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Report On The Moqui Pueblos Of Arizona
By Julian Scott, Special Agent
About the residence of Mr. Thomas V. Beam, known as the Tusayan trading post in Keams Canyon, daily collect groups of Indians from various tribes, trading posts, near and far, Navajo, Moqui, and the Oraibi generally, Cojonina, Zuñi and Laguna occasionally, from the plateaus of the north, mesas of the west, and butte country in the south. They come afoot, horseback, on burros, and on mules, bringing with them hides, blankets, baskets, pottery, dried peaches, melons of all kinds, gourds, pumpkins, beans, and corn for barter and trade; others come for social purposes; gossip and news, to meet old friends, to engage in popular sports, horse and foot racing, and in games of chance, like monte and koon kan. Men, women, and even children engage in these pastimes, and, what is quite remarkable, I never saw any quarreling among them, and their tempers were often put to severe tests. The dissimilarity in costume of these various tribes is not easily noticeable till after long observation; while generally similar, they are quite unlike in detail; for instance, while all the men and boys wear scarfs, 2 or 3 inches wide, around their heads, tied in a simple knot at the side, the Navajos gather all their hair at the back and tie it in a vertical bow of two loops, low at the neck; all the others gather only their back hair into a similar knot with the front parted or in bangs above the eyes, the side locks hanging loosely over the ears and cheeks down to the shoulders. The Navajos seldom wear head covering, except when necessary, and then the blanket is drawn over like a hood. The Indians of all these tribes, viz; Navajos, Moquis, and other Pueblos, wear variously colored, tightly fitting calico shirts, loose trousers of the same material or cotton, falling just below the knee, and slit on the outer sides from the bottom, about 6 inches upward, forming flaps, through the openings of which the knees are seen and leggings of buckskin, reaching up to just below the knee, overlapped and held in place by broad, gay colored, and fringed garters, woven by the Moquis and Navajos, tied above the calf in a bow or square knot, according to fancy, the lower part of the leggings falling loosely over the moccasins. The moccasins are of plain buck or cow skin, either of a natural color or dyed black or brick red; the vamp reaches to the ankle, the quarters or sides extend a little higher and pass across the front; the button fly folds over the outer quarter and fastens just above the heel. Added to this description of their attire, I must mention the blankets, which are of -various designs and colors, of Navajo, Moqui, Anglo-American, and Mexican manufacture; they form not only an indispensable part of the Indians’ wardrobe, but also serve as their bed covering at night or day, whatever time they take for sleep. The blanket is generally wrapped about one its full length, covering the head and falling below the knees, and is girdled about the waist by a cartridge belt, or by the more ornamental and expensive belt made by the Navajo silversmith. When not used for shoulder or head covering, the upper part is allowed to fall and form a double skirt, which falls gracefully about the legs. These Indians wear beads of every kind, homemade, and principally of shell, turquoise, and silver. The commercial value of the shell beads is gauged according to their thinness and to a special pink color or tint’ they possess. The value of the turquoise beads is gauged by the delicacy and purity of their blue shade, while that of the silver beads, including all other silver ornaments, is determined by weight.1 The ornaments made of these beads, consist of necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. Other ornaments, beautifully engraved, such as buckles, belts, buttons, and also bracelets, are made of solid silver. They the not care for gold ornaments.
I visited the pueblos of the vicinity, going into many of the houses.
Houses of the Moqui
The Moqui houses generally can be termed ” rough rubble” masonry, being of rough, uncut sandstone, laid in blue or dark mud, all from and about the mesas. The stones are usually about 10 inches square. The house roof is made of peeled pine poles from 6 to 8 inches in diameter, laid from wall to wall and about 15 inches apart. The rooms are from 8 to 10 feet square and the ceilings low, say 7 feet. The connecting doorways between the rooms are sometimes but holes, 4 feet high at most. Over the ceiling rafters or joists, which have a slight pitch or fall, are laid small cedar branches, side by side, like a thatch. Over these is the fiber of the yucca, which makes a matlike covering, and on this is laid the mud which makes the roof, say a foot deep. The walls of the houses project above the roof a foot or more, and sometimes outlet holes are in this parapet, through which the little water which conies from rain runs out. Some of the houses have long split logs inserted in these holes for drainpipes. When a Moqui wants to repair the roof of his house he simply shovels upon it a quantity of mud. The floors of the houses are rock for the first story and mud for the others, laid as in the roof. The joists in all the houses are similar. The fireplaces are in the corners of the rooms usually, with flues (this is modern, however), but some are still in the center, the smoke, escaping through the square hole in the roof. In many of the houses old jars of pottery are used for chimneys, the bottoms being knocked out and the jars piled one on the other. Sometimes piles of stone or boulders make the chimneys.
The houses of the 7 Moqui pueblos are similar to those of the pueblos of New Mexico in general features, except that the former are of stone, while most of the latter are ‘of adobe. The interiors and sleeping arrangements are about the same, and the methods of making bread and cooking food of both the Moquis and Pueblos ate the same. Some articles are found among the Moquis made by the Mexicans or Navajos or bought from the Mormons, who are their neighbors on the northwest. Some few Moquis have lamps and cooking stoves.
While age, and neglect characterized their exteriors there was a neatness and cleanliness inside agreeably disappointing. The rooms, plastered with mad generally, were small and dimly lighted, making it difficult to notice details, though some had windows of gypsum for glass. From the ceilings were suspended poles, upon which hung dried meat and strings of peaches and dried pumpkins. Pieces of deer horns were driven in the walls and used as hat and coat racks. The fireplaces were small, generally built in a corner, and answered for both heating and cooking. Here and there in the walls were niches of different sizes, which served as storing places for crockery, trinkets, and clay gods. Some of the rooms had low stone seats running along one or two sides, which were covered with goat and sheep skins and blankets to make them more comfortable. These, rolled out on the floor, are usually the beds of the Moquis. Occasionally there would be an ordinary chair or two and a pine table. The floors were of clay or cement. The ceilings were low, not more than 7 to 8 feet, and the inside doors, or connecting ones, say 4 by 3 feet.
Every family possesses facilities for grinding corn, and in most of the houses we entered were found one or more of their young women kneeling behind low bins containing inclined stone slabs (lactates), on which they were grinding corn into meal of different grades of fineness.. They bake a bread from this corn meal, called wyavi, or piki.
