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Old 04-09-2004, 06:19 AM   #22
mountaindew
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Gourd Dance Origins

Hello. I guess these things aren't foolproof after all. I'm having to use a relative's user name to respond to this inquiry.
For some reason the tools issued by this site won't let me in.
My address is [email protected] if anyone what to chew the fat regarding origins.---Wateredge Kid gave the most accurate account so far. Ah-ho.---The Lone Bear descendants also have an annual Tiah-piah-gaw celebration during Labor Day weekend called the Kiowa Warrior Descendants(KWD) Celebration. This began officially in 1974 and began on Lone Bear's original allotment 4 miles southeast of Carnegie. However, during the 19teens and 1920s this annual celebration has held at this same site on the 4th of July. I have a 1921 photo that shows the Kiowa Tiah-piah-gaw being performed by old Kiowa men on the Lone Bear's Old Dance Ground. Lone Bear stopped having this celebration on his allotment after his wife was killed during a tornado which destroyed his house and surrounding property in April of 1929. This was called "The Great Carnegie Storm of 1929". Today KWD can claim to have the only celebration on a traditional Kiowa dance ground.---Now to the historical aspect. In the Texas Panhandle during the summer of 1837 just after their sundance ceremony about 38 Cheyenne warriors called the Bowstring Society travelled south to raid the Kiowa on foot eventhough their Sacred Arrows weren't properly renewed. The Kiowa discovered their presence and a warparty lead by Sitting Bear met the Cheyenne who had constructed battlements to ward off Kiowa arrows. There was an engagement that lasted half the day but curiousity overcame the Kiowa and a temporary truce was called. The Bowstrings demonstrated how their society was run and sang their songs. However, both sides returned to the battle with the Kiowa eventually wiping out the Bowstrings. This happened on Sweetwater Creek south of Mobeetie, TX. When the Cheyenne finally learned the fate of the Bowstrings the following year they planned an all out offensive against the Kiowa. It was one of the seven times that the Cheyenne moved their Sacred Arrows against an enemy. The engagement on Wolf Creek near Fort Supply, OK during the summer of 1838 was the largest and greatest battle that every occured between two tribal forces. The battle started in the morning and raged all day long. Toward the late afternoon both sides probably wanted to sue for peace but didn't know how to go about it. Some say an Arapaho & Apache behind the scenes made arrangements. Another account says that Kiowa elders saw that too many of the bluebloods were being killed and came out of their tipis crying and shouting for the fighting to stop. In either case the fighting ceased with the Cheyenne withdrawing to the north. The Kiowa had invited the Osage to come to their sundance and two days later the Osage rode into the Kiowa encampment amidst the wailing for the dead. The 1838 Kiowa Sundance was called the "Wailing Sundance Summer". The Osage learned of the great battle and told the Kiowa to strike back at the Cheyenne and they would help destroy the Cheyenne but the Kiowa said, "No, they are gone. Let them go". Two years later on the Arkansas River in southeast Colorado several miles east of Old Bent's Fort the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache made peace with the Cheyenne, Arapaho and Sioux. The Cheyenne gave the Kiowa rifles and the Kiowa gave the Cheyenne 2000 horses. There was an attempt to return the scalps of the Bowstring warriors but the Cheyenne refused them telling the Kiowa to bury them. THIS is when the Kiowa Tiah-piah-gaw was started. There is more but I may run out of space.---Yes, I know of the Red Wolf legend but I feel it was more of a spiritual vindication for the evolution of the Tia-piah-gaw and its integration with the Kiowa Sundance which was the only time that the Tia-piah-gaw was performed collectively.---Personally, I wrote about these accounts which appeared in the August 17, 1991 issue of the Anadarko Daily News. This article was called "Kiowa Tia-piah Society Origins", plus, on the same page is an article called "Red Wolf's Legacy to the Kiowa People".---Ah-ho for the opportunity to re-tell this story. I was getting kind of rusty.
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