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Native American War Paint

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  • Native American War Paint

    I'm doing a pony party with an Indian theme and would like some ideas for dressing up my "war pony" I tried googling but am not having any luck. Does anybody know what are war paint symbols (what they mean would be cool too) and how to tie feathers in. I love to braid and be crafty so if you have any ideas about how I can use pony beads that would be great too!
    www.abernathyfarm.com

  • #2
    Hand prints, and circles around the eyes are what I've always considered "war paint". Of course, all my knowledge about Native Americans and their war ponies comes from the movies.....

    Braid in some feathers, too. I don't think you'll be able to get eagle feathers, so you may have to hit the craft store for something similar. Either that, or shoot a turkey buzzard.

    Sounds like fun, in any case. I don't think anyone is going to call you on the carpet, if your horse doesn't look exactly like a war pony.
    Homeopathy claims water can cure you since it once held medicine. That's like saying you can get sustenance from an empty plate because it once held food.

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    • #3
      Actually, all the markings have different meanings. I'm a stickler for the meanings I have a pinto mustang that I've considered doing a Native American costume with (he's classic Native horse) so this is a fun topic. Here's a site:

      http://www.aaanativearts.com/article260.html
      If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.
      ~ Maya Angelou

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        great site! Thanks
        www.abernathyfarm.com

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        • #5
          OMG--you have to read Reynard Ridge's 2nd $700 Pony book--she has a harrowing tale of the Wee Spotted Pony and Native American war paint.

          But be prepared for some gut-busting.
          Approved helmet: Every time; every ride.
          "When a sport gets to be predictable it ceases to be fun." - RAR's wise brother

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Risk-Averse Rider View Post
            OMG--you have to read Reynard Ridge's 2nd $700 Pony book--she has a harrowing tale of the Wee Spotted Pony and Native American war paint.

            But be prepared for some gut-busting.
            I was just about to suggest that too!
            Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights I call it a draw. -- fun.

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            • #7
              Hand prints on the hips mean"stolen pony". The Indians used to put hand prints on the hips of ponies they had stolen from other tribes. I used to ride in a drill team in Boise Idaho and we dressed as Native Americans and war painted our horses. for some of the designs we used Google Eh-Capa Bareback Riders of Boise Idaho, there are lots of pictures. All of the designs are put on with poster paint and wash right off.
              The only difference between a runaway and a fast gallop is nothing but a SMILE
              Most horses cross the Rainbow Bridge, but TEDDY JUMPED IT!!!
              Member of the COTH Enabler Clique

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              • #8
                Originally posted by pinkdiamondracing View Post
                Hand prints on the hips mean"stolen pony". The Indians used to put hand prints on the hips of ponies they had stolen from other tribes. I used to ride in a drill team in Boise Idaho and we dressed as Native Americans and war painted our horses. for some of the designs we used Google Eh-Capa Bareback Riders of Boise Idaho, there are lots of pictures. All of the designs are put on with poster paint and wash right off.
                I always just thought they put a handprint on because it was easy to do...for what it's worth, I had an all but solid chesnut Appy mare whose ONLY spots were one darker egg shape on one hip, and a very faint roan handprint on the other--looked like someone had applied the white poster paint handprint and it didnt quite all wash out....

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                • #9
                  keep googling, there is tons of stuff out there, location of the marking matters, design and color, too, Like zigzags, 'tear' drops, circles....handprints.


                  Unfortunately I have switched computers since I found one awesome website (so the link is gone) maybe search by tribe/nation?
                  Originally posted by BigMama1
                  Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                  GNU Terry Prachett

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                  • #10
                    A simple google search will bring you all sorts of results. Before I moved to MT and talked to natives (and subsequently found that there was a real mixed opinion on non-natives using native symbols) I liked to put circles (for better vision) around my horse's eyes and hail on his hindquarters to invoke his power, but now...I just leave it be.

                    There are tons of sites on native symbols though, so just use google.
                    Hail, coup stripes, hand prints, circles/lightning, etc. all common symbols for war
                    Different symbols for hunting
                    I was told that women-the mother, or the wife-often painted the horse/lodge and used symbols she felt were particularly powerful for her son/husband.

                    sh22
                    True Bearing Equestrian
                    St. Helena Island, SC

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've been told by the researcher for the Nokota Horse Conservancy who works directly with Native American people that they find it very offensive when we dress in their costumes like Halloween or for fun, they take it very seriously. We had done that a couple times to show our horses in presentations and was told not to do that anymore. I had feathers in my horse's mane and tale and he looked so cute and he made the newspaper.
                      That's when I was told that it was wrong to do that if we respect the Native Americans. These markings and feathers have deep meaning to the Native American and they consider it mockery and minimizes the importance to them when we dress up.

                      I do understand that a red hand on the butt was from a fallen warrior. He would take his blood from his wound and smack his horse on the rear to send him home to let his people know he died in battle. These Nokota war horses, (Nokota is a new name for this old breed) were trained to kill anyone who would steal them. Only the warrior could ride their own horse. If the enemy would attempt to mount them after taking them in battle the horse would try to kill them. I don't know how that would work but I'm just repeating that story. And I understand that the war horse was the most important of all, when bad weather came they were brought into the tent and the wife went to sleep elsewhere, maybe with her mother. The war horse was also used for hunting buffalo and had to be very brave. When you see a red circle with a squggly line going down and a dot in the middle of the circle it's a wound, the dot being the entry, and squiggly line representing the blood drip all of this is red. This is Lakota people that I know about. You can look at a horse ephogy or horse stick to see some of how they painted the horses.

                      You can see some interesting links here: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=ISO-8859-1&q=lakota++horse+stick&btnG=Search

                      and Linda Little Wolfa Lakota story teller
                      http://www.authorsden.com/visit/author.asp?AuthorID=583

                      and
                      http://www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/feature_wdesc.php?rec=4358 Kennedy Center Honoree Mary Louise Defender Wilson
                      http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=ISO-8859-1&q=mary+louise+defender+wilson who is directly associated with the Nokota Horse Conservancy as is artist Butch Thunderhawk, there are too many links on Butch so just look at the Google search http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=ISO-8859-1&q=butch+thunderhawk

                      If anyone is in PA and would like to learn more about the Nokota horse Frank Kuntz will be speaking at the Farm Show on Jan 15, Thursday and the parade of breeds will feature several Nokota horses on that Saturday afternoon. I have 3 and anyone near Chester County, PA would be welcome to meet them.



                      Originally posted by spirithorse22 View Post
                      A simple google search will bring you all sorts of results. Before I moved to MT and talked to natives (and subsequently found that there was a real mixed opinion on non-natives using native symbols) I liked to put circles (for better vision) around my horse's eyes and hail on his hindquarters to invoke his power, but now...I just leave it be.

                      There are tons of sites on native symbols though, so just use google.
                      Hail, coup stripes, hand prints, circles/lightning, etc. all common symbols for war
                      Different symbols for hunting
                      I was told that women-the mother, or the wife-often painted the horse/lodge and used symbols she felt were particularly powerful for her son/husband.

                      sh22

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thanks for all the tips. Googling specfic nations must work better, I think I was being to generic. I plan on educating the kids on what each symbol means. In my area everyone seems to have some Native American heritage, although, this area wasn't known for horses (NC piedmont) The child imparticular's Grandfather is Native American, that is why he wan't an "indian pony" so hopefully I won't be offending anyone. Even I am 1/16 cherokee with my red hair and green eyes.
                        www.abernathyfarm.com

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