Thunder Visions
The Crazy Horse Wotawe
of the Lakota Medicine Man Woptuha

Back to Woptuha Books Home Page

Links to Books

Woptuha Book 1, Talking to Spirits Woptuha Book 2, Thunder Visions Woptuha Book 3, Shadow World Voices Woptuha Book 4,
Wicasa Pejuta
Woptuha Book 5
Shunke Wakan


Hard bound, 9x7 inches, 52 pages.

During the 1800s Pte He Woptuha (Buffalo Horn Chips) a Lakota Medicine Man made numerous talismanic objects, otherwise called wotawe, for his cousin Crazy Horse (Tashunke Witko) and for his fellow tribesmen. This is the second in a series of books by Franz Brown on a few of those objects (the first was "Talking to Spirits"). This is a photographic book and little is done in the way of interpretation of the objects. In accordance with tradition the objects only had power in connection with the person for whom they were made and the purpose for which they were made. They were also dependent on Woptuha who kept a related object that was meant to channel the various forces from Wakan Tanka, through him to the person being helped. Finally their power was dependent upon having the correct words said, the correct song sung and the correct actions performed. Upon completion of their purpose the objects lost their power. They would also lose their power upon the death of the user of the object or the death of Woptuha.

The objects are held in private collections in the United States as well as overseas. They were made available for a very short period by the various owners so that Woptuha might be recognized for his artistic skills as well as his significance within the Lakota nation.  It was also hoped that through this photography interested persons might have an appreciation for this aspect of Lakota life. Although they are but a small piece of cultural history they are of value in understanding a great nation and their contribution to humanity and our understanding of the universe and ourselves.

This book is being printed on demand only, one at a time, the number printed is expected to be small.

See a few images. Please click the images to see an enlargement.

Above Left: One of a number of ear stones worn by Crazy Horse. The leather straps were worn braided into the hair behind the left ear.

Above Center: This heart stone was worn by Crazy Horse under his left arm. One of a number of heart stones, this one features a big head horse, symbol of the Thunder Beings.

Above Right: Crazy Horse Tourniquet. A tourniquet was wrapped around the head to cause the veins to bulge. The vein was then pricked with a sharp buffalo horn splinter causing it to bleed to produce a "blood sacrifice." Such a ritual was required to get cleansed of the act killing a human.

Link to buy this book at Book 2: Thunder Visions

Home : Art : Paintings  Photographs  : Galleries : Biography
Franz Links : Links to Art Sites : Santa Claus

Franz Brown Home
Contact Franz Brown:
or write
Franz Brown, 646 S 16th Apt B4, Hot Springs, SD 57747