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Designation And Mode Of Camping
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3 _{~latin Small Letter Turned T~}{~latin Small Letter Open O~}iwe´re_ (_people Of This Place_)
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The Omaha

The gentes keeping the sacred pipes and those having the sacred tents are
designated among the Omaha by appropriate designs. The sacred tent of the
Wejincte was the tent of war, those of the Hanga were the tents associated
with the buffalo hunt and the cultivation of the soil. The diameter of the
circle (figure 34) represents the road traveled by the tribe when going on
the buffalo hunt, numbers 1 and 10 being the gentes which were always in
the van. The tribe was divided into half tribes, each half tribe
consisting of five gentes. The sacred tents of the Omaha and all the
objects that were kept in them are now in the Peabody Museum of
Archaeology and Ethnology at Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The two groups of gentes forming the half tribes or phratries, sometimes
composed of subgentes or sections, are as follows:

Hangacenu gentes--1, Wejincte, Elk. 2, Inke-sabe, Black shoulder, a
Buffalo gens; the custodian of the real pipes of peace. 3, Hanga or
Ancestral, a Buffalo gens; the regulator of all the so-called pipes of
peace and keeper of two sacred tents. 4, catada, meaning uncertain; in
four subgentes: a, Wasabe hit'aji, Touch-not-the-skin-of-a-black-bear;
b, Wajinga cataji, Eat-no-small-birds; Bird people; c, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}e-*d*a it'aji,
Touch-no-buffalo-head; Eagle people; d, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED K~}e-'in,
Carry-a-turtle-on-the-back; Turtle people. 5, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED K~}anze, Wind people.

Ictasanda gentes--6, Mancinka-gaxe, Earth-lodge-makers; coyote and wolf
people. 7, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}e-sinde, Buffalo-tail; a Buffalo-calf people. 8, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}a-*d*a,
Deer-head; Deer people. 9, Ingce-jide, Red dung; a Buffalo-calf gens. 10,
Icta-sanda, meaning uncertain (gray eyes?), said to refer to the effect
of lightning on the eyes. This last gens consists of Thunder and Reptile

The Inke-sabe formerly consisted of four subgentes. When the gens met as a
whole, the order of sitting was that shown in figure 35. In the tribal
circle the Wacigije camped next to the Hanga gens, and the other Inke-sabe
people came next to the Wejincte; but in the gentile council fire the
first became last and the last first.

The Iekice or Criers.

The Naqceit'a-baji, Those-who-touch-no-charcoal.

The three subgentes here named sat on the same side of fireplace.

The Hanga formerly had four subgeutes, but two of them, the Waciitan or
Workers, and the Ha-{~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}u-it'aji, Touches-no-green(-corn)-husks, are extinct,
the few survivors having joined the other subgentes. The remaining
subgentes are each called by several names: 1, {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}csanha-{~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}acican, pertaining
to the sacred skin of an albino buffalo cow, or Wacabe, Dark buffalo; or
Hanga-qti, real Hanga; or {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}e-ceze-cataji, Do-not-eat-buffalo-tongues. 2,
Janha-{~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}acican, pertaining to the sacred (cottonwood) bark; or
Waqcexe-acin, Keeps-the-spotted-object (the sacred pole); or
Jan-waqube-acin, Keeps-the-sacred-or-mysterious-wood (pole); or
{~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}a-waqube-cataji, Does-not-eat-the-sacred (mysterious)-buffalo-sides; or
Minxa-san-cataji-ki *P*etan-cataji, Eat-no-geese-or-swans-or-cranes.

In the tribal circle the Wacabe camped next to the Inke-sabe, and the
Waqecxe-acin were next to the Wasabe-hit'aji subgens of the catada; but in
the Hanga gentile assembly the positions were reversed, the Wacabe sitting
on the right side of the fire and the Waqcexe-acin on the left.

The Wasabe-hit'aji subgens of the catada was divided into four sections:
Black-bear, Raccoon, Grizzly-bear, and Porcupine. The only survivors are
the Black-bear and Raccoon (Singers).

The Wajinga cataji subgens was divided into four sections: 1, Hawk people,
under the chief Standing Hawk (now dead). 2, Blackbird people, under the
chief Wajina-gahiga. B, Starling or Thunder people. 4, Owl and Magpie

The {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED K~}anze gens was divided into at least two subgentes, the Keepers of the
pipe and the Wind people. Lion, of the Deer-head gens, said that there
were four subgentes, but this was denied in 1882 by Two Crows of the Hanga

The Mancinka-gaxe subgentes, as given by Lion, were: 1, Coyote and Wolf
people. 2, In'e-waqube-acin, Keepers-of-the-mysterious-stones. 3,
Niniba-t'an, Keepers-of-the-pipe. 4, Minxa-san-wet'aji.
Touch(es)-not-swans. Cange-ska, White Horse, chief of the Mancin-ka-gaxe
(in 1878-1880) named three subgentes, thus: 1, Qube, Mysterious person, a
modern name (probably including the Mi{~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED K~}asi and In'e-waqube-acin, and
certainly consisting of the descendants of the chief Wa-jinga-sabe or
Blackbird). 2, Niniba-t'an. 3, Minxa-san-wet'aji.

The {~LATIN SMALL LETTER TURNED T~}a-*d*a were divided into four parts: 1, Niniba-t'an,
Keepers-of-the-pipe, under Lion. 2, Naqce-it'aji, Touches-no-charcoal,
under Boy Chief. 3, Thunder-people, under Pawnee Chief. 4, Deer-people,
under Sinde-xanxan (Deer's-)tail-shows-red-at-intervals

The Ictasanda gens also was in four parts: 1, Niniba-t'an,
Keepers-of-the-pipe. 2, Real Ictasanda people, (Numbers 1 and 2 were
consolidated prior to 1880.) 3, Wacetan or Reptile people, sometimes
called Keepers-of-the-claws-of-a-wildcat. 4, Real Thunder people, or
Those-who-do-not-touch-a-clamshell, or

The social organization of the Omaha has been treated at length by the
author in his paper on Omaha Sociology.(6)

Next: The Ponka

Previous: The Asiniboin

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