Food with Buffalo Bone Farming Tools
Artifacts Group 1 / Group 2 / Group 3

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Plains Indian Food with Buffalo Bone Farming Tools

Plains Indian Food, blue corn, timpsila
blue corn and timpsila

Plains Indian Buffalo Bone Farming Tools

1. hoe    2. knife    3. digger

Mandan and Hidatsa

The farming tribes kept four colors of corn: red, blue, white and yellow. After harvest, ears were braided into strands that were hung for drying and storage.

Gardening was done near creek bottoms where the soil was rich. The ground was prepared and later weeded with a hoe fashioned from a bison shoulder blade and added handle.

To dig holes or to turn over the soil, a type of spade was made from the upper leg bone of a buffalo. One end was broken away to be the digging end and a hole bored at the top to receive a shaft.

The corn raised by the Mandans saved the Corps members from starvation when they wintered over in present-day North Dakota.


Plains Indian Food chokecherry patties, buffalo jerky

Dried Chokecherry Patties (left) with Buffalo Jerky (Pemmican)


Buffalo Jerky (Pemmican) with Dried Chokecherry Patties and jerky, animal fat.


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