National Geographic : 1894 Apr 25
36 M. W. Harrington- Weather making. Zufni, Choctaws, and others. For this purpose pipes were smoked, tobacco was burned, prayers and incantations were offered, arrows were discharged toward the clouds, charms were used, and various other methods were employed. Classifying by tribes the processes employed, we turn first to the Iroquois. Mrs E. A. Smith, in her "Myths of the Iroquois," says: In a dry season, the horizon being filled with distant thunder-heads, it was customary to burn what is called by the Indians real tobacco as an offering to bring rain. On occasions of this nature the people were notified by swift-footed heralds that the children, or sons, of Thunder were in the horizon, and that tobacco must be burned in order to get some rain. * As to the Muskingum, Heckewelder, in his "Account of the Indians of Pennsylvania" (Philadelphia, 1819, page 229), says: There are jugglers, generally old men and women, who get their living by pretending to bring down rain when wanted, and to impart good luck to bad hunters. In the summer of 1799 a most uncommon drought happened in the Muskingum country (Ohio). An old man was applied to by the women to bring down rain, and, after various ceremonies, de clared that they should have rain enough. The sky had been clear for nearly five weeks, and was equally clear when the Indian made this declaration; but about four o'clock in the afternoon the horizon became overcast, and, without any thunder or wind, it began to rain, and con tinued to do so until the ground became thoroughly soaked. Heckewelder adds that " Experience had doubtless taught the juggler to observe that certain signs in the sky and in the water were the forerunners of rain." Among the Natchez, according to Father Charlevoix,t jugglers not only pretended to cure the sick, but also professed to procure rain and seasons favorable for the fruits of the earth. Their in cantations were often directed to the dispersion of clouds and the expulsion of evil spirits from the bodies of the afflicted. In the third report of the Bureau of Ethnology it is stated by J. Owen Dorsey that " When the first thunder is heard in the spring of the year the Elk people [among the Omaha Indians] call to their servants, the Bear people, who proceed to the sacred tent of the Elk gens. When the Bear people arrive one of them opens the sacred bag and, after removing the sacred pipe, hands it to one of the Elk men, with some of the tobacco from the elk *2d Ann. Rep. Bureau of Ethnology for 1880-'81 (1883), p. 72. t Voyage to North America, Dublin, 1776, vol. ii, p. 203.
1894 May 23
1894 Mar 17