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Title: Navajo Code Talkers

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

During World War II, many Navajos serving in the Marine Corps worked as “code talkers,” using a code in the Navajo language that the Japanese forces could not break for relaying information between US troops.

Although the United States government finally granted citizenship to Native Americans in 1924, the states of New Mexico and Arizona denied native people the right to vote until 1948. Nevertheless, during World War I (1917-1919) many Native Americans,...

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Title: The Indian Traders

Author(s): Frank McNitt (Author)

A description of typical goods for sale or barter at trading posts; the preface describes one trading post and merchant in Cabezon in the Rio Puerco area.

...flour, lard, sugar, green coffee in hundred pound sacks (customers roasting the beans in ovens at home and then grinding them), and canned goods. On their shelves were bolts of calico, fine muslins, Spanish lace, cards of fancy buttons, and spools...

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Title: Rugs for Trade or Cash

Source(s): Wide Ruins

Author(s): Sallie R. Wagner (Author)

Sallie Wagner writes of her days running a trading post with her husband on the Navajo reservation in the 1930s and 1940s.

When my husband and I bought the trading post, the Navajos in the area were making very poor rugs, the kind that were sold from knocked-together stands along Highway 66. The wool was not well cleaned or well spun. The bordered designs were the kind t...

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Title: Crossings

Source(s): Canícula

Author(s): Norma Elia Cantú (Author)

Author Norma Elia Cantú and her family have crossed the US-Mexico border many times to visit their relatives.

Bueli and Mami and Papi crossed the bridge on foot from one Laredo to the other; they took turns carrying me, or maybe only pushing my blue stroller. Chirinola, our dog, came too, papers and all. It was 1948. For Bueli the move brought back memories,...

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Title: The Pajarito Plateau and Los Alamos

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

A description of the Pajarito Plateau and Los Alamos.

Millions of years ago the Jemez Mountains were formed by volcanic flows. Later eruptions of ash tuff, carved by wind and water, formed the Pajarito [Little Bird] Plateau on the east flank of the Jemez Mountains. The Rio Grande, flowing south through ...

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Title: Indian Traders: Recent Aspersions of Jake Morgan

Source(s): Southwest Tourist News

Author(s): Unidentified (Author)

A Navajo trader defends his profession against charges made by Jake Morgan, a former member of the Navajo Tribal Council.

The unwarranted attack on the traders to the Navajo Indians by Jake Morgan, former member of the Navajo tribal council, and the subsequent denial by the United Indian Traders Association, brings to an issue the status of the trader in Navajo affairs....

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Title: Mothers-in-Law Are Avoided by Navajos: “The Old Owl” is Term Applied by the Braves

Author(s): Unidentified (Author)

Why Navajo males avoid all contact with their mothers-in-law; the consequences of meeting or making eye contact.

Gallup, N.M., March 5, 1937. (AP)—Mother-in-law may be queen in Texas today, but to Navajo Indian braves she is still “the old owl,” to be avoided with more fear than the very “Chindi”—devil. And it’s no joke to the Navajos, either. ...

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Title: Navajo Customs

Author(s): Roy Dunn (Author)

Brief descriptions of Navajo customs or “superstitions.”

A Navajo will never burn ants or insects of any kind. A Navajo will never whistle at night. A Navajo will never go near a burial or hogan (home) where someone has died. It is a very old superstition of the Navajos not to comb their hair at n...

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Title: Navajo Medicine Man Requests Christian Burial

Author(s): Unidentified (Author)

The death of Navajo shaman Hosteen Klah; description of his Christian burial and traditional Navajo ceremonies.

Gallup, N.M., March 4, 1937 (AP)—Hosteen Klah, powerful Navajo shaman, master of a thousand pagan chants, was buried Wednesday with Christian ceremonies. Only in death did Klah, regarded by all his tribe as the most powerful of medicine men, for...

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Title: Navajo Revive an Ancient Ceremonial

Source(s): Southwest Tourist News

Author(s): Unidentified (Author)

Description of Navajo rituals conducted to break the drought near Ganado, NM.

July 17, 1936. Fear of a devastating drouth has turned the Navajo living in the Ganado, Arizona, district to a rain-making ritual that has not been enacted in years, according to Roman Hubbell, Navajo trader. Under the direction of Beninie, Ganado...

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