Collection Manuscrpts Great Basin College Yellow Lodge

Western Shoshoni Songs & Stories

We have compiled up various songs through continuous donations of videos, cassettes, and CDs. For a full viewing of these media documents please visit the Great Basin College Library or contact Norm Cavanaugh.

Western Shoshoni Songs

Beverly Crum reads the translations of the songs performed by her husband, Earl. The songs are about the weather and the seasons.

Earl & Beverly Crum Song

Ellison Jackson sings a song with his drum and mentions how it tells a story about Mother Nature and animals.

Ellison Jackson Song

Marge Hall Puela shares with us her recordings of her mother singing, and then explains exactly what she is singing and what it represents.

Marge hall Puela Song

Various Western Shoshoni songs that date back to as late as 1963.

Western Shoshoni Song 1

Western Shoshoni Song 2

Western Shoshoni Song 3

Western Shoshoni Song 4

Western Shoshoni Song 5

Western Shoshoni Stories

CD 2

Track 1

This recording describes an epidemic about small pox contamination from a cloth given to them by a preacher. The Shoshoni also explain a story about a cotton tail and brush rabbit pursuing the sun so they can shoot it down.

CD 2 Track 1

Track 3

This track shares about the importance of the Sun Dance and healing. The Newe people also ask for a blessing from the eagle, using mountain spring water for cleansing, while drinking it for purity.

CD 2 Track 3

Track 4

Judy Saw and Doric Doc explain the significance of the pine nut gathering ceremony, while mentioning due to the improper lack of ceremonial rituals, Mother Earth is growing dry. Included also in this recording is the Pine Nut song.

CD 2 Track 4

Track 5

This track reveals the story about the burning of a giant man Soahbitche’.

CD 2 Track 5

Track 6

Continuation of Soahbitche’ story.

CD 2 Track 6

Track 7

This recording tells a story of an Owl always hunting instead of loving his wife, and ends with the rabbit story.

CD 2 Track 7

CD 3

Track 2

This recording discusses a lot about how the Native People are losing their customs and ways by converting over to European culture.  It explains how the Native Americans are the keeper of Mother Earth, and the bible is not their way of life. The track also goes into detail about how the U.S. government has not compensated the Western Shoshoni for their land.

CD 3 Track 2

Track 3

This track explains, in great detail, how the White Man is stealing the Western Shoshoni language, which is all they have left.  They share the Western Shoshoni frustrations regarding the land that was stolen from them, the restrictions of hunting their animals, and the cavalry murdering Western Shoshoni people.  

CD 3 Track 3

Track 4

This is a story of two brothers that came home from the Ely area. The two brothers, returning home, were then shot at by the United States Cavalry and proceeded to run into Goshute territory to issue a warning. Unfortunately, the Native Americans didn’t listen and then were massacred by the cavalry.

CD 3 Track 4

CD 4

Track 1

This track contains another version of the story of the cotton tail and brush rabbit shooting down the sun. It goes into detail about after shooting down the sun; they ran into their hole to hide from the heat. His younger brother got scorched from the sun and almost died.

CD 4 Track 1

Track 5

This recording goes into great detail about how the various animals were placed on this Mother Earth. It talks about the reasoning why the sage hen, buffalo, antelope and squirrel were placed on Mother Earth. They discuss why white people have mandated laws for hunting, and the problems it has presented for Native Americans.

CD 4 Track 5

Track 6

During this part of the CD, the Native Americans describe the story about becoming a woman. They also discuss various herbal medicines that they drink, some of the hard times and illnesses that followed them, and how a longtime ago Native Americans took better care of their children compared to today.

CD 4 Track 6

CD 5

Track 1

This is a story about two ladies on the other side of the ocean.

CD 5 Track 1

Track 2

This track reveals the story about a crow (Hi) and how he was the boss. It describes how Hi was the leader of the animals.

CD 5 Track 2

Track 3

This recording describes a story about the animals when their people were on Mother Earth. It talks about them playing the hand game with the people that owned the pine-nuts.

CD 5 Track 3

Track 4

This is the story about the antelope with two heads. The antelope dies and is given rebirth with only one head so that the Native Americans can hunt it for food.

CD 5 Track 4

CD 6

Track 2

This track describes a story about a rattlesnake and if used as bad medicine it can be fatal. It also describes some of the medicines used and talks about medicine men.

CD 6 Track 2

Track 4

This is a story about traveling through the Austin area and getting caught in a flood.

CD 6 Track 4

Track 5

This recording tells a story about a coyote harassing a family traveling alone to pick pine-nuts.

CD 6 Track 5

Track 6

This track tells about a family’s story about traveling through tough terrain. It also talks about spirits and how they meet their ancestors when they pass on.

CD 6 Track 6



Special thanks to Frank JayJo for donating these songs and stories to our collection.