Once Upon A Wigwam City

“The American Indian is of the soil, whether it be the region of forest, plains, pueblos, or mesas. He fits into the landscape, for the hand that fashioned the continent also fashioned the man for his surroundings. He once grew as naturally as the wild sunflowers, he belongs just as the buffalo belonged…” ~Luther Standing Bear 

I grew up on sacred grounds. I roamed the land once inhabited by the Monacans. Can you see the large circle in the first photo and two in the second photo? These were perhaps created by the oils of the hides covering the wigwams. My father used to not mow this area…it is only noticeable when the grasses are cut and you can see a different type of grass grows in patches within the circle. In my father’s lifetime (82years), this area has only once been tilled. My cousin and I used to run through these fields…her home and mine, only separated by the creek that runs through the fields.

Occasionally we found artifacts such as arrowheads, spears, and bowls. Every time we found a mound in the woods we swore it was an Indian burial ground…my father got a chuckle out of our imaginations. We started a club called Monacan Indian Rattlers. She and I were co-presidents…there were no other members; we didn’t need anyone else. We actually didn’t think anyone could understand our obsession…after all, it was the marrow of our bones, the soul of our existence…We climbed their trees, swung on their wild grape vines, built tepees, waded their creek, and did our own rain dance version through their glades. The land melded the time between our beloved Monacans and the dreams of our childhoods. We believed with all our hearts our great grandmother was Monacan Indian. This information is now disputed, but still we hold our heritage close. We live and breathe this sacred land.

Indian bowl my husband found on the creek about a year ago.

25 thoughts on “Once Upon A Wigwam City

  1. When I was a kid, I found what I thought was a Native American arrowhead — I’m pretty sure I’ve still got it somewhere, tucked safely away. Theirs was a way of life mysterious to us. Glad you and your cousin got to enjoy some of it!

  2. What a FASCINATING post, Suzi!

    “Can you see the large circle in the first photo and two in the second photo? These were perhaps created by the oils of the hides covering the wigwams.”

    WOW…that is so cool! I’ve always been interesting in American Indian history because I truly believe they knew so much about natural healing.

    Great photos! Especially loved the one of the creek.

    Thanks for sharing. Really enjoyed reading this!

    Have a terrific Tuesday!


  3. I saw the movie “Cochise” when I was a kid. I fell in love with all things Native American. In Cowboy and Indians flicks, I always wanted the Indians to win! You grew up in such a marvelous place and you formed an attachment to nature that is evident in every word you write and every photo you take. You have Native American in your soul no matter what your heritage.

  4. The post has power and expression in that there are no Native American people in the pictures. That alone has symbolism. If I weren’t a Presbyterian the alternative religion I would select is that if the Indians.

    • Not too far from Monacan Nation in Amherst, Virginia. Monacans settled all along the creeks of Amherst and Nelson Counties. Am aware of Monacan Nation as I claim them as my people though I have no papers of proof. My father goes to the pow wow there, but I have not been. I’ve been to ones in Va. Beach and another in Virginia, I think the Mattaponi.

  5. Here’s proof positive that I save your posts to read when I have time. Glad I didn’t delete this one in June. Great history. I used to love playing in the wilds around Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. My friends and I found an old abandoned survival cabin…one of those places that people built along a trail or a trapping line or something, so that they could sleep indoors for a change and cook some food, or maybe wait out a blizzard.

    Our imaginations went wild and we played in and around that cabin endlessly through that magic summer. Each scenario involved things like using daring hunting skills and surviving starvation and blizzards by a thread. I’d love to go back as an adult and see that cabin again. It and the surrounding area hold so many memories.

  6. Wonderful photo’s as you took me back to your childhood.. And what a fantastic place to grow up in.. must have been so great to go find arrow heads and pieces of history, what a find your hubby found with that Indian bowl.. Amazing..

    loved reading your post today.. Many thanks for bringing me here..
    Blessings Sue

    • It is a fabulous place to grow up, and now to go back and unwind. While others had advantages offered in the city, I had nature and heritage; I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
      I found an Indian bowl on the family land when I was in elementary school, but what became of it I don’t know…I think that was why I was super tickled when the hubby found one. This one came home with me for safe keeping!

      • That’s good to know, almost like the Universe knew of your loss and eventually returned a similar prize..

        When I go back to the area where I grew up in, I always say I am going home. Even though I have now lived away from that area longer than I lived there.. 🙂 Our roots are anchored in the beauty spots of our hearts ..
        Have a Beautiful Sunday Suzi x

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