with the object
of conveying ideas or recording facts. When a gesture-sign had been
established and it became necessary or desirable to draw a character
or design to convey the same ideas, nothing could be more natural than
to use the graphic form or delineation which was known and used in the
gesture-sign. It was but one more step, and an easy one, to fasten upon
bark, skins, or rocks the evanescent air pictures of the signs.

The industrious research of Dr. D. G. Brinton, whose recent work, The
Lenâpé and their Legends, before mentioned, is received as this paper
passes through the press, has discovered passages in Rafinesque’s
generally neglected and perhaps unduly discredited volumes, by which
that eccentric but acute writer seems to have announced the general
proposition that the graphic signs of the Indians correspond to their
manual signs. He also asserted that he had collected a large number of
them, though the statement is not clear, for if all Indian pictographs
are, in a very general sense, “based upon their language of signs,”
all of those pictographs might be included in his alleged collection,
without an ascertained specific relation between any pictograph and
any sign. It is probable, however, that Rafinesque actually had at
least valuable notes on the subject, the loss of which is greatly to be

In the paper “Sign Language among the North American Indians,”
published in the First Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology, a
large number of instances were given of the reproduction of gesture
lines in the pictographs made by the North American Indians, and they
appeared to be most frequent when there was an attempt to convey
subjective ideas. These were beyond the range of an artistic skill
limited to the rough presentation of objects in outline. It was
suggested, therefore, that the part of pictographs which is the most
difficult of interpretation in the absence of positive knowledge, was
the one in the elucidation of which the study of sign-language would
assist. Many pictographs in the present paper, the meaning of which is
definitely known from direct sources, are noted in connection with the
gesture-signs corresponding with the same idea, which signs are also
understood from independent evidence.

So numerous and conclusive are these examples, that it is not necessary
to add to them save by presenting the pictograph copied in Figure 155,
as one of special importance in this connection.

During the summer of 1882 Dr. W. J. Hoffman visited the Tule River
Agency, California, where he found a large rock painting, of which
Figure 155 is a copy made by him, the following being his description:

The agency is located upon the western side of the Sierra Nevada in
the headwater cañons of the branches of the south fork of Tule River.
The country is at present occupied by several tribes of the Yokuts
linguistic stock, and the only answer received to inquiries respecting
the age or origin of the record was, that it was found there when the
ancestors of the present tribes arrived. The local migrations of the
various Indian tribes of this part of California are not yet known with
sufficient certainty to determine to whom the records may be credited,
but all appearances with respect to the weathering and disintegration
of the rock upon which the record is etched, the appearance of the
coloring matter subsequently applied, and the condition of the small
depressions made at the time for mixing the pigments with a viscous
substance would indicate that the work had been performed about a
century ago.

The Tulare Indians have been residents of that part of the State for
at least one hundred years, and the oldest now living state that the
records were found by their ancestors, though whether more than two
generations ago could not be ascertained.

[Illustration: FIG. 155.--Rock-painting. Tule River, California.]

The drawings were outlined by pecking with a piece of quartz or other
silicious rock, to the depth of from a mere visible depression to a
third of an inch. Having thus satisfactorily depicted the several
ideas, colors were applied which upon examination appear to have
penetrated the slight interstices between the crystalline particles of
the rock, which had been bruised and slightly fractured by hammering
with a piece of stone. It appears probable, too, that the hammering was
repeated after application of the colors to insure better results.

Upon a small bowlder, under the natural archway formed by the breaking
of the large rock, small depressions were found which had been used as
mortars for grinding and mixing the colors. These depressions average
2 inches in diameter and about 1 inch in depth. Traces of color still
remain, mixed with a thin layer of a shining substance resembling a
coating of varnish, though of a flinty hardness.

This coating is so thin that it cannot be removed with a steel
instrument, and appears to have become part of the rock itself.

From the animals depicted upon the ceiling it seems that both beaver
and deer were found in the country, and as the beaver tail and the
hoofs of deer and antelope are boiled to procure glue, it is probable
that the tribe which made these pictographs was as far advanced in
respect to the making of glue and preparing of paints as other tribes
throughout the United States.

Examination shows that the dull red color is red ocher, found in
various places in the valley, while the yellow was an ocherous clay,
also found there. The white color was probably obtained there, and
is evidently earthy, though of what nature can only be surmised, not
sufficient being obtainable from the rock picture to make satisfactory
analysis with the blow pipe. The composition of the black is not
known, unless it was made by mixing clay and powdered charcoal from
the embers. The latter is a preparation common at this day among other

An immense granite bowlder, about 20 feet in thickness and 30 in
length, is so broken that a lower quarter is removed, leaving a large
square passageway through its entire diameter almost northwest and
southeast. Upon the western wall of this passageway is a collection of
the colored sketches of which Figure 155 is a reduced copy. The entire
face of the rock upon which the pictograph occurs measures about 12
or 15 feet in width and 8 in height. The ceiling also contains many
characters of birds, quadrupeds, etc. No. 1 in the figure measures 6
feet in height, from the end of the toes to the top of the head, the
others being in proportion as represented.

The attempt at reproducing gestures is admirably portrayed, and the
following explanations are based upon such natural gestures as are
almost universally in use:

No. 1 represents a person weeping. The eyes have lines running down to
the breast, below the ends of which are three short lines on either
side. The arms and hands are in the exact position for making the
gesture for rain. It was evidently the intention of the artist to show
that the hands in this gesture should be passed downward over the face,
as probably suggested by the short lines upon the lower end of the
tears. This is a noticeable illustration of the general term used by
Indians when making the gesture for weeping; _i. e._, “eye-rain.” It is
evident that sorrow is portrayed in this illustration, grief based upon
the sufferings of others who are shown in connection therewith.

Nos. 2, 3, 4. Six individuals apparently making the gesture for
“hunger,” by passing the hands towards and backward from the sides of
the body, denoting a “gnawing sensation,” as expressed by Indians.
No. 4 occupying a horizontal position, may possibly denote a “dead
man,” dead of starvation, this position being adopted by the Ojibwa,
Blackfeet, and others as a common way of representing a dead person.
The varying lengths of head ornaments denote different degrees of
position as warriors or chiefs.

Nos. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 are individuals in various shapes making gestures
for negation, or more specifically _nothing_, _nothing here_, a natural
and universal gesture made by throwing one or both hands outward toward
either side of the body. The hands are extended also, and, to make the
action apparently more emphatic, the extended toes are also shown on
Nos. 5, 6, 7, and 9. The several lines upon the leg of No. 9 refer
evidently to trimmings upon the leggings.

No. 10 is strikingly similar to the Alaskan pictographs (see No. 1 of
Figure 55, page 153) indicating _self_ with the right hand, and the
left pointing away, signifying _to go_.

No. 11 is an ornamented head with body and legs, and is unintelligible.
This may probably refer to a Shaman, the head being similar to like
personages as represented by the Ojibwa and Iroquois.

Similar drawings occur at a distance of about 10 miles southeast of
this locality, as well as at other places toward the northwest, and
it appears probable that the present record was made by a portion
of a tribe which had advanced for the purpose of selecting a new
camping place, but failing to find the necessary quantities of food
for sustenance, this notice was erected to advise their successors of
their misfortune and ultimate departure toward the northwest. It is
noticeable, also, that the picture is so placed upon the rock that the
extended arm of No. 10 points toward the north.

The foregoing description is substantially the same as published by Dr.
Hoffman in Transactions of the Anthropological Society, Washington, II,
1883, pages 128-132.

The limits of this paper do not allow of presenting a list of the
characters in the pictographs which have become known. It may be
properly demanded, however, that some of the characters in the
petroglyph, Figure 1, should be explained. The following is a list of
those which were interpreted to Mr. Gilbert, as mentioned on page 29

[Illustration: FIG. 156.]

[Illustration: FIG. 157.]

Figure 156 is an inclosure, or pen, in which ceremonial dances are
performed. Figure 157 is a head-dress used in ceremonial dances.

[Illustration: FIG. 158.]

Figure 158 shows different representations of houses.

[Illustration: FIG. 159.]

[Illustration: FIG. 160.]

Figure 159 sketches the frames or sticks used in carrying wood on the
back. Figure 160 shows different forms of arrows.

[Illustration: FIG. 161.]

Figure 161 represents the blossoms of melons, squashes, etc.

[Illustration: FIG. 162.]

[Illustration: FIG. 163.]

Figure 162 shows three ways in which lightning is represented. Figure
163 represents clouds.

[Illustration: FIG. 164.]

Figure 164 represents clouds with rain descending.

[Illustration: FIG. 165.]

Figure 165 shows various forms of stars.

[Illustration: FIG. 166.]

Figure 166 shows various representations of the sun.

[Illustration: FIG. 167.]

Figure 167 shows various representations of sunrise.

It is of interest in this connection that in the pictorial notation
of the Laplanders the sun bears its usual figure of a man’s head,
rayed, as reported in Schoolcraft, _op. cit._ I, 426. See drawings in
Scheffer’s Hist. of Lapland, London ed., 1704.

It may be desirable also to note, to avoid misconception, that where,
through this paper, mention is made of particulars under the headings
of Customs, Religious, etc., which might be made the subject of
graphic illustration in pictographs, and for that reason should be
known as preliminary to the attempted interpretation of the latter,
the suggestion is not given as a mere hypothesis. Such objective marks
and conceptions of the character indicated which can readily be made
objective, are in fact frequently found in pictographs and have been
understood by means of the preliminary information to which reference
is made. When interpretations obtained through this line of study are
properly verified they can take places in the card-catalogue little
inferior to those of interpretations derived directly from aboriginal


It has been already mentioned that characters substantially the
same, or homomorphs, made by one set of people, have a different
signification among others. Differing forms for the same general
conception or idea are also noticed. These may be termed symmorphs.
Some examples under these titles are noted as follows, not for the
purpose of giving an even approximately complete list, but merely to
show the manner in which they may be compared and sometimes confused
with similar characters, some of which appear in other parts of this

[Illustration: FIG. 168.]

Figure 168 represents Dakota lodges as drawn by the Hidatsa. These
characters when carelessly or rudely drawn can only be distinguished
from personal marks by their position and their relation to other

[Illustration: FIG. 169.]

Figure 169 signifies earth lodges among the Hidatsa. The circles
resemble the ground plan of the lodges, while the central markings are
intended to represent the upright poles, which support the roof on the
interior. Some of these are similar to the Kadiak drawing for island,
Figure 47, page 147.

[Illustration: FIG. 170.]

