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the tributary branches to its head. It will also be noted that in several places there are streams of the same name in the country of the Northern and the Southern Cheyenne.
These stream names are offered for what they are worth, in the hope that the work may be taken up by other students in the Indian field.
MISSOURI RIVER: E'omita'i, 'It gives (us, or the people) fat,' (hèa 'yo'm, 'fat'; nă'mit, I give to him '). Usually translated 'greasy.' It is said that long ago, when the Cheyenne first reached Missouri river, they found on its banks many recently-drowned fat buffalo. They named the river from this welcome food supply.
Some of the Southern Cheyenne say that when they first saw the Missouri river it was rising, and that great masses or lumps of froth were floating down. This foam resembled the froth, i'tăv, or itāw'i, which formed in the water on their kettles, when boiling pounded bones to extract the grease greasy = è-ōm' and the name was given to the stream from these masses of greasy looking foam.
It is said also that the name was given it because when they first reached the river they had found the branches on some of the trees greasy, because fat meat had been hung on them; hence' greasy timber': ēōm' + mātā'î. The first derivation is probably the right one.
YELLOWSTONE RIVER: Mōéhe' yoë', 'Elk river' (mõé, ‘elk' (mõěhë' pl.), +ohe', 'river'). So called by most of the northern plains tribes, from the abundance of elk found in its valley.
BIGHORN RIVER: Ksaiyo'he', 'Sheep river' (kos, a wild sheep' (kōsān', pl.), + ohe').
LITTLE BIGHORN RIVER: Ksaiyo' hēkis', 'Little Sheep river' (kos, 'a wild sheep' pl.; +ohë' + kis, diminutive suffix).
TONGUE RIVER: Wit'ǎnowi'yohe', 'Tongue river (wit'tănowi, pl. 'tongues,' + ohè').
Rosebud river: Hininiyohë', 'Roseberry river' (hini'n"', ‘rosebud’+ ohe'). From abundance of wild rose bushes in its bottom.
POWDER RIVER: Paiyo'he', 'Powder river' (pai, gunpowder,' 'coal,' or any black dust, +ohe'). So named from the seams of lignite along its banks. The word is said to have been used for coal (lignite) before gunpowder was known.
LITTLE POWDER RIVER: Pai' yohēkis, Little Powder river' (as above, + diminutive suffix kis).
CRAZY WOMAN'S RIVER: Tūn'shinūwiyóhe', 'Foolish woman river'
(tūnshinühk'a, 'foolish woman,' + ohe'). Many years ago a large village of Sioux, Cheyenne, and Arapaho were camped on this stream, when on the return of a successful war party a scalp dance was held, and in the enthusiasm and excitement certain women hitherto above reproach gave themselves up to the members of the successful war party.
Tünshinühk'ǎ means strictly a dandy,' a 'dude,' a well dressed or stylish person, male or female, and conveys also the idea of light-headedness, lack of balance, likelihood to do foolish things. It is not however like măssă', a crazy female, nor like måssă'ně, crazy or foolish. The idea is not that these women permanently fell from grace, but merely acted foolishly, led away by excitement. The belief still exists that if a camp is made for any length of time on this river, some of the young women are sure to make run-away matches. The Cheyenne declare that the Sioux gave it this name, and it is so called by Cheyenne, Sioux, and Arapaho.
MUSSELSHELL RIVER: Ihkowom'iyo'he', 'Musselshell river' (ihk'o wōm, musselshell' [Unio], + ohë').
LITTLE MISSOURI RIVER: Wōkaihe' yunio'he, Antelope-pit river' (wokai, antelope,' + heyūn', 'pit,' + ohe'). It was on this river especially that the Cheyenne captured antelope in pitfalls.
WHITE RIVER : Wohk' pom: White water' (woh'kom, 'white,' + ma'pi, water').
NORTH PLATTE RIVER: Minnii'yohe', 'Moon Shell river' (minni, 'shell,' i. e. 'moon shell,' circular white shell ornaments obtained from traders, ohe'). It sounds also like Dove river, from hemin', 'dove,' 'pigeon,' pl. hèmin'i); and doves (Zenaidura macroura) abound on the North Platte river; but in making the sign for the stream all Indians make the sign for water and circular ornament. The first derivation seems the right one.
(Same as North Platte.)
SOUTH PLATTE RIVER: Wit'ăni'yohe', 'Fat river' (wit'ăn, fat,' tallow,' + ohe').
