The First Buffalo Stone

One time long, long ago, before the People had horses, the buffalo suddenly disappeared. All the hunters killed elk, deer, and smaller game animals along the river bottoms then. When all of them were either killed or driven away, the people began to starve. They were camped in a circle near a buffalo drive. Among them was a very, very poor old woman, the second wife of her husband. Her buffalo robe was old and full of holes. Her moccasins were old and were torn by rocks. While gathering wood for the fire one day, she thought she heard someone singing a song. It seemed quite close… but when she looked around she saw no one. Following the sound and looking closely she found a small rock that was singing, “Take me! I am of great power. Take me! I am of great power.” When the woman picked up the rock it told her what […] Read More

How the Buffalo Were Released on Earth

In the first days, a powerful being named Humpback owned all the buffalo. He kept them in a corral in the mountains north of San Juan, where he lived with his young son. Not one buffalo would Humpback release for the people on earth, nor would he share any meat with those who lived near him. Coyote decided that something should be done to release the buffalo from Humpback’s corral. He called the people to a council. “Humpback will not give us any buffalo,” Coyote said. “Let us all go over to his corral and make a plan to release them.” They camped in the mountains near Humpback’s place, and after dark, they made a careful inspection of his buffalo enclosure. The stone walls were too high to climb, and the only entrance was through the back door of Humpback’s house. After four days Coyote summoned the people to […] Read More

The Buffalo and The Field Mouse

Once upon a time, when the Field-Mouse was out gathering wild beans for the winter, his neighbor, the Buffalo, came down to graze in the meadow. This the little Mouse did not like, for he knew that the other would mow down all the long grass with his prickly tongue, and there would be no place in which to hide. He made up his mind to offer battle like a man. “Ho, Friend Buffalo, I challenge you to a fight! “he exclaimed in a small, squeaking voice. The Buffalo paid no attention, thinking it only a joke. The Mouse angrily repeated the challenge, and still his enemy went on quietly grazing. Then the little Mouse laughed with contempt as he offered his defiance. The Buffalo at last looked at him and replied carelessly: “You had better keep still, little one, or I shall come over there and step on […] Read More

Origin of the Buffalo

Cheyenne – Native American Lore Long ago, a tribe of Cheyenne hunters lived at the head of a rushing stream, which eventually emptied into a large cave. Because of the great need for a new food supply for his people, the Chief called a council meeting. “We should explore the large cave,” he told his people. “How many brave hunters will offer to go on this venture? Of course, it may be very dangerous, but we have brave hunters.” No one responded to the Chief’s request. Finally, one young brave painted himself for hunting and stepped forth, replying to the Chief, “I will go and sacrifice myself for our people.” He arrived at the cave, and to his surprise, First Brave found two other Cheyenne hunters near the opening, where the stream rushed underground. “Are they here to taunt me,” First Brave wondered? “Will they only pretend to jump when I […] Read More