Figure 170 represents buildings erected by white men; the character is
generally used by the Hidatsa to designate Government buildings and
traders’ stores.

[Illustration: FIG. 171.]

Figure 171 is the Hidatsati, the home of the Hidatsa. Inclosure with
earth lodges within.

The Arikara sometimes simply mark dots or spots to signify men; when
in connection with small crescents to denote horses. The numerical
strength of a war party is sometimes shown in this manner, as in Figure

[Illustration: FIG. 172.]

Figure 173 was drawn for dead man by the Arikara. Cf. “nothing there,”
page 168.

[Illustration: FIG. 173.]

Figure 174. In records of personal events the two lines above the head
of the fallen enemy denote among the Hidatsa that the person to whom
the exploit refers was the second to strike the body.

[Illustration: FIG. 174.]

Figure 175 shows the third person to strike the enemy, as drawn by the

[Illustration: FIG. 175.]

Figure 176 means a scalp taken. Hidatsa.

[Illustration: FIG. 176.]

Figure 177 signifies, in Hidatsa drawing, the man who struck the enemy,
and who took his gun.

[Illustration: FIG. 177.]

The following specimens from the writer’s card collection are presented
as having some individual interest:

Figure 178 was drawn by a Dakota Indian, at Mendota, Minnesota, and
represents a man holding a scalp in one hand, while in the other is
the gun, the weapon used in the destruction of the enemy. The short
vertical lines below the periphery of the scalp indicate hair. The line
crossing the leg of the Indian is only an indication of the ground upon
which the figure is supposed to stand.

[Illustration: FIG. 178.]

Figure 179 is taken from the winter count of
Battiste Good for the year 1840-’41. He names it
“Came-and-killed-five-of-Little-Thunder’s-brothers winter” and
“Battiste-alone-returns winter.” He explains that the five were killed
in an encounter with the Panis. Battiste Good was the only one of the
party to escape. The capote is shown, and signifies war, as in several
other instances of the same record. The five short vertical lines below
the arrow signify that five were killed.

[Illustration: FIG. 179.]

Figure 180 is taken from Mrs. Eastman’s Dahcotah, or Life and Legends
of the Sioux, New York, 1849, p. xxvii, and shows a Dakota method of
recording the taking of prisoners. Nos. 1 and 3 are the prisoners; No.
1 being a female, as denoted by the presence of mammæ, and No. 3 a
male. No. 2 is the person making the capture. It is also noted that the
prisoners are without hands, to signify their helplessness.

[Illustration: FIG. 180.]

In this connection the following quotation is taken from the Historical
Collections of Louisiana, Part III, 1851, p. 124, describing a
pictograph, as follows: “There were two figures of men without heads
and some entire. The first denoted the dead and the second the
prisoners. One of my conductors told me on this occasion that when
there are any French among either, they set their arms akimbo, or their
hands upon their hips, to distinguish them from the savages, whom they
represent with their arms hanging down. This distinction is not purely
arbitrary; it proceeds from these people having observed that the
French often put themselves in this posture, which is not used among

[Illustration: FIG. 181.--Circle of men. Dakota.]

Figure 181 is taken from the winter count of Battiste Good for the
year 1851-’52. In the year 1851-’52, the first issue of goods was made
to the Indians, and the character represents a blanket surrounded by
a circle to show how the Indians sat awaiting the distribution. The
people are represented by small lines running at right angles to the

[Illustration: FIG. 182.--Shooting from river banks. Dakota.]

Figure 182 is also from Battiste Good. An encounter is represented
between two tribes, each on the banks of a river, from which arrows
were fired across the water at the opposing party. The vertical lines
represent the banks, while the opposing arrows denote a fight or an

[Illustration: FIG. 183.--Panther. Haida.]

The drawing, Figure 183, was made by Mr. J. G. Swan while on a visit to
the Prince of Wales Archipelago, where he found two carved figures with
panthers’ heads, and claws upon the fore feet, and human feet attached
to the hind legs. These mythical animals were placed upon either side
of a corpse which was lying in state, awaiting burial.

This union of the human figure with that of other animals is of
interest in comparison with the well-known forms of similar character
in the art of Egypt and Assyria.

[Illustration: FIG. 184.--Wolf head. Haida.]

The feet of the accompanying Figure 184 cannot be seen, being hidden in
the head of the figure beneath. It is squatting, with its hands on its
knees, and has a wolf’s head. Arms, legs, mouth, jaws, nostrils, and
ear-holes are scarlet; eyebrows, irises, and edges of the ears black.
The figure is reproduced from The Northwest Coast of America, being
results of recent ethnological researches from the collections of the
Royal Museums at Berlin. (Trans. from German.) New York, Pl. 7, Fig. 3.

The accompanying illustration, Figure 185, represents a knife from
Africa, which bears upon both sides of the blade incised characters of
the human form, strikingly similar to those found among the Ojibwa. The
lines running upward from the head are identical with an Ojibwa form of
representing a meda, or Shaman, while the hour-glass form of body is
also frequently found, though generally used to designate a woman, the
lower part of the body representing the skirt. In the present instance,
it may have allusion to the peculiar skirt-like dress often worn by the
men among the tribes of Northern Africa.

[Illustration: FIG. 185.--Drawings on an African knife.]

The lines extending from the middle of the body downward to below the
skirt and terminating in an irregular knob somewhat resemble the Pueblo
method of designating sex, the male being shown by a small cross, and
the female by a simple, short, vertical line attached to the perinæum.

The upper character, in B, in addition to the line and circle extending
downward from the lower extremity, shows a bird’s leg and toes at
either side. This is also, according to Schoolcraft, an Ojibwa method
of depicting a person or being who is endowed with the power of flight
into the upper regions, hence one of superior knowledge.

The history of the knife here figured is received from Mr. Thomas M.
Chatard, of the National Museum, who in turn obtained it from his
father, Mr. F. E. Chatard, Baltimore, Maryland, who writes that it
was obtained at Cape Mesurado, Africa, in November, 1822, where the
natives had attacked a recently established colony. The Africans were
repulsed, and the knife was subsequently picked up on the battle-field
and brought to America by the late William Seton, an officer of the
United States Navy.


The course of conventionalizing is noticeable in pictographs as well
as in gesture-signs, on the one hand, and, on the other, as it appears
in all forms of graphic art. The analysis of such conventions in form
could be pursued at great length with regard to the pictographs now
known in the same manner as has been done with success by Dr. Harrison
Allen in his work “An analysis of the Life-form in Art,” Philadelphia,
1875. Some suggestions may be obtained from the present paper,
especially from examples given under the headings of Ideographs, page
219, and Homomorphs and Symmorphs, page 239. See also conventionalized
sign for Ponka in Winter Count No. I for 1778-79, on page 131, and
for Mandan in the same count for 1783-84, on the same page; also the
conventional sign for Cheyenne, Figure 78, page 173; also the device
for starvation, Figure 144, page 220, as conventionalized in Figure
145, page 221. The limits of this paper will only allow of submitting
in addition the following conventionalized forms of the human figure,
in some cases being merely marks arbitrarily used to represent humanity:

[Illustration: FIG. 186.]

Figure 186 signifies men among the Arikara. The characters are used
in connection with horse-shoes, to denote “mounted men.” In other
pictographs such spots or dots are merely numerical.

[Illustration: FIG. 187.]

Figure 187 is drawn by the Kiatéxamut branch of the Innuits for man. It
is an abbreviated form and rare.

[Illustration: FIG. 188.]

Figure 188, drawn by the Blackfeet, signifies “Man--dead.” This is from
a pictograph in Wind River Mountains. See Jones’s Northwestern Wyoming,
etc., _op. cit._

[Illustration: FIG. 189.]

Figure 189 is the Kiatéxamut Innuit drawing for man. This figure is
armless; generally represents the person addressed.

[Illustration: FIG. 190.]

Figure 190 is also a Kiatéxamut Innuit drawing for man. The figure
makes the gesture for _negation_.

[Illustration: FIG. 191.]

Figure 191, from a Californian pictograph, is a man, also gesturing

[Illustration: FIG. 192.]

Figure 192 is another Californian pictograph for man, making the same

[Illustration: FIG. 193.]

Figure 193, from Schoolcraft, I, Pl. 59, No. 91, is the Ojibwa “symbol”
for disabled man.

[Illustration: FIG. 194.]

Figure 194 is the Kiatéxamut Innuit drawing for Shaman.

[Illustration: FIG. 195.]

Figure 195, used by the Kiatéxamut Innuit, represents man supplicating.

The five figures, 196 to 200, are reproduced from Schoolcraft, Vol.
I, Pl. 58, opp. p. 408. The Numbers attached are those given by that

[Illustration: FIG. 196.]

Figure 196, No. 6, is the Ojibwa representative figure for man.

[Illustration: FIG. 197.]

Figure 197, No. 10, is used by the Ojibwa to denote a spirit or man
enlightened from on high, having the head of the sun.

[Illustration: FIG. 198.]

Figure 198, No. 20, is drawn by the Ojibwa for a “wabeno” or Shaman.

[Illustration: FIG. 199.]

Figure 199, No. 30, is the Ojibwa “symbol” for an evil or one-sided
“meda” or higher grade Shaman.

[Illustration: FIG. 200.]

Figure 200, No. 29, is the Ojibwa general “symbol” for a meda.

[Illustration: FIG. 201.]

Figure 201 is drawn by the Hidatsa for man.

[Illustration: FIG. 202.]

Figure 202, from Schoolcraft, I, Pl. 58, No. 3, is an Ojibwa drawing of
a headless body.

[Illustration: FIG. 203.]

Figure 203, from Schoolcraft, I, Pl. 58, No. 2, is another Ojibwa
figure for a headless body, perhaps female.

[Illustration: FIG. 204.]

Figure 204, contributed by Mr. Gilbert Thompson, is a drawing for man,
made by the Moki in Arizona.

[Illustration: FIG. 205.]

Figure 205, reproduced from Schoolcraft, I, Pl. 64, opposite page 424,
is a drawing from the banks of the River Yenesei, Siberia, by Von
Strahlenberg, in his historical and geographical description of the
northern and eastern parts of Europe, Asia, etc. London, 1738.

The similarity to characters on Figure 185 is obvious.

[Illustration: FIG. 206.]

Figure 206, also from Strahlenberg, and quoted in Schoolcraft, Vol. I,
Pl. 66, Fig. 4, opp. p. 342, was found in Siberia, and is identical
with the character which, according to Schoolcraft, is drawn by
the Ojibwa to represent speed and the power of superior knowledge
by exaltation to the regions of the air, being, in his opinion, a
combination of bird and man.

