"In his book, 'No More Buffalo', Bob Scriver tells with a fictional story how the Blackfeet described the first horse that they saw. Some said it looked like the elk, being about the same size and color, and others had seen it in distant Indian camps being used to pull the travois - like the dogs that were used by the Blackfeet. So, according to the story, they called them 'Ponokah-Eemetah' in their language, which translates to Elk-Dog in English.
"To quote from Bob Scriver, 'After the horse was obtained and its many uses became apparent, a whole new way of life evolved which came to be known as the Horse Culture. Acquisition of the horse helped make the Plains Indians into the freest people the world has ever known. They became mobile in war; their garments, their dwellings and their food were more easily obtained; their personal belongings and their religious bundles became much more expansive. In the opinion of many, mankind reached its zenith with the combination of the Plains Indian and the horse. Having little or no government, they lived the rich, free, unfettered life so many modern people yearn for.'
"I have tried in the painting to celebrate the freedom and excitement of 'Running with the Elk-Dogs'." - Martin Grelle
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