Last modified: 2022-10-14 by rick wyatt
Keywords: osage | oklahoma | native american |
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image by Donald Healy, 21 January 2008
map image by Peter Orenski based on input from Don Healy
Osage - Oklahoma
The Ni-U-Ko'n-Ska, or "children of the middle waters" as the Osage call themselves, came originally from what is now Ohio. They were members of the same people that today include the Kaw, Omaha, Ponca, and Quapaw Tribes. Osage is actually a corruption by the French of the name of the largest band, the Wazhazhe (ENAT, 170-171).
The Osage migrated from Ohio to the area of Missouri and Arkansas and by the early 1800s there were three distinct bands of Osage: the Great Osage, who settled around the Osage River; the Little Osage, who lived near the Missouri River; and the Arkansas Osage, who were part of the Great Osage until they broke off and moved to the region around the Arkansas River. Today, the Osage Nation continues to thrive in Osage County, Oklahoma; their capital is the town of Pawhuska.
© Donald Healy 2008
The flag (provided by the Osage Tribal Museum) is light blue, perhaps referring to the Sky People, one of the two clans into which the Osage were traditionally divided (the other clan was the Earth People). Centered on the flag is the circular tribal seal (Annin & Co.) in yellow with an outer band of gold. The seal depicts a large arrowhead, in light blue, pointing downward. On the arrowhead, also pointing downward, is a prayer fan composed of eagle feathers. The fan and feathers all appear in white with black details; a small red band secures the feathers to the fan holder. A red peace pipe crosses the arrowhead and fan. Above the arrowhead is "SEAL OF" and below it "OSAGE NATION", both in black.
The Osage have also influenced the state flag of Oklahoma, which bears an "Osage shield"-that of the great Osage chief, Claremont (The Seal of the Osage Nation, flyer, n.d.).
© Donald Healy 2008
information provided by Peter Orenski, 21 January 2008