New Member
In the Yellowstone caldera area there is a legend of a group of Native Americans who lived high in the Rocky Mountains. This tribe was short in stature and were actually considered to be a pygmy people. They eschewed the use of horses and instead used dogs to transport products and carry food. They were gone a long time ago and the only remnant of them is some of the dwellings they left, such as sheep enclosures and conical timber lodges made by them. They, like so many tribes of native peoples, have gone the way of the dinosaurs, leaving no trace of their passing except for their dwellings. Curious.


Ronnie, thank your for sharing. I have never heard of the sheepeaters before. In tyring to learn more about them, here is some interesting information to share. The Sheepeaters are a branch of the Shoshone Indians. This area they lived in was very in hospitable weather wise and a seismic hot bed of activity, with over 1,000 volcanic tremors reported annually. I am curious if this geo-thermal activity had anything to do with their size. I understand that this area is now part of the Yellowstone National Park near a place called Swan Flats. Would love to see it one day.


That's awesome! I love how they used dogs as horses. There are some dogs these days that could be used as pack horses because they've been bred to be huge. I could see a Mastiff carrying food and a small human.


It's always interesting (and a little sad) when you learn about cultures that are completely gone. I'm not surprised they chose dogs as pack animals since they were short. I don't think geothermal activity impacts height, but other than possible nutritional deficiencies, I'm not sure what could have caused that.

Ricky Kendall

New Member
There was one remaining member of this tribe who lived in Lander Wyoming. She wrote a book about the Sheepeaters. Last I heard, her book was under lock and key at the Lander Library. I don't know the exact name of the book and I don't think it can be checked out. I do believe a researcher could read it at the library. One of Chief Tendoys' wives was a Sheepeater. They were feared by most of the other tribes because they were fierce warriors. They knew how to set traps that could take out entire war parties.