Games of the North American Indians: Games of skill, Volume 2
Games figured prominently in the myths of North American Indian tribes, and also in their ceremonies for bringing rain and fertility and combating misfortune. In his classic study, originally published in 1907 as a report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, Stewart Culin divided the games played by Indian men and women into two general types.
Volume 1 of this Bison Books edition takes up games of chance, involving guessing and throwing dice. Culin was able to show that the games of North American tribes were remarkably similar in method and purpose. He found that games using dice of various materials?wood, cane, bone, animal teeth, fruit stones?existed among 130 tribes belonging to 30 linguistic groups. The games are described in detail in this volume, and so are the popular guessing games drawing on sticks and wooden disks and involving hidden objects.
Volume 2 is just as absorbing in its elaboration of skills like archery and games like snow-snake, in which darts or javelins were hurled over snow or ice. Played throughout the continent north of Mexico were the hoop and pole game and its miniature, solitaire form called ring and pin, here illustrated. With equal authority Culin discusses ball games: racket, shinny, football, and hot ball. He includes accounts of "minor amusements": shuttlecock, tipcat, quoits, popgun, bean shooter, and cat's cradle.
Originally published in 1907, Stewart Culin's comprehensive work reveals a side of American Indian culture still only rarely shown. An experienced observer, Culin was curator of ethnology at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences and the author of books about games in other cultures.
Gaming arrows Kiowa Oklahoma 38S X Hidatsa playing hoop and pole North Dakota 511
Cnoctaw ballplay dance Indian Territory
Choetaw ball play ball up Indian Territory 601
Games of dexterity
Arrow target Grosventres Montana
Arrow target Naraho Arizona 38i
Toy IKV and arrow Oglala Dakota South Dakota
Snowsnake Chippewa Minnesota
Snowdart Cree Assiniboia
Menominee holding snowsnake Wisconsin
Snowdarts Passamaquoddy Maine
Snowsnakes Penobscot Maine
Snowsnakes Sauk and Foxes Iowa 40
Game dart Takulli British Columbia
Game of the arrow Mandan North Dakota
Method of holding arrows in playing showiiiltowe Zuni New Mexico
Lapochiwe Zuni New Mexico
Target and bow and arrows MM New Mexico
Snowsnake Chippewa Minnesota 102
Snowsnakes Chippewa Minnesota
Games derived from Europeans
Summary of conclusions