Print, Photographic


Creation Date
circa 1990

Film size: 4 7/8 x 3 7/8

Red Wing H. S. New Addition, 1952 negative size 4 7/8 x 3 7/8

Loincloth: Grass dance costume loincloth. The loincloth is black cotton. It is 16" long from the top to the point. The front and back point down. At the bottom of the black is 3/8" wide red, 3/8" wide orange, 1/4" wide yellow, 3/8" wide white, 1/2" wide brown stripes. There are apple green triangles over the red, orange, and yellow stripes. On the front loincloth in the center are 3 white plastic rings. There are 2 light green and 2 white ribbons hanging down from each one. They extend past the black cloth. Along the sides and bottom is a 10" long yarn fringe. It is heavily fringed. The top sides fringes are white, the bottom sides are brown, red, orange, and yellow. The bottom fringes are white and the bottom center is dark and medium green. There is a belt inserted through the loincloth. It is yellow and white striped woven material. The ends are white leather with a gold buckle. There is a price tag on the inside by the buckle that says "$7.50" in purple. On the inside of the other leather end stamped in black is "GENUINE LEATHER ???". Condition - There are a few dirt stains on the fringe. One of the white ribbons is frayed. Goes with 1994.73.1-8. Costume made by Denise One Star. Dream catcher made by Jerry Fill the Pipe. This is a grass dance outfit worn by male members of the tribe. It is one of the oldest Dakota traditional dances that is still performed today. As a freestyle type of dancing, the dancers must follow the changing beat of the drum and must stop on time with both feet on the ground. The fringe movement is a flowing motion that represents the prairie grass in the wind. Solomon Campbell is a grass dancer from the Prairie Island Dakota Community. He is the grandson of Curtis Campbell, Sr. and Mrs. Vivian Mireau. This was his first grass dance outfit. He mastered his dance steps at the age of 6 years and competed in his first dance at Albuquerque NM in 1990. He is named after his great-great-grandfather, Solomon Wells--"Tatanka Maza"--"Iron Buffalo." The elders tell us that one of the songs sung by the Mdewakanton elders until the end of WWII was a grass dance song. Beginning around the 1880s until the 1900s many Mdewakanton returned to Prairie Island, an area rich in traditional medicine. Buffalo grass used to grow abundantly on Prairie Island as part of the circle of life. The words of the song say: "Pray very hard grass dancer./You have the feather. Pray./Grass men are dancing./They have the feather. Pray." This place located at Buffalo Slough on Prairie Island was a serene place where elders would gather from time to time. Story as related by Curtis Campbell, Sr., Prairie Island. Compiled by John Dow, Prairie Island 11/1994.

Contact the Goodhue County Historical Society for more information