Goodnight and the Parkers

Cynthia Ann Parker was captured as a young girl by the Caddo, Comanche and Kiowa Indians in 1836. She was  adopted into the tribe and raised by a Comanche couple. Parker soon forgot her past life with her original family, prefering a life with the Comanches. She refused several times to return home to her relatives. She married Peta Nocoma, the young chief and bore three children: Quanah, Pecos and Topsannah. In 1860, a young Charles Goodnight was scouting the area and he found an encampment of Comanches. He guided his fellow Texas Rangers, led by Lawrence Sullivan Ross. (To be sure, Goodnight did not mean to capture Cynthia Ann. He was doing his job as a Texas Ranger.) They captured three Comanches, one which was a mother with fair skin and blue eyes. Col. Isaac Parker later identified the captured Comanche woman as his niece, Cynthia Ann. While traveling through Fort Worth she was photographed with her daughter at her breast and her hair cut short, a Comanche sign of mourning. She thought that Peta Nocona was dead and feared that she would never see her sons again. On April 8, 1861, a sympathetic Texas legislature voted her a grant of $100 annually for five years and a league of land and appointed Isaac D. and Benjamin F. Parker her guardians. But she was never reconciled to living in white society and made several unsuccessful attempts to flee to her Comanche family.

Cynthia Ann Parker and her daughter, Topsannah.

Cynthia Ann Parker’s son, Quanah Parker, grew up to become the last of the Comanches chiefs. He was Chief of the Quahadis (“Antelopes”),the most warlike of the various Comanche bands. He fought to defend Native American hunting grounds and when he could no longer defend, he fiercely compromised with the U.S. government to keep the traditions of his tribe alive. He also became good friends with Charles Goodnight. The two even had plans to come over to Goodnight’s ranch and help Goodnight film a short film with a live buffalo hunt. Charles Goodnight gave him several buffaloes throughout the years.

Quanah Parker, done in beading by Marcus Amerman.

Marcus Amerman is an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. He was born in Phoenix, AZ and grew up in the Pacific Northwest before settling in Santa Fe, NM. He received a BA in Fine Art at Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA and took additional art courses at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, NM. He credits the Plateau region and its wealth of talented bead artists with introducing him to the “traditional” art form of beadwork. He quickly made this art form his own, however, by creating a new genre of bead artistry in which beads are stitched down, one by one, to create realistic, pictorial images, not just large color fields or patterns.

An Iris print of Quanah Parker done by Robert Orduno, an Apache artist

An Iris printer is a large format colour inkjet printer manufactured by the Graphic Communications Group of Eastman Kodak, which is used for digital prepress proofing. Iris printers use a continuous flow ink system to produce continuous-tone output on various media, including paper, canvas, silk, linen and other textiles….The prints are noted for their accurate color reproduction….Prints produced by an Iris printer are commonly called “Iris prints”, “Iris proofs”, or simply “Irises”….Another generic name “giclée” is also used for this type of print. Some artist and fine art printers still prefer to call prints produced on an Iris printer an “Iris print”.


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