Topic: Crow

1837 Smallpox Epidemic

No disease which has been introduced among the tribes, has exercised so fatal an influence upon them as the smallpox. Their physicians have no remedy for it. Old and young regard it as if it were the plague, and, on its appearance among them, blindly submit to its ravages. This disease has appeared among them periodically, at irregular intervals of time. It has been one of the prominent causes of their depopulation. Ardent spirits, it is true, in its various forms, has, in the long run, carried a greater number of the tribes to their graves; but its effects have

Fig. 23. Parfleche Pattern.

Plains Indians Use of Rawhide

The Use of Rawhide. In the use of rawhide for binding and hafting (handle or strap), the Plains tribes seem almost unique. When making mauls and stone-headed clubs a piece of green or wet hide is firmly sewed on and as this dries its natural shrinkage sets the parts firmly. This is nicely illustrated in saddles. Thus, rawhide here takes the place of nails, twine, cement, etc., in other cultures. The Partleche A number of characteristic bags were made of rawhide, the most conspicuous being the parfleche. Its simplicity of construction is inspiring and its usefulness scarcely to be over-estimated.

Fig. 34. The Cheyenne Camp Circle. (Dorsey).

Plains Indian Culture

Museum collections cannot illustrate this important phase of culture; but since no comprehensive view of the subject can be had without its consideration, we must give it some space. It is customary to treat of all habits or customs having to do with the family organization, the community, and what we call the state, under the head of social organization. So, in order that the reader may form some general idea of social conditions in this area, we shall review some of the discussed points. Unfortunately, the data for many tribes are meager so that a complete review cannot be

Blackfoot Medicine Pipe

Religion and Ceremonies of the Plains Tribes

The sacred beliefs of these Indians are largely formulated and expressed in sayings and narratives having some resemblance to the legends of European peoples. There are available large collections of these tales and myths from the Blackfoot, Crow, Nez Perce, Assiniboin, Gros Ventre, Arapaho, Arikara, Pawnee, Omaha, Northern Shoshoni, and less complete series from the Dakota, Cheyenne, and Ute. In these will be found much curious and interesting information. Each tribe in this area has its own individual beliefs and sacred myths, yet many have much in common, the distribution of the various incidents therein forming one of the important

Fig. 35. A Dog Dancer. Hidatsa. (After Maximilian.)

Government and Societies of the Plains Tribes

The political organization of plains tribes was rather loose and in general quite democratic. Each band, gens, or clan informally recognized an indefinite number of men as head men, one or more of whom were formally vested with representative powers in the tribal council. Among the Dakota, there was a kind of society of older men, self-electing, who legislated on all important matters. They appointed four of their number to exercise the executive functions. The Omaha had a somewhat similar system. The Cheyenne had four chiefs of equal rank and a popularly elected council of forty members. Among the Blackfoot

Crow Indian Tribe Photo Descriptions

The Crow, or, as they call themselves, Absaroka, meaning something or anything that flies, when first known occupied the Lower Yellowstone and the valleys of the Big Horn and Tongue Rivers, but roamed over much of the surrounding country, carrying their incursions even to the plains of Snake River and to the valley of the Green. Were originally one with the Minataree or Gros Ventre, but separated from them, and were afterward driven from their territory by the Ogalalla and Cheyenne, settling finally about the head of the Yellowstone, dispossessing ‘in their turn the Blackfeet and Flatheads. Are divided into

Crow Indian Bands, Gens and Clans

Many tribes have sub-tribes, bands, gens, clans and phratry.  Often very little information is known or they no longer exist.  We have included them here to provide more information about the Crow Tribe. Lewis 1Stat. View, 1807. said the Crow were divided into four bands, called by themselves: Ahaharopirnop Ehartsar Noota Pareescar Culbertson 2Smithson. Rep. 1850, 144, 1801. divides the tribe into: Crow People Minesetperi, or Sapsuckers. These two divisions he subdivides into 12 bands, giving as the names only the English equivalents. Morgan 3Anc. Soc., 159, 1877. gives the following bands: Achepabecha Ahachik Ashinadea Ashbochiah Ashkanena Booadasha Esachkabuk Esekepkabuk