New PDF release: Along Navajo Trails: Recollections of a Trader 1898-1948
By Will Evans
Will Evans's writings should still discover a designated area of interest within the small yet major physique of literature from and approximately investors to the Navajos. Evans was once the owner of the Shiprock buying and selling corporation. most likely greater than such a lot of his fellow investors, he had a powerful curiosity in Navajo tradition. the hassle he made to checklist and proportion what he discovered definitely used to be strange. He released within the Farmington and New Mexico newspapers and different periodicals, compiling lots of his items right into a e-book manuscript. His topics have been Navajos he knew and traded with, their tales of ancient occasions similar to the lengthy stroll, and outlines in their tradition as he, an intruder with no educational education, understood it. Evans's writings have been coloured via his fondness for, unusual entry to, and friendships with Navajos, and by way of who he used to be: a dealer, folks artist, and Mormon. He effectively portrayed the operations of a buying and selling submit and knew either the fabric and inventive price of Navajo crafts. His paintings used to be generally encouraged via Navajo sandpainting. He appropriated and, doubtless, occasionally misappropriated that sacred artwork to color surfaces and items of all types. As a Mormon, he had specific perspectives of who the Navajos have been and what they believed and used to be consultant of a big classification of often-overlooked investors. a lot of the Navajo exchange within the 4 Corners zone and farther west used to be operated through Mormons. that they had an important historic position as intermediaries, or agents, among local and ecu American peoples during this a part of the West. good hooked up on the heart of that international, Evans was once a very good spokesperson.
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Extra info for Along Navajo Trails: Recollections of a Trader 1898-1948
56 What happened to Mr. Reddy and his ailing wife is unknown. Whether they ever met Evans on an anticipated trip back East was never recorded. Evans’s way of representing the Navajo to the outside world is clear in this correspondence. Having worked out a system of explanations about the efﬁcacy of Navajo ceremonialism, he saw its healing power and did not deny it. Obviously he assumed a Mormon view of the means by which it occurred, working from his own scriptural interpretation and also asserting white racial superiority.
Having worked out a system of explanations about the efﬁcacy of Navajo ceremonialism, he saw its healing power and did not deny it. Obviously he assumed a Mormon view of the means by which it occurred, working from his own scriptural interpretation and also asserting white racial superiority. His was not a heavy-handed approach or explanation though. Being a person who went on two proselytizing missions for his church, he presented his beliefs in a manner that was palatable to the dominant white culture, while also showing respect for Navajo beliefs.
Evans faithfully recorded this information. Through it all, he had only “pleasant memories and no regrets. ”66 Intellectually, he was engaged. When asked what some of the reasons were that kept him in the “desert,” he responded, “In dealing with the natives, I like to match wits with them and that, sometimes, is no small task. ”67 This is a telling comment. In spite of his intense interest in Navajo culture, he was still an outsider. His comments about racial superiority, that “mysterious something” that white men had that prevented them from “faltering” and “lagging” as Indians did, speaks of underlying cultural assumptions.
Along Navajo Trails: Recollections of a Trader 1898-1948 by Will Evans