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Indian dances

Identifier: Film Collection no. 260

Scope and Contents

Outtake material from Edgar Monsanto Queeny's film Sunrise Serenades was incorporated in this film made by the museum's Department of Education. Designed primarily for use by schools, the film was intended to teach observation and understanding by depicting the Indian as a skillful observer of nature. In the museum's Felix M. Warburg Memorial Hall (Man and Nature), the film's opening sequence focuses on the relationship between the blue jay and the fox in the Autumn at Stissing Mountain habitat group, while the narration discusses the hidden dramas in life around us. During scenes filmed at Stissing Mountain in New York, the film's central theme is developed: American Indians observe birds and animals in nature, and these observations influence Indian dances. The rest of the film consists of scenes of various animals followed by interpretations of the animal in Indian dances. First are the Queeny outtakes: views of the sharp-tailed grouse and scenes from a Plains Indian dance. Other animals and dances include the American eagle (in the Hall of North American Birds) and the Iroquois eagle dance, the mule deer (in the Hall of North American Mammals) and the Pueblo Indian deer dance, and the bison (also in the Hall of North American Mammals) and the Plains Indian buffalo hunting dance. The dances are performed in a studio by Tom Two Arrows, an Indian dancer.


  • 1951

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Not available through interlibrary loan. Contact AMNH Library Special Collections for terms of access.


1 Film Reel (10 minutes) : sound, color ; 16 mm.

1 Videocassette (U-Matic (10 minutes)) : sound, color ; 3/4 in.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

3/4 in., U-Matic, viewing copy


Original format: 16 mm. print.



Edgar M. Queeny, bird photographer; Ralph Piper, bird sound recording; American Museum of Natural History Dept. of Education, producer; Encyclopaedia Britannica Films, Inc., distributor.

Indian dances, 1951
Iris Lee
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Museum Archives at the Gottesman Research Library Repository

American Museum of Natural History
200 Central Park West
New York NY 10024 USA
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