Fetish carvings and Native American symbolism found frequently on crafts items like pottery, jewelry, bead or leather work, paintings, carvings, etc are part of an ancient culture and religion which is extremely complex. Zuni fetishes, known to the Shiwi people as wemawe, are small stone animal carvings made by talented artisans of the Zuni Pueblo. Due to the remote location in Northwest New Mexico, the Zuni people have been able to retain a great deal of their culture and religion despite being among the most studied Native American people by anthropologists, past and present. It is my experience that though Native American culture and tradition can differ between tribes/sects, there are many agreed to meanings of the symbols found throughout the craft works, etc. Inn at Pueblo Bonito features several Native American Artisans from local NM Pueblos- two of which are Marilyn Ray (Acoma) and Vera Tenorio (Santo Domingo). Well known and respected artisans within their Pueblo cultures- each proudly carry on ancestral traditions of craftsmanship and storytelling. The following should provide some insight as to meanings of Native American symbols, Native American fetishes, and materials used in their artwork.
Native American Symbolism Guide
Bears: symbolizes physical strength, leadership and is known as the “first helper”.
Bear Paws: are a symbol representing inner strength.
Feathers: symbols of prayers, marks of honor or sources of ideas. They represent a Creative Force.
Kokopelli: a common fertility symbol thought to bring fertility to women drawn to his flute playing. He also represents the spirit of music.
Eagle: Master of sky; carrier of prayers. Admired for bravery and special connections to the creator.
Buffalo: Spiritual protector bringing nourishment to body & soul. A White Buffalo symbolizes peace.
Dream Catcher: It is believed the web tangles bad dreams & prevents them from passing through. Good dreams slip through the center. Each morning sunlight purifies the web of bad dreams.
Arrowhead: Represents the hunter and symbolizes the adventurer within each of us.
Zuni Bear: The Guardian of the Earth. A heart-line arrow going from head to heart symbolizes a warrior’s heart is strong like the bear’s.
Native American Stone Meanings
CORAL: is known to be very soothing and very protective. It is of an organic origin, being the skeletal remains of marine animals called Coral Polyps. Colonies of these tiny creatures build branching structures as they grow, gradually forming reefs and atolls.
TURQUOISE: It is believed that turquoise tends to bring good fortune, strength and helps overcome illness. Turquoise got its name from the Levantine traders called Turks who brought the stone to Europe from Persia via Turkey centuries ago. Native Americans have prized turquoise since the time of the Aztecs, who mined it in New Mexico. The natural variations that occur in turquoise are part of their appeal and beauty.
RUBY: A gemstone, ruby is thought to speed the healing of body, mind and spirit. It is believed to aid in psychic development while it energizes. It’s a good stone for just about everyone.
LAPIS: Lapis is the perfect stone for wisdom and fortitude. It is also believed to be an excellent stone for decision makers. It helps increase psychic ability.
OPAL: Most people know Opal for it’s distinctive play of color, it is semi-transparent solidified mineral composed of silicon and water, and it gets its name from the Latin word “Oplus” meaning precious stone. Opal is October’s birthstone. It is believed to release self-consciousness allowing spontaneous action, and awakens one’s psychic and mystical qualities.
ONYX: It is a semi-precious gemstone, and it is a cryptocrystalline form of quartz. Onyx is also known to be a calming stone. Native Americans believe it collects negative energy from you while wearing it.
MALACHITE: It is famous for its radial banding and deep green color. Popular today for use in Southwestern Indian jewelry, malachite was also popular in the past with the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans. It was worn as a good luck charm to keep away danger and illness. It is believed to balance and stabilize ones emotions.
TIGER”S EYE: Also called Tigers eye or Tiger eye is a chatoyant gemstone. Tiger Eye stone contains a golden yellow reflection on a brown ground color. The most important source of tiger eye is South Africa, but it is also found in California. Native American Indians believe it conveys courage and protection.
PEARLS: Pearls are known to stabilize and balance emotions. They are believed to help your body in using calcium better. For Native Americans pearls are full of purity and integrity.
