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True West Magazine
True West Magazine
True West Magazine

True West Magazine

True West relates our history back to the present day, showing readers the important role our heritage plays in keeping the spirit of the West alive!

The youngest son of Lone Horn, Touch The Clouds assumed the leadership of the Minneconjou Teton Lakota after his father died in 1875. Two years later, this photo was taken of him at the Spotted Tail Agency in Nebraska, after he surrendered with his people. He holds a heavy-barreled Remington Rolling Block rifle and an 1873 Colt Cavalry revolver (also check out his military garrison belt). – Courtesy Glen Swanson Collection –

After serving as field secretary to the governor during the Bannock War of 1878, Maj. Lee Moorhouse went on to become agent for Oregon’s Umatilla Indian Reservation in 1889. From 1888 to 1916, he produced more than 9,000 images of life in Umatilla County and the Columbia Basin, and he recorded on film these Bannock braves (from left) Jim Mukai and Ponga. – True West archives –

George Bird Grinnell invited Edward S. Curtis to photograph the Blackfoot in 1900, and a tour that included this photograph would lead, six years later, to J.P. Morgan funding Curtis’s monumental The North American Indian project. – True West archives –

An Arikara medicine ceremony, performed as a prayer offering for rain and food, had been banned by the U.S. government since about 1885; photographer Edward S. Curtis arranged for some Arikaras to perform the outlawed ritual in 1908. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

One of the pioneer photographers of Southwestern Indians, Timothy H. O’Sullivan traveled with Lt. George M. Wheeler’s survey west of the 100th Meridian during 1871-74. After some boats capsized, few of his 300 negatives survived the trip back East. This one, of “Apaches Indians, as they appear ready for the war-path,” made it. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Despite a palsied hand, Crooked Hand, a Pawnee, gained notoriety as the “greatest warrior in the tribe,” anthropologist George Bird Grinnell reported. His son, Dog Chief, went on to serve as a U.S. Indian scout in the 1870s. This photo of Crooked Hand was taken circa 1870, three years before the warrior died. – Courtesy Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology –

The Utes traditionally made cradleboards out of willow, but the reservation period began a trend of inserting boards into buckskin sacks, like the cradleboard holding Peearat’s baby in this 1899 photograph. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Edward S. Curtis photographed this Crow (Apsaroke) man, leaning back slightly, with strips of leather attached to his chest and tethered to a pole secured by rocks, participating in the piercing ritual of the Sun Dance that lasted at least four days; a dancer could not be freed until he experienced a vision. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

In the Yuma tradition, young men courted sweethearts by playing the flute. Isaiah West Taber photographed this Yuma musician from Arizona in San Francisco, California, circa 1885. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Kiowa leader Hunting Horse stands with his daughters in this 1908 photograph by J.V. Dedrick of Taloga, Oklahoma. He served as a scout for Gen. George Custer, and he lived to be 107, dying in the same year, 1953, when this magazine was founded. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Geronimo, whom Gen. Nelson Miles named the Human Tiger, looks tamed and subdued in this photograph. A similar photo of him in painted headgear introduced his autobiography, published in 1906. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

On the reservation in Lame Deer, Montana, Julia Tuell photographed Northern Cheyenne girls taking care of their deerskin dolls and arranging their small tipis in a circle just as their elders did in the big camp. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Timothy H. O’Sullivan captured some of the traditional daily life among the Navajo in this 1873 photo taken near Old Fort Defiance in New Mexico of Navajos clustered around a loom, hunting equipment and drying maize. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

With a mixture of brains and other animal fats, this Dakota woman hand rubs the buffalo hide to help soften the leather so it could be made into robes, parfleches, moccasins and so on. – Courtesy Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology –

Apache women were skilled basket makers. Edward Curtis took this 1903 photograph of a woman filling her watertight basket with water to take back to camp. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

In northeastern Arizona, this kneeling Hopi woman combed and arranged the maiden’s hair into whorls, a coiffure that represented the squash flower and symbolized that a girl was of marriageable age. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Oglala Lakota women and children sit inside the home of Mrs. American Horse, the wife of the Oglala chief who gained influence during the Great Sioux War of 1876-77, in this 1891 photo by John Grabill that was likely taken on or near the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Terrequoip, known as Horse Back in English, was a Comanche chief of the Noconie band. Bleeding from his lungs confined the warrior to his camp, where William S. Soule captured this photo in 1873 at Wichita Agency near Oklahoma’s Fort Sill. His sickness moved him toward peace with the whites, and he urged his people to surrender to reservation life. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

When Apaches abducted Felix Ward in 1860, they wore loincloths and moccasins. Seventeen years later, at the Camp Verde reservation in Arizona, white man’s clothing was just coming into vogue. Ward stands among them, second from right; he had joined the U.S. Army as a scout in 1872 and would even attempt to track down the renegade Apache Kid. – Courtesy Sharlot Hall Museum –

While scouting for the U.S. Cavalry during the 1880s, he was known as the Apache Kid. His people called him Haskaybaynayntayl, which means “brave and tall and will come to a mysterious end.” Quite a fitting name, since he disappeared after escaping during a transport to Arizona’s Yuma Territorial Prison in 1889. – True West Archives –

Photographed in native dress during a Nez Perce delegation to Washington, D.C. in 1868, Chief Kalkalshuatash holds a feather fan and pipe. After meeting with the government to restore the provisions of an 1863 treaty, his people still fell victim to funds squandered by government officials. – Courtesy Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology –

This powerful view of a Hidatsa holding an eagle as he stands on a large rock overlooking a valley conveys why so many Edward S. Curtis photographs speak to us today. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

As one of the delegates from the Lemhi and Fort Hall agencies who signed the treaty of May 14, 1880, Uriewici, a Shoshone also known as Jack Tendoy, was photographed by Charles M. Bell in Washington, D.C. Ultimately, the Shoshone, Bannock and Lemhi would be moved to the Fort Hall area of Idaho. – Courtesy Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology –

In 1891, John Grabill’s camera captured this view of a Brulé Lakota tipi camp, near South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Reservation, with their horses stationed at the White Clay Creek watering hole. – Courtesy Library of Congress –

Taken by James Dempsey Hutton during William F. Raynolds’s 1859 expedition of the Yellowstone region, this photograph of Arapahos (including Warshinun, on the right) is among the early images that triggered the photographic trend to capture views of frontier Indians in the 19th and early 20th centuries. – Courtesy National Anthropological Archives –