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Buffalo Hunt By Russell Freedman. Presentation by Carlee Clifford. A Gift From the Great Spirit.

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Buffalo Hunt

By Russell Freedman

Presentation by Carlee Clifford


A Gift From the Great Spirit

Indian storytellers would gather at night for great tales and tell neat stories. To Indians the buffalo andbison were very important and provided every thing for the Indians to stay alive (bellies full bodies warm, tools, weapons). It is hard to believe but the Indians like the buffalo so much that they praise (admire) the spirit of the buffalo before every hunt. Buffalo herds are very big. Indians are usually astonished (surprised) when they see the buffalo stretch across the countryside. 150 years ago there were no horses so the Indians traveled on foot. There were big shaggy dogs that carried the Indians tipis. The Indians still knew how to lurk (creep)up on grazing (eating all the time)buffalo. Horses came by Spanish Explorers in the early 1500s, Indians can now travel farther distances and hunting will be more facial (easy).

When the buffalo were grazing on the grass like this one it was easier for the hunters to kill them, when they didn’t have a horse.


Buffalo Magic

The best time for hunting was between late summer and early fall. The Indians would hunt until there was enough meat to last the whole winter. A medicine man is not a doctor, (sounds like his name should be like a doctor with the word medicine in it) but people honored him as a spiritual (religious) leader. Before hunting a medicine man offered prayers, sang songs, and performed a ritual (tradition). There was also a ceremonial (ritual) dance, this dance tries to make a buffalo approach (arrive) the Indian tribe. In an Indian tribe there was also people called a marshals. A marshal had the powers to take away your property, destroy tipis, kill your horse, or bar (ban) the Indian from taking part of the hunt for bad behavior. A hunters most prized possession was its horse because it was fast and was smart enough to dodge (avoid) away from the buffalo’s horns.

The rawhide trailing down from the horse helps the rider so will not fall off.


The Hunt

The day of the hunt these Indians have to get up super early and mound (climb)onto their horse, that is why the door of their tipi is facing East toward the sun’s radiance (brightness). Lashed (fastened, secured) on the sides of the horses or dogs were poles, that supported travois (tra-voyssturdy rawhide platform). When the Indian tribe was on the move some Indians kept guard for lurking (hidden, sneaking) enemies. The Indians rely (have confidence in) on animals to help locate (find) the buffalo. Once an arrow hit the mark (goal, target) a hunter would pick the arrow up and find a new buffalo to hunt. A hunter had a choice of using a spear or a bow and arrow. A spear is were you have to throw the weapon with your hand, and a bow and arrow is where you use the bow to make the arrow go.

In this picture the Indians choose to hunt the buffalo with bows and arrows.


From the Brains to the Tail

Before butchering (slay and prepare animal for meat) the buffalo the medicine man gets to take one part of the buffalo’s body and use it as a religious offering and sometimes it became sacred (protected). One buffalo supplies enough meat for 100 famished (starving) people, to gorge (eat ferocious) on. Every part of the buffalo was devoured (consumed) or used in some way. Fur made nice warm blankets, the stomach made a water bottle, the buffalo skin was used as the outside of the tipi, pouches, purses, and saddle bags, buffalos horns can make silverware, the hooves produced (generate, create) soap, and buffalos bones was shaped into spears. A tipi furnished (supplied) heat and is a good winter home. The buffalo’s skin helps make that tipi warm.

Women would make robes and dry meat to help the herd.

with the buffalo gone
With the Buffalo Gone

Indians have hunted buffalo for years with out making a big dent (depression, chip). All of a sudden the white people came and the buffalo started to dwindle (lesson, waste away, abate). At first the Indians thought that the white people were friendly and would not harm anything, but they started to kill more buffalo than the Indians ever had. Buffalo hunting became popular and travelers came and thought that a trip wasn’t complete without shooting a buffalo. By the 1860’s buffalo were vanishing (disappearing). The Indians life was conquered (beat, overcome),because there was no more hunting space, because the white people and settlers took over the land. Buffalo hunting faded and so did the buffalo, but that never ceased (stopped) Indian storytellersfrom telling tales.

When the white people came they killed all the buffalo and this is what the Indians looked like then.