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Blackfoot Lodge Tales

George Bird Grinnell

80 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1517498430 / ISBN 13: 9781517498436
Published by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015
Condition: Good Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Blackfoot Lodge Tales

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Publication Date: 2015

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition: Good

About this title


This is a compendium of oral legends and tales passed down by the Blackfeet. Stories vary, but the name “Blackfeet” or “Blackfoot,” applied to them by others, may have come originally from their practice of dying their moccasin soles black. That said, their use of an Algonquian language group may indicate that they were relatively recent newcomers to the region from somewhere in the Northeast. The territory of the Blackfeet, at its greatest extent, encompassed a vast area from the eastern Rocky Mountains of Alberta and Montana and extending several hundred miles out onto the Great Plains, around the upper reaches of the Saskatchewan River and its tributaries in Alberta and the upper reaches of the Missouri River and its tributaries in Montana. The area of the land most sacred to the Blackfeet is the Sweet Grass Hills, which are located just south of the Canadian border in the central part of Montana. These are a group of buttes forested with balsam firs rising several thousand feet above the surrounding plains and which can be seen for a considerable distance. This was also Napi’s favorite resting place in the mythology of the Blackfeet. Young Blackfeet went up into the Hills on their vision quests and, as their predecessors had done for several thousands of years, left inscriptions and petroglyphs on the surface of the tall sandstone cliffs. Many of the stories told by the Blackfeet take place there.

From the Inside Flap:

"The author’s observations of the social organization, daily life, and customs of [the Blackfoot] rounds out a singular book."—Los Angeles Times. "Grinnell’s book has stood the test of time as an important contribution to the history and ethnography of the Blackfeet."—Natural History.

"A classic collection of tales by a gifted storyteller and a lucid ethnographic description of the Blackfeet."—Studies in American Indian Literature.

This collection of powerful stories reveals the complex and wondrous world of the Blackfoot nation in the nineteenth century. The thirty tales transcribed by George Bird Grinnell provide an intimate look into Blackfoot culture and philosophy and remind us of tribal values to be upheld and taught. Classic tales of adventure speak of deeds accomplished, and cultural heroes roam across an arresting Native landscape of legend and history. Ancient stories, captured in oral tradition, cast the shadow of the Blackfoot people far into the past and provide foundation and meaning for their lives in the present. The final section of this book is an insightful overview of the history and culture of the Blackfoot Nation. First published in 1892, Blackfoot Lodge Tales is based on George Bird Grinnell’s personal interactions with the Blackfoot people.

A member of the Blackfeet Tribe and a historian, Thedis Berthelson Crowe provides an indigenous perspective of the Blackfoot Lodge Tales in her new introduction to this edition. Her great-great grandfather, William Russell, served as the Blackfoot interpreter for Grinnell.

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