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                                            the following stories are from a book I read at the loacal library

                             BLACKFOOT (Blak-Foot)
                                    The Blackfoot, whose name literally means "moccasins which
                              became black from prairie ash,"are a plains tribe who
                         frequented the border area of   northern Montana
                       and southern Alberta, Canada.
      They are not to be confused with the Blackfeet,
                                      a similar name and one of the seven bands of the Lakota (Sioux).

            The Blackfoot lived among the Rocky Mountains
         often wintering along the banks of the Flathead
                River so they could hunt deer, elk, moose, antelope
                  and bear. Like most nomadic, buffalo-hunting tribes
                  they summered on the Great Plains, living in circles
                of very large and distinct tipis with lodgepoles that
            cleared the top of the buffalo hide covers by four
  to six feet. The center of the tipi circle was
                            often the site of ceremony and hunting strategy sessions.

                 The summer hunt often found warriors "disguised"
                  as animals in hides and fur so the buffalo could not
             detect their human scent. The buffalo were often
                  driven into small, enclosed areas where they would
      be easier to kill. Sometimes "buffalo jumps"
    were used, before and after the introduction
         of the horse. Buffalo would be driven off a cliff
        easy enough to negotiate but high enough that
the fall would kill them.

                     The buffalo provided the Blackfoot, too, with clothing,
                     shelter, tools and weapons. After the hunt, the women
                of the tribe would dry and preserve the meat, often
                    making pemmican (dried meat, fat and berries) that
      could be traded to area trappers. The women
                               and children also scoured the woods and plains for berries,
            nuts and other wild foods to supplement the diet.

                      The men wore long buckskin leggings that pulled up to
             the waist and folded over a belt, creating the look
                    of a breechcloth. Women wore long buckskin dresses
           that were sleeveless in summer and had sleeves
                to add in winter. Buffalo robes and moccasins with
                                  the buffalo fur side in for warmth rounded out the winter wardrobe.

                            The Blackfoot were gifted artists, with many tipis painted
                          with exquisite designs and ceremonial clothing that was
                         fringed and decorated with quillwork, beads and paint.

                          Blackfoot belief is that an old man named Napi was the
        creator of the world. The tribe participated in
               an annual Sundance ceremony and many special
      religious and brotherhood societies existed.
              Women, too, participated in all-female societies.

          While the Blackfoot were forced to protect their
                   homelands from white intruders too, they did carry
                             on trade peacefully with European trappers for more than
                                    200 years. Over the course of time, many Blackfoot died from
                         disease brought by whites and by the late 1800s hoards
                         of white settlers and sightseers flooded Blackfoot lands

            Thousands and thousands of buffalo were killed
               for sport not need, and then left to rot. The winter
        of 1883 saw the starvation death of more than
                                800 Blackfoot because there were already no more buffalo.
                        Those who survived gave up their lands and submitted
                  to removal to reservations in Canada and Montana
                                 in exchange for government subsidies of cattle, money and supplies.

                      Today, many Blackfoot are successful cattle ranchers
                                       and farmers still living on reservations in Montana and Alberta, Canada.
 
 
 

Continued