Thoughts of corn back home

This week I’ve been writing a lot about Hopi corn beyond the mesas. And yet, the more I write about Hopi corn in Illinois, the more I think about corn back home. Here’s a scene (depicted in the photo) that one can never replicate in the Midwest, or any other place besides the Hopi mesas of northeastern Arizona.

Hopi Third Mesa Corn, Photograph by Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert

2 Responses to “Thoughts of corn back home”


  1. 1 Jeanell Timmons May 18, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    My grandfather of English descent was a cotton grower in West Texas in the early 1900’s. The corn he grew for his family and animals was planted in long straight furrows. Rainfall was scanty – often times non-existent, but it would probably have been a blessing by mesa standards. Like the Hopi, there was no irrigation – just prayer and chopping weeds. I’m curious about the film and it’s focus. It looks as though all varieties will be planted in a similar method, but will they all be watered and cared for in the same manner?

    I am looking forward to photos of the plants’ progress, and the knowledge gained from the experience. Hopefully, we will see the film on PBS stations.

    • 2 Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert May 18, 2012 at 9:41 pm

      Jeanell, thanks for your comment! Yes, all of the varieties of corn will be cared for in the same manner. Also, the students planted the seeds in the same way – one seed at a time – 10 or so inches apart (unlike the way Hopi farmers plant corn back home). Thanks again for your comment and interest in the film. I’ll continue blogging about it throughout the summer. Hopefully these posts will provide people with a bit more clarification about the focus of the film.


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© Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert and BEYOND THE MESAS, 2009-2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert and BEYOND THE MESAS with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

About the author

Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert (Hopi) is Professor and Head of the Department of American Indian Studies at the University of Arizona.

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Revisiting the Hopi Boarding School Experience at Sherman Institute and the Process of Making Research Meaningful to Community (JAIE, 2018)

Education beyond the Mesas: Hopi Students at Sherman Institute, 1902-1929 (University of Nebraska Press, 2010)

Introduction to Education beyond the Mesas (2010)

The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue: Voices and Images From Sherman Institute (Oregon State University Press, 2012)

Foreward to Don Talayesva’s Sun Chief: An Autobiography of A Hopi Indian (2013)

Foreword to Kevin Whalen’s Native Students at Work: American Indian Labor and Sherman Institute’s Outing Program, 1900-1945

A Second Wave of Hopi Migration (HEQ, 2014)

Marathoner Louis Tewanima and the Continuity of Hopi Running, 1908-1912 (WHQ, 2012). Winner of Spur Award for Best Western Short Nonfiction, Western Writers of America (2013)

Hopi Footraces and American Marathons, 1912-1930 (AQ, 2010)

The Hopi Followers: Chief Tawaquaptewa and Hopi Student Advancement at Sherman Institute, 1906-1909 (JAIE, 2005)

Constitution and Bylaws of the Hopi Tribe (With all amendments, click to download)

Click to listen to KUYI On-Line

Matt’s Goodreads

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