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Native Americans (U.S.)

Last modified: 2006-08-26 by rick wyatt
Keywords: native american | united states | heritage | end of trail | pony indian | american indian |
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Flags with "four directions" on them

I have read about a flag of four stripes -- red, yellow, black, and white -- which represent the four directions (west, east, north, south) in some Native American symbolic systems. One form of this flag is the official flag of the Miccousukee Tribe in Florida. Was the flag's more general use inspired by its adoption by this one tribe, or was it the other way around? In the Miccousukee version of the flag, the order of the stripes, from top to bottom, is white, black, red, and yellow.
Perry Dane

[Flag of the Miccousukee Tribe]
Miccousukee Tribe
image by Filip Van Laenen, 6 August 1996
[Flag of the American Indian Movement]
American Indian Movement
image by Rick Wyatt, 15 July 2001

Unusual colors

I can think of several American Indian flags with unusual colors. The Navajo Indian Nation (southwestern USA) uses a field that I think would be best described as beige. Also present on this flag are burnt-orange and brown.

The Sechelt Indians of Western Canada use a white field with a bird emblem in tan, orange, and yellow, detailed in brown.

David R. Lewellen, 29 January 1996

Designer flags

There is a Canadian flag with an image of an Indian superimposed. This is designer flag. They come in nine variations.

One has the head of an Indian. Another has the famous "End of the Trail" by Frederick Remington. Some people, especially Indians dislike this because it shows a defeated Indian and his horse, both with bowed heads. A third variation, "Pony Indian" has both Indian and pony with raised head. All three of these pics come superimposed upon either the American, Canadian or Confederate Naval Jack, yielding a total of nine different variations.

William M. Grimes-Wyatt, 29 June 1996