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Released March 20, 2002
Legends and Lore!

Native American stories are rich in detail, meaning, moral, and filled with
powerful creatures.  The Thunderbird rules the sky, yet lives a lonely life 
in the Olympic mountains.  He emerges from stormy clouds, lightning 
flashing from his eyes and thunder pounding from his wings, to deliver 
food to a starving village, or protect others from harm.

And, of course, the  Thunderbird has an enemy:  Siskiutl, the two-headed 
sea serpent.  Siskiutl is a very powerful creature, and he loves to fight.  He
pulls canoes filled with warriors to battle sites so that people can fight faster (war delights him).  He protects his followers from injury, and can turn the enemy to stone with one glance of his crystal eyes.

This week we've captured the essence of a few powerful Native American
tales.  You'll find designs of the Thunderbird and Siskiutl, as well as Totem
Poles that tell the story of dance and contain some interesting characters. 
Wolves turn into whales, and the wolf spirits emerge from smoke rising from a campfire.  Enjoy the stories and the designs as we explore Native American Legends and Lore.

(Click on any image to go to the design information page.)

The Thunderbird is the master of the sky.  He has a benevolent nature, and many stories tell of his great wisdom and kindness. He has saved starving villages by delivering food, or scaring away predators from fish.  His mighty wings sound like thunder, and lightning flashes from his blinking eyes.
Available in two sizes:
 5.65"X7.11" and 2.99"X3.77"

Siskiutl, the two-headed sea serpent, is the Thunderbird's enemy, but he carries a strong moral in Native American stories.  Siskiutl searches for truth, and seeks out those who are consumed with fear - for those that know fear cannot know truth.  The lesson that Siskutl teaches is to find courage, and stare fear in its face.
2-Headed Sea Serpent
Available in two sizes:
4.42"X6.02" and 2.74"X3.75"

Totem Poles were carved from trees by Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest.  Poles represent a family's history, and the animals that are important to the heritage.  This Totem Pole has the Thunderbird, the Frog meaning great wealth, and the Bear,
a caring and nurturing figure.
Available in two sizes:
8.50"X5.54" and 4.51"X2.94"

This Totem Pole tells the story of Wakiash, a chief with a very 
generous nature, but a chief who had no dance.  A Raven (middle) flew Wakiash and a frog around the world.  They landed in front of a house that was filled with animals and alive with music and dancing.  The chief of the animals was a Beaver (top), and he gaveWakiash his own dance.  Wakiash built his first Totem Pole to tell the story of his dance.
Totem Pole of Dance
Available in two sizes:
6.53"X5.13" and 4.52"X3.54"

The Thunderbird might rule the air, and the Wolf might rule the earth, but the Whale rules the water.  In legend and lore, the Whale is a powerful water creature who rules an underwater city.  He takes canoes full of people to his city, where he transforms them into whales.

The Wolf and Whale are bound together in legend and lore.  Both animals strongly symbolize family - both mate for life, and travel in close family units and packs.  Both animals are strong hunters, and their spirits gave strength to Native American hunters. Some legends speak of whales turning into wolves, as this design shows.
Whale Wolf

Early hunters learned much from wolves.  The idea of hunting in packs, and loyalty, was learned from watching wolves.  The wolf spirit is believed to bring strength and endurance in hunting. Here, wolf spirits emerge from the smoke rising from a fire.
Wolf Smoke

Available in two sizes:
8.49"X10.10" and 7.81"X9.30"

Campfire Alone:

The Thunderbird is an extremely important creature in Native American legends and lore.  
A powerful creature, he is one who creates storms.  Lightning emerges from blinking eyes, 
and and thunder roars from flapping wings.  The Thunderbird lives high in the mountains, in a 
snow cave.  If anyone draws too close to its home, the Thunderbird will flap his mighty wings 
and cause an avalanche.  In this design, the Thunderbird takes shape from dark, stormy clouds.  The Thunderbird is protective and benevolent.  Northwest Native American legends tell us of 
times of famine, and the appearance of the Thunderbird carrying a whale to feed entire villages.  
Images of the Thunderbird were often painted on fishing canoes, and then covered up with another 
coat of paint.  The power of the Thunderbird was strong enough to help whalers on their hunt.
Thunderbird Storm

These creatures, and many others, contributed to the rich history and culture of Native Americans.  
Here, four women ride through the forest with their horses, protected and challenged by these very 
same spirits and creatures.
Horse Riders

Click here to see a list of what was new for previous weeks

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