The houses being one above the other in terraces, the roof of the lower. is frequently the front yard of the upper. They all extend back to the same rear wall. The caps and sills of some of them are made of sandstone. Ladders are used to reach the higher dwellings, and I am told that until recent years the lower houses were entered from the top; those hawing roofs to the sky have a square hole for light and air and exit. We form nearly all the terraces and upper roofs covered with ripened corn of every color; they also dry their peaches on these roofs. We were here shown more piki (bread) made of the colored corn, which they bake on flat, hot stones, the color of winch the process of baking did not change.
On the outer walls of the houses, and over the windows and doors, hung in graceful festoons and small bunches ripening chili, in color from emerald green to brilliant scarlet, old water jars, whose bottoms had been worn out, were worked into their chimneys with the other masonry, giving them quite a tasteful appearance.
In every household can be seen from one to a dozen wooden or clay idols or gods of the oddest and quaintest shapes, roughly made, and while resembling each other, they are different from any other Indian images. They are of all sizes, from 2 inches to over 4 feet high, painted in various colors; sometimes they are invested with beautiful ceremonial robes, woven expressly for them. These gods are not, properly speaking, gods at all, but represent different Cachinas (or Katcheenas), who are but semigods and intermediaries between the Moquis and their principal deity.
The gods made from trunks or limbs of small trees which by chance have grown to resemble in part a man are regarded with great favor, especially for gods for the estufa, it being believed that the spirit of a Cachina is in such wood. The material employed in making the Cachinas is usually cottonwood, Such as have ceremonial vestments are of wood, the clothes being of white cotton cloth, richly embroidered in Colors; the cloth used is from the Moqui looms and is of a peculiar fabric; clothes, including headdress, are also made of feathers. The colors employed in painting these gods are used as each individual fancies.2
The Moquis have a great number of dogs. These dogs, like the children, climb the ladders and narrow stone Moqui steps from roof to roof with the greatest ease, likewise the cats, here in large numbers.
We came to a bevy of girls, collected upon one of the housetops, appearing in fall dress toilet, the most noticeable feature of which was their tunics, each of some bright color, red, green, arid yellow being the favorites, worn gracefully about the shoulders. The hair was arranged in the peculiar cartwheel side pun. Their simplest dress consisted of a small blanket brought close under the left area With the two upper corners fastened over the right shoulder, the side edges being tied beneath, forming an arm hole, leaving the right and left arm, left shoulder, and part of the left breast bare. It is girdled at the waist by a belt of their own weaving, and closed clown the side either with colored yarn or silver pins. Seine of them wore leggings peculiar to the Moqui and Navajo women, each consisting of an entire deerskin, wrapped in spiral folds from over the moccasins upward to the knee and there fastened in some mysterious manner.
The estufa bears more relation to the life and customs of the Moquis than churches or clubhouses do to the Anglo-Saxon. The ordinary estufas are simply underground rooms. Some are sacred, some are for lounging, some for work. They are used by the Males, and are usually from 12 to 16 feet square. Some, however, are parallelograms, and from 8 to 10 feet high. They are sometimes walled inside with stone, and have beams of cedar or cottonwood laid across them, with an opening 2 by 2 or 2 by 3 feet left in the ceiling or roof for a ladder. This is the only means of Ventilation. The roof or ceiling beams are lagged in with other beams or thick brush, and dirt is thrown over all. The floor is sometimes laid with stone, sometimes with mud, and around the 4 sides of the room are stone benches. One of these benches is usually constructed so as to form a table, for the ladder to rest on,
In the center of the room is a place for a fire of wood, with several stones 10 by 12 inches or larger lying about it, which are used for seats. The walls contain niches for idols, and on one side is a pole about 6 feet long, suspended 2 feet from the ceiling, hung with rawhide, to which the weavers attach their blankets when weaving. The estufas are sometimes decorated by the different orders, septs, gentes, or clans, but usually they are clay or stone lined, sometimes whitewashed. The ladders are made of wood, with loose rounds.
The estufas where the men bold religious ceremonies do not differ much from the ordinary estufas. They are also underground rooms, usually oblong in shape, 12 to 14 feet wide, 18 to 20 feet long, and 10 to 12 feet deep, They are reached by descending a ladder through a narrow opening or hatch, These places of worship are destitute of any kind of furniture. On 3 sides are usually built stone benches, where the men sit; the floor is covered with large flagstones, and a small pile of ashes, almost under the hatch, is generally to be seen, where the fire has been kindled when needed. There are niches in the walls, in which masks and wooden gods are stored when not in use. The only source of light to these sacred places is through the opening at the top, which is also the only means of ventilation.
Many picture writings were observed on the rocks about the mesa, and afterward many were observed at the second or western mesa and about Oraibi.
In some of the excursions I made into the desert and to the mesas I frequently came across large herds of Navajo sheep and goats, always attended by women and children acting as herders, together with a large number of dogs, far from their own reservation, monopolizing the feeding and watering places belonging to the Moquis. These Navajos, with their herds, roam up and clown the canyons and over the plateaus to the Tusayan trading post, and. spend days along the mesas skirting the canyons, occupying all the little side canyons that have water, and their hogans are found near all these points, which they appropriate. They overrun the Moqui lands at will.
I visited the Moqui School at Kearns Canyon several times, examined all its buildings, and found them in excellent condition and kept in the most perfect order, everything appearing to be under good management and wholesome discipline.
The Moqui people are rich in legends and folklore. They have their stories of giants, giantesses, hobgoblins, fairies, and all kinds of spirits, which they believe once, lived and inhabited the earth in time long since gone by. Every cliff and mesa, every mountain and canyon, has some story attached to it which the natives treasure with care. All these legends, traditions, and stories are transmitted, orally, from generation to generation, with minutest exactness of circumstances and detail. A child in telling these, stories is attentively heard by its elders and quickly prompted if it makes a mistake in any particular; so we can feel assured in reading any of these legends received directly from these people that they accord with the true, literal Indian version, These people also have their superstitions and their belief in ghosts.
All the Moquis have peach orchards, which are situated at the foot of the mesas in protected spots; the young trees are surrounded by stonewalls to keep them from the ravages of the sheep and goats. Some of the orchards are inclosed within high walls. One can hardly imagine the amount of labor which has been expended upon a peach tree which has attained its full growth. Apricots are also cultivated, and gourds, pumpkins, corn, beans, and a great variety of watermelons. Peaches are dried for winter use, and watermelons are kept, through the dryness of the atmosphere, as late as March. The crops are gathered and owned in common. Each family gets its portion and the rest is stored for the common use.
