Meaning of the Mountain Range Symbol
Native American Indians were a deeply spiritual people and they communicated their history, thoughts, ideas and dreams from generation to generation through Symbols and Signs such as the Mountain Range symbol. Native American symbols are geometric portrayals of celestial bodies, natural phenomena and animal designs. The meaning of the Mountain Range symbol was to signify the geography of a particular area and an indication that a journey had been made across a mountain range.
The Meaning of the Mountain Range Symbol to the Navajo Tribe
The Navajo tribe first emerged about 3,000 years ago at a point now called La Platte Mountain in Colorado. The four mountains sacred to the Navajo tribe are La Platte Mountain, Mount Taylor, Navaho Mountain, and San Francisco Mountain and were visually identified by colors. The eastern mountains were white, the southern mountains were blue, the western mountains were yellow, and the northern mountains were black. The rise and fall of these mountains caused the alternation of day and night. When the white mountains rose it was day, when the yellow mountains rose it was twilight, the black mountains brought night, and the blue mountains brought dawn dawn.
The Mountain Range Symbol
Before the arrival of European traders and explorers, the Native Indians were relatively settled hunters and farmers. The introduction of the horse led to the Plains culture in the vast prairie region between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains. Plateau Indians such as the Nez Perce (see picture below) travelled across the Rocky Mountains to hunt buffalo on the Great Plains and then returned to their Plateau homeland in the winter to continue fishing in the great rivers. The Mountain range symbol would have been used to represent this type of journey.
| ||Picture of a Plateau Indian - Nez Perce Tribe|
The Mountain Range Symbol - Meaning
There were so many tribes of Native American Indians it is only possible to generalise the most common meaning of the Mountain Range symbol or pattern. Native Indian symbols are still used as Tattoos and were used for a variety of reasons and depicted on numerous objects such as tepees, totem poles, musical instruments, clothes and War Paint. Indian Tribes also used their own Colors for Symbols and designs depending on the natural resources available to make Native American paint.