It is to be noticed that some Ojibwa recently examined regard the
character merely as a human figure with outstretched arms, and fringes
pendant therefrom. It has, also, a strong resemblance to some of the
figures in the Dakota Winter Counts (those for 1854-’55 and 1866-’67,
pages 121 and 124, respectively), in which there is no attempt
understood to signify any thing more than a war-dress.

[Illustration: FIG. 207.]

Figure 207, according to Schoolcraft, Vol. I, Pl. 58, No. 58, is the
Ojibwa drawing symbolic for an American.


No large amount of space need be occupied in the mention of recognized
pictographic frauds, their importance being small, but much more than
is now allowed would be required for the discussion of controverted

There is little inducement, beyond a disposition to hoax, to commit
actual frauds in the fabrication of rock-carvings. The instances where
inscribed stones from mounds have been ascertained to be forgeries or
fictitious drawings have been about equally divided between simple
mischief and an attempt either to increase the marketable value of some
real estate, supposed to contain more, or to sell the specimens.

With regard to the much more familiar and more portable material of
engraved pipes, painted robes and like curios, it is well known to all
recent travelers in the West who have had former experience that the
fancy prices paid by amateurs for those decorations have stimulated
their wholesale manufacture by Indians at agencies (locally termed
“coffee-coolers”), who make a business of sketching upon ordinary robes
or plain pipes the characters in common use by them, without regard to
any real event or person, and selling them as curious records.

This pictorial forgery would seem to show a gratifying advance of
the Indians in civilization, but it is feared that the credit of the
invention is chiefly due to some enterprising traders who have been
known to furnish the unstained robes, plain pipes, paints, and other
materials for the purpose, and simply pay a skillful Indian for his
work, when the fresh antique or imaginary chronicle is delivered.

Six inscribed copper plates were said to have been found in a mound
near Kinderhook, Pike County, Illinois, which were reported to bear
a close resemblance to Chinese. This resemblance seemed not to be so
extraordinary when it was ascertained that the plate had been engraved
by the village blacksmith, copied from the lid of a Chinese tea-chest.

Mica plates were found in a mound at Lower Sandusky, Ohio, which, after
some attempts at interpretation, proved to belong to the material known
as graphic or hieroglyphic mica, the discolorations having been caused
by the infiltration of mineral solution between the laminæ.

The following recent notice of a case of alleged fraud is quoted from
Science, Vol. III, No. 58, March 14, 1884, page 334:

  Dr. N. Roe Bradner exhibited [at the Academy of Natural Sciences,
  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,] an inscribed stone found inside a skull
  taken from one of the ancient mounds at Newark, Ohio, in 1865. An
  exploration of the region had been undertaken in consequence of
  the finding of stones bearing markings somewhat resembling Hebrew
  letters, in the hope of finding other specimens of a like character.
  The exploration was supposed to have been entirely unproductive of
  such objects until Dr. Bradner had found the engraved stone, now
  exhibited, in a skull which had been given to him.

This was supplemented by an editorial note in No. 62 of the same
publication, page 467, as follows:

  A correspondent from Newark, Ohio, warns us that any inscribed
  stones said to originate from that locality may be looked upon as
  spurious. Years ago certain parties in that place made a business of
  manufacturing and burying inscribed stones and other objects in the
  autumn, and exhuming them the following spring in the presence of
  innocent witnesses. Some of the parties to these frauds afterwards
  confessed to them; and no such objects, except such as were spurious,
  have ever been known from that region.

The correspondent of Science probably remembered the operations of
David Wyrick, of Newark, who, to prove his theory that the Hebrews were
the mound-builders, discovered in 1860 a tablet bearing on one side a
truculent “likeness” of Moses with his name in Hebrew, and on the other
a Hebrew abridgment of the ten commandments. A Hebrew bible afterwards
found in Mr. Wyrick’s private room threw some light on the inscribed

As the business of making and selling archæological frauds has become
so extensive in Egypt and Palestine, it can be no matter of surprise
that it has been attempted by the enterprising people of the United
States. The Bureau of Ethnology has discovered several centers of that
fraudulent industry.

Without further pursuing the subject of mercenary frauds, an example
may be mentioned which was brought forth during the researches of
the present writer and his assistant, Dr. Hoffman, which is probably
as good a case of a modern antique in this line as can be presented.
Figure 208 is a copy of a drawing taken from an Ojibwa pipe-stem,
obtained by Dr. Hoffman from an officer of the United States Army, who
had procured it from an Indian in Saint Paul, Minnesota. On a later
and more minute examination, it appeared that the pipe-stem had been
purchased at a store in Saint Paul, which had furnished a large number
of similar objects, so large as to awaken suspicion that they were in
the course of daily manufacture. The figures and characters on the
pipe-stem were drawn in colors. In the present figure, which is without
colors, the horizontal lines represent blue and the vertical red,
according to the heraldic scheme several times used in this paper. The
outlines were drawn in a dark neutral tint, in some lines approaching
black; the triangular characters, representing lodges, being also in
a neutral tint, or an ashen hue, and approaching black in several
instances. The explanation of the figures, made before there was any
suspicion of their real character, is as follows:

[Illustration: FIG. 208.--Specimen of imitated pictograph.]

The first figure is that of a bear, representing the individual to whom
the record pertains. The three hearts above the line, according to an
expression in gesture language, signifies a brave heart; increased
numbers indicating _much_ or _many_, _i. e._, a large brave heart.

The second figure, a circle inclosing a triradiate character, refers
to the personal totem. The character in the middle resembles, to some
extent, the pictograph sometimes found to represent stars, though in
the latter the lines center upon the disks and not at a common point.

The seven triangular characters represent the lodges of a village to
which the individual to whom reference is made belongs.

The serpentine line immediately below these signifies a stream or
river, near which the village is located.

The two persons holding guns in their left hands, together with another
having a spear, appear to be the companions of the speaker, all of whom
are members of the turtle gens, as shown by that reptile.

The curve from left to right is a representation of the sky, the sun
having appeared upon the left or eastern horizon when the transaction
below mentioned was enacted. In an explanation by gesture, or by
pictograph, the speaker always faces the south, or conducts himself
as if he did so, and begins on the left side to convey the idea of
morning, if day; the hand, or line, is drawn all the way from the
eastern horizon to the western. The above, then, represents the morning
when a female--headless body of a woman--a member of the crane gens,
was killed.

The figure of a bear below is the same apparently as number one, though
turned to the right. The heart is reversed to denote sadness, grief,
remorse, as expressed in gesture-language, and to atone for the misdeed
committed in the proceeding the pipe is brought and offering made to
the “Great Spirit.”

Altogether, the act depicted appears to have been accidental, the woman
belonging to the same tribe, as can be learned from the gens of which
she was a member. The regret or sorrow signified in the bear, next to
the last figure, corresponds with that supposition, as such feelings
would not be congruous to the Indian in the case of an enemy.

The point of interest in this pictograph is, that the figures are
very skillfully copied from the numerous characters of the same kind
representing Ojibwa pictographs, and given by Schoolcraft. The
arrangement of these copied characters is precisely that which would be
natural in the similar work of Indians. In fact, the groups constitute
a thoroughly genuine pictograph, and afford a good illustration of the
manner in which a record can be made. The fact that it was made and
sold under false representations is its objectionable feature.

An inscribed stone found in Grave Creek Mound, near the Ohio River, in
1838, has been the subject of much linguistic contention among those
who admitted its authenticity. Twenty-four characters on it have been
considered to be alphabetic and one is a supposed hieroglyphic sign.
Mr. Schoolcraft says that twenty-two of the characters are alphabetic,
but there has been a difference of opinion with regard to their origin.
One scholar finds among them four characters which he claims are
ancient Greek; another claims that four are Etruscan; five have been
said to be Runic; six, ancient Gaelic; seven, old Erse; ten, Phœnician;
fourteen, old British; and sixteen, Celteberic. M. Levy Bing reported
at the Congress of Americanists at Nancy, in 1875, that he found in the
inscription twenty-three Canaanite letters, and translated it: “What
thou sayest, thou dost impose it, thou shinest in thy impetuous clan
and rapid chamois.”(!) M. Maurice Schwab in 1857 rendered it: “The
Chief of Emigration who reached these places (or this island) has fixed
these statutes forever.” M. Oppert, however, gave additional variety by
the translation, so that all tastes can be suited: “The grave of one
who was assassinated here. May God to avenge him strike his murderer,
cutting off the hand of his existence.”

For further particulars on this topic reference may be made to Colonel
Charles Whittlesey’s Archæological Frauds, in several tracts, and to
The Mound Builders, by J. P. MacLean, Cincinnati, 1879, p. 90, _et seq._

From considerations mentioned in the introduction of this paper,
and others that are obvious, any inscriptions purporting to be
pre-Columbian showing apparent use of alphabetic characters, signs of
the zodiac, or other evidences of a culture higher than that known
among the North American Indians, must be received with caution,
but the pictographs may be altogether genuine, and their erroneous
interpretation be the sole ground of their being discredited.

In this connection some allusion may be made to the learned discussions
upon the Dighton rock before mentioned. The originally Algonkian
characters were translated by a Scandinavian antiquary as an account
of the party of Thorfinn, the Hopeful. A distinguished Orientalist
made out clearly the word _melek_ (king). Another scholar triumphantly
established the characters to be Scythian, and still another made them
Phœnician. But this inscription has been so manipulated that it is
difficult now to determine the original details.

The course above explained, viz., to attempt the interpretation of
all unknown American pictographs by the aid of actual pictographers
among the living Indians, should be adopted regarding all remarkable
“finds.” This course was pursued by Mr. Horatio N. Rust, of Pasadena,
California, regarding the much-discussed Davenport Tablets, in the
genuineness of which he believes, and which is not here placed in
question. Mr. Rust exhibited the drawings to Dakotas, with the result
made public at the late Montreal meeting of the American Association
for the Advancement of Science, and also in a letter, an extract from
which is as follows:

  As I made the acquaintance of several of the older and more
  intelligent members of the tribe, I took the opportunity to show them
  the drawings. Explaining that they were pictures copied from stones
  found in a mound, I asked what they meant. They readily gave me the
  same interpretation (and in no instance did either interpreter know
  that another had seen the pictures, so there could be no collusion).
  In Plate I, of the Davenport Inscribed Tablets [so numbered in the
  Proceedings of the Davenport Academy, Vol. II], the lower central
  figure represents a dome-shaped lodge, with smoke issuing from
  the top, behind and to either side of which appears a number of
  individuals with hands joined, while three persons are depicted as
  lying upon the ground. Upon the right and left central margins are
  the sun and moon, the whole surmounted by three arched lines, between
  each of which, as well as above them, are numerous unintelligible
  characters. * * * The central figure, which has been supposed by some
  to represent a funeral pile, was simply the picture of a dirt lodge.
  The irregular markings apparently upon the side and to the left of
  the lodge represent a fence made of sticks and brush set in the
  ground. The same style of fence may be seen now in any Sioux village.