During the season of planting and growing many of the men and boys, in order to protect their crops from the wandering herds of time Navajos, crows, ravens, and cutworms, temporarily live in brush houses by their fields, some of which are far out in the desert, along the washes where the ground is sure of natural irrigation. After the planting these men spin yarn and weave blankets, sashes, and other articles of wearing apparel, a most unusual occupation for a male Indian and unknown in other tribes, except in few instances. The people of the first mesa are Skilled in making pottery. Those of the second mesa and of the Oraibi are noted for their fine willow and large coiled basketwork.
After their harvest their religious ceremonies begin, in which they thank the Great Spirit for blessings vouchsafed to them, and ask that the coming days be prosperous; that drought, famine, and pestilence be kept away, and that the supposed ancient prosperity and mighty condition of their race be ultimately restored. It is evident that they are hardworking people, for almost every moment of their time is spent in obtaining the necessaries of life, as they are poor and in a barren country. A day now and then is appointed for sports, which only the men attend, dancing3 and horse racing, the latter being the principal outdoor sport. For the horse racing they go into the desert and select grounds at a point where they can be seen from the mesas, and when the day arrives the men all come mounted on their best ponies, dressed in a variety of costumes, some in the castoff clothing of the white man, sonic in only a “gee-string” (breechcloth), eagle feathers, a pair of moccasins, and an old hat, some tastefully and others most gorgeously arrayed in finery of their own invention and manufacture. When the races open the people form two lines, facing each other, the distance between them being about 30 feet. Usually but two race at a time. Those entering the contest ride away 300, 400, or 500 yards, to some point agreed upon; then, turning, they dash forward, riding to and between these lints to a lariat, which has been drawn across from one side to the other. All the spectators act as judges. There is never any dispute as to the result of a race, no matter how much has been staked upon it, one way or the other. The wildest demonstrations of delight are indulged in by the winners, and the losers, join heartily in the general hilarity.
The Moquis bury their dead with much ceremony. They do not pat them in boxes or coffins, but wrap them in blankets and lay them away in the rocks with bowls of sacred meal, meat, water, corn, and fruits. This is not done from any superstitious notion that these things are going to be of any use to the dead, but because they are symbols of certain ideas. The women are the chief mourners. The great altitude of the town with the consequently rare and pure air prevents odors.
Their form of courtship and marriage is very simple. In this part of their life neither priests nor civil officials have anything to do. When a young man seeks a wife he pays court to a maiden of his own choosing, and if’ he is favored she sends him a, basket of variously colored. piki, or poky, which signifies that she is willing to marry him. Then he, with all his people, visits her family and they have a little fate. This is returned, when the young man goes away with the girl, now his bride, and lives in her house. These people are very moral and hold in most sacred regard the family life. They do not marry sisters or cousins, and they invariably go out of their family or gees to select wives or husbands.
In visits paid to the different Moqui pueblos, or villages, I frequently met with Indians of other tribes who had come for trade, and who were objects of interest on account of their great dissimilarity in costume, manner of dressing the hair, and painting their faces. The Moquis as a rule do not paint their faces except for ceremonials. There were Apaches, Utes, Pintos, Navajos, and Cojoninas, The latter Indians deserve special mention. There are but few of them now, and their home is at the bottom of Cataract Creek canyon, one of the side canyons of the Great Colorado. They live in houses of stone and earth, which I am told are built like those of the Moquis. They make the beautiful willow baskets, which are deep, and so tightly woven that they hold water, They are like the Apache baskets, only the designs worked in them are of 1 color, black, while the Apache baskets are of 2 colors, black and red.
From Moqui, or Walpi, to Holbrook the road passes many old ruins, which came into view every little while high up on the mesas. These mounds, sometime; walls covering acres, were ruins when the Spaniards first came there. Ten miles or so to the south, and at our right, overlooking that part of the desert where the “Giant’s Chair” is situated, is Awatubi (meaning high rock), probably the most picturesque of all these ruins. The Navajos call it Tal-li-hogan (singing house). It is supposed to be one of the 7 Moqui towns of the ancient province of Tusayan, which have been supposed by some to be the “7 cities of the kingdom of Cibola”, and a part of the walls of a church built by the Franciscan monks and Indian slaves are still standing in a good state of preservation. Some of the walls of the houses, too, have outlived the storms, and could today, with a little repairing, be utilized for places of abode. I was told by the Indian Nah-ji that the people of Awatubi became very bad and put to death their chief and the members of his family; that 4 years from the time of this revolt the men of the other 6 pueblos entered the city while those of Awatubi were engaged in religions ceremonies in their estufas, and that at a given signal fired brush, which they had brought with them was thrown into the estufas, together with chili (red pepper), which greatly aided in the suffocation of their victims. Those who attempted to escape were brained with stone axes. They then killed all the old women, sparing the young children, who were divided among the other pueblos. The town was completely destroyed and has not since been used as a human habitation, unless temporarily by some nomadic Navajos.
All evidences of the Spanish invasion and possession have passed away excepting a few remains of old buildings, probably churches, judging from their dimensions. One of these, under Shimopavi, just south, is a mission, or church, with walls from 4 to 6 feet thick; they now form a part of a large sheep corral. Other Spanish ruins lie among the ruins of Awatubi. All other evidences of this occupation have disappeared, except now and then small ancient silver crosses of strange shapes, which the Indians wear among their beads.