HORSE CREEK : Mohí năăm yohể, ‘ Horse river ’(mīhi năăm, ‘horses,’ + ohe').
LODGEPOLE CREEK: Oõhkoi' yohe', 'Lodge-pole river' (hōōhk', 'lodge-pole,' + ohë').
Republican rivER: Mā'hōhēvā'ohe', 'Red Shield river' (măhōhē'va, 'Red Shield,' + ohe). So named because the young men were collected there for a meeting of the "Red Shield soldiers."
SOLOMON RIVER: Māhki' nëōhē, Turkeys creek,' or 'Creek of Tur
AM. ANTH., N. S., 8-2.
Tributary of Re
keys' (māh'ki, 'turkey' (māhki' niō, pl.), + ohe').
SMOKY HILL RIVER: Măno'iyō'he', 'Bunch of Trees river' (tsēmănot 'grove' (of trees), + ohe'). So called because formerly at the stream's head there was a large grove of cottonwood trees, among which no underbrush grew.
ARKANSAS RIVER: Mütsitsóōni'yohe, Flint Arrowpoint river' (mūť'sisō'ōn, 'flint arrowpoint,' + ohe'). They once found there many manufactured flint arrowpoints. There is no flint stone in that country.
CIMARRON RIVER: Hōtü'ão'he, Bull river' (hotu'a, bull,' + ohe'). The name Bull river was given to this stream by the Comanche, Kiowa, and Apache, and adopted by the Cheyenne. The original name was Noatsi'ohe' a Sioux name and dance adopted by the Cheyenne many pipe dance river,' referring to great pipe dances given there by various tribes. Up to forty years ago, it is said that the river was so called, and only in later times changed to Bull river. In telling stories the old men still refer to it by its ancient name.
NORTH CANADIAN: Hönih' hiyo'he', 'Wolf river' (honih', 'wolf,' + ohe').
SOUTH CANADIAN: Māh'ōm, 'Red water' (ēmāhō, ‘red,' + mă'pi, ' water').
(Same as South Canadian.)
Oohkoi'yōhe', 'Lodge-pole river.' (See Lodgepole creek, above.) Name said to have been given by the Kiowa and Comanche and adopted by the Cheyenne.
SWEETWATER RIVER (of the South): Wiuhk' himăp, Bitter water' (wiuhk'ien, bitter,' + ma'pi).
RED RIVER (of the South): Mah'öm (Num'hastoh'), 'Red water' (Southern ').
PUNISHED WOMAN'S FORK: Åmåõhktsi'yōhè, ‘Driven (back and forth) river' na'maov, 'I drive,' + ohe'). Tributary of the Smoky Hill river; scene of battle with Dull Knife's band, in which Colonel Lewis was killed. The name is given from a battle between Pawnee and Cheyenne about 1835, when the Pawnee finally chased the Cheyenne for a long distance along the banks of the stream. The word conveys the idea of driving back and forth alternately by either party to the battle, as was so much the custom in intertribal fighting.
FOUNTAIN RIVER: E'esivut'iyohe, Boiling river' (ē'ēsīvuť'au, 'it boils,' + ohe').
MILK RIVER: Ski'iyo'he, 'Little river' (tskii', little, + ohe').
MUD CREEK: Heko' mai'yohë, Miry creek' (heekō'mā, miry,' + ohè'). Tributary of the Arkansas below Fort Lyon, Colorado.
STILLWATER CREEK: Ihkko'mōo'yohë, 'Greasy creek' (e'ikom, ‘rich' or oily,' + mo'è, grass,' + ohe). Tributary of Cimarron river in northeastern Oklahoma. The Northern Cheyenne call this stream Hēkō' mõi' yohe, with the same derivation, and apply the same name to Greasy Grass creek, a tributary of Little Bighorn river in Montana. The grass along this stream is said to look greasy, “as if a frying pan had been emptied on it." Horses get very fat on this pasturage.
NIOBRARA RIVER: Hisse' yoviyoë, Sudden, or Unexpected, river,' 'Surprise river' (hissi'yowõiv, 'suddenly,' + ohe'). It is said that the Cheyenne, crossing a wide flat on which there grew no timber or willows, were astonished when they came on the stream flowing through this flat. This is said to be the character of Niobrara river between the headwaters of Snake creek and White river to the north. Without this traditional explanation the name of the Niobrara might perhaps be translated Sandy river,' from his' siyo võiv, sandy,' + ohe', 'river,' but the Cheyenne always explain this stream's name as given above.
