Comanche Ethnography: Field Notes of E. Adamson Hoebel, Waldo R. Wedel, Gustav G. Carlson, and Robert H. Lowie

By E. Adamson Hoebel; Waldo R. Wedel et al. | Go to book overview

The 1933 Field Party Notes

HERMAN ASENAP
June 30–July 1, 1933

Etiquette One said hahaitsI 'friend'1 (in greeting). A visitor first stated his business, and then inquired as to his host's affairs. Indians are now suspicious.

Economy: Trade There was trade with Mexico; horses for nuts, etc.; ten to twenty dollars per horse.

Horses The early Comanches had family-owned brands for stock2; all stock was turned out on the range. Comanches gelded horses.

Captives Herman's father was captured “while gathering beans” as very small boy, along with his two brothers “boys”, and was later adopted into a Comanche family. “He was given full tribal status.”

Captives were adopted by families that had no children.

Herman's father was a Mexican (?). As an adult, he was given the chance to return to his old home, but he refused. “He was returned to Mexico by the Indians, but he refused to leave the tribe. He participated in raids.”

Political Organization: Chiefs: Leadership Leadership was achieved through bravery in war only. Old braves were very rare. Leadership was never attained by generosity or sagacity alone.

War: Cowardice Cowardice in battle was a deep disgrace.

Captives Adopted children had the same privileges of attaining leadership as did full bloods.

1. Literally, “Hello, friend.”

2. It is not clear if pre-reservation Comanches branded horses. They must have been aware of them,
for there are several Mexican period edicts prohibiting the purchase of branded horses from Comanches
(Kavanagh 1996:207–8). For the reservation period, James Inkanish's (a Caddo) brand book for the
Kiowa, Comanche, Apache-Wichita-Caddo-Delaware Agency, 1879–1888, is in Box 29 of the C. Ross
Hume papers in the Western History Collection at the University of Oklahoma.

-33-

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Comanche Ethnography: Field Notes of E. Adamson Hoebel, Waldo R. Wedel, Gustav G. Carlson, and Robert H. Lowie
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Photographs ix
  • Figures xi
  • Preface xiii
  • Part One - The 1933 Comanche Field Party 1
  • Introduction 3
  • The 1933 Field Party Notes 33
  • Part Two - Robert Lowie's 1912 Field Trip 481
  • Introduction 483
  • Lowie's 1912 Field Notes 484
  • Appendix A - Sources of Ethnographic Information in Hoebel (1940) 493
  • Appendix B - Sources of Ethnographic Information in Wallace and Hoebel (1952) 499
  • Appendix C - Sources of Ethnobotanical Information in Carlson and Jones (1940) 511
  • Appendix D - Comanche Lexicon 515
  • References 523
  • Index 533
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