Tewa, the present seventh town, was built after the expulsion of the Spaniards as a home for some hired fighting men, who went there and settled with their families. The Navajos, Utes, and Apaches had constantly menaced the Moquis, who were and still are a very peaceable people, as the name they call themselves implies, Ho-pi-tub. It was for a better protection of life that they built their houses on the Mesas. Their fields were always in danger of being despoiled by roaming bands of one or the other of these tribes, and their condition became distressing. Finally, hi their extremity, they secured the aid of some Indians from Tehua, on the Rio Grande, Who took possession of the new village and gave it the name Tewa, as it is now spelt, the “w” substituting the Spanish “hu”. The village had been provided for them and was one of the inducements offered to get them. Besides their dwellings all the other necessaries of life were furnished, and the Tehuas were not obliged to perform any other duty than that of protecting the Moqui flocks, herds, fields, and orchards against the incursions of their enemies. The Tehuas were inured to war and proved a valuable auxiliary to their old kinsmen, with whom they were destined to become more closely united. It is nearly 200 years since they became a part of the Moqui establishment, marrying and intermarrying and speaking the Moqui tongue, yet in all this time they have preserved their own language in toto. The descendants of these Indian military families are farmers. They show a pronounced difference in their bearing from the pure Moqui, and as a general rule are taller and broader. They are foremost in all things that pertain to their future good, and were the first to leave the mesa and build new homes more convenient to wood and water and their fields. They have from the beginning encouraged the school that has been established for the Moquis at Kearns Canyon. Polaki is their principal man, or chief, and in him is typified the force and energy of his race.
The Moquis have been led to believe that all who would leave the mesas, that is, their old homes in the 7 pueblos, and come down and build new houses in the valleys would be provided roofs for their houses by the government. This encouragement or statement has brought clown more than was expected and more than roofs can be provided for. To get nearer water is one of the inducements, if not the principal one, for them to leave their old homes on the mesas, and they can not understand why they should nave been asked to come down if they are not to be dose to the water. They claim that by this allotment no benefits in that direction will be derived. They also desire to build and live in small communities, but some of the walls which they have put up to this end have been pushed over, and their wishes in this respect disregarded. The springs which they have always had continue to be their only supply.
The Moqui men say that they begin to think that the promises of the nation and white men to develop new water sources or improve the old ones are lies, and that after all, the so-called efforts to help them are only schemes for the ultimate dispossessing them of their old homes and lands, where for centuries they have lived, following the peaceful habits of agriculturists, never asking any other aid from the government excepting that of protection against the Navajos. There is grave danger here of a charge of bad faith. The United States can best aid these people by expending a few thousand dollars to develop their water supply and put them in the way of planting quick-growing trees for fuel and timber. In other matters, save schools, it is wise to let them alone. They now feed and care for themselves but the future water and wood supply should be undertaken by the nation $15,000 expended judiciously now will settle these things.
There. is evidence of an abundance of water about all the mesas, but the springs are not properly developed, and at present there is a great waste of water; there being no reservoirs to keep or store the water it easily percolates through the earth and sand to the ‘tower rock benches beneath the drift, and so is lost.
At intervals along the foot of the first mesa there are 11 well-known springs; at the second, 18, of which 14 are about the spur upon which the village of Shimopavi rests.
Oraibi, on the third mesa, and the largest of all the pueblos, has comparatively the smallest water supply, there being at the present time but 5 springs to furnish its large number of inhabitants with this great necessity.
There is, however, a present greater necessity than lack of water confronting these peaceful and industrious people, that is fuel. The mesas for 7 to 12 miles around have been completely denuded of every vestige of wood or timber. They now have to go to remote canyons and distant mesa tops for their supply. The idea of planting trees, except those that bear fruit, has never occurred to them. The parts of the tablelands the Moquis cultivate, as viewed from the mesas, seem but little specks of green in the vast areas of sandy waste.
The agent of the Navajos is also the Moqui, agent.
The country immediately about the Moqui towns suggested the name for this region. Leaving the tablelands and passing down to the lower levels the surface becomes more broken, with here and there lonesome looking buttes. The Navajos called all this section “Ta-sa-un”, meaning “isolated buttes”, and the Spaniards christened the country the “Tusayan” and called it the “Province of Tusayan”.
The Moquis are an entirely peaceful and industrious people, self-sustaining, supporting themselves by agriculture, stork raising, and the manufacture and sale of pottery and basket work. The villages, or pueblos, are from 700 to 800 feet above the valleys, and wood has to be brought by men and donkeys, or burros, a distance of 6 to 8 miles, while water, obtained from springs at the bottom or base of the Mesas, has to be brought by women in jars to 2 miles, up well-worn paths along the sides of the mesas to the villages. Their supply of water depends entirely on the continuance of the wet or rainy season. Snows begin in and about the high mountains in December and continue until February. The rainy season commences about the middle of July and lasts until September. Sometimes, after a rain, a little dew is noticeable in the morning, but only for a few days or until the surface water disappears. It can not be said that the water supply increases or decreases. There are many springs adjoining the mesas, which, if properly developed, would more than treble the present water supply. Their corn and wheat fields are along the water washes and in the valleys. Both cereals are planted in hills, the corn irregularly, from 5 to 6 feet apart, the wheat about 18 inches apart. A primitive planting stick, say 2.5 feet in length and 1.5 inches in diameter, with a projection about 19 inches from the end and 4 inches long, on which they place their foot to force the stick in the ground, is mostly used in planting. In using it they dig down to where the sand or earth, as it may be, is moist; then the seed is deposited and covered up. Small brush houses are built near the grain fields, in which watchers remain during the growing season to keep off the ravens and other birds. A few of the Moquis use modern hoes, beyond which they possess no implements for farming. Melons of all kinds, squashes, pumpkins, cucumbers, beans, and chili (pepper, used in all their stewed dishes), are planted in groups, the seeds being dropped in the holes- made by the stick beside the corn and wheat fields. Peach orchards are plentifully sprinkled among the rolling sand hills, which bank up against the sides of the mesas. Some are planted on the top of the mesas, where there is sufficient earth and sand to hold moisture. At Shimopavi and Oraibi, particularly at the latter place, at the north and west of the town, there are a number of large and thriving peach orchards, which, until our last visit, had been usually considered the only Moqui peach orchards. Ou the first mesa, about 1 mile north of Tewa, are 2 large orchards covering from 3 to 5 acres, and 3 miles further north, on the west slope of the mesa, there are fully 20 acres of peach trees of great age and still yielding abundance of fruit; the trees are planted along lines on the walled terraces, which are daily watered through small ditches running along each terrace, ingeniously contrived to receive and distribute an abundant supply of water from a large spring up and under the first bends of the mesa. This spring is called 44 Co-nell-a-bah”, sheep spring.
The Navajos have made frequent raids upon this place with their herds, so that there are now acres of peach orchards gone to waste through the destruction of portions of the terraces and trees. These terraces are all on the north side, from which direction the Navajos come.
