Wi-jún-jon

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Pigeon's Egg Head
Wi-jún-jon
George Catlin - Pigeons Egg Head - Smithsonian.jpg
Portrait by George Catlin, 1831 [1]
Assiniboine leader
Personal details
Born 1796
Died 1872
Nickname(s) The Light

Wi-jún-jon, also called Pigeon's Egg Head or The Light (1796–1872) was a Native American chief of the Assiniboine tribe. Best known for appearing the painting by George Catlin, depicting what happened after he was assimilated into white culture following a trip to Washington, D.C., in 1832.

Wi-jún-jon Before and After his trip to Washington, DC by George Catlin

Caitlin wrote that Wi-jún-jon "exchanged his beautifully garnished and classic costume" for

a suit of "broadcloth, of finest blue, trimmed with lace of gold; on his shoulders were mounted two immense epaulets; his neck was strangled with a shining black stock and his feet were pinioned in a pair of water-proof boots, with high heels which made him 'step like a yoked hog'."[2]

A print based on the painting, showing Wi-jún-jon wearing Assiniboine dress and a Western suit, titled Wi-jún-jon, Pigeon's Egg Head, Going to Washington, returning to his house, became quite popular, appearing in a German magazine, Die Gartenlaube in 1853.[3]

'After he had returned Wi-Jun-Jon was called the best healer in his tribe by 'using the white man's magic' and his tribe believed that no bullet could pierce his skin. Later this was proven wrong as a white man shot him, afterwards spreading the rumor stating his own tribe had killed him, after he was caught bragging and lying to them to justify the slaughtering of Native Americans

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wi-jún-jon, Pigeon's Egg Head (The Light), a Distinguished Young Warrior by George Catlin". Smithsonian American Art Museum. Retrieved 2012-08-10. 
  2. ^ Gordon Morris Bakken (2011). The World of the American West. Taylor & Francis US. p. 190. ISBN 978-0-415-98995-4. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  3. ^ Pamela Kort; Max Hollein; Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt (2006). I like America: fictions of the Wild West. Prestel. Retrieved 10 August 2012.