The Lakota always painted on Buffalo hides that depicted important events in their history.
These painted Buffalo hides were called Winter Counts. A important member of the tribe decided which image was to be painted on the hide.
It would represent the year. In the 1880’s the Buffalo were gone and hides were hard to come by.
Being very resourceful they acquired old ledgers from the Forts or trading post and used colored pencils to portray their important events.
They were also used by Warriors in prison and children in forced Boarding Schools.
As the great Tatanka roams
Looking about for sweet Buffalo grass
The hot Lakota sun shines down
Warming the Majestic Bull and ground
Sustainer of the Tribe
Providing what we need
To be free on our land
Going into the cool summer night
To greet the shining starts
All is right in the land and heavens
Tatanka of the Plains