A mile to the north of Tewa, around a spur of the mesa, are the terraced gardens of Weepo (onion springs), where the water supply is quite as great as that of Co-nell-a-bah. These gardens are used by all the Indians of the 7 pueblos or villages. There are hundreds of acres of these peach orchards, and they are found in the most out of the way places, wherever there is sand which will hold moisture. The sands have drifted over some of them so deeply that the tree trunks are lost to sight, the limbs emerging like the blades of the yucca plant from the drift about them. It is impossible to accurately state the aggregated acreage of these orchards, and equally difficult to estimate the actual acreage of their cornfields. It is believed that between the 7 pueblos or villages there are 3,000 to 3,600 acres of corn lands, and there are certainly 1,000 or more acres of peach trees. I should have said the peach orchards are set out very much as those in the east, and are grown front the pit. Great care is required in preserving the young trees from the goats and burros, or donkeys. Stone walls are built singly about each young tree, and brush is then piled over these; even after this provision much care is required, frequent watering being necessary if the season is a dry one. The stone inclosures and brush also serve to keep the sand from drifting over and burying the young trees. The Moquis have about 2,000 acres in vegetables.
All of the 7 pueblos or villages are under the chieftainship of one man, whose title is hereditary. He is assisted by sub-chiefs or principal men, one or more of whom live in each village. To the council of chiefs the medicine men, or priests, are always invited, and they have a voice in the discussion of all subjects that come before the council, The principal priests, that is, the heads of the different orders, such as the antelope, snake, hear, and beaver, elect their own successors, imparting to them during their last days the carefully bidden secrets so potent in their religious ceremonies. Their successors are usually chosen from their own family or gens, and they are instructed from their youth. in the mysteries of the ‘particular order into which they may be initiated. up to a certain point, beyond which none of the final rites are revealed until their predecessors select them to take their exalted places.4
The Moquis are subject to all the diseases common to other people. Pestilence more frequently breaks out among them than among nomadic Indians, owing, no doubt, to the accumulated filth about their villages. While their houses are neat within, their streets are common cesspools, All corners and covered ways are the conveniences, the outhouses and water-closets of well regulated homes. Ollas of urine stand in front of every house (the urine is used for dyeing purposes), so it is easily imagined that the atmosphere they constantly breathe while within the walls of their town is poisonous and death dealing. They have doctors who are skillful in the treatment of simple ailments and some of the diseases. These doctors may come from among the medicine men, or priests, and they may belong to the council of chiefs.
Herbs constitute their only medicine beyond the sun bath and prayers. The women attend to all cases of childbirth.
The Moquis, as already stated, bury at the foot of the mesas in walled graves, where, wrapped in blankets, their dead are laid away, first covered by slabs of stone, over which earth or sand is thrown. Burial bowls containing corn and other eatables are buried with them, but not because of a belief that they will benefit the dead, but to symbolize some of their religious beliefs.
The Moquis, male and female, are, as a rule, small in stature; the average height of the men will not exceed 5 feet 6 inches, but there are some stalwarts among them. They are well proportioned, but their heads often appear overlarge, owing rather to the thick and vigorous growth of hair than to enlarged amnions. This growth of hair is undoubtedly due to their not wearing head covering constantly. While they generally possess finely-cut and regular features, many of them have heavy jaws and broad faces, though rarely large or coarse mouths. They resemble the Arapaho or Cheyenne more than the Kiowa, or Comanche, and to the casual observer or stranger they all look alike, but close acquaintance with them shows that there is as great a dissimilarity in features among them as in other races. The women are, of course, smaller than the men, with broad, squat figures.
The custom the men have of banging their hair, with side locks parted from the top of the head and falling to the shoulders, their back hair gathered and tied in a knot low on the neck, contributes largely to the idea of similarity of features. The older men do not strictly follow this custom, but often neglect the banging and allow their hair to fall loosely about their shoulders and back, parting it in the middle on top. The hair of the male Moqui is exceedingly coarse, and only in rare instances is it any other color than a blue-black. The few albinos among them have flaxen hair, pink skin, and. white eyes, which seem to move involuntarily; they are the most repulsive looking objects met with among the Indians, The women when young are lithe and rather pretty, but as they get older they become portly, though not clumsy. They have a peculiar gait, a waddle, inclining the body, forward as thought they were always about to step a little faster. This is attributed to the heavy burdens they carry on their heads, particularly water, which they bring from the distant springs lying at the base of the mesas, sometimes 3 miles away. For this purpose they use large, almost round jugs, which they make of clay and burn. When the jug is filled it is swung to the small of the back, and the strap fastened through the ears of the jug is brought over the forehead, and the long march homeward begins. Sometimes the jug is wrapped in a blanket and carried as with the strap, but this is done only when one or both of the ears of the jug may be broken.
Virginity is highly prized by the Moquis. The hair of the females, the decorations or marks on their pottery, and the method of their basket weaving indicate whether or not the Moqui women making the articles are childbearing. When a Moqui woman ceases to be childbearing it is said of her “the gate is closed”. Their plaque baskets, used for holding and passing bread, are made of one continuous strand of colored braided straw, and when the end of the outer coil is left unfinished and scraggy it signifies that the woman making it is still able to bear children; in other words “the gate is open”. When the end, is finished and rounded sheds unable to bear children, and “the gate is closed”.
The Oraibis do not pay so much attention to this distinction in the decoration of their willow baskets. The large coil baskets or plaques are made on the second mesa, pottery principally on the first mesa, and the small willow baskets on the third mesa. The three great pottery pueblos are Sichumnavi, Tewa, and Walpi, The method of making is by hand.
Unmarried women, maidens, wear their hair in the “curt wheel” “sideboard” style, denoting virginity, that is, they have “half a blanket to let”, and are ready to wed. The married women braid their hair in two braids, parting it in the middle from the forehead to the back of the neck. Sometimes it is all brought forward and tied in a knot at the top of the forehead; some of them bang the hair and wear it cut short. Very young girls also wear the peculiar large “wheel” puff. The Moqui females spend much time in doing up their hair. They are particular to keep the scalp clean, and almost daily wash the hair with soapweed (amolí), which gives it a beautiful satin gloss. They frequently neglect the nice while washing the hair. In washing the face or wetting the hair they fill the mouth with water and spurt it out (after the manner of Chinamen sprinkling clothes), a little at a time, in the hands, which are held together, forming a bowl, and then apply it to the fume. They do not use towels; the air is so dry and moisture evaporates so quickly that there is no need of a towel.
