THE COMING OF THE EUROPEANS. 283
by a row of very stout poles or stems of trees,
which, are set close together on the top of the bank
and meet in the center above. The roof is thatch-
ed with willow boughs and then plastered over
with clay, so as to make it perfectly water-proof.
In the center of the interior is a fire-place, which
consists simply of a shallow depression in the
ground. This fire-place can, of course, be ap-
proached on every side,, and it is for the use in
common of all the families that inhabit the lodge.
The space at the circumference of the lodge,
extending along the wall, is divided into separate
compartments, like the cabins of a ship, for the
several families. Sometimes very rich and showy
curtains are used to separate these compartments
from each other, and the posts which are set up to
divide them are hung with arms and armor, and
also with scalps, antlers and other trophies.
Each family has a bedstead within its compart-
ment. A buffalo skin stretched over it forms both
sacking and bed. Another buffalo skin serves the
combined purpose of sheets, blankets and counter-
pane; while a third, properly folded, fulfills the
function of both bolster and pillows.
Some of these Indians carry their luxury, in the
matter of dress and decoration, very far. An
American traveler once gave fifty dollars for the