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January 6, 2002

Montana State student compiles Crow stories

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In the way of the Crow, storytellers have passed down the traditions and history of the people word by word, from one generation to the next, since the beginnings of the tribe.

Phenocia Bauerle, a senior at Montana State University and an enrolled member of the Crow Tribe, has become a storyteller with a contemporary twist. She has edited a book of Crow stories that will be published next spring by the University of Nebraska Press.

The book is tentatively titled The Way of the Warrior: Stories of the Crow People .

The book’s stories are about Crow warriors who lived in the time before contact with non-Indian influences, roughly 1800-1860. They were passed to Bauerle by her grandfather, Crow elder Barney Old Coyote, who now lives in Billings.

The book is unprecedented because the collection, translation, interpretation and editing of the material was done by members of Bauerle’s family, all Crow Indians who are familiar with the language, culture and context of the historical stories.

Until this time, non-native speakers were involved with Native American texts. These stories will change the way we look at Native American literature.

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