  The lines of human figures standing hand-in-hand indicate that a
  dance was being conducted in the lodge. The three prostrate forms at
  right and left sides of the lodge represent two men and a woman who,
  being overcome by the excitement and fatigue of the dance, had been
  carried out in the air to recover. The difference in the shape of the
  prostrate forms indicates the different sexes.

  The curling figures or rings above the lodge represent smoke, and
  indicates that the dance was held in winter, when fire was used.

An example of forced interpretation of a genuine petroglyph is given
by Lieutenant J. W. Gunnison, U. S. Top. Engineers, in his work
entitled The Mormons, or, Latter-day Saints, in the Valley of the Great
Salt Lake, etc., Philadelphia, 1852, pp. 62, 63. He furnishes two
illustrations of petroglyphs taken from the cliff in Sam Pete Valley,
Utah, not reproduced in this paper, which resemble the general type of
the Shoshonian system. On account of various coincidences which have
occurred to strikingly keep alive in the mountain brethren their idea
of being the chosen of the Lord, these etchings confirm them in the
belief of the inspiration of the Book of Mormon. One of their Regents
has translated one of them as follows:

  I, Mahanti, the 2nd King of the Lamanites, in five valleys in the
  mountains, make this record in the 12 hundredth year since we came
  out of Jerusalem. And I have three sons gone to the South country to
  live by hunting antelope and deer.

Among the curiosities of literature in connection with the
interpretation of pictographs may be mentioned La Vèritè sur le Livre
des Sauvages, par L’Abbé Em. Domenech, Paris, 1861, and Researches
into the Lost Histories of America, by W. S. Blacket, London and
Philadelphia, 1884.

Under the head of errors some of the most marked have arisen from the
determination of enthusiastic symbolists to discover something mystical
in the form of the cross wherever found.

The following quotation is taken from a work by Gabriel de Mortillet,
entitled Le Signe de la Croix avant le Christianisme (Paris, Reinwald,
1866), p. 173:

  On voit qu’il ne peut plus y avoir de doute sur l’emploi de la Croix
  comme signe religieux, bien longtemps avant le christianisme. Le
  culte de la Croix, répandu en Gaule avant la conquête, existait
  déjà dans l’Émilie à l’époque du bronze, plus de mille aus avant

  C’est surtout dans les sépultures de Golasecca où ce culte s’est
  révélé de la manière la plus complète; et là, chose étrange, on a
  trouvé un vase portant le monogramme ancien du Christ, figure 117
  [reproduced in the present paper by Figure 209; the right-hand figure
  being from the vase, and that on the left the recognized monogram of
  Christ], dessiné peut-être mille ans avant la venue de Jésus-Christ.
  La présence isolée de ce monogramme du Christ au milieu de nombreuses
  Croix est-elle un fait accidentel entièrement fortuit? Des recherches
  plus complètes peuvent seules permettre de répondre à cette question.

  Un autre fait fort curieux, très-intéressant à constater, c’est
  que ce grand développement du culte de la Croix, avant la venue du
  Christ, semble toujours coïncider avec l’absence d’idoles et même
  de toute représentation d’objets vivants. Dès que ces objets se
  montrent, on dirait que les Croix deviennent plus rares et finissent
  même par disparaître.

  La Croix a donc été, dans la haute antiquité, bien longtemps avant
  la venue de Jésus-Christ, l’emblème sacré d’une secte religieuse qui
  repoussait l’idolâtrie!!!

[Illustration: FIG. 209.--Symbols of the cross.]

The author, with considerable naiveté, has evidently determined that
the form of the cross was significant of a high state of religious
culture, and that its being succeeded by effigies, which he calls
idols, showed a lapse into idolatry. The fact is simply that, next
to one straight line, the combination of two straight lines forming
a cross is the easiest figure to draw, and its use before art could
attain to the drawing of animal forms, or their representation in
plastic material, is merely an evidence of crudeness or imperfection in
designing. It is worthy of remark that Dr. Schliemann, in his “Troja,”
page 107, presents as Fig. 38 a much more distinct cross than that
given by M. Mortillet, with the simple remark that it is “a geometrical
ornamentation.” An anecdote told by Dr. Robert Fletcher, U. S. Army,
in connection with his exhaustive paper on Tattooing Among Civilized
People, published in the Transactions of the Anthropological Society
of Washington, Vol. II, page 40, is also in point. Some _savants_ were
much excited over the form of the cross found in tattoo marks on an
Arab boy, but on inquiry of the mother as to why the cross had been
placed there, she simply answered “because it looked pretty.” The
present writer will add to the literature on the subject a reference to
the cross as shown upon the arm of a Cheyenne in Cloud-Shield’s winter
count for the year 1790-’91, page 132, _ante_. (See also page 173.)
This is explained fully by one of the common gestures for the tribal
sign, Cheyenne.

“The extended index, palm upward, is drawn across the forefinger of
the left hand, palm inward, several times, left hand stationary;
right hand is drawn toward the body until the index is drawn clear
off; then repeat. Some Cheyennes believe this to have reference to
the former custom of cutting the arm as offerings to spirits, while
others think that it refers to a more ancient custom, the cutting of
the enemy’s fingers for necklaces.” The pictograph is simply a graphic
representation of this gesture sign. See also the Moki use of the
Maltese cross, page 232, the form of which in a rock-painting appears
in _x_ on Plate II, page 35.

There is no doubt that among the Egyptians and several of the peoples
of the eastern hemisphere, ancient and modern, the form of the cross
was used symbolically, and there is no more doubt that it was employed
in a similar manner by many American tribes with reference to the
points of the compass, or rather the four winds. It was also used with
many differing significations. See in this paper Figure 60, page 158,
Figure 143, page 220, Figure 154, page 230, Figure 165, page 238, and
Figure 168, page 240. The ease with which the design was made would
tend to its early adoption as a sign, an emblem, or a symbol.

Rev. S. D. Hinman states that among the Dakota, symbolic crosses always
have the members equal, or of the “Greek” pattern, and are always
worn resting on one foot, not two as in the St. Andrew’s cross. They
represent the four winds issuing from the four caverns in which the
souls of men existed before embodiment. The top of the cross is the
cold, all-conquering giant, the north wind. As worn on the body it is
nearest the head, the seat of intelligence. The top arm, covering the
heart, is the east wind, coming from the seat of life and love. The
foot is the burning south wind, indicating as it is worn the seat of
passion and fiery lust. The right is the gentle west wind, blowing from
the spirit land, covering the lungs, from which at last the breath goes
out. The center of the cross is the earth and man, sometimes indicated
at that point by a circle surrounding a dot. On the upper arm an arrow
is sometimes drawn, on the left a heart, on the right a star, and on
the lower a sun.


The present writer hopes to receive contributions from travelers and
observers, not only in North America, but in other parts of the world.
Such collaboration will always receive due credit, and when practicable
will be reproduced in the language of the collaborator.

The number and the importance of the contributions received upon the
collateral branch of sign-language encourages the hope of similar
success in this application for assistance in the monograph on
pictographs now in preparation.

The main object of the classification both of the text and of the
illustrations in the present paper has been to stimulate the research
and assist the collaboration invited, so that reference to the various
preceding headings is unnecessary. Some practical suggestions may,
however, be offered as follows:

As a small drawing of large rock inscriptions may give an exaggerated
idea of the degree of finish or fineness of the subject, it is
desirable, in every instance, to affix the scale of the drawing, or
to give a principal dimension that may serve as a guide. A convenient
scale for ordinary petroglyphs is one-sixteenth of full size. The
drawing should be sufficiently close and accurate to show the character
of the work. It is desirable to note the lithologic character of the
rock or bowlder used; whether the drawing has been etched into the
face of the rock, or pecked in more deeply with a sharp implement,
and the depth of such pecking; whether the design is merely outlined,
or the whole body of the figures pecked out, and whether paint has
been applied to the pecked surface, or the design executed with paint
only. The composition of paint should be ascertained when possible.
The amount of weathering or erosion, together with the exposure, or
any other feature bearing on the question of antiquity, would prove
important. If actual colors are not accessible for representation the
ordinary heraldic scheme of colors can be used.

That sketches even by fair artists, are of not high value in accuracy,
is shown by the discrepant copies of some of the most carefully-studied
pictographs, which discrepancies sometimes leave in uncertainty the
points most needed for interpretation. Sketches, or still better,
photographs are desirable to present a connected and general view of
the characters and the surface upon which they are found. For accuracy
of details “squeezes” should be obtained when practicable.

A simple method of obtaining squeezes of petroglyphs, when the lines
are sufficiently deep to receive an impression, is to take ordinary
manilla paper of loose texture, and to spread the sheet, after being
thoroughly wetted, over the surface desired, commencing at the top.
The top edge may be temporarily secured by a small streak of starch
or flour paste. The paper is then pressed upon the surface of the
rock by means of a soft bristle brush, so that its texture is gently
forced into every depression. Torn portions of the paper may be
supplied by applying small patches of wet paper until every opening is
thoroughly covered. A coating of ordinary paste, as above mentioned,
is now applied to the entire surface, and a new sheet of paper,
similarly softened by water, is laid over this and pressed down with
the brush. This process is continued until three or four thicknesses
of paper have been used. Upon drying, the entire mold will usually
fall off by contraction. The edge at the top, if previously pasted to
the rock, should be cut. The entire sheet can then be rolled up, or
if inconveniently large can be cut in sections and properly marked
for future purposes. This process yields the negative. To obtain the
_positive_ the inner coating of the negative may be oiled, and the
former process renewed upon the cast.

Pictographs, when of bright colors and upon a light-colored surface,
may readily be traced upon tracing linen, such as is employed by
topographers. Should the rock be of a dark color, and the characters
indistinct, a simple process is to first follow the pictographic
characters in outline with colored crayons, red chalk, or dry colors
mixed with water and applied with a brush, after which a piece of
muslin is placed over the surface and pressed so as to receive
sufficient coloring matter to indicate the general form and relative
positions of the characters. After these impressions are touched up the
true position may be obtained by painting the lines upon the back of
the sheet of muslin, or by making a true tracing of the negative.

