THE ALOSAKA CULT OF THE HOPI INDIANS ■
By J. WALTER FEVVKES Introduction
A little over ten years ago an Indian living near Ream's Canyon, Arizona, informed Mr T. V. Keam, who for several years had been making a collection of Hopi curiosities, that there were two idols in a cave near the ruins of the old pueblo of Awatobi. Mr Keam, supposing these images to be so ancient that they no longer were used in the Hopi ritual, especially as they were reported from a point ten miles from the nearest pueblo, visited the place, and brought the idols to his store, several miles distant. When the removal of these objects became known, it created great consternation among some of the Hopi, and a delegation of priests from one of their villages begged Mr Keam to restore the figurines to them, stating that they were still used in their ceremonies. This request was immediately granted, and the two idols were borne away with great reverence by the priests, who sprinkled a line of meal on the ground along the trail as they returned home. The images, however, have never been returned to their old shrine under the Awatobi mesa, but a new fane has been found for them, the situation of which is known to no white man. 8
From the late Mr A. M. Stephen's rough sketches, notes, and measurements of these images (which the writer has not seen), it appears that they are made of Cottonwood, the larger one about four feet tall, the other five inches shorter. Mr Stephen thought
1 These studies were made under the auspices of the Bureau of American Ethnology.
- The author has been told that they were deposited among the foothills of the
coffin-shaped mesa southwest of Awatobi.