Establishing shot: Navajo man sits on frame left, brushing his hair with his fingers. In the background a mountainous range can be seen.
Named locations: Southwestern United States; New Mexico; Arizona.
Major themes covered: Overview of the Navajo people
Native activities shown: The film begins with three siblings from the Carrillo family tending to their sheep herd; Mother Carrillo is filmed carding and spinning wool and expertly weaving a rug at a loom. Two women are shown displaying a large handcrafted rug. Next, a husband and wife team (The Bojas), are filmed skillfully crafting silver jewelry by punching, hammering, and chaping with craft tools. Footage of several Navajos displaying their jewelry collection. Mrs. Carrillo is shown grinding corn, and then combing and tying her daughter’s hair into a traditional bun (chongo knot).
Individuals Named: John, Michael, and Ruth Carillo; Mr. Boja and wife, silversmiths.
Native language spoken: No audible native languages.
Noteworthy elements: Good images of working with wool and weaving blankets
Other notes: Gorgeous shots of antique jewelry.
This film was made in cooperation with the University of Minnesota and was distributed by the International Film Bureau.
Elmer Albinson photographed Navajo Country; a selection of Albinson’s films, including many on Native American tribes, are archived at the Minnesota Historical Society. The finding aid for this collection can be found at http://www.mnhs.org/library/findaids/sv000040.xml#a8.
--Mikel Stone, 2012