The Moquis are very fond of tobacco and are habitual smokers, with a decided preference for the little yellow cigarette, which they make themselves. Its use among them is not confined to the men; women and children are also sharers in the smoking habit, and they all seem to enjoy it as much as they do their melons and peaches. They do not raise the tobacco usually smoked by them, but buy it from the traders. Small presents of it form a most excellent means of making friends with them.
Sometimes they blow the smoke slowly through the hand and waft it heavenward. When they can not get paper to make cigarettes the cottonwood leaves, which are tough and well adapted for the purpose, are used. It is amusing to see a small, nude child, not more than 5 years old, make a cigarette and smoke it with the air of a veteran. The Moquis have native tobacco, which they use in ceremonies. They do not use commercial tobacco in their ceremonies.
The domestic life, food, and cooking of the Moquis are generally similar to the Pueblos of New Mexico, They have in their domestic life all the charms of peace. Their bread (piki) consists of corn meal and water made into a thin batter, which is spread in handfuls over a large flat stone sufficiently hot to quickly bake it. When a number of these sheets or wafers have been cooked, they are rolled up together and laid away.5 The women grind the corn for the bread on the metáte (or stone) with stones. Their cooking is done in rude fireplaces, generally in the corner of their rooms, but some of them now have modern stoves. Their cooking utensils are iron pots, kettles, and tomato cans, or anything that will hold water. Coffee pots, cups and saucers, and knives and forks are used, but not generally. Their rooms are furnished with blankets, sheepskins, pottery, sometimes as loom, and large stones for seats, but lately boxes and even chairs have made their appearance. Soups and. stews are made, from mutton or beef, with various small vegetables, including the onion. Cow’s milk and butter are not used, goat’s milk supplying the place of the former. Watermelons and peaches are their fruits. Sugar they buy when they can. They are very fond of all sweets.
The cattle, horses, burros, sheep, and goats are not owned in community but by individuals. The fields are owned by families or gentes, and worked by them together, the products being divided equally. The herds of each pueblo are cared for by herders assigned each day by the governor. The crier in the early morning passes through the streets arousing the herders, when the herds are driven out and brought back at night and placed in the stone pens about the mesas. The Oraibis own the most of the cattle of the Moquis. The herds are the property of individuals, but are herded as a whole.
The Moquis clip their sheep once, or twice a year. The wool was formerly cut off with a knife, and recently a Moqui was seen using a piece of tin from a tomato can for sheep shearing; but shears are now generally used.
The Moquis, it is said, believe in a great spirit, who lives in the sun and who gives them light and heat. With the Moquis there is male and female in the idea of deity; flue earth is the female, and all living things are the issue.6
Serofula is prevalent to some extent among them; no cases of syphilis, however, are known to exist at the present time. The Moquis are a pure, an unmixed people. The bite of the rattlesnake has no terror to the Moquis, as their doctors cure it-without fail, even after swelling has begun. The remedy applied is jealously guarded, and like’ other secrets is transmitted through the chief priests of the snake order.
Many of the Moquis possess firearms, repeating rifles, revolvers, and ammunition, for hunting7, which they buy of the small traders that lurk about the outskirts of the reservation, many of whom, south of here, on the Little Colorado, are also selling whisky. Dancing is a social as well as a devotional matter with the Moquis. Their dances are very frequent.
As the women do most of the house building, such as laying the stones, plastering, and roofing, for this reason, perhaps, the dwellings belong to them. The Moqui women, it is said, own all the household goods as well as the houses. The descent of this property is in the female line and through the mother. The men do all the weaving of blankets, dresses, and sashes. The Moqui sacred blanket of white, with colored borders, is held in great esteem by all Indians.8 The men are domestic and kind, the women are loving and virtuous, the children are obedient and return the affection bestowed upon them by their parents. The men own the small tracts of land which they cultivate.
The Moquis tan hides after the fashion of other Indians, by scraping and rubbing with the brains of the animal and then stretching the hide until dry. Rawhide is generally used for the soles of their moccasins and for the covering of their saddles. Their boxes and sacks for the storing and transporting of provisions were formerly made of rawhide, but now they use commercial hags and boxes, which they procure from the traders. They are quick to receive and apply the ingenious articles used by white people religion of a people who are low in mental development, and in whose pitiful lives the hours of trial and privation and sorrow are much more numerous than the happy ones, that the spirit of good, though all-wise, is not all-powerful, so it is found here. Cotukinuniwa loves his children and would send to thorn nothing but good; but that he eon not always do, for Balilokon is sometimes stronger than ho, and wills evil. Yet it would not be right to call Balilokon the spirit of evil, for ho is by no meters always so. When he is pleased the mists and rains fall gently and the sap runs lustily through plants and trees, giving them vigorous growth; the springs and rivers are full, but clear, giving abundance of good water to the people and their flocks, and the blood flowing in the veins of the children of the tribe is the blood of health; but Balilokon is sometimes angered and the rains come not at all, or come in deluges that destroy; the rivers are dry or are raging floods; the sap is withdrawn from the plants and trees and they die, and the blood of the people flows through their veins but to poison. There have been times when the auger of Balilokon it seemed no ceremony or prayer could appease, then hundreds of the people went down to death, and one time, a Nay in the dim past, so many moons ago that their wisest one can not tell how many, he sent a great flood that covered nearly all the earth, nod but very few of the people and not many of the beasts were saved. Balilokon, having it in his power to do so much of evil, is the god most prayed to, and in his name almost all of the ceremonies are hold. At the foot of the cliff at the southern point of the mesa is a large rock [Moqui luck shrine] with a nearly flat top, about 8 by 10 feet in sire, and a few yards to one side of it is a well-worn trail. On the top of the rook are thousands of pebbles, seemingly every one that could possibly be lodged there, and around the base are other thousands them have fallen. It is the great luck stone, and from time immemorial have the children of the villages gone there to get forecasts of their lives. Each little devotee of the Mind goddess selects 3 pebbles, and while walking down the trail throws (them, one by one, upon the reek. If but 1 pebble lodges the thrower will know much of sorrow and disappointment, yet his efforts will sometimes bear good fruits. If 2 pebbles stay ho will find more than the average of success, and if all 3 lodge upon the top ho may march onward boldly, for what can withstand him! Should all the little stones fall off, what then? Well, the child can ask himself but one question, “Why was I born?”-Charles R. Moffet, 1889.
