Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Indian Summer

As a writer we often come across things we have no idea where they started. I have been working on a poem--poetry is really hard for me to write, but I have a few. I wanted to write about Indian Summer and realized I was not sure where it came from or what it was. It has been a great fall in Wyoming (and I live at 7,200 feet).Cold for a short spell, now it’s warm again. This time of year has been called Indian Summer for a long time. But why? Now that I’ve got your attention by casually mentioning the weather and everyone loves talking about the weather. Here is why this time of year is called Indian Summer. I have no idea—just kidding.

People have speculated for more than two-hundred years over the derivation of the term Indian Summer. Many guesses as to where it came from have been tried but here is the correct and proper answer - at least according to me.

Indian summer, which must follow a hard frost, is named after that time of year when the indigenous peoples of the plains harvested crops. Crops the natives planted east of the Missouri River and the harvest of wild plumbs and roots west of the big river. It was also the time for hunting, curing and storing of the meat for the winter sure to come. Really the end of the summer. Pretty neat.

There you have it from the one who knows—a really old guy who just likes to write western stories. Indian Summer!

No comments: