Osage Indians

A brief history and description of the Osage Indians from Missouri.

The following is a little history of the Osage Indians. The Osage Indians were originally located in Missouri near the Missouri and Osage rivers. They were first discovered by French explorers around 1673. The Osage Indians are a seminomadic tribe. They were known for gardening, hunting, and foraging. Eventually, they found themselves in the northwestern part of Arkansas.

The United States government started to take away land from the Osage Indians in 1808. A reservation was formed for the Osage Indians in Southern Kansas in 1825. As with many other tribes they were relocated to Oklahoma. Many Osage Indians still live in Oklahoma around the Pawhuska area.

The Osage Indians hunted small game, elk, deer, bear, and bison. While the men of the Osage were responsible for the hunting, the women would butcher and prepare the meat by drying or smoking methods. They would also work with the hides. The women also gathered plants that grew in the area. With the extra produce and meat, the Osage Indians would trade items with the Europeans and other Indians.

The men of the Osage Indians wore a scalplock with the rest of the head shaved. The clan a man belonged to could be distinguished by the pattern of their scalplock. The men wore clothing that consisted of loincloths made from deerskin, moccasins, and leggings. To protect them against cold weather they would occasionally wear bearskin or buffalo robes. Beaded jewelry was also worn as well as tattoos. These tattoos where mostly located on the chest.

Women's clothing was also made of deerskin and consisted of dresses, moccasins, belts, and leggings. They wore their hair long and also wore jewelry and tattoos. The women of the Osage Indians also used columbine seed to perfume their clothing. Puma and Ermine furs decorated their ceremonial garments.

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