RHODOCHROSITE: A mineral mined in the U.S., rhodochrosite is known to strengthen self- identity; helps heal deep emotional trauma and balances with a loving vibration. JET: It is an organic gemstone which was highly popular during the reign of Queen Victoria. It has been traditionally fashioned into rosaries for monks. In the U.S. long necklaces of jet beads were very popular during the 1920s, or Roaring Twenties, when women and young flappers would wear multiple strands of jet beads stretching from the neckline to the waistline. Today it is used to beautify Native American Indian jewelry.
Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM proudly features both of these talented Native American Artists and their crafts in our gift gallery. Unique and culturally different New Mexico locally crafted gifts- perfect for gift giving. Valentines is coming up…..why not consider giving the gift of travel and experience our unique historic adobe pueblo-style downtown Santa Fe Bed Breakfast. Book Now and experience a one-of-a-kind New Mexico lodging experience! Give us a call 1-800-461-4599 and allow us to assist you. www.pueblobonitoinn.com
#1 in Series of Top Recommended Santa Fe Day Trips – part 2 here: http://www.pueblobonitoinn.com/top-recommended-santa-fe-day-trips-2-in-series.html
Providing Santa Fe Travelers with Memorable Experiences for 30+ years!
Santa Fe Tourist Attractions To See During Your Day Trip
A wonderful scenic 40 minutes drive from historic downtown Santa Fe and Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast! Great for half day or full day trip up into the Jemez mountains in Northern New Mexico. Once in the park, guests walk through ancient Indian Ruins, view Native American petroglyphs and explore historic cliff dwellings and climbs on handcrafted kiva ladders. Ancient ruins date back to 1250 AD! A novice skill level, one mile-long hike weaves Santa Fe day trippers past petroglyphs, masonry walls built into a cliff face to the pinnacle “long house”. Ancestral Pueblo people left Frijoles Canyon sometime after 1250, for reasons unknown. Bandelier is our 2016 #1 Top Santa Fe Day Trip for visitors – you will very much enjoy this special New Mexico highlight. Pueblo people thrived in this area near Los Alamos in what is now Bandelier National Monument- 10,000 years ago. The Bandelier National Park covers 33,677 acres within Frijoles Canyon and is filled with lush pine forests, wildlife and clear blue skies. An easy, enjoyable and certain to please Santa Fe day trip put first on our list of BEST Santa Fe Day Trips and Travel Suggestions!
“Add On” Options for Santa Fe Day Tripping:
- San Ildefonso Pueblo– We highly suggest pairing a Day Trip to Bandelier with a quick visit to San Ildefonso Pueblo. After exploring history, why not contrast an active living Native American Pueblo? Known for black on black method of pottery design made famous by Maria Martinez, San Ildefonso pueblo people are mutli-talented, kind hearted and welcoming. Be prepared to enjoy some beautiful handcrafts!
- Santa Clara Pueblo– personal guided tours of the Santa Clara Puye Cliff Dwellings (similar to Bandelier). An option to consider – especially for returning Santa Fe visitors. Having a one-on-one interaction with a native Santa Claran guide can only prove to enhance any Day Trip experience of Northern New Mexico! Fee charged per person.
- Santa Fe Golf at Towa Golf Course: off 285 in Tesuque, NM. 18 hole Arnold Palmer golf course with rolling hill fairways with stunning views of the Sangre de Cristo mountains in Santa Fe County! We don’t suggest making this your “destination”, but adding a half day of golf when in Santa Fe could be a lot of fun!
- Bradbury Museum: in Los Alamos, NM. Extremely interesting, informative National History Museum documenting the Manhattan Project. Real film footage of the US President and historic news broadcasts of the atomic bomb project. Exhibits highlighting benefits of our National Defense funding also presented.
Restaurants/ Wineries/ Distilleries (AKA: The Foodie Side of Santa Fe Day Tripping):
- Gabrielle Restaurant: 285 in Tesuque, NM (10 min from our historic adobe Santa Fe Inn). Our favorite menu items: House margarita; Guacamole and chips; Chicken Chimi.
- Rancho de Chimayo Restaurant- Highway 501 in Chimayo, NM. Our Favorite menu items: House margarita; Green Chile Chicken Enchilada with Sour Cream; Sopapillas
- Estrella del Norte: Award winning Winery. Excellent side trip toward Chimayo, NM for an afternoon wine tasting! Lovely back patio/grounds and fun gift shop!
