Pueblo Boy (1947)

Jemez Pueblo father, Vivian Fragua, instructs his son, Moses, on their cultural practices and heritage including agriculture and food making, adobe building, and ceremonial dances. They also visit the Gallup Indian Ceremonial and perform in the parade.

Opening credits over an image of a textured adobe wall: “The Ford Motor Company Presents Americans At Home: A Series, The Ford Motor Company takes pride in bringing you this story of the Pueblo People and is pleased to present --- for the first time — original recordings of some of their songs and dances. Pueblo Boy, a Transfilm Production, Copyright 1947, Ford Motor Company, All Rights Reserved. Produced by Walter Lowendahl, Supervised by William H. Wilson. Musical Score by Robert Stringer, Technical Supervision by Clark Defandorf and Laboratory of Anthropology, Sante [sic] Fe, N.M. Written by Burton Rowles, Jr., Photographed by Lawrence Madison, Rodney Albright. Directed by Lawrence Madison, Edited by Sidney Meyers.”   Image of buttes in background, dried vegetation in the foreground; dry yucca plant in foreground, mountains in distance; dried brush in foreground, hillside and clouds in the distance; horses walking and looking for food on open field of dried vegetation, trees and mountains in background; young woman with braids and a blue pinafore over a flowered dress walks from a door of an adobe and carries a bundle of red peppers over to a ladder and climbs up to wear another bundle hangs on the wall; a parade of native peoples riding on horseback down Route 66 through Gallup, New Mexico, past the camera, they pass a business called Gross Kelly & Co. Wholesale Dealers, who sign says they sell Navajo blankets and general merchandise, close-up of onlookers’ faces; closer view of riders passing the camera down the street past a diner and a J.C. Penneys; toddler walking towards the camera outside an adobe door; a woman hangs clothing on a line (over drying herbs or peppers?), a man, a woman man, a girl and a small boy walk through a field and towering sunflower plants and carrying hoes and shovels; two men pass each other one walking towards a very small building that’s a U.S. post office, and the other away from it opening a piece of mail; close-up of the man (Vivian Fragua) reading his mail; back to him walking and opening a large brochure; Vivian walking through Jemez Pueblo/Walatowa square reading the document and then folding it up, big sky of clouds in the background; Vivian walks around a corner over to where two boys are wrestling on the ground; closer view of the boys wrestling and laughing; his son Moses gets up and runs off camera, leaving the other boy on the ground laughing; he joins his father in looking at the brochure and pointing to a photo; close-ups of the boy looking at the pictures and pointing, and from over their shoulders to reveal the brochure is for the Gallup Indian Ceremonial; close-ups of the two talking as they lean on a fence post, individually and together; a young man (Tony White Cloud) car drives down a dirt road through the pueblo and parks outside Vivian and his son’s home; Vivian gets up and walks over as Tony gets out and does the same, the shake hands in front of the car, they lean against it and look off camera; Moses plays with a white hoop, trees and a corral in the background; closer view of Vivian and Tony laughing; alternating shots of Tony walking over to surprise Moses and Vivian looking on laughing; Tony gets Moses’ attention and he hands his hoop to him; closer view of the two of them talking, then just of Tony; Tony performs a hoop dance while Vivian chants and beats a drum and Moses watches alongside; close-up of his feet and up his torso as he dances; Vivian drumming and watching; back to a shots of the three while Tony dances, alternating with close-up of Moses smiling; Tony stops and talks to Moses, then another close-up of the boy smiling; two men building a adobe brick wall with a doorway; shot from another angle as a woman applies brown paint to the wall; closer shot of Tony handing a bucket of clay up to Vivian who is applying it as mortar for the adobe bricks, shot of Tony handing up a brick; a woman walks carrying a long board full of balls of unbaked dough past a wall over to where another woman stokes the fire in an outdoor oven (horno); a woman on the second floor of an adobe shakes out a rug while down below another woman is pouring out dried corn from a basket onto a blanket while an elderly man watches, girls walk past; closer view of the woman pouring corn and then of the elderly man; close-up of the woman’s face as she pours the corn from above her head, then of her feet where it’s landing; the woman who carried the loaves of dough now is putting them in the oven on a long wooden paddle, she’s then joined by another woman; close-up