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N

EARLY

E

XTINCT

,

THE

C

HURRO

S

HEEP

S

URVIVES

FOR

N

AVAJO

W

EAVERS

Trading Post Times

Fred Harvey was a classic

entrepreneur

who developed

the Harvey House lunch

rooms, restaurants, souvenir

shops, and hotels, which

served rail passengers on the

Atchison, Topeka and Santa

Fe Railway, the Gulf Coast

and Santa Fe Railway, the

Kansas Pacific Railway, the

St. Louis-San Francisco

Railway, and the Terminal

Railroad Association of St.

Louis.

As an innovative restaura-

teur and marketer, Fred

Harvey is credited with cre-

ating the first restaurant

chain in the United States.

He was also a leader in pro-

moting tourism in the

Volume 13, Issue 4

October:December 2016

R i v e r T r a d i n g P o s t

INSIDE THIS ISSUE:

What is an American

Indian? A Dilemma.

2

Old Tails from an Old

Friend

3

Great Gift Ideas for You 4

Navajo weavers are among the very finest in the world.

They are not only known for their exceptionally fine

weaving, but for the cultural traditions that are reflect-

ed in each rug or blanket.

Creation of these fine Navajo textiles has a simple

beginning, with the four horned Churro Sheep.

Navajo-Churro sheep are descended from the Churra, an ancient

Iberian breed. The Churra was the very first breed of domesticat-

ed sheep in the New World. It was imported to New Spain by

the Spanish in the 16th century and was used to feed and clothe

the armies of the conquistadors and Spanish settlers. It was par-

ticularly valued for its hardiness, it’s silky wool and it’s fecundity.

Due to the excessive drought in the 1930’s, the U.S. government

co duct d a stock reduction of the Native-owned Churro and

other livestock. Sheep, goats, cows and horses were slaughtered

or thrown into arroyos and burned, making the unique breed

nearly extinct.

Today the Navajo Churro Sheep Association strives to pre-

serve the “old type sheep.” And, the association been suc-

cessful as the Churro population grows, and no longer is on

the endangered species list.

Today the long, shaggy wool from the sheep is carefully

carded and hand spun into a virtual rainbow of colors,

which today is sold to Navajo weavers at a few Southwest

trading posts such as Burnham’s in Sanders, Arizona.

The Navajo weaving tradition continues today. From the wool of this four-horned Churro

sheep to the exquisite weavings produced by the Navajo weavers.

SPECIAL POINTS OF INTEREST:

22nd Annual Native American Harvest

Pow Wow. September 24 & 25.

Naper Settlement, Naperville, Il.

Pueblo Seasonal Dances. Please check

Pueblos for dates and times.