Bull Chief

Bull Chief
by Ken West

The Bull Chief was an Apsaroke Crow and was a Chief of the Bull Club. The Indians had their special groups or clubs which carried names like we have today, i.e. Elks, Moose, Lions, etc. Their purpose and rituals were somewhat secret and a lot of their meaning has been lost to history. To be a member of the Bull club one had to have a certain number of coups, and to have a position of honor the Brave was required to have a "Vision".

This particular Chief had a buffalo robe attached to his back, probably through the skin, and he drug it around the camp for over 24 hours. When he collapsed he had his vision. He then wore the buffalo robe as a sign of honor and position.

The photo from which the picture was drawn was taken by Curtis circa 1900 and depicts the Chief wearing his buffalo robe.

The original of this piece is available. This is a very large graphite painting and is absolutely beautiful.

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