Apache (1953)

An overview of daily Apache (White Mountain) life collecting water, cattle grazing, clothing styles and baskets, as well as the performance of a Sunrise Cermony.
Cultural Narrative: 

Counter-narration by Cheyenne Bearfoot, Chiricahua Apache, and graduate of the University of California Santa Cruz. Language of narration is primarily English.

Traditional Knowledge: 

Title credits: “Avalon Presents”, white road sign with black letters reads “Apache”, Apache/Inde men wearing headdresses and body paint (Crown Dancers) walk in a parade procession down a city street; closer view of a dancer wearing a crown that covers his face with fabric; wide shot of the Gila River Valley; a mission church; wide shot of White Mountains(?) in the distance, rock formations in foreground; wide shots of farmstead and farm windmill; an abandoned and worn out small building; covered wagon train crossing the desert, hills behind; desert landscape with scrubs and tall saguaro cacti; paved road with road sign that says “Cochise” and an arrow pointing left, a car drives past; road signs that read “Apache County” and then “Geronimo”; “El Cochise Motel” neon sign with Indian in headdress; road sign that reads “Cochise Stronghold”; then a view of the Stronghold, rocky and boulder-filled hillside; a woman, man and boy (possibly White Mountain Apache/Łįįnábáha/Łįįnábáha dinéʼiʼ) walking a cross a shallow part of the Gila River; wide shot of the White Mountains; various shots of Gila River around surrounding cliffs and trees; white horse grazing outside a small blue house; a completed conical shaped dried brush covers wickiup; a man building a wickiup, canvas atop, buckets around; view of a wickiup from between cornstalks; closer views of the wickiup; a man on horseback outside a wickiup; the horse and rider come towards the camera and on each use are hanging woven baskets; he dismounts the horse; closer views of the deep, round baskets with fringes hanging down; views of Gila River and trees lining the rocky shoreline; close view of three woven basket: a fringed one like before, a flat one with star design and a woven jug (tus); close ups of another flat basket; close ups of a water jug; close ups of a jar covered in resin; a woman carrying a water jug, a small boy and a dog walk across white rocks to a stream; various shots of the woman seated at the water’s edge filling her jug with a metal dipper; she then stuffs the jug’s opening with a bundle of leaves, packing it in; she gets up and attaches it to her forehead with a cord and walks off; four little girls play and sit near rocks in the river; a herd of cattle crossing the river, ushered by two men on horseback; the cattle continue down the river bank, then up a dirt road; men on horseback herd the cattle into a large coral; two men tackle a cow to the ground, cows behind and fire pit in the foreground; shot of a man holding a branding iron in the fire; close up of a cow being branded; close up of “ID” branded into its fur; various views of a large herd of cattle walking; two men sitting atop a wooden corral fence; another similar shot, with more men watching the cattle in the corral; closer view of the cattle penned into the corral; wide shot of a group of women and girls walking down a dirt road, trees behind, stone wall in foreground; a large group of women from behind, dancing in place; closer views of women dancing; a woman in ceremonial regalia and a younger one in a light yellow satin ceremonial dress, a group of men drumming and chanting behind (Sunrise Ceremony, Girls’ Puberty Ceremony, or Na'ii'ees); close up of the young woman looking downward; two young women dancing in ceremonial dress, men behind, then the camera pulls back to reveal three; a young man sits atop his horse watching; a man rides up on horseback followed by a two younger boys on a donkey, all have large white dots painted on their cheeks; a covered wagon comes down a dirt road, a dog running alongside; a young woman walks carrying a cradleboard on her back; close up of a baby looking at the camera, being held by its smiling mother; shots of same baby sleeping in the cardboard; the mother demonstrating how to strap the baby onto the board; another woman walking with a cradleboard; a toddler boy ambles about with a little cowboy hat and suspenders and jeans; two toddler girls doing the same in their satin and cotton ceremonial dresses; three slightly older girls in calico dresses; a yet older girl poses for the camera in her blue two-piece outfit with beaded ornament (Yoo); two women walk near tents, a dog runs behind; people sitting around a covered wagon; sides of beef hang from ropes between trees; the same hanging from branches; one of the young woman being honored stands before a long line of blankets upon which many baskets and boxes foodstuffs and packaged goods; closer view of goods, then of a toddler girl wailing among the boxes and grabs a box of treats; the young woman dances in place, joined by another young woman, men and boys behind drumming and chanting; close ups of the drumming; various shots of a much older woman dancing along side the young woman; a man, paired with two women dance back in forth, then a group shot of others dancing; another pair of three dances; a group dances, one in front holding a toddler girl; shots of a woman sitting rocking a baby in a cradleboard, she looks directly at the camera; various shots of the woman being honored dancing alongside another woman, the woman accompanying wipes sweat from her face and rests for a bit; the honoree dancing while kneeling on a blanket, hands in air and torso moving with the beat, bowl of yellow pollen nearby; close up of the bowl; shots of the honoree now laying face down on a blanket as her previous dance partner pushes on part of her body; various shots of her then pressing on the prostrate girl with her moccasined foot; the honoree dances surrounded by mostly men; when she’s back dancing next to the much older woman, a man gestures to her; she then leads a group of mainly children running around a cane sticking up from the ground, a man looks on; the younger and older woman run past and away from the camera and a large group of all ages follows; shots of the two women are now surround by adults who are sprinkling pollen the women’s heads; back to shots of them dancing in place; wide shot of the sky at sunset; in a nighttime scene; various shots of Crown Dancers — like were scene in the earlier parade scene — are running dancing in a circle around a fire pit; a young woman (the honoree in different dress?) wearing a Yoo dances with them at points; one Crown Dancers stand with hands on hips; daylight now, a woman walks away from the camera carrying a cradleboard, people mill and walk about; back to the girls from an earlier scene playing on the rocks at the river’s edge; shots of a man on horseback herding cattle across the river, and the cliffs behind; wide shot of cliffs and rock walls, tress, then of one craggy rock formation, then another in silhouette. End credits: “The End, An Avalon Daggett Production, Copyright MCMLIII by Avalon Daggett” over an image of a woman in a dress looking through a motion picture camera eye piece, wind blowing her dress behind her.