A mode of securing the outline once adopted was to clear out the
channels of the intaglios, then, after painting them heavily, to press
a sheet of muslin into the freshly-painted depressions. The objection
to this method is the obvious damage inflicted on the inscription.
Before such treatment, if the only one practicable, all particulars of
the work to be covered by paint should be carefully recorded.

The locality should be reported with detail of State (or Territory),
county, township, and distance and direction from the nearest
post-office, railway station or country road. In addition the name
of any contiguous stream, hill, bluff, or other remarkable natural
feature should be given. The name of the owner of the land is of some
secondary value, but that indication is liable to frequent changes. The
site or station should be particularly described with reference to the
surrounding country and to the natural circumstances and geological
history of the location.

When numbers and groups of petroglyphs or rock paintings occur,
their relation to each other, to the points of the compass, or to
topographical features should be noted, if possible, by an accurate
survey, otherwise by numeration and sketching.

The following details should be carefully noted: The direction of the
face of the rock. The presence of probable trails and gaps which may
have been used in shortening distances in travel. Localities of mounds
and caves, if any, in the vicinity. Ancient camping grounds, indicated
by fragments of pottery, flint chips, etc. Existence of aboriginal
relics, particularly flints which may have been used in pecking; these
may be found at the base of the rocks upon which petroglyphs occur. The
presence of small mortar-holes which may have served in the preparation
of colors.

With reference to pictographs on other objects than rock the material
upon which they appear and the substances used in their execution
should be reported, as indicated in another part of this paper.

With reference to all kinds of pictographs, it should be noted that
mere descriptions without reproduction are of little value. Probable
age and origin and traditions relating to them should be ascertained.
Their interpretation by natives of the locality who themselves make
pictographs or who belong to people who have lately made pictographs
is most valuable, especially in reference to such designs as do not
represent objects of nature, and which may be either conventional or
connected with lines of gesture-signs.



  Abbe, Prof. Cleveland, explained eclipse to Indians 125
  Abnaki devices 152, 153
  [Absaroka], customs 55, 166, 230
  Abstract ideas pictured 233
  Achievements, Signs of individual 183-187
  Adams, William A., on rock carvings 22
  [African] carved knife 243
  [African] property mark 182
  Aigaluxamut dialect 148, 198, 199
  Ainos of Gazo tattoo 78
  [Alaska] Commercial Company, ivory pictographs 191-194
  [Alaska] tattooing 66-73
  Alaskan pictographs 59, 147-150, 152-155, 161, 191-194, 197-199, 214
  Algonkian linguistic stock 19
  [Algonkin] family 118
  [Algonkin] petroglyph 20, 224-225, 227
  [Algonkin] tribe 108
  [Algonquin] characters 250
  [Algonquin] legends of New England 190
  Alleghany River, Pictographs on 20, 21
  Allen, Dr. Harrison, on conventionalized forms 244
  Alphabets 13
  American Horse chart or Winter count, (_see_ Corbusier Winter counts)
          95, 129-146
  [American Naturalist] on tattooing 76
  Amherst, Ohio, Rock carvings at 21
  Analysis of the life form in art, An 244
  Andree, Dr. R., criticism on pictographs 14-15
  [Animal] mounds in Wisconsin 61
  Anthropological Society, Washington, cited 17
  Antiquities of the Southern Indians, Jones, quoted 22-23, 46
  Arab symbols 222
  [Arapahoes], Algonkin 108, 109
  [Arapahoes], called Blue Cloud 176
  [Arapahoes], formation of war party 139
  Arch Spring, Pictographs at 28
  Archæological frauds, Whittlesey’s, cited 250
  Arickara (see Arikara) 100, 101
  [Arikara] at war with Dakotas and United States 111-112
  [Arikara] pictography 48, 50, 59, 186, 187, 240
  [Arikara] property marks 182
  [Arikara] Symbol of 60, 213-214, 231
  [Arikaras], a branch of the Pawnee or Pani 105
  [Arikaras], killed 209-214
  Arikaree; Corrupt form of Arikara 100
  Arison, William, copied petroglyph 225
  [Arizona], pictographs on person 61
  Rock carvings in 28-30, 222, 228, 245
  Army Medical Museum, Tattooed heads in 75
  Arrows in declaration of war 87, 88
  Ashley, Gen. William H., attacked by Arickara 111
  Assiniboine 116, 119, 124
  Association pictographs 203-206
  Atsina 108
  Australian tattooing 76
  Authors quoted by Bancroft 66
  Avoidance of personal name by Indians 171
  [Aztec] writing 14
  Azuza Cañon pictographs 37, 156


  Babylonian use of color 54
  Bancroft, H. H., on pictography 64, 65, 66, 73, 78, 88
  Barnes, Dr. G. W., California pictographs 229
  Barnesville, Ohio, Bock carvings at 21
  Bark, Pictographs on 59
  [Bark] record of Lenni Lenape 207
  Barrés totem mark 167
  [Basketry] suggesting ornament 57
  Beach’s Indian Miscellany, cited 188
  Beale wagon road 30
  Beaver Creek, Pictographs on 27
  Beef first issued to Dakotas 125
  Belmont County, Ohio, Rock carvings in 21
  Beltrami, J. C., on Dakotas 104-105
  Bendire, Capt. Charles, on petrographs 26
  Benton, Cal., Petrographs at 31, 32
  Berthond, Capt. E. L., on pictographs 27
  Bible on war symbols 88
  Big Horse Creek, Rock carvings on 22
  Big Road’s roster 174-176
  Biographic pictographs 208-218
  Black Bear or Mato Sapa’s chart 94, 99-127
  Black Hills discovered 130
  Black Late Valley, Pictographs at 31
  Black Rock Springs, Pictographs at 27
  Blacket, W. S., cited 251
  Blackfoot 102, 104, 106, 114, 121, 122, 227
  [Blackfoot] defined 97
  [Blackfoot], Rock carvings of 24
  Bland, Dr. T. A., loaned Red Cloud census 176, 177
  Blodgett, James H., on pictographs 33
  Blue Cloud, a name for Arapaho 117, 118, 176
  Boats ornamented 72, 78
  Bo-i-de, or The Flame, Time chart of 93
  Bone, Pictographs on 59
  [Bone] tattooed 73-74
  Book cliff, Pictographs of 27
  Bourke, Capt. John G., on Moki colors 56
  Bow-drill, used by Innuit 48
  Brauns, Professor, on tattooing 78
  Brazil, Petroglyphs in 44, 45
  [Brazil], Totem marks in 167
  Brinton, Dr. D. G., Research of 84, 188, 233
  British Guiana, Pictographs in 40-44
  Brown, Charles B., on pictographs in Guiana 40, 43, 44
  Brulé 108, 109, 119, 120, 122, 127, 132, 134, 135, 136, 137, 141
  [Brulé] defined 98, 207
  [Brulé] Winter counts 129
  Bureau of Ethnology, system of spelling 147
  Burning Spring, W. Va., Pictographs at 22
  Bush, Maj. Joseph, on time charts 94, 99-127


  Calendar 127
  [Calendar], of the Dakota Nation, A 89
  Calhoun, J. C., Report cited on attack of soldiers and Dakotas on
          Arikaras 111, 112
  California claim symbols 159
  [California] grass weavers 78
  [California] mnemonic device 80, 81
  [California] pictographic land-marks 61
  [California] petrographs 30-33
  [California], Pictographs in 34, 59, 156-157, 182, 195, 198,
          229, 234, 245
  [California] tattooing 64
  [California] war challenge 88
  Calumet pipe 104
  Campbell’s Creek, West Virginia, Pictographs on 22
  Cañon de Chelly, Petroglyphs in 28, 37, 155
  Cape Mesurado, African knife from 243
  Caribbean Sea, Pictographs of 40
  Carisa Plain, Pictographs of the 36
  Carson Desert, Nevada, Rock-carvings in 24
  Carver, Capt. J., on Indians 98, 99, 104, 113
  Catlin on Indians 101, 114, 115, 116
  Catlinite 23
  Cattle-brands 182-183
  Ceremonial chart, New Holland 197
  [Ceremonial chart] pictographs 194-197
  Chadron builds house 114
  Challenge to war 88
  Charms 201-202
  Chart, Tattooed 86
  Charts (_see_ Winter counts).
  [Charts] Of geographic features 157
  Chatard, F. E., African knife 243
  Chatard, T. M., African knife 243
  Chelan Lake, Pictographs at 26
  Cherokee pictographs 33
  Cheyenne Agency, Charts at 94
  [Cheyenne Agency], Fight near 102
  [Cheyenne] cross 252
  [Cheyenne] pictograph letter 160-161
  [Cheyenne], Symbol for 123, 166, 172-173
  Cheyenne war with General Mackenzie 146
  Cheyennes 101, 115, 118, 132, 133, 134, 139, 141, 142, 144
  Chippewa grave posts 199-200
  Chippewayan tattooing 65
  Cholera among Indians 142
  Christy, Henry, on symbols 82
  Chronology attempted by Indians, System of 127
  Chumanas totem mark 167
  Claim or demand pictograph 159
  Clan designation 167
  Clément, Basil, (interpreter) on Winter count 90, 91, 113, 113,
          120, 122
  Clement, Clara Erskine; Handbook of Legendary and Mythological Art 54
  Cleveland, Rev. William J., cited 129
  Cliff-dwellers 202
  Cloud Shield, chart or Winter count (_see_ Corbusier Winter counts) 95,
  Coale, Charles B., on pictographs 33
  Collaborators, Suggestions to 254-256
  Colorado, Rock carvings in 27
  Collections of the Historical Committee of the American Philosophical
          Society, cited 158
  [Color] materials 235, 236
  [Colorado] maps 158
  Colors, Significance of 53-57
  [Colors] used by Indians 50, 51
  Columbia River, Pictographs on 26
  Columbiana County, Ohio, Rock carvings in 21
  Commercial fraud in relics 248
  Communication by pictographs 160-164
  Conder, Lieutenant, on symbol at Jerusalem 222
  Contributions to North American ethnology 153, 166, 195, 231
  Conventionalizing 13, 15, 244
  Copper-plate frauds 247
  Corbusier, Dr. W. H., on pictographs 60
  [Corbusier, Dr. W. H.], on rock carvings 24
  [Corbusier, Dr. W. H.], on time symbols 88
  [Corbusier] Winter counts, The 95, 118, 119, 121, 124, 127-146
  Coronel, Hon. A. F., collection of herders’ notched sticks 81-82
  [Coronel, Hon. A. F.], on pictographs 35, 36
  [Coronel, Hon. A. F.], on Serrano land-marks 182
  Cosninos 30
  Crook, General, Designation for 146
  [Cross] in pictography 252
  Crow. (_See_ Absaroka.)
  [Crow], Distinctive mark of 231
  Crow Indians mode of painting 54
  Crows 103, 104, 105, 107, 114, 115, 118, 120, 121, 122, 123, 124,
          126, 127, 130, 132, 134, 135, 136, 138, 140, 141, 142,
          143, 144, 146
  Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Rock carvings in 21


