An Important Native American Weapon – The Bow and Arrow

It is easy to picture Native American braves thundering across the plains on their horses, bows drawn. They would be in pursuit of a buffalo herd. Daring and swift, these men would use these simple implements to provide food for the tribe. It is all the more impressive when you realize how basic the tools that were available to make the bow and arrows. Using only flint implements, the Native American artisan would first shape a length of wood. Sinew would be used for the bow string. After the arrow shafts were formed, arrow heads of flint, wood, or bone were made. Regardless of the simplicity of the craft, bows of great elegance and beauty were made.

They were only able to make the bows themselves because only stone tools were available to Native American artisans ,. Although composite bows are considered to be superior in performance to the self made bows, the Indian archer was still a match for anyone throughout the world. The excellent craftsmanship of Native American bows and arrows began from one piece of wood. It would have been chosen with care to make sure it was approximately the correct diameter. Only a minimum of detailing was possible due to the flint tools used to shape the bow.

Notches at the ends of the bow would hold the string in place. Sinew was the material of choice although sometimes plant fiber might be used for the string. Sinew is extremely strong and tough and was readily available from the animals they hunted. The design of the bow could be very simple and utilitarian, or it could be decorated. Feathers and fur were the favorite decorative items. Such was the strength of the bow and the skill of the hunter, that game of nearly any size could be brought down by one of these bows.

To bring this classic cultural item into your home today is easy. Any wall can be brightened and personalized with the addition of a Native American bows and arrows. Placing a bow and arrows over a fireplace will give a pleasing result. Decorating in a southwest style involves bringing various diverse elements together for a total look. You can bring the rest of the room into focus by adding a bow and arrows, or even several to form a collection ,. It can be especially effective when combined with such items as horsehair pottery, a collection of rattles or dream catchers. Native American bows and arrows can contribute a masculine touch to a den or a boy's bedroom.