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Mrs. Lucy George and Mrs. Nancy Littlejohn, basket makers, are descendants of the band of Cherokees who clung to their ancestral home in the Great Smoky Mountains when the Federal Government resettled the tribe in 1830. Their generations-old double-weave basketry technique, once nearly forgotten, is again a thriving craft.

Ambrose Roanhorse, of Gallup, New Mexico, is considered by the Navajos one of their greatest silversmiths. This display of his work includes many concha disks, a form probably copied from Mexican horse bridles, and adapted by the Navajos to belts and bracelets. James Going Back Chiltoskey (right) is pre-eminent among the Cherokee woodcarvers of North Carolina. His skillful knife and chisel take inspiration from any kind of wood to create statues of Saint Frances and a forest of delightful animals.

and a master skin sewer. In younger days she helped her husband fish and hunt the beluga, or white whale, and supplied the family with footwear and clothing. The women of Kotzebue make a doll family-man, woman and child dressed in parkas and mukluks-so faithful in detail they could serve as Eskimo models in any museum.

California is the hearth of basketry, where women of small, impoverished tribes continue the oldest of New World arts. The aboriginal Californians wove beautiful baskets, using bird plumage with techniques equaled only by the Peruvians and Polynesians. The greatest weaver of recent history was Dat-so-la-lee, of the Washoes, who transmitted the legend and lore of her tribe through 256 magnificent baskets before her death in 1925. Her finest piece, "Myriads of Stars Shine O'er the Graves of Our Ancestors," has no less than 86,590 stitches and is now valued at $10,000. Though her work may never be matched, you can still purchase baskets of museum quality from women of the Washoe, Pomo and Hoopa reservations.

On the Hoopa Valley reservation, for example, in the high, forested mountains northeast of Eureka, the basket makers weave white grass, black maidenhair fern, willow root, woodworth shrub and hazel. One of their designs is a progressive zigzag in brown and pale green, named "rattlesnake."

Among the Northern California weavers, Mrs. Lizzie Smith combines the sense of the past with the needs of the present; she makes large cooking 
baskets for preparing pinole (a meal made from plant seeds) as her grand-
mother did. Mrs. Smith also makes finely woven wine-bottle covers traditional in pattern but adaptable to any modern setting. The price is $10. You can also order her more expensive baskets which combine porcupine quills, dyed yellow with lichen, and other materials in brown and beiges.

The tribes of the Northern and Southern Plains create beadwork art, buckskin garments, feathered war bonnets and long fringed shirts that have been collectors' items for years. They draw inspiration from a heritage of master painters who inscribed their shields with life forms and recorded history on buffalo hides. In fact their forebears used nearly every part of the buffalo in some way. From the hides owmen made clothing, tepees and rawhide vessels. They plaited the hair into ropes and the sinew into thread, they carved the horns into spoons and made the skull a ceremonial altar. 

Women of the Plains also developed the art of embroidering with brightly colored porcupine quills. Such quillwork is purley Indian but unfortunately it is almost a thing of the past. Before the introduction of glass beadwork, young girls were taught to apply the quills to buckskin in many designs. Here and there this dying craft is still practiced, or at least demonstrated, and it may yet come back. But protecting the authentic beadwork is problem enough, since the Plains are presently being flooded with cheap Hong Kong imitations. If you want the real thing you must shop carefully; it is worth the effort.

The Bannock and Shoshone of Fort Hall Reservation, Idaho, for example produce exquisite and precise floral designs on beaded purses and moccasins. In the Southern Plains of Oklahoma, on the other hand, the Kiowa, Arapaho, Comanche and other tribes do bolder beadwork on suede, in geometric and medallion forms reminiscent of warriors' belts and bridles. Buckskin jackets with fringed yoke and beaded decoration sell for $75 to $125, suede for $55. Beaded necklaces are $3 to $8, sturdy deerskin gloves, $4.50, and rawhide baskets $25.

In the upper reaches of North Dakota, the Turtle Mountain Chippewa are another tribe famous for beadwork. This area also produces a type of woodwork not found elsewhere: highly polished "diamond willow." The naturally grooved diamond shapes, caused by a fungus growth in the tree, become visible once the bark is removed. Whittlers make the most of the curving grains in the wood -- and sometimes diamonds within diamonds -- while fashioning lamps, chairs, bedsteads and canes.

In Oklahoma, where sixty tribes number almost 58,000, the town of Anadarko has become one of the major Indian centers of the country. Here are located the Indian Hall of Fame and the Southern Plains Exhibit and Craft Center, and here is held, in mid-August, the American Indian Exposition featuring crafts demonstrations, ceremonials and the National Indian War Dance Contest.

To show the genuine nature of the craft revival, I like to cite the example of the late Acee Blue Eagle, a distinguished Oklahoma Indian artist, who studied and lectured at Oxford, and became an articulate spokesman for his race. Although his primary interest was painting the lives of his people, their dances, their dress and the land around them, he did exhaustive research in the ancient arts of ceramics, leatherwork and jewelry. He traced the history of the Indians' highly stylized little figures molded or carved as fetishes and charms, and of wooden figures carved on ceremonial staffs, spoons or feast bowls. In museums he studied and sketched the way his ancestors treated the head, arms, legs and feet in their art and tried to deduce a form of sculpture as characteristic of the Indian as their painting, beadwork, silver, and weaving.

At Pipestone, Minnesota, for three centuries the Sioux have quarried and carved ceremonial pipes. The "Classic Ground" George Catlin once called the sacred quarries. Catlin, artist, explorer and devoted friend of the Indians, almost lost his life at the hands of the Sioux when he entered that ground in 1836. But he received his rewards: a pipe quarried for him by a chief, and the name catlinite later given to the smooth red stone.

The pipe filled a high role in tribal life. Treaties were arranged, lands acquired and wars terminated over a pipe. But a pipe from these quarries was held in special esteem, for the red stone was believed formed from the flesh of the Indians' ancestors. The quarry is protected as Pipestone National Monument, and its use is re-