  Dahcotah, or Life and legend of the Sioux around Fort Snelling
          cited 184, 189, 195, 241
  Dakota defined 97
  [Dakota] notched sticks 81
  [Dakota] pictographs 55, 60, 183
  [Dakota] picture message at Fort Rice 98
  [Dakota] pipe-stone quarries 17
  [Dakota] time symbols 88
  [Dakota] totem 167
  [Dakota] treaty 1868 125
  [Dakota] war with Rees 111
  [Dakota] Winter counts 18, 89-127, 168
  Dakotas drowned in flood of Missouri River 113
  Dall, William H., on colors used in Alaska 51
  Dalles of the Columbia, Petroglyphs in the 25
  Dance pictographs 194-197
  Das Ausland cited on marks 183
  [Davenport] tablets 251
  Designs on pottery 78
  Dighton rock inscriptions 20, 21, 250
  Diplomatic packets 161-164
  [Distribution of] petroglyphs in North America 19
  Domenech, L’Abbé, cited 251
  Dorsey, Rev. J. Owen, on Indian customs 52, 84-86, 165, 167, 197
  Dropsy among Indians 113
  Dyer, Agent, Letter of 160-161


  Eagles, how caught 105
  Eastman, Mrs. Mary (“Dahkotah”) cited 184, 189, 195, 241
  Eclipse, Indian idea of 125
  Eells, Rev. M., on Thunder-bird 189
  [Eells, Rev. M., on] Twana tattooing 49, 64
  Effigy mounds, Wisconsin 61
  Egyptian tattooing 78
  [Egyptian] use of cross 253
  [Egyptian] writing 13, 14
  El Moro, Pictographs at 28
  Enchanted Mountain, Georgia, Rock carvings on 23
  Errors in pictography 247-253
  Eskimo tattooing 64
  Expedition, Record of 164
  Explanation of Haida tattooing 67-72
  [Explanation of] Osage mnemonic chart 84-86
  [Explanation of] pictographs _passim_ 1-256
  [Explanation of] San Gabriel notched sticks 81-82
  [Explanation of] symbols for songs 82-84


  Fayette County, Pennsylvania, Pictographs in 80, 224
  Feather pictographs 60
  Featherman cited 78
  Fetiches 201
  Fetterman, Capt. W. J. 144
  Fielder, Interpreter, cited 117
  Fletcher, Dr. E., cited 252
  Flood in Missouri River recorded 137-138
  [Florida] Indian war symbols 88
  Fool Creek Cañon, Pictographs in 27, 229
  Forsyth County, Georgia, Rock carvings in 23
  Fort Berthold, Indian fight near 103
  [Fort Berthold], Indian painting at 55
  [Fort Berthold], Notched sticks at 81
  [Fort Berthold], Pictographs at 183, 186, 187
  [Fort] Buford, Indian fight near 103
  [Fort] Laramie, Battle between whites and Indians near 143
  [Fort] [Laramie], First goods issued to Indians at 142
  [Fort] [Laramie] treaty 121, 125
  [Fort] Leavenworth councils 125
  [Fort] O’Kinakane 26
  [Fort] Phil. Kearny, Whites massacred at 144
  [Fort] Fort Pierre, Treaty at 122
  [Fort] Rice, Eclipse seen at 126
  [Fort] [Rice], Picture message at 98
  [Fort] [Rice], Winter counts at 89, 90, 91
  [Fort] Robinson, Events at 146
  [Fort] Snelling, Dakotas near 202
  [Fort] Union, Indian fight near 103
  [Fort] Washakie, Wyoming, Rock carvings near 24
  Frauds in Indian relics 247-253
  French explorers observed pictographs 33


  Gallatin cited on Indian names 98
  Gaston, Oreg., Rock etchings at 25
  Gatschet, A. S., on Indian customs 25, 51, 63, 183
  Geneskelos, decorator of great canoe for Centennial Exposition 72
  Gentile designation 167
  Geographic pictographs 157
  Gesture pictured 236
  Gibbon, A. S., on sacred stone of Oraibi 58
  Gibbs, Dr. George, on Oregon pictographs 231
  [Gibbs, Dr. George], quoted on symbols of Northwest tribes 153
  Gila pottery 219
  [Gila] River, Pictographs on the 28
  Gilbert, G. K., on pictographs 25, 30, 46, 228, 237
  [Gilbert, G. K.], on sacred stone of Oraibi 58
  Glue made by Indians 235
  Good Battiste chart or Winter count. (_See_ Corbusier Winter
          counts). 88, 95, 99-146, 165, 166, 172, 219, 220,
          241, 242
  [Gourds], Pictographs on 60
  Gozzadini, Conte Giovanni, cited 62
  Grant on tattooing 66
  Grapevine Springs, Pictographs at 157
  Grass baskets 78
  Grave Creek Mound stone 250
  Grave posts 198
  Great Spirit of Indians an error 191
  Gros Ventre, Symbol for 166
  Gros Ventres 101, 103, 107, 108, 114, 133, 134, 138
  Ground, Pictographs on the 60
  Guiana Indian name system 171-172
  [Guiana], Pictographs in 40-44, 61
  Guidance and warning pictographs 155-157
  Gunnison, Lieut. J. W., on forced interpretation 251


  Habel, Dr S., Investigations in Central South America,
          cited 73, 80, 194
  Haida boundaries 60
  Hale cited on Indian names 98
  Hamilton Pictured Rock 225-220
  Harney, General, cited 121, 123
  Haywood, John, on pictographs 22, 33
  Head in bronze, Italy 62
  Hebrew tattooing 78
  Heralds challenging to war 88
  Herders’ notched sticks 81
  Hervey group tattooing 76
  [Hidatsa], Siouan 108
  [Hidatsa], map 158
  Hides, Pictographs on 60
  [Hinman], Rev. S. D., obtained Ogalala roster 174
  [Hinman], on the cross as a symbol among Dakotas 253
  Historical map of Pennsylvania pictographs 226
  History of Indian tribes (Schoolcraft) quoted 20, 199
  Hochstetter, Dr. Ferd. von, quoted 200, 201
  Hoffman, Dr. W. J., Aid of 18
  [Holmes, W. H.] on pictography 60, 87, 194
  Holston, Pictographs on the 33
  Homomorphs and symmorphs 239
  Hongi tattooing 75
  Horse-hair pictographs 60, 213, 231
  Horses taken by the United States from Dakotas 127
  Hortsman, Nicholas, on pictographs 39
  Hualpai pictograph on person 61
  Humboldt, A. von, on petroglyph 38
  Hunger, Petroglyphs for 152
  Hunt, Pictographs of the 214
  Hupâ tattooing 64


  Idaho, Rock carvings in 24, 228,
  Pictographs in 37
  Identification of the pictographs 224-232
  Identity of drawings in each tribal system 17
  Ideographs 14, 219-223
  Illinois, Pictographs in 33
  Independence, Ohio, Rock carvings at 21
  Indian Miscellany quoted 188
  Indians, Pictographs of the North American (Garrick Mallery) 3-256
  Influence of civilization on pictographs 46
  [Innuit] language 147, 191, 214-215
  [Innuit] pictographs 198
  [Innuit] tattooing 63
  [Innuit] use bow-drill 48
  Inscription rock, El Moro 28
  Insignia of authority 168
  Instruments used in pictography 48
  Interpretation of picture signs; how obtained 16
  [Iowa], Pictographs in 34,
  [Iowa], Rock carvings in 23
  Iron, Pictures on 191-194, 197, 205-206, 214


  James’ Long’s exploration quoted 151
  Johnson, Sir William; wampum belts 86, 87
  Jones, Capt. William A., discussed petroglyphs in Wyoming 24,
          227, 244
  Jones, Prof. C. C., on pictographs 22, 23
  Jones’s Antiquities of the Southern Indians quoted 22, 23, 47


  Kadiak notice of direction 150
  Kaibab Indian name 171
  [Kaiowa] 135
  [Kaiowa] symbol 165
  Kanawha River, Pictographs on 22
  Kern County, California, Pictographs in 30
  Kiatexamut dialect 147-148, 191-194, 214-215
  Kimball, Mrs. F. A., on California pictography 229
  Kinderhook, Ill., fraudulent copper plates 247
  Kingsborough’s Mexico cited 169
  Klamath 49, 51, 63, 183


  Ladley, Lieut. O. D., loaned time chart 94
  La Hontan, Baron de, cited 113
  Lake Chelan, Pictographs at 26
  Landmarks by pictographs 61, 182
  Lapland pictographs 239
  Lartet, Edouard, referred to 82
  Lasso first used by Dakotas 108
  Laudonnière, Captain, on Florida symbol of war 88
  Lavary, A. (interpreter), cited on time charts 93, 120, 123, 124, 125
  Lean Wolf map 158-159
  [Lean Wolf] name symbol 172
  [Lean Wolf] pictograph 168
  Leavenworth, Col., H., attacked Rees 112
  Legend of animal swallowing human beings 120
  Leland, Charles, cited 190
  Lenape and their legends, The, referred to 84, 188, 233
  Lenni Lenape record 158, 207
  Licking County, Ohio, Rock carvings in 21
  Little Coal River, Rock carvings on 22
  Little Popo-Agie, Pictographs on 24
  Little-Man letter 160
  Loew, Dr. Oscar, on pictographs 31
  Lone Butte, Nev., Rock carvings on 24
  Lone Dog Winter count system discussed 90, 99-127
  Lone-Horn’s fate 115-116
  Long, J., cited 87
  Long, Maj. Stephen H., quoted 150, 151
  Lorain County, Ohio, Rock carvings in 21
  Los Angeles, Cal., Pictographs at 35, 36, 61, 156-157, 182, 198
  [Louisiana], Pictographs in 241


