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Title: Zuni

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Introduction to Zuni

The Zuni, who call themselves A'shiwi, tell the story that long ago their gods cut off the peoples' tails, split the webs between their toes with stone knives, and led them from the underworld to seek their home in the center of the universe. When at...

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Title: Muster Roll

Source(s): Majestic Journey: Coronado’s Inland Empire

Author(s): Stewart L. Udall (Author)

Before Coronado’s expedition into New Mexico, a muster roll was taken describing each traveler in detail.

We know a lot about events that day at Compostela— exactly 192 years before George Washington was born in 1732—because Don Antonio had issued an order that each soldier would pass before an inspector and declare his possessions. Thus, diligent sc...

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Title: Early Life

Source(s): Geronimo: His Own Story

Author(s): Geronimo (Author); S. M. Barrett (Oral Historian)

Famed Chiricahua Apache war chief Geronimo speaks of his childhood and how a boy becomes a warrior. As Told to S. M. Barrett.

I was born in No-doyohn Cañon, Arizona, June, 1829. In that country which lies around the headwaters of the Gila River I was reared. This range was our fatherland; among these mountains our wigwams were hidden; the scattered valleys contained our fi...

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Title: Barboncito’s Speech to General Sherman at Fort Sumner

Source(s): Dinétah: An Early History of the Navajo People

Author(s): Barboncito (Author); Lawrence D. Sundberg (Author)

The Navajo leader Barboncito tells General Sherman to release the Navajos from captivity at Fort Sumner.

Bringing us here has made many of us die, also a great number of our animals. Our Grandfathers had no idea of living in any other place except our own land, and I don't think it is right for us to do what we were taught not to do. When the Navajo wer...

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Title: Wheat-Sprout

Source(s): Flaming Arrow’s People by an Acoma Indian

Author(s): James Paytiamo (Author)

James Paytiamo explains why his mother named him "Wheat-Sprout."

It was the wheat cutting time or, as the white people call it, August. The Acomas, my people's tribe, were down at the little irrigated valley, assisting each other to cut the wheat by hand. These wheat fields were small, and had been laboriously pla...

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Title: Traditional Apache Life

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An overview of some important events and themes in the lives of Apaches.

The Athapaskan peoples migrated south from Alaska and Canada and eventually split into seven distinct groups. By 1500, they occupied a vast expanse of territory in the American Southwest. The extreme environments they inhabited—mountains, deserts, ...

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Title: Cattle

Source(s): Indeh: An Apache Odyssey

Author(s): Daklugie (Author); Eve Ball (Author)

Daklugie describes how he became a cattle rancher and dealt with some rustlers.

So I took over. The government had given the prisoners a start in cattle, and in one year some of the men had become fairly good at handling them. All were good horsemen, but they had to learn how to rope and to flank calves. I had not done that eith...

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Title: Navajo

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Navajo history: early migration from Alaska and Canada to encounters with the Spanish and war with the United States; concludes with an account of contemporary Navajo life.

Traditional Navajo, or Diné, stories tell that First Man, First Woman, the Holy People, and all the animals had to pass through three different worlds before emerging into the Fourth or Glittering World. Here, the People saw four rivers bounded by f...

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Title: Left Handed, Son of Old Man Hat: A Navaho Autobiography

Author(s): Walter Dyk (Author)

A detailed description by Walt Dyk of how prayers and songs were handed on, from father to (in this case) nephew.

That winter, while we lived on Black Mountain at Willows Coming Out, Who Has Mules came to our place. I was out herding. When I returned with the sheep towards evening he came out of the hogan and rode away. He’d been with my father all day; they m...

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Title: Agarró nomás la Cuarto [He Just Grabbed the Whip]

Source(s): Abuelitos: Stories of the Rio Puerco Valley

Author(s): Eduardo Valdez (Author); Nasario García (Editor)

Oral historian Nasario García interviewed many elders from the Río Puerco area of New Mexico, including Eduardo Valdez, who remembers the early days and the best cowboy around, Don Teodoro.

This Don Teodoro, and several others, not only him, because there were several horsemen there in Guadalupe, they say one day they penned up a herd of horses in a corral. And long ago they used to put two long poles on the corral and then they'd put a...

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