The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 33, July 1929 - April, 1930 Page: 40
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Then, too, much of the meat was roasted or broiled"4 and eaten by
the savages while it was fresh.
With the skinning of the animal and the preparation of the meat,
there was yet much work to be done by the squaw. Probably the
most difficult task was that of dressing the hides, as is seen from
the following account:
"After the meat is taken care of, the skin must be looked after.
Those taken at this season (summer) of the year are mostly dressed
for lodges. They are first staked on a smooth spot of ground and
water put upon them, when they are ready for fleshing. This con-
sists in removing the flesh with an instrument made of a straight
bar of iron, about a foot in length, flattened at one end and filed
to an edge. This being grasped in the hand, and with a succession
of quick blows, the work slowly proceeds. The skin is then dried,
after which the hair is removed in a dry state, and the skin is
reduced to the proper thickness by dressing down on the hair side.
This is done with an instrument made by firmly tying a flat piece
of steel, filed to a bevelled edge at one end, and with the corners
rounded, to a large prong of a deer's horn. This is so trimmed,
in connection with the body of the horn, as to form an elbow, and
is used a little as a carpenter uses his adze. This work is usually
done in the cool of the morning.
"The brains of the animal, having been properly taken care of
for the purpose, are now soaked and squeezed by the hand until
reduced to a paste and applied to both sides of the skin, which is
afterwards worked and rubbed until flexible."25
With this multifold utility of the buffalo in the life of the plains
Indian, it is not far from the truth to assert that its use by the
red man was indispensable to the free nomadic life which he lived.
Statements made by plainsmen living during this period are fairly
well established by documentary evidence of government scientists
in regard to this fact. Indeed, the leading authorities of the period
were agreed that the plentiful supply of the buffaloes was a neces-
sary concomitant of the wild life of the savage.26
Even before the white hunters threatened the extinction of the
buffalo herds of the West, the Indians were slaying hundreds of
"2Grace E. Meredith, Girl Captives of the Cheyennes, 37.
"2Thomas C. Battey, A Quaker Among the Indians, 187-188.
6For the points of view of each of these types, see J. H. Cook's Fifty
Years on the Old Frontier, 132, and W. T. Sherman's Personal Memoirs, II,
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 33, July 1929 - April, 1930, periodical, 1930; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101090/m1/48/: accessed October 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.