  McGillycuddy, Dr. V. T., on pictographs 160, 177
  Mackenzie, General, whipped Cheyennes 146
  MacLean, J. P., cited 250
  McLaughlin, Major; Ogalala roster 174
  Maiden Spring, Virginia, Pictographs at 33
  Mallery, Garrick; Pictographs of the North American Indians 3-256
  Mandan property marks 182
  Mandans 101, 102, 107, 114, 119, 131, 186
  Manning, James, cited 197
  Maori customs 88, 164, 200
  Marcoy, Paul, on tattooing 49, 53
  [Marcoy, Paul on], totem marks 167
  Massacre at Fort Phil. Kearny 144
  Masta, Abnaki, chief, cited 152
  Materials used for pictographs 36
  Mato Sapa or Black Bear’s chart 94, 99-127
  Matthews, Dr. W., cited 60, 126, 195
  Mattoal, Symbol for 167
  Mans, Lieutenant, obtained interpretation of time chart 93
  Maya writing 14
  Maynadier, General, as “many deer” 144, 170
  [Maynadier, General], made peace with Indians 144
  Mdewakantawan 173, 186
  Measles among Dakotas 110
  Meda songs 82-84
  Medicine men defined 106, 107
  Mendota, Minn., Pictograph at 189
  Merriam, Col. Henry, discovered pictographs 26
  Messages by pictographs 160-164
  Meteors recorded 111, 116, 136-137, 138-139
  Mexican pictographs 38, 169
  Mica plate frauds 247
  Miles, Gen., destroyed Indian village 117
  Milford, Utah, Pictographs at 27
  Millsborough, Pa., Petroglyphs at 20, 224
  Minneconjou Dakotas 94, 96
  [Minneconjou] defined 98
  Minnesota pictographs 33
  [Minnesota] relic frauds 248-250
  [Minnesota] rock carvings 23
  Minnetari 108
  [Mississippi] River pictographs 33, 34
  [Mississippi] [River] rock carvings 23
  [Missouri] River flood recorded 113
  Mnemonic devices 79-146
  [Mnemonic] pictographs 79-81, 161
  Mode of counting, Dakota 107
  [Mode of] making pictographs 234
  [Mode of] weaving horse hair 230-231
  Modes of interpretation 233-243
  Modoc tattooing 63
  Mojave pigments 52
  Moki distinctive marks 232
  [Moki] pictographs 16, 25, 29, 36, 46, 157, 194, 222, 229
  Monongahela River, Pictographs on 21
  Month names 99
  Montmagny, Great Mountain name for 170
  Moors, Symbols of 222
  Mormons or Latter Day Saints, by Lieut. J. W. Gunnison, cited 251
  Mortillet, Gabriel de, quoted 252
  [Mortuary] practices 197-202
  Motive to frauds 47
  Mount Pleasant, W. Va., Rock carvings at 22
  Mourning 197
  Muskingum River, Rock carvings on 22
  Musselshell river, Pictographs on 62
  Myths of the Iroquois 190
  [Myths] and songs from the South Pacific, cited on tattooing 76


  Najowe Pass, Pictographs at 36
  Name systems of Indians 169-173
  Narrative of an expedition to the Saint Peter’s River, quoted 150
  Native races. (H. H. Bancroft) 64, 65, 66, 73, 78, 88
  Natural and Aboriginal History of Tennessee 21, 33
  Naumoff Drawings and interpretations of 147-150, 152, 153, 154, 155,
          195, 205, 206
  Nevada pictographs 24, 25, 60, 157
  New Albin, Iowa, Rock carvings at 23, 34
  [New] England, Rock carvings in 19
  [New] Holland ceremonial chart 197
  [New] Mexico, Pictographs in 28, 34, 37, 158, 229
  [New] Zealand, Red in 56
  [New] [Zealand] grave effigy 200, 201
  [New] [Zealand] tattooing 73, 75, 76
  Newark, Ohio, Rock carvings at 21
  Nez Percés, named by error 121
  Nicaragua, Pictographs in 40
  Nichols County, West Virginia, Pictographs in 22
  Nishinam claim symbols 159
  Norris, P. W., on pictographs 22, 23, 33, 34, 173
  North American Indians, Pictographs of 3-256
  Notched sticks as mnemonic aids 81
  Notices by pictographs 147-155


  Oakley Springs, Arizona, Pictographs at 17, 29, 30, 46-47, 194
  Objects represented in pictographs 46-47
  Ogalala, Ogalalla, Oglala 132, 133, 134, 136, 137, 140, 141, 143,
          144, 145, 146
  Oglala defined 98
  [Oglala] roster 169, 174-176
  [Oglala] Winter counts 129
  Ohio mica plate frauds 247
  [Ohio], Rock carvings in 21
  Ojibwa pictographs 17, 69, 186, 217-218, 227, 228, 243, 245, 246
  [Ojibwa] pipe stone 248-250
  [Ojibwa] song device 82-84
  Ojo Pescado pictographs 28
  O’Kinakane, Fort 26
  Ola Walum 84, 158, 188, 207
  Omaha, Symbol for 66, 167
  Omahas 101, 132, 133, 134, 135
  Oncpapas 122
  Oneida, Idaho, Pictographs at 37
  Oraibi sacred stone 58
  Oraibi chief, Tubi 29, 46, 194
  Oregon, Rock carvings in 25
  [Origin] [of] Dakota name of the Deity 103
  [Origin] [of] the Winter counts 91, 92
  Osage mnemonic chart explained 84-86
  [Osage] tribal designation 165
  Ottawa pictographs 203, 217-218, 220
  Owen’s Valley pictographs 31


  Pacific islands, Tattooing in the 73-77
  Paddles ornamented 78
  Painted pottery 252
  Painting, Manner of 48
  Paint Lick Mountain, Va 33
  Pai-Ute attempt at suicide 132
  Pai-Ute Creek, Pictographs on 33
  Pai-Ute pictographs 61, 158
  Pani (_see_ Pawnees) 166, 241
  Particular exploits and events 214-218
  Partridge Creek, Rock carvings on 30
  Passés totem mark 167
  Patrick, Dr. John B., sent time chart 93
  Patten’s Valley, Origin of rock etchings in 25, 26
  Pawkees 227
  Pawnees (Pani) 102, 127, 131, 135, 139, 141, 142, 143, 144
  Paxton, William A., brought first Texas cattle to Dakota 125
  Pennsylvania, Petrographs in 20, 158, 224-225, 226-227
  Peoria Bottom, Dakota, Sans Arc dirt lodges at 109
  Person, Pictures on the 61-78
  Personal designations 168
  [Personal] name pictographs 109-173
  Peru, Pictographs in 45
  Petroglyphs in North America 19
  Pictograph defined 13
  Pictographs, Identification of 224-236
  [Pictographs] of the North American Indians 3-256
  Pictography influenced by civilization 46
  Piedra Pintada Creek 27
  Pilgrimage, Beltrami’s, cited on Dakota 104
  Pinart, Alphonse, on pictographs 30, 40
  Pine Ridge Agency, pictograph letter 160-161
  [Pine Ridge Agency], pictographs 176
  Pipe-stone quarry 23, 33
  Pomme blanche defined 102
  Ponio war symbols 88
  Ponka Reservation 125
  Ponkas 131, 133, 134
  Pottawatomi 220
  [Pottery], how colored 50, 51
  Powell, Maj. J. W., learned real name of Indian 171
  [Powell, Maj. J. W.], on classification of Indiana 97
  Powers, Stephen, on Indian customs 49, 64, 195, 197
  Premeau, Jean, interpreted time chart 94
  Prince of Wales Archipelago tattooing 67-73
  Prince Maximilian zu Wied, cited 107, 195, 220, 222
  [Property] marks 182
  [Pueblo] totem marks 167
  Pyramid Lake, Nevada, Rock carvings near 24


  Queen Charlotte Islands’ tattooing 66-73, 189
  Quipu of Peru, The 79


  Rafinesque, cited 233
  Rau, Dr. Charles, cited 93
  Red Cloud census 169, 176-181
  Red Lake Reservation, Designs from 187
  Ree, Derivation of 100
  Reed, Lieut. H. T., on Dakota time chart winter count 89-90, 93
  Rees (_see_ Arikara)
  [Rees], Symbol for 166
  Relic frauds 247-253
  Religious pictographs 188
  Reveille, Nev., Pictographs at 25
  Riggs, on Indian names 97, 98, 109
  Rio del Norte, Pictographs on the 27
  [Rio] Verde, Rock etchings on the 30
  Robb, James C., time chart 94
  Rock carvings 16, 20-33
  Rocks, Paintings on 58
  Rocky Dell Creek, N. Mex., Pictographs on 33
  Russell, I. C., on pictographs 27, 229
  Russell, I. C., on tattooing in New Zealand 73, 75, 76
  Rust, Horatio N., on Davenport tablets 251


  Sage Creek, Wyoming, Rock carvings on 24
  Samoa (Rev. George Turner), quoted 77
  San Antonio Springs, Pictographs at 34
  [San] Bernardino, Rock carvings at 30
  [San] Diego, Pictographs at 37
  [San] Gabriel herders’ notched sticks 81-82
  [San] [Gabriel] River, Pictographs on 56-57
  [San] Juan, Pictographs on the 34
  San Marcos Pass, Pictographs at 36
  Sans Arc 93, 94, 109, 118, 122, 134
  Sans Arc defined 98
  Santa Barbara, Pictographs at 35, 36, 37
  Santa Ynez Mountains, Pictographs on 34, 36
  Santee defined 88
  Santees 124
  Satsika petrograph 227
  Scheffer’s History of Lapland, cited 239
  Schliemann, Dr. Henry, cited 63, 252
  Schomburgk, quoted by Humboldt on pictographs 39
  Schoolcraft, H. H., quoted on Indian pictographs and devices 17, 20,
          21, 59, 82, 155, 158, 161-164
  [Schoolcraft, H. H.,] cited 167, 168, 188, 189, 199, 200, 216, 222,
          239, 243, 245, 246
  Science, quoted on relic frauds 247
  Scott County, Iowa, Pottery from. (_See_ Davenport).
  Sculptures of San Lucia, Cosumalwhuapa (Habel), quoted 80
  Serrano Indian land-marks 61, 182
  Seton, William, U. S. N., African knife 243
  Shaman 190-194, 195, 237, 243
  Shamanism 100, 194, 202
  Sheafer, P. W., Pictographs of Pennsylvania 220-527
  [Shells], Pictographs on 60
  Sherman, General W. T. 125
  Shinumo rock carvings 25, 228
  Shoshoni 140, 141, 229
  [Shoshoni] petroglyphs 227, 228
  [Shoshoni] pictographs 25, 155, 215, 216, 231
  Shumeia war symbols 88
  Siberia, Pictographs in 245, 246
  Sibley, Colonel 124
  Sierra Nevada, Pictographs of the 31
  Sign language among North American Indians, cited 24, 132, 137,
          155, 234
  Significance of color 54
  Signs of particular achievements 183
  Simpson, Lieut. J. H., on pictographs 28
  Siouan adopted as family term 97, 108, 114
  Sioux 101, 109, 122
  [Sioux] defined 97
  [Sioux] Falls 125
  Small-pox among Dakotas 110, 136
  Smith, Capt. John, on tattooing 63
  Smith, Mrs. E. A., Myths of the Iroquois 190
  Social status pictographs 183
  Soldiers fight Rees 111-112
  Songs of the Meda 82
  South America, Petroglyphs in 38
  Spanish blankets introduced among Dakotas 121
  Sproat, cited 67
  Standing Rock Agency 174
  Starvation symbol 154, 155
  Status pictographs 183
  Stephenson, Dr. M. F., on rock carvings 23
  Stevenson, James, on pictographs 60, 167, 194
  Stock cattle first issued to Dakotas 145
  Stones, Paintings on 58
  Suggestions to collaborators 211-256
  Suicide among Indians 131-132
  Sully, General 124
  Susquehanna, Pictographs on the 158
  Swan, James G., on Haida tattooing 56, 66-73, 189, 194-195, 242
  Syllabaries 13
  Symbolism 154, 221
  Symmorphs 239
  System of chronology attempted by Indians 127
  [System of] spelling of Bureau of Ethnology 17


