Illustrations of the Manners, Customs and Condition of the North American Indians, with Letters and Notes Written During Eight Years of Travel and Adventure Among the Wildest and Most Remarkable Tribes now Existing, vol. 1. London, England: H. Bohn, 1866, pp. 264.
Subject: Piikani, Art, Stu-mick-o-sucks, Leadership, Chiefs, Travel Writing, Battles, Catlin, George, 1796-1872
Transcript: I have this day been painting a portrait of the head chief of the Blackfoot nation; he is a good-looking and dignified Indian, about fifty years of age, and superbly dressed (PLATE 11); whilst sitting for his picture he has been surrounded by his own braves and warriors, and also gazed at by his enemies, the Crows and the Knisteneaux, Assinneboins and Ojibbeways; a number of distinguished personages of each of which tribes, have laid all day around the sides of my room; reciting to each other the battles they have fought, and pointing to the scalp-locks, worn as proofs of their victories, and attached to the seams of their shirts and leggings. This is a curious scene to witness, when one sits in the midst of such inflammable and combustible materials, brought together, unarmed, for the first time in their lives; peaceably and calmly recounting over the deeds of their lives, and smoking their pipes upon it, when a few weeks or days will bring them on the plains again, where the war-cry will be raised, and their deadly bows will again be drawn on each other. The name of this dignitary, of whom I have just spoken, is Stu-mick-o-sucks (the buffalo's back fat), i. e. the "hump" or "fleece," the most delicious part of the buffalo's flesh. I have also painted, of the Blackfeet. From: Illustrations of the Manners, Customs and Condition of the North American Indians, with Letters and Notes Written During Eight Years of Travel and Adventure Among the Wildest and Most Remarkable Tribes now Existing, vol. 1 Author: Catlin, George, 1796-1872