In the “neck”, or “saddle” which connects the first of the Moqui “islands” of rock [the first-or eastern mesa, on which is Walpi] with the main tableland is a shrine of great importance. It is a little inclosure of slabs of slate surrounding a large stone fetich, which as been carved into a conventional representation of the sacred. snake. In 2 small natural cavities of the dance rook are also kept other largo fetiches.-Charles F. Lummis, in “Some Strange Corners of Our Country “, 1802
At points about the Moqui villages are altars and shrines, on or in which are idols made of wood or pottery, and at which the Moquis individually worship. Near Oraibi is a noted phallic-shrine. The Moqui worship or devotional acts are largely private. Their communal and public worship is generally by dancing or in games. Some of these shrines may be the-remains of the old Catholic worship.
In 1875; John W. Powell wrote; “The greater part of their [the Moquis’] clothing is made of wool, thought all of their priestly habiliments, their wedding and burying garments are still made of cotton”.
The Moqui men weave a white blanket of wool of from 2 to 3 feet in width and 5 to 8 feet in length. Those blankets, which have margins or borders worked in rod and black of curious patterns, are both useful mid artistic. They are costly, and are known as Moqui sacred blankets. The Moqui industries are few, blankets, fur clothing, baskets, and pottery being the staples. The Moqui blankets are eagerly purchased by other Indians. They keep out water and are of bright colors. Indians, the civilized as well as the wild, love bright colors. The blue or grey blankets issued by the United States the Indians soon drop or exchange for highly colored ones, and even in Minnesota one can at times see the Moqui, Navajo, and Mexican blankets on the stalwart Chippewas.
The usual rule with the Indians of this section is to charge $2 for jewelry containing $1 of silver. ↩
About the heads of some are coronets of 5 or 6 small squares of wood. These coronets sometimes resemble a Maltese cross, with it near approach to a Grecian border on them, the lines being in green. The bodies of the wooden gods are usually painted white, and frequently a bit of the down of a feather is glued to the points of the coronet, which may be a symbol, copied from the halos around the bonds of the images of saints in Catholic churches. Tho Spanish Catholic influence is quite apparent, in many of the Moqui images, and also in some of their customs, on their pottery, and in figures on their blankets. ↩
In 1880 Mr. C. R. Moffet attended a tininina, or social dance, given by the young men of Walpi. He thus describes it “We made our way through the intricate windings of the narrow streets to nearly the opposite side of the village, where we found about 40 men assembled in a long, low, and narrow ball. As only one very poor clip was burning, and as the only opening through, wall or roof was a very low and narrow door near one end, it is safe to say that the lighting and ventilating of their ballroom was not first class. The dancers had removed- all superfluous clothing, and it was extremely ludicrous to see an Indian come in and, after quietly greeting those present, with great dignity take off his shirt and hang it up, just as a white man under similar circumstances would remove his overcoat and hat. The musical instruments were a tom-tom, made of a section of to hollow cottonwood log, one end of which was covered with dried mule skin, a number of gourds filled with pebbles, and wonderful innovation, a half string of sleigh bons. Ties pebble-filled gourds and the bells were rattled and the tom-tom, beaten with a heavy stick, came in from time to time like a bass drum, and the dancers, in a long single file, kept time. First but the right foot of each moved, to the music, then both feet, then both foot and, one arm, then all the limbs, then the head, then the whole frame fairly writhed. The line slowly retreated to the back of the hall, but at once advanced with ever accelerating speed, ending in. a terrific bound. All this in perfect unison, keeping time to the music, all the dangers chanting the story of their tribe. First, low and plaintive the song, telling the death of some renowned chief, or great misfortune of their people; then higher, telling of the capture of whole herds of deer, and antelope, and big horn, by their mighty hunters; then higher, ever higher, tolling the adventures of their brave warriors on the fields of strife, and ending in a terrible yell, that marked the close of a wonderful exploit of some death-dealing chief. The wavering light, the shadowy corners, scarcely lighted at all the rattling belle and gourds, and the mournful tom-tom; the long line Of nearly mule Indians, their long hair streaming out behind, marching, bounding, writhing, and wildly tossing their arms; and the strange song, now soft and low, now loud and fierce, formed a scene oppressively weird, and never to be forgotten. The dentine ended at about 10 o’clock.” ↩
Clans or Gentes Among the Moquis.-The great difficulty experienced by anyone on visiting the Maqui towns is to get some one to talk with him. Now and then a Moqui may speak a little English and some Navajo or Spanish. These people, while obliging and good natured, are not very communicative as to home life unless they see a chance for trade or to receive motley for their conversation. Unless their antecedent history is known one might as well be in the midst of a desert. One might remain with them 10 years and find out but little unless be knew their language, or learned it or fell in with those who knew it and could speak English. The Moquis are cunning and will fill the listening ear with wonders if the palm is crossed. They like silver, both the color and the coin. One can suggest a form, theory, clan, or gens, and the Moquis will supply what is wanting. How much of what is thus obtained from them is true is a query. In writing of gone, Lewis H. Morgan, in his “Ancient Society”, 1878, says of the Moquis: “In seine of the tribes, as the Moqui village Indians of New Mexico (Angoria), the members of the gene claimed their descent from the animal whose name they born, their remote ancestors having been transformed by the Great Spirit from the animal into the human form”. Captain J. G. Bourke, in ”The Moquis of Arizona”, says of the clans or gentes of the Moquis: The clans or gentes of the Oraybi [Oraibi] Moquis are almost identical with those of Suchongnewy [Sichumnavi]. Nahivehma [Naha] said that, in. Oraybi there is a crane gens, but the oak and road runner gentes are both extinct”. Bishop Hatch, of the Mormon church, insisted that while he was in Oraybi there was a sacred family among the Moquis; he said that there was a widow, whose infant son, not over 4 years old, was upon every feast day or occasion of ceremony loaded down with beads of seashell, chalehibuitl, abalone, and everything else precious in the eyes of the Moquis. Concerning the clans or gentes of the Moquis, Bishop Hatch says: I give the following lists, obtained at different times, and varying slightly from the inability of different Moquis to give the correct Spanish for each clan name or my own inability to understand them. Surgeon
Tem Broock, United States army in 1852, compiled the following list; 1, Deer; 2, Sand; 3, Water; 4, Bear; 5, Hare; 6, Prairie Wolf (coyote); 7, Rattlesnake; 8, Tobacco plum; 2,seed Grass. Tegua Tom, in October, 1881, gave me the following names: 1, Water; 2, Toad, or Frog; 3, Sun; 4, Snake; 5, Rabbit; 6, Butterfly; 7, Tobacco, 8, Badger; 9, Corn; 10, Cottonwood.; 11, Clown, or Dead Man; 12, Bear; 13, Coyote; 14, Deer; 15, Lizard, and 16, Road runner. The Tegna Indians living in the village of Hano, or Tegue, with the Mavis have 1, Sun; 2, Corn; 3, Snake; 4, Tobacco; 5, Cottonwood; 6, Pine; 7, Cloud; 8, Boar; 9, Parrot. Tom himself was of the corn gums, his father of the frog, and his wife of the bear. Nahivehma, Tom said, was roadrunner. The clans or goatee of the Moquis, according to an old Moquis, who expressed himself with great intelligence, although he spoke but little Spanish, are as follows. My informant, I must take care to say, was old Tochi, or Moccasin, our host or lust night. Ho said that be himself belonged to the boli or butterfly, gene, that his wife and children wore of the aguila, or eagle, his father was venado, or deer, and his son hail married a quingoi, or oak, and his brother a lena, or ku-ga.
