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Sentry Rock or Indigenous Multi-tasking by James Lewis Hamilton


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Sentry Rock or Indigenous Multi-tasking by 

1210 views by 13 July 2014

This pen and ink sketch happens to be one of my personal favorites. I brings up memories of the beautiful day I went hiking into the eastern side of the Dragoon Mountains in southern Arizona. Into a canyon called Cochise’s Stronghold.
It’s called this because Cochise, the famous and fierce Apache Indian leader, would ‘hole-up’ in this narrow mouthed canyon and the Army patrols chasing him were in too much danger to enter there. Also Cochise was one of the few Indian warriors that insisted on 24 hour sentries to warn of any impending attack.
So back to the hike and sketch. Only a mile or so up a winding trial I stopped for breath and water. I stepped off the trail and spotted this rock. I just had to clamber down and onto it, because of the ‘mortar hole’ pounded into it. Such holes are from the Indians who made them to grind beans or other food stuffs.
I squatted and then sat cross legged right behind the mortar hole. The trees above me, along the trail, would dapple this location with shade most of the day. The view to the northeast was amazing in that one could see for miles out across the desert, and a hundred plus years ago would allow anyone paying attention to see the dust and movement of anyone approaching the mouth of this canyon. Further, the shorter view was right down, over the tree tops, and into the very opening of the canyon.
So a sentry posted here could see anyone approaching and entering the canyon. At the same time they could pound a sack of mesquite beans into flour for the tortillas of the evening meal… what I’d call proof of indigenous ability to multi-task!
To actually draw this sketch I could only find an uncomfortable purchase. Then I had to experiment to find a way to represent the sea of live oak trees and leaves. Scribbling in tight circles worked best. Somehow the whole experience and sense of ‘being there’ with the Indian lookout’s endless tasks made a great impression… and inspired this sketch in my Canson sketch book.
In 2013 I’m busy in Photoshop taking my favorite art and making adjustments to load as the various Red Bubble products available. I’m enjoying these new presentations and hope you do, too! ;-)))


jlh designs, james lewis hamilton, pen and ink sketches, arizona, sentry, cochise, us army, american indians, dragoon mountains, mortar holes, mesquite beans, tortillas, photoshop, history, american west, cowboys and indians

A persona who has apparently lived a relatively long, varied and eclectic life. My Red Bubble portfolios reflect my seeming persona… and IF there’s any veracity to these reflections then some sense of HUMOUR and enjoyment should be PRESENT!
‘Ola!’ ;~}}}

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  • robpixaday
    robpixadayalmost 5 years ago

    NEAT!!! and a fascinating story!

  • Thanks for reading through it.

    – James Lewis Hamilton

  • Zefira
    Zefiraalmost 5 years ago

    great drawing and story

  • thanks for your comments on my sketches

    – James Lewis Hamilton

  • rocamiadesign
    rocamiadesignalmost 5 years ago

    Beautiful sketch, and the story gives me a feeling of being there. My father was Chiracahua, and I’ve always wanted to explore the areas of the southwest where the Apache roamed.

  • The Chiracahua Mountains and surrounding valleys and mountains are an extremely beautiful and diverse area. It’s not hard to imagine why the Apaches fought to keep their home territory from the invading waves of over dressed and equipped white settlers.
    Thanks for your comments.

    – James Lewis Hamilton

    BLYTHARTover 4 years ago

    I can tell by all the work you’ve put into this that you love it … and so you should.

  • thanks… yes I do love sketching… can’t believe I’ve stopped for so many years… but all this bubble praise got me to ask for a new sketchbook for my recent birthday… so watch out… master steady hand is drawing lines again!!!

    – James Lewis Hamilton

  • madvlad
    madvladover 4 years ago

    great art and history too i loved doing this too, been down around wilcox looking at am, indian history there too jim and if you say i was following you, your right, my wife and i were moving fools and loved the road

  • flipteez
    flipteezover 4 years ago

    Solid insideout! Incredible work’n’storyXXXXX

  • life just fits together… if you make those kind of choices…lol

    – James Lewis Hamilton

  • artisandelimage
    artisandelimageover 4 years ago

  • CeePhotoArt
    CeePhotoArtover 4 years ago

    Your cohosts,
    Cee and Chris

  • James Lewis Hamilton
    James Lewis Ha...over 3 years ago

  • LoneAngel
    LoneAngelover 3 years ago

    magical work

  • thanks for this comment… it has had its own magical effect on me!!!

    – James Lewis Hamilton

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