of a woman’s hands smoothing a small clay pot in her hands, then of her face; wider shot of same, and back to a close-up of her hands; women bent over a pond with flat baskets that they’re using to rinse dried corn; wider view of the three women sorting the corn; a young woman pours corn from her basket into a cloth sack; a woman bent over rinsing corn as a small boy watches, and then her alone in the shot; different shots of the family from before walking with shovels and hoes bent over hoeing in a planted field, including closer views of each family member; shots of a man digging an irrigation trough along the field as Moses and his father look on; wides shots of the nearly by snow-capped mountains; various shots of trees and ground covered in snow, and melted snow now running as water, then rushing water in a stream, then running through a dam; back to the man digging the trench; views of a woman, and then a man, gathering corn cobs from stalks in a corn field; shots of men walking alongside horse and wagons hauling wheat to giant piles of grain; wide shot of a combine threshing wheat into the piles, and then of people standing around near by large cloth bags; series of shots of men, including Moses and Vivian, forking wheat from a wagon into the thresher, and then of women sweeping beneath; a man picks up a large pail of grain from the machine’s spout as it’s filling another, and brings it over and fills a waiting woman’s sack; close-up of Vivian’s smiling face and then of two sets of men’s hands tying closed a burlap sack; shots of men carrying large sacks of grain and hoisting them into a wagon, and  close-ups of a women watching and waiting; Vivian putting a bag on a wagon, and then a closer shot of him tired and removing his headband to wipe his face and neck; Vivian and Moses look on as a large group of people gather around, and climb into a Santa Fe Indian School bus; shot from behind the bus where little children stand watching; closer views of people climbing aboard, and Vivian and Moses looking at each other; various shots of students embarking and family members gathered; close-up of Vivian’s face; classroom with those students now seated, teacher before them; series of closer shots of the students and teacher;   series of shots of young men working in the school’s silversmithing shop, including moving molten hot metal and polishing a newly cast belt buckle, hammering metal, opening a Tufa stone (?) mold to extract a raw object; various shots of students drawing and painting at drawing desks in an art room as a teaching looks on; Vivian and Moses walking down a dirt road, the pueblo in the background; wide shots of the Anasazi/Ancient Pueblo cliff dwelling, Cliff Palace, and shots Vivian and Moses walking between its many abandoned dwellings where only walls remain; various shots, at a distance and close up of men and a drummer performing an eagle dance and then the buffalo dance and the bow and arrow dance, alternating with shots of Vivian and Moses acting out the eagle dance, watching, and talking; various shots — wider and close-ups — of a group sits on the ground having a meal, their wagons and horses behind; a young woman sitting in the wagon bed, a young man mounting a horse, and then another jumps on behind, back to the young woman laughing; a truck driving down the road with a large group in the back waving as it passes the camera; views out a car’s side and front windows of the desert landscape, and a horse and old-fashioned covered wagon and cars passing, the road ahead; Vivian and Moses walking past parked horse and wagons, then shots of wagons and people setting up camp on a foothill; closer views of the two watching and talking; back to the scene from the start of the film of a parade of Navajo people on horseback, and continuing with a long sequence of the parade including Apaches, Comanches, Arapahos, Kiowas, Utes, Zunis and Pueblos riding down Route 66 through Gallup on horses and in wagons, walking and dancing, alternating with closer shots of onlookers; Moses follows his uncle Tony in the parade by performing the Hop Step dance, and people in the stands rise to watch, and Vivian follows in the parade drumming; many more performances from the parade, and close-ups of audience members and of Moses dancing; various shots of revelers in the back of wagons, on the truck from before, watching from atop a hill and a mesa; a sky full of clouds; a close-up of wheat stalks blowing in the breeze, clouds behind; dark clouds above trees; clouds behind a mountain, a creek and dried brush in foreground; horses walking on an open field, dark clouds in the distance; Vivian and Moses walking down a dirt road past buttes and vegetation. End credits “The End. A Ford Motor Company Presentation.”      

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