YELLOWPAINT RIVER: Hiyo vini'yohe, Yellowpaint river' ('hiovon, 'yellow paint,' + ohe'). Tributary of Purgatory river, in Colorado. The same name is given by the Northern Cheyenne to Muddy creek in Montana, a tributary of Rosebud river from the east.
LARAMIE RIVER: Hin'ini'yohë, 'Goose river' (hi'nă, 'goose,' + ohe').
HEART RIVER: Histǎï'yohë, ‘Heart river' (histsis, or histă', 'heart,' +ohe). Tributary of the Missouri, near Mandan, North Dakota. Northern Cheyenne call this stream Histā hāyo.
RAPID CREEK: Haiyōi'yohë, 'Rapid river' (ihaï'yo, ‘rapid,' + ohe'). A tributary of Cheyenne river which rises in the Black hills. The Northern Cheyenne call this stream Hāiyo' hēmǎp, 'swift, or rapid, water.' DEEP FORK: Hiyo tōiyohë', 'Deep river' (ihyéătăm, ‘deep,' + ohe'). Rises about 25 miles east of Fort Reno, Okla., and flows into the North fork of Canadian river. By some of the Northern Cheyenne this is called Hau'ētāmiyohe, the derivation being the same.
MEDICINE LODGE CREEK: Höhkii'yohe, Medicine Lodge river' (hôhki'ǎyúm, medicine lodge,' + ohe'). Enters Beaver river about 25 miles west of Fort Supply, Okla.
MEDICINE LODGE CREEK (in Kansas): Höhkii'yōhe'kis, Little Medicine Lodge river' (as above + kis, diminutive).
BEAVER RIVER: Hōma'iyohe, 'Beaver river' (hōmā', 'beaver,' + ohe').
Beaver and Wolf creeks unite a short distance below Fort Supply, forming the North fork of Canadian river. Another Beaver river runs into the Republican river from the south, flowing through northern Kansas. ELM FORK (of the North fork of Red river): Hōmino'iyohe, Elm river' (hōmin'o, ‘elm,' + ohe').
CHUG RIVER: Hotu'ǎaina'ōhe', 'Bull-falling-down river' (hōtū'ā, 'bull;' éhyana, he falls,' + ohe'). Said to have been named from the fact that in 1846 a wounded bull, backing from an Indian about to shoot at him, fell over the bluff.
BRAZOS RIVER: Uhkto' wüsi'yohe, Trading river' (näühk'tō, 'I trade' or 'buy,' +ohe). In ancient times the Cheyenne met the Comanche there for the first time. They met as friends and exchanged horses and clothing.
HACKBERRY CREEK: Kō'kōèmin' oshë, 'Where hackberries stand thick' (kōkōëmin'öt, 'hackberry,' + she, from hish'ik, earth,' 'ground,' a suffix of quantity denoting abundance of vegetation, of whatever kind; it signifies covered with,' or 'standing thick together.' Where used of streams where the vegetation indicated stands thick, the word ohe', 'river,' is omitted, and the stream's name would be, as in the present case, 'where the hackberries stand thick.') This stream flows into the South Canadian about 15 miles east of Antelope hills.
BARNETT'S CREEK: Kōnāï'yohë, 'Sick man's river' (kōnhāis, sick man, + ohë'). Konhais - here used as a proper name was buried on a
scaffold near the mouth of this stream. He was Red Moon's brother.
RED WILLOW CREEK: Mähkōm'ēhisuniyóhe, 'Red Willow river' (mahkōm'èhis, 'red willow' (actually a small dogwood), + ohe'). Enters the Republican just below Beecher's island.
KINGFISHER CREEK: Matsin'iyohe, Kingfisher river' (mätsin'i, kingfisher,' + ohe'). A tributary of the Cimarron. This stream seems to be more commonly called 'Fish creek,' Nomǎ'hiyohē (nōmā'hě + ohè'). There is a Kingfisher creek, as above, which enters the Platte not far from the present town of Fremont, Neb.
CHEYENNE RIVER: Maitōmõni'ohe, 'Red paint river' (māitùm', 'paint,' + ohe'). The South Cheyenne river of Dakota; so called because of the abundance of red clay near its banks.
WILLOW CREEK: Min'oshe, 'Where willows stand thick' (min'õk, 'willow,' + she). A tributary of Medicine Lodge creek, in southern Kansas.
BOX ELDER CREEK: Mishkimai' ohe, 'Box-elder river' (mishkimā, ox-elder,' + ohe). Tributary of Cheyenne river east of the Black hills.