  Tattooing 49, 63-78, 86, 183, 252
  Taylor, Rev. Richard, on New Zealand 49, 50, 74, 76, 88, 164
  Tazewell County, Virginia, Pictographs in 33
  Te Ika a Maui or New Zealand (Rev. R. Taylor) 49, 56, 57, 74, 76,
          88, 104
  Tegua map 158
  Temple Creek Cañon, Pictographs in 26, 37
  Tenina 161
  Tennessee, Pictographs in 33
  Terry, General 125
  Teton defined 98
  Textile construction limited and governed Pueblo pottery ornament 60
  The Flame, or Bo-i-de, Time chart of 93, 99-127
  The Swan’s chart 93, 99-127
  Thlinkit pictographs 78
  Thompson, Gilbert, on pictographs 27, 33, 34, 229, 245
  Three Stars, an Indian name for General Crook 146
  Thunder Bird 188
  Thurn, Everard F. im, on name system of Guiana Indians 171-172
  [Thurn, Everard F. im,] on Indian customs in Guiana 40, 53, 61, 77
  Tillamuk 26
  Time symbols 88-146
  Tokens of authority 168
  Tomanawos ceremonies 70, 73
  Totem post 68
  Totemic names, Dakota and West Virginia 17
  [Totemic] pictographs 105, 231
  Totems 98, 167
  Trading-house built 109, 110, 111
  Traditions 84-86
  “Travail” explained 217
  Treaties 86-87
  Trees, Pictographs on 59
  Tribal symbolic designation 165
  [Tribal] historical pictographs 207
  Troja cited 63, 252
  Trumbull, Dr. J. Hammond, cited 97
  Tschudi, Dr. J. J. von, on pictographs 45
  [Tschudi, Dr. J. J. von], on the Quipu of the Peruvians 79-80
  Tuálati Indian rock etchings 25, 26
  Tubi, Oraibi chief, quoted 29, 46, 194
  Tulare Indians 234
  Tule River Agency, Weaving grass figures at 78
  [Tule River Agency], Yokuts at 52, 78
  [Tule River], Pictographs on 31, 33, 37, 234
  Turner, Rev. George, quoted on tattooing 77
  Twana thunder-bird 189
  Two Kettles 93, 94, 105, 113, 117, 122
  [Two Kettles] defined 97


  Uncpapa 100, 103, 104, 106, 116, 122, 126
  [Uncpapa] defined 98
  Union County, Georgia, Rock carvings in 23
  United States forces attack Arikaras 111-112
  Utah, Pictographs in 37, 229
  [Utah], Rock carvings in 26, 251
  Utes 108, 145


  Venango County, Pennsylvania, Rock carvings in 20
  Venezuela, Pictographs in 40
  Vermillion cliff, Rock carvings on 26, 29
  Virginia Indians tattooing 63
  [Virginia], Pictographs in 33
  Von Strahlenberg on pictographs in Liberia 245, 246


  Wall, J. Sutton, on pictographs in Pennsylvania 20-21, 225
  Walker Lake, Nevada, Rock carvings near 24
  “Walum Olum” in The Lenape and their Legends 84, 158, 188, 207
  Wampum belts 86-87
  War party, how made up 139-140
  [War] symbols 87-88
  Ward, James W., on rock carvings in Ohio 21
  Warning and guidance pictographs 155-157
  Washington, Rock carvings in 25
  Watterson’s Ranch petroglyphs 31, 32
  Wellsville, Ohio, Rock carvings at 21
  West, Dr. W., copied Dakota time chart 93-94
  West Virginia, Rock carvings in 22, 225
  [West Virginia] totem marks 17
  Western Lancet cited on claim symbols 159
  Wham, Maj. J. W., built adobe houses 145
  Whipple, Lieutenant, on pictographs 28, 29, 33, 138
  Whistle sickness 114, 138, 221
  White-cow-killer Winter count chart (_See_ Corbusier Winter
          counts.) 95, 99-127, 129-130
  Whitfield, J., on pictographs in Brazil 44-45
  Whittlesey, Col. Charles, cited 250
  Whooping-cough among Indians 108
  Wild horses first caught by Dakotas 108
  Williamson, Rev. Dr., cited 119
  Williams River, Rock carvings on 29
  Wind River Mountains, Rock carvings near 24
  Winter counts 88-148, 191, 207
  Wintūn tattooing 64
  Wisconsin effigy mounds 61
  Wood, Paintings on 59
  Woodthorp, Lt. Col., on war symbols 88
  Wright, Charles D., on pictographs 34
  Wyoming, Rock carvings in 24, 227
  Wyrick David, fraudulent Hebrew inscription 248


  Yampais Springs, Pictographs at 29
  Yankton defined 97
  [Yankton] Reservation 125
  Yanktons 112, 122
  Yanktonnais 122, 124
  Yokuts, Color used by 52
  [Yokuts] weave grass figures 78
  Young, John W., on sacred stone of Oraibi 68
  Yuki, Color used by 52
  [Yuki] tattooing 49
  Yukon River tattooing 65
  [Yuma] paintings 60, 158
  Yuris totem mark 167


  Zuñi 194, 195
  [Zuñi] pictographs 16, 28, 60
  [Zuñi] pottery 78

Transcriber's Note

Illustrations have been moved next to the text to which they refer.
Page numbers in the text or the list of Illustrations may not match
their locations in the eBook.

The following apparent errors have been corrected:

p. 6 "Seggestions" changed to "Suggestions"

p. 11 "Cerimonial" changed to "Ceremonial

p. 19 "proposed with with" changed to "proposed with"

p. 21 "standstone" changed to "sandstone"

p. 22 "Virginia," changed to "Virginia."

p. 44 "reason" changed to "season"

p. 55 "_et. seq._" changed to "_et seq._"

p. 56 "signifes" changed to "signifies"

p. 60 "Plate IV" changed to "Plate VI"

p. 61 "PERSON" changed to "PERSON."

p. 67 "neck on" changed to "neck, on"

p. 71 "octupus" changed to "octopus"

p. 72 "sqid" changed to "squid"

p. 72 "frog in" changed to "frog on"

p. 86 "(Pleiades)" changed to "(Pleiades)"

p. 94 "interpetation" changed to "interpretation"

p. 102 "-No. 1. A Mandan" changed to "-No. I. A Mandan"

p. 106 "Ree Indians. dians." changed to "Ree Indians."

p. 110 "Lone Dog’s" changed to "Lone-Dog’s"

p. 113 "1824-’25" changed to "1824-’25."

p. 123 "extremity of of" changed to "extremity of"

p. 133 "woman-winter." changed to "woman winter."

p. 155 "Bureau of, Ethnology." changed to "Bureau of Ethnology."

p. 175 "Painted-rock" changed to "Painted-rock."

p. 186 "Mdewakantanwan" changed to "Mdewakantawan"

p. 195 "page 36" changed to "page 86"

p. 196 "Fig, 111_a_" changed to "FIG. 111_a_"

p. 200 "seq" changed to "seq."

p. 206 "Miztec" changed to "Miztec)"

p. 246 "FIG. 207" changed to "FIG. 207."

(index) "cited on Indina" changed to "cited on Indian"

(index) "Hupa" changed to "Hupâ"

(index) "Laudonniere" changed to "Laudonnière"

(index) "McGillicuddy" changed to "McGillycuddy"

(index) "MacKenzie" changed to "Mackenzie"

(index) "Maclean" changed to "MacLean"

(index) "Mottellet" changed to "Mortillet"

(index) "Mussellshell" changed to "Musselshell"

(index) "Weid" changed to "Wied"

(index) "Schlieman" changed to "Schliemann"

(index) "Schomburgh" changed to "Schomburgk"

(index) "Everard F. im." changed to "Everard F. im"

(index) "Tomanawas" changed to "Tomanawos"

(index) "Waterson’s" changed to "Watterson’s"

(index) "Wintun" changed to "Wintūn"

Inconsistent or dubious spelling and punctuation have otherwise been
left as printed.

The captions on plates have been regularised.

The following are inconsistently used in the text:

aërial and aerial

Aigaluxamut and Aígalúxamut

arrowheads and arrow-heads

Cottontail and Cotton-tail

cottonwood and cotton-wood

footprint and foot-print

Hañka and Hanka

headwaters and head-waters

horseshoes and horse-shoes

Kiatexamut and Kiatéxamut

Lenni-Lenape and Lenni-Lenapè

Oglala and Oglála

outline and out-line

rawhide and raw-hide

sandstone and sand-stone

sculpin and skulpin

subchiefs and sub-chiefs

Wa[c]a[c]e and Wa[c]ace

warpath and war-path

widespread and wide-spread

Zuni and Zuñi

On pp. 81-82, ">-shaped", "v-shaped" and ">-shape" were printed with
special symbols.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Pictographs of the North American Indians. A preliminary paper - Fourth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the - Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1882-83, - Government Printing Office, Washington, 1886, pages 3-256" ***

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