1. Boll Mariposa Butterfly 10. Pa-kua Sapo Toad, or Frog (3) 2. Kuaja Agnila Eagle 11. Tajua Sol Sun 3. Ka-ah Maiz Corn 12. A-to-co Grulla Crane (now extinct) 4. Chia Vibora Rattlesnake 13. Shu-hui-ma Venado Deer 5. Sui Conejos Rabbit (1) 14. Ku-ga Lena Firewood (almost extinct) 6. Honan Oso Bear 15. Sha-hue Coyote Coyote 7. Piba Bunchi Tobacco (negative (2) 16. Huspon Pnisano Road-runner (chapparal) 8. Honaui Tejon Badger 17. Quingoi Eucina Oak 9. Pa-jeh Agua Water 18. Oma-a Nube Cloud
(1) The Spanish, word conejos’ was given, but I am too well acquainted with the employment by the Indians of this word for liebre’ (a hare or jack rabbit, and vice versa) not to feel it my duty to point out the uncertainty of the translation.
(2) No. 7 is named from the bunchi,’ or native tobacco, cultivated by all the pueblos of New Mexico and Arizona,
(3) In like manner, the Spanish ‘ sapo’ (toad) is used so generally by the Indians instead of “rana’ (frog), and I am so well satisfied that ‘pa-kua’ in the Moqui language means frog that I have felt constrained to give that as the name of the tenth gene:
(4) The Indian could not explain what this meant; he repeated ‘leua, lena’ (firewood), but whether “alamo’ (cottonwood), or some other tree like the cedar or pine, I could not make out.” ↩
John W. Powell, in 1875, thus wrote of the Moqui method of baking piki, er bread They take great pains to raise corn of different colors and have the corn of each color stored in a separate room. This is ground by hand to a fine flour in stone mills, then made into a paste like a rather thick gruel. In every house there is a little oven, made of a fiat stone, 18 or 20 inches square, raised 4 or 5 inches from the door, and beneath this a little fire is built, When the even is hot and the dough mixed in a little vessel of pottery the good woman plunges her hand in the mixture and aridly swears the broad surface of the furnace rook with a thin coating of the paste. In a few moments the film of batter is baked, when taken up it looks like a sheet of paper. This she folds and places one tray. Haying made 7 sheets of this paper bread, from the batter of one color and placed them on the tray she takes batter of another color, and in this way makes 7 sheets of each of the several colors of corn batter.” ↩
The Moquis know one all wise and good spirit, Cotuknuniwa, “The Heart of the Stars”. They have also Balilokon the Great Water Snake, the spirit of the element, of water, and they see Min in the rains and snows, the rivers and springs, the sap in the treed, and the blood in the body. The whole Moqui heavens are filled, too, with Katcina, angels, or, literally, “those who have listened to the gods”. All of the great dead men of the Moqui Nation at some time before they died saw [Cachina, or Kateheena] and received messages from them, and some of the chiefs now living have seen them, too. ↩
The Moquis stilt use bows and arrows for ‘killing small game, and have a curious “boomerang” of wood. about 18 inches long, list, say 1.5 inches wide and looped in the center, with which they kill rabbits. Whether they can throw this so deftly as to have it return to the thrower with the aid of the velocity which sends it away I can not verify. The boys are very adept in the use of the bow and arrow and the boomerang. The boomerang is the favorite weapon in the Moqui rabbit hunt [the Moquis use rabbit skins for robes and the flesh for food], besides it saves powder and shot or cartridges. As we were returning, about dark, from our last call we found coast of the inhabitants of the village [Walpi] congregated. in an open space, while from a housetop a chief was delivering a harangue. “Me chief of the hunt proclaims a rabbit hunt for tomorrow “, explained the doctor, “and all the able-bodied men and boys above a certain age must go”. In these limits the Moqui’s usually drive to some part of the plaits to the south and east of the villages, where the little “cottontails” are very plentiful, and where they also find a good many of the large jack rabbits. Leaving all their firearms at home (powder and lead are too scarce and valuable to be used on rabbits), they go forth armed, some with bows and blunt arrows, but most of them only with pieces of wood shaped quite like a Turkish scimiter, the blade about 20 inches long, 2 inches wide, and one-quarter of an inch thick. From 50 to 100 Indians surround a large tract, gradually converge, driving the game before them. When near the center the rabbits attempt to escape through the lines, and they are knocked over by arrows or the crooked sticks, thrown by the hunters with wonderful skill. The hunts sometimes yield a marvelous number of cottontails, if the hunters can be believed.-C. R. Moffet, 1889. ↩
Blankets are no more made by the Pueblos (of New Mexico), and they of Moqui alone continue to weave the women’s dresses, with which they supply all the other (including New Mexico) pueblos, as they do with baskets,-Gushers F. Lummis, 1802. ↩