OCR Interpretation

Williams news. [microfilm reel] (Williams, Ariz.) 1891-19??, August 31, 1901, Image 3

Image and text provided by Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records; Phoenix, AZ

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82015761/1901-08-31/ed-1/seq-3/

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ly a boy not over fix years old,
Jus body ftained and decorated, a
wreath o cottonwood leaves on his
head, belt and anklets of cot ton -wood
leaves, Vreaet and lepi bare,
carrying a vessel of liquid which
he sprinkles by means of an eagle
feather, ahead of the men as they
march about the plaza. The re
maining Antelope priests, bare-footed,
their bodies grotesquely ftri jutj
with white, faces blackened and
chins painted white, white cotton
trunks about the loins, necklesses
of silver, shells and turquoise,
bracelets about the arms alove the
elbows, carrying a small rattle in
the right hand, march four times
around the plaza to the left. The
last one irv line, a youngster like the
leader, carries a blade-shaped piece
of wood, to which a string is tied.
As they pass the four Kints of the
compass, he produces a sound simu
lating a storm, whirling the wood
through the air. In front of the
kisi of cottonwiMtd lioughs lies a
plank aliout four feet long and one
foot wide, the sipapu plank, with a
hole in the middle, communicating
with the under world. As the
priests cross the plank, they stamp
violently un it with the right
foot to inform the spirits that the
ceremony is in progress. After
making the circuit four times, the
Anteloe men line up. six on each
side of the cottonwood kisi, facing
southward, where they await the
entry of the snake men, keeping up
:t continual shaking of the rattles
Here come the Snake men ! With
long, rapid strides they enter, and
woe to the camera or onlooker
chancing to lie in their way, as they
make a circuit alut twice as large
as that made by the Antelope
priests. Their 1 km lie ainted a
brownish hue, faces blackened and
stnjieU with white, brown kilts
with a broad black zigzag jmttern
in the center and green and yellow
lorders,a row of liangles deendant
from the kilt, reddish brown feath
ers in their hair, fox hides hanging
down their lucks, they present an
apearance solemn and dramatic
as they proceed four times about
the plaza, stamping on the siiapu
plank each time they pass. Then
they line up, twenty-eight in num
ler, in front of the kisi, facing the
A nteloe priests. All is quiet for a
moment, then the rattles begin, ac
companied by a low humming
chant. The eagle feather snake
whi8 make a peculiar swishing ac
comaniment as the lines sway
from side to side rgfee first verse
of the chant H .. The lines fac
ing each othi-t . k "U of swnving
thiA -. k
from side to side, now step backward
and forward as the chant grows
louder. This alternation is relocat
ed several times.
Suddenly the Snake men break
ranks. Two priests place their
arms atout each other and dance
in a circle in front of the kisi, a
third priest following. The entire
Snake line of twenty-eight men
thus breaks up in groups. The
"carrier" suddenly drois- on his
knees in front of the kisi, and
fumbling alnmt draws one or more
snakes from the lmg. At former
dances, a priest in the kisi handed
out the snakes. This vear the " car
rier" brings out the snake and
places it crosswise in his mouth.
The priest, whose arm is about the
earner s" shoulder, engrosses the
attention of the snake, by means of
his snake whip, and the trio, fol
lowed by other trios, dance aliout
the plaza, to the accompaminent of
the rattle and chant of the AntelojKJ
men, who do not break line during
this iart of the dance. Four
times around the plaza, then the
"carrier" leans over and drops
tike snake to the ground. The third
man. the "gatherer," now picks up
the snake. Sometimes, in the case
of the venomous reptile, consider
able time is consumed persuading
the snake to uncoil. The "gatherer,"
with an agility which is marvelous,
picks up the snake and adds it to
the others which he has in his
hand. When the "gatherers'
hands are full, they pass a few of
the snakes to the Antelof men,
who are lined up. The little Ante
lope priest at the head of the line,
held a snake larger than he was
himself. After the bag is emptied,
and all the snakes have participated
in the ceremony, an old priest ad
vances to the west of the plaza and
makes a large circle with corn
meal, outlining the points of the
com J ass by crss lines. At a given
signal, the snakes are thrown into
the circle and corn meal is thrown
on them by the Snake priestesses,
maidens with hair in whorls on the
sides of their heads, and gaily at
tired for the occasion. A sudden
scramble, and the snakes are gather
ed in handful by the priests, who
run down the mesa and carry them
far out in the trails below, where
they are left to carry the prayers of
the people to the gods. The Ante
loie priests march around the
plaza, stamping the plank as lie
fore, and miss out to their kiva, and
the ceremony is over.
When the Snake men return,
they go to their kiva and divest
themselves oftheir trappings, re-
rosctj-MD o ro mix
4 'V- '- .- ' ' t
General Merchandise
A Complete Line of Ladies'
and Men's Shoes, and Gents'
Furnishing Goods Just Arrived
Twitty & Parker
We rf located temporarily In the flrt MoryofODD
FELLOWS' HALL. where we will be pleaed to wait on
til of our old ruRtoraera, and aa many new on aa care
to come, until mirnrw tullllnjc In tiumhed on William
Avenue. The beat goods and courteous treatment aruar
leed all.
2iiiams Jfcarctiuare and
fSiatonerj Co.
Everything in General Notions
Complete Line of Hardware
Bicycles, Crockery
Glassware, Lamps
Stationery, Books
and Magazines
The Unrest line nt Naralo Rnirs and
Hlanketa. Orand Canyon Views. Curioa.
Frulta. Nuta. Fine Candies. The Parker
Lucky Cum and Waterman Fountain
Pens. Battetick and Standard Patterns.

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