Horses are a common sight. But long ago, Native American people had never seen a horse. The animal had died out in North America but had survived in Europe and Asia. On his second voyage to the New World, in 1493, Italian explorer Christopher Columbus brought horses with him to this land.
Some native people were afraid when they saw Spanish soldiers riding on the backs of the strange new animals. But over time, horses became an important part of American Indian culture. Native people used them to travel, hunt and fight. Horses still play a part in the lives of many American Indians.
A Song for the Horse Nation
At the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of the American Indian, in Washington, D.C., visitors can see a special exhibit about native people and horses called A Song for the Horse Nation. The show will be on view at the museum through January 7, 2013.
Emil Her Many Horses is the show's curator. He is also an artist and a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe from South Dakota. His name was passed down from his great-great-grandmother, who owned many horses.
Her Many Horses says tribes no longer use horses as they once did. "But horses still inspire our songs, our stories and our artwork," he told TFK. Visit nmai.si.edu for more information about the show.
To access the digital edition of Time For Kids, go to timeforkids.com/digital.