- Don Quixote Distillery: 285 in Espanola, NM. Famous for NM Blue Corn Vodka or Bourbon! Great experience in spirit tastings. Blue Corn spirits make great gifts for folks left behind!
- Blue Heron: Located on the plaza in Espanola, NM. Tasting house is features local home brews made fresh daily.
Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn: Located in Santa Fe at 138 W Manhattan Ave. Uniquely, enchanting. Adobe pueblo-style bed and breakfast. TOP for two reasons:
- 1. Most authentically preserved historic downtown Santa Fe lodging. A must do for enhancing a Native American Historic Santa Fe Experience! Traditional, authentic New Mexico adobe architecture- one of a kind! 154 yrs of southwest US history exudes from this privately owned estate turned bed and breakfast in 1986. True Santa Fe accomodations to transform a stay in Santa Fe, New Mexico into a cultural, historic lodging experience! THE Best way to compliment a day trip to Bandelier National Monument!
- 2. People! Innkeepers- Amy & Herb Behm have 30+ consecutive years at Pueblo Bonito and 55+ living in New Mexico living! We serve guests need: help plan, recommend, provide welcoming hospitality and everything that goes along with great Santa Fe Vacation Travel experiences! Guests know what to expect – the REAL thing! Real history. Real Adobe. Real wood burning kivas. Real people! Nothing phony or make believe here! Voted “Guest Favorite” over 8,200 properties in US and Canada (2011; 12; 13! Rated “Excellent” TripAdvisor 2010, 11 ,12, 13, 14, 15!).
Our knowledge and insight into the region, culture, cuisine and travel in New Mexico is priceless. We make Santa Fe come to life! Give us a call 1-800-461-4599- You’ll be glad you did.
Courtesy of Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn.
Bandelier National Monument – Great hiking with numerous archeological sites along the Main Loop Trail (1.2 mi rt) and on the additional mile round-trip trail to Alcove House. Private cars may enter park before 9 a.m. and after 3 p.m. Other times visitors access park with Park shuttle provided in parking lot at entrance of park.
Directions from Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM (40 min): Right onto Manhattan Ave. Right onto Paseo De Peralta. Left onto Saint Francis Drive (HWY 84/285) north toward Los Alamos. Just after the village of Pojoaque, merge right onto NM 502 to Los Alamos. Continue on NM502 toward Los Alamos. Bear right and exit onto NM 4 towards White Rock. Continue for 12 miles, passing White Rock. Bandelier Park entrance is on left. Fee about $12 p/car.
Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, lies the unique geological area known as Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks. Kasha-Katuwe (or white cliffs in the traditional language of Keresan of Cochiti Pueblo people) is an area that features large, tent-shaped rocks that hug the steep cliffs of Peralta Canyon. These rocks were created by the powerful forces of volcanism and erosion, which have built up and then torn down this landscape.
Directions from Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM: Right onto Manhattan Ave. Right onto Paseo de Peralta. Left onto Cerrillos Rd. Left onto St Francis Dr (HWY 84/285) south. I-25 S toward Albuquerque. Take Cochiti exit off I-25 to NM Route 22 and follow signs to Cochiti Pueblo. Turn right at the pueblo water tower (painted like a drum) onto Tribal Route 92 (connects to Forest Service Road 266). 5 miles on this dirt road to Tent Rocks parking area- marked with a sign.
Pecos National Monument – between the Sangre de Cristo mountains and Glorieta Mesa lies the Glorieta Pass. A visit to Pecos National Historical Park takes visitors to a gem of the National Park Service. History of pueblo and Spanish settlers; the Santa Fe Trail (which passed through what are now park grounds); ranch history in the Pecos Valley; and the Civil War Battle of Glorieta Pass all come alive in the Pecos! A 25 minute drive from Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM:Directions: Right onto Manhattan. Left onto Paseo de Peralta. Left onto Old Santa Fe Trail (turns into Old Pecos Trail) to I-25 N (toward Las Vegas, NM). Take exit 299 on to HWY 50 to Pecos village and south two miles on State Road 63.