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Coeur d'Alene
Expedition Culture Geography People Maps Nature
  Setting the Stage: Acknowledgements and Review Process
Setting the Stage: Cultural Property Rights Agreement
Approaching this Module: Pedagogy
Approaching this Module: Principles of Sovereignty
Will of the People: Governance and Contemporay Programs
Gaming: Coeur d'Alene Tribal Casino
Natural and Cultural Resources: Focus on the Lake
Cultural Preservation: Language Center
Cultural Preservation: GIS Names-Place Project
Health Care: Benewah Medical and Wellness Center

  Native American
  Approaching the Oral Traditions: Preparations
Story: Coyote's Identity
Story: Coyote and the Rock Monster
Story: Coyote and the Green Field
Story: Coyote and the White Man
Story: Coyote and the Falls
Story: Chipmunk
Story: Four Smokes
Reflections on the Stories: Laugh, Learn and Perpetuate
Songs: Introduction
Songs: from the Animal People
Songs: of the Powwow
Songs: of the July-amsh Powwow
Songs: of the Sweat House
Heart Knowledge: Listening to the Ancestors
Heart Knowledge: Clean Hands

  Horses, Bugs and Furs: Early Contact
Manifest Destiny: War and a Reservation
Manifest Destiny: Allotment
Wilderness Kingdom: Jesuit Mission
Wounded: Facing the Continuing Challenges

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HTML Transcript
Listen as Lawrence Aripa tells the story of Coyote and the Falls. You will come to learn why there are falls along the Spokane River and why there are no salmon in Lake Coeur d'Alene. This is also the last time Coyote was seen.

(originally developed as part of "Coyote Legends" video by the Foundation for Water and Energy Education in 1998.)

Mary Antelope Michel, ca. 1910
The participatory involvement of the listeners in the story is especially facilitated in the creative poignancy attributed to native words and language itself. Words not only describe or refer to the images of the world but have a power to bring forth that which they name. This understanding is reflected in an Indian name. The descriptive "Indian name," ritually bestowed, has a volition to help the person become that which is indicated in his or her name. Within the narratives themselves there is a clear understanding of this capacity. Upon saying he wanted to look a particular way, Coyote was transformed into that image. When he sang the words of a particular song referring to travel across the river, the song was able to transport him to a distant location and that "green field." At the close of the storytelling season and having thus spoken of all the Animal Peoples, an elder might say that it is time for the animals to go to the forests, the birds to the sky, and the fish to the rivers. What had been witnessed in the storytelling is now free to return to the mythically endowed landscape. When the word fibers of a story are woven into a fine tapestry, the meaning and vitality of that oral tradition are re-infused back into the landscape’s carpet.

© Coeur d'Alene Tribe 2002

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