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Title: Letter from Coronado to Mendoza

Source(s): The Journey of Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, 1540-1542

Author(s): Francisco Vásquez de Coronado (Author); George Hammond (Editor); Agapito Rey (Editor)

Francisco Vásquez de Coronado wrote this report to Viceroy Antonio de Mendoza describing his expedition into New Mexico in 1540.

Ferrando Alvarado came back to tell me that some Indians had met him peaceably, & that two of them were with the army-master waiting for me. I went to them forthwith and gave them some paternosters and some little cloaks, telling them to return to th...

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Title: The Vengeance of Gouyen

Source(s): Indeh: An Apache Odyssey

Author(s): Eve Ball (Author); Nora Henn (Author); Lynda A. Sanchez

The widow Gouyen seeks revenge against a Comanche chief for killing her husband.

The Apache girl lay in the brush arbor of her mother-in-law waiting for the older woman to sleep. Her name is one the Apaches are forbidden to mention and she is known today only as Gouyen, Wise Woman, a term reserved only for the intelligent and cha...

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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: Corn

Source(s): The Zuni Indians and Their Uses of Plants

Author(s): Matilda Coxe Stevenson (Author)

Anthropologist Matilda Stevenson describes the many ways in which Zuni people use corn.

Though not indigenous to the United States, corn was the staple food of the inhabitants of the Southwest long before the coming of the Spaniards in the middle of the sixteenth century, having been brought to this section either by peoples migrating f...

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Title: Acoma

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An introduction to the history and culture of the people of Acoma.

Tribal elders say that Acoma (sometimes spelled Akome, Acuo, Acuco, Ako and A’ku-me) means “a place that always was.” Archaeologists have found artifacts at digs on Acoma Mesa that speak of prehistoric times. Like its near neighbors Hopi and Zu...

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Title: The Origins of Pottery

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

When people started to make pottery and how it changed their societies.

Small bands of indigenous peoples roamed the American Southwest between 10,000 BCE and 1000 CE. They moved around following game and gathering whatever plants were in season. They may have carried their belongings and foodstuffs in baskets. Peopl...

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Title: Acoma Pottery

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

Acoma pottery in the past and today.

From earliest times, Pueblo Indian potters have made ceramic pots for practical daily use. Pueblo people carried, cooked, and stored water and food in pottery. They also used it for ceremonial purposes. The exceptional quality of Acoma pottery made i...

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Title: How the World Began

Source(s): When Jesus Came, the Corn Mothers Went Away

Author(s): Ramon A. Gutíerrez (Author)

A noted scholar tells the story of how the world began according to the people of Acoma.

In the beginning two females were born underneath the earth at a place called Shipapu. In total darkness Tsichtinako (Thought Woman) nursed the sisters, taught them language and gave them each a basket that their father Uchtsiti had sent them contain...

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Title: Two Lives for Oñate

Author(s): Miguel Encinias (Author)

An excerpt from a novel about Juan de Oñate's campaign to conquer New Mexico in 1598-99.

On 12 January 1599, Zaldívar set out for Acoma with seventy soldiers and instructions to demand the delivery of those guilty for the attack on the Spaniards and, failing to achieve that, to wage relentless war and to take all of the inhabitants pris...

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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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