Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Man Afraid of His Horse, Native American Photograph

The Morans loved to travel.  During one of their many trips some of the Morans took a "grand tour" of the west, at least once and possibly several times.  Many of the Moran kinfolk were living in Texas and Oklahoma, probably good stopping points on their way west. However, at some point they must have found their way to South Dakota, which is likely since some of their Shumate family were living in Denver, because one of the most interesting photographs we have is signed by "Man Afraid of His Horse" and inscribed "What E'er it be that not impossible 'He'"

You can Google "Man Afraid of His Horse" and find a lot of information about a father and son known as "Old Man Afraid of His Horses" and "Young Man Afraid of His Horses".  And there are images of both the Older and Younger "Man" but so far I have not found one like this picture.  Is he the younger "Man Afraid of His Horse" or is he someone else?  Oh and if you're like me you might think that the name is referring to the man is afraid of his own horse but that is not the case.  Quite the reverse actually.  It means that the man is so feared by others that even the sight of his horse is enough to inspire fear in others.

What e'er it be that not impossible "He"
"Man Afraid of His Horse"
The inscription is rather cryptic as well.  "What e'er it be that not impossible 'He'".  The only reference that comes remotely close is from a poem by Englishman Richard Crenshaw, 1612- 1649 entitled Wishes to his (Supposed) Mistress.  It starts out like this...."Who e'er she be That not impossible she That shall command my heart and me".  Was "Man" showing the viewer that he was educated?

If anyone can tell us more about this picture we would be most appreciative. 

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