Navajo Children (1938)

Theme: overview of Navajo/Diné agricultural practices, moving from winter to summer hogans and other seasonal activities. Story: follows a family including two children, Little Bow and Dark Eyes.

Wide shot of desert brush covered in snow; cliffs in background; medium shot of sheep (dibé) nibbling on remnants of sage brush on snowy ground; wide shot of man in coat and sheep walking past, then shot from down the hill past trees, two men behind; wide shot of sheep and men approaching a hogan with snow on top, ground; same shot, now no snow, horse and buggy, two men and a woman standing alongside, a woman carries materials out of the hogan and places them next to the wagon; medium wide shot of man (identified as the father of family) with handkerchief around head, a necklace, and dark-colored shirt and pants, silver concho belt; hitching horses to the wagon; shots of man picking up a cardboard box and sheepskin and woven blanket that he then loads into back of wagon; a girl (identified as "Dark Eyes") sits on a blanket and pets two kittens (mósí), she then gets up and hand them to the man to place in the wagon; close up of his hands placing them on a blanket as they meow; wide shot of a woman in a long black shirt and black long-sleeved top and a boy (identified as Little Bow) in jeans and a collared shirt opening the gate to a sheep pen; various medium-close shots of the Little Bow herding the sheep out (shouting voice dubbed in); same holding a puppy (łééchąą’í), pulls another puppy out of a wooden pen (Border Collies?), carries them off; medium close shot of the boy handing the puppies to the man who pats one on the head and places them in the wagon; closer shot of a the puppies and kittens relaxing and eyeing each other on a blanket; medium shots of Little Bow retrieving a bow and arrow set hanging on a tree, then going to another tree to untie a saddled horse and mounting; wider shot of smiling the boy riding horse close to the camera; medium shot of him herding the sheep and goats on horseback; interior medium shot of the woman sitting and finishing tying a baby into a cradleboard, another toddler sitting nearby; close-up of the baby's face (identified as a boy); back to woman tying; Dark Eyes walks up and kneels; close-up of her; she and the woman, carrying the cradleboard, and the toddler get up and exit; medium shot of girl crawling into back of wagon and the woman handling the baby to her; closer shot of her holding the cradleboard as the woman climbs in and takes the baby; the toddler boy crawls in smiling; medium wide shot from the front of the wagon where the man and another (older?) woman wrapped in a blanket sit as they take off; wide shots of wagon leaving the yard, accompanied by sheep, goats and other horses herded by Little Bow, and the group riding between rocky outcroppings and trees; medium shot of wagon passing; wide shot from behind of boy herding; very wide shots of the group passing through the landscape past a huge rock; another slightly closer shot of the group passing two more large rocks; group stops at a configuration of smaller rocks and cliff, the man waves; medium shot of three men sitting alongside a wagon, one waves and gets up; back to shot of the group as the man approaches; medium shot of the men shaking hands at the family's wagon, they speak and the new man points behind him, and the other nods; medium wide shot of the group moving their wagon; at dusk, wide shot of people sitting in a wide circle, wagons and horses close by; a group of five men stand and sing as one beats a drum (music may be dubbed here); closer shot of three; medium shot of the woman in the wagon with the baby and toddler boys looking; medium wide shot of two men in cowboy hats leaning again a wagon and two women seated next to them listen; back to men singing; medium shot of a woman and two girls of varying ages listening; shot of a woman holding a baby in a cradleboard; daytime medium shot of family group seated alongside the wagon, the older woman frying bread, small campfire; wider shot of the other woman feeding some to the toddler, Little Bow gets up with his bow and arrow, smiling, and gets up, walks off towards Navajo/Dine voice calling off-screen; medium wide shot of him approaching another boy with his bow and arrow near a wall of boulders and they walk off to join three others getting ready shoot; medium shot Little Bow shooting and smiling, then reverse shot of the arrow going into a narrow tree stump; back to the boy smiling; medium shot of another boy shooting, then Little Bow and similar reverse shot of arrow hitting the stump; medium wide shot of boys retrieving their arrows; medium shot of the father saying something in Navajo/Dine (likely dubbed) and motioning to the boy to come to the wagon where he is hitching the horse; back to the boys and Little Bow waves goodbye; wide shot of wagon, horses, sheep, etc. passing through landscape; closer shot as they approach a hogan made with loosely arranged branches and a shelter form not yet covered; the girl herds the sheep and goats; medium wide of Dark Eyes herding them around the wagon as the adults rise to get off; medium wide shot of the boy dismounting his horse and leaving it untethered to the shelter brace; medium shot of the woman lifting blankets out of the wagon and the man handing Little Bow a puppy and two kittens, then similar shot of man handing the Dark Eyes a puppy and a hoe as he says something in Navajo/Dine (dubbed), she turns and walks off with both; medium wide shot of the girl holding a basket and her mother digging a hole with the hoe; close-up of the girl dropping squash seeds into the hole, the mother's shoe pushing dirt over; back to shot of the two of them, the woman tamping down the dirt, they walk off; wide shot of the man walking behind a horse and handheld plow, hills and cliff in background; closer shot of him walking along and dropping seeds from a basket onto ground; wide shot with sheep and rocks in background boy playing with a puppy and a can on the end of a string in the fore; medium shot of boy and puppy, they walk off; medium wide shot as the puppy runs into the herd of sheep and goats, followed by shot of Little Bow herding the animals (shouting voice dubbed in); wide shot of herding the animals into a corral beyond the hogan and yard; wide shot of mother and girl entering the hogan, older woman sitting outside, man walks up with horse; medium shot of boy among the herd, closer shot of boy pulling a goat by the horns and wresting it to the ground, the man walks up and ties its feet together; medium wide shot of woman and girl approaching with a bag; closer shot of the woman using sheep sheers to begin clipping the sheep's wool/aghaaʼ as Dark Eyes helps hold its feet as it squirms; medium wide shot of the man gathering branches, a puppy playing nearby gets caught up while playing and runs off; medium shot of the girl gathering up a pile of wool into her sack, camera pans to another big pile, sheered sheep and goats nearby, the mother walks up and add a big armful to the pile; medium wide shot of two looms attached to the shelter frame, the mother sitting at one weaving and Dark Eyes at the other; medium and closer shots of the mother working on her pattern; medium shots of the pair, then the man walks up speaking (dubbed); close-up of the girl listening; back to shot of all three, the man squatting and speaking to her; medium shot of the toddler and the baby boys playing with yarn; wide shot of Little Bow herding the animals between rock formations; wide shot of the herd grazing in grassy area; wide shot of same, with Little Bow perched on a low rocky cliff above with a puppy; medium wide shot of boy petting the puppy on the rock; end credit.

Cultural Narrative: 

Narrated by Cindy and Perry Slivers. Facilitated by Rhiannon Sorrell, Instructor and Librarian at Diné College.

Language of narration primarily Diné Bizaad.

Dark Eyes