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Native American Horse Mythology

Despite their relatively recent introduction to the Americas, horses were important enough to many Native American tribes to acquire ceremonial importance. Some tribes, such as the Shawnees, adopted a Horse Clan alongside their more traditional clans. The Cherokee and Creek also have a Horse Dance among their tribal dance traditions.

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Native American Legends About Horses

*Song of the Horses:
    19th-century legend about the horses of the Navajo sun god.
*The Orphan Boy and the Elk Dogs:
    19th-century legend about how horses came to the Blackfeet.
*A Pawnee Horse Story:
    Skidi Pawnee story about a woman transformed into a horse.
*The Ghost Stallion:
    Cree horse legend about the punishment of a greedy and abusive man.
*Catawba Little People Pick On Children:
    Catawba stories and traditions about the Yehasuri and the tricks they play on children and horses.
*The Adventures of Coyote:
    Caddo legends about the trickster Coyote, including one in which he unsuccessfully tries to learn to kill horses.
*The Swift Blue One:
    Tejas legend about the first Indian mustang.
Nakoda Knowledge Holders: Horses:
    Oral history and folklore from Stoney Nakoda tribal members related to the role of horses in Nakoda culture.

Recommended Books of Horse Stories from Native American Myth and Legend
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Bringer of the Mystery Dog:
    A good children's book illustrating a Sioux folktale about the first Indian horse.
What's the Most Beautiful Thing You Know About Horses?:
    Gorgeous picture book by a Dogrib author and Cree artist depicting Native views of horses.
Horse, Follow Closely: Native American Horsemanship:
    Coffee-table book by a Cherokee author exploring traditional relationships between Native Americans and their horses.
Native American Animal Stories:
    Great collection of American Indian animal tales for kids, told by Abenaki storyteller Joseph Bruchac.

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