DOUBLEBALL GAME





INTRODUCTORY NOTE.--Some stories credit the Moon as the giver of this game

to the women, by whom it is exclusively played throughout the United States

except among the tribes in Northern California, where the men use the game.

There are indications that the Double-ball Game was known upon this

continent in the remote past.



The peculiar ball employed for this game is composed of two small stuffed

pouches connected by a band, or two billets of wood about five inches long,

made like thick pegs with heads and ornamented on all sides with carvings;

a leather thong five to eight inches long is attached at each end to the

neck of each of the two billets. Dr. Culin reports an ingenious specimen

made by the Maricopa Indians of Arizona; that double-ball is made from

narrow strips of leather braided to form a band, each end of which is

enlarged by braiding so as to make a ball, the finished article being about

eight inches in length. (Ibid., p.665, Fig. 882.)



_Properties_.--One double-ball; as many sticks as players; red and yellow

head-bands, equal in number, for the two sides of players.



_Directions_.--The double-ball should be made in camp in the following

manner: A strip of leather or of strong, closely woven brown cloth from

fifteen to twenty inches long. For six inches from both ends the strip

should be about seven inches wide; the portion of the strip between these

wide ends should be about three inches wide. The wide ends are to form the

pouches, and the narrower middle section the band to connect the two

pouches. The two edges of the strip should be lapped and strongly sewed the

entire length of the strip, except a small opening about an inch long left

on the side of each of the pouches. Through this opening the pouches are

filled with dry sand, then the edges are securely sewed together so that no

sand can escape. These pouches are the "balls." The sides of the pouches

should be decorated with designs painted in bright colors and a little tuft

or tassel of red yarn fastened at the middle of the bottom of the pouch.

The sticks should be about thirty-two inches long, not too heavy and

somewhat pointed at one end that is slightly curved. Each stick should be

marked by an individual device so that it can be claimed by its owner.



Two wickets, made by crotched poles about five and a half to six feet high,

having a bar fastened across the top, are placed in line with each other,

one at the East, the other at the West, and as far apart as the limits of

the camp grounds will permit. A red streamer to be tied to the eastern

wicket and a yellow streamer to the western wicket.



The players are divided into two parties of equal numbers and lots should

be drawn to decide which side shall have the eastern goal, and all of that

side must wear red head-bands; the other side must wear yellow head-bands

to show that theirs is the western goal.



An Umpire must be chosen, to whom belongs the duty of tossing the ball when

necessary; to keep the score, and to settle any disputes.



To make a point the ball must be tossed so as to hang on the crossbar of

the wicket. An agreement must be made as to how many points shall

constitute the game.



THE GAME



The players stand in two rows about fifteen to twenty feet apart, one color

on one side, the other color opposite. The Umpire takes a place between the

two lines and as near as possible to the middle of the rows. When all are

in readiness the double-ball is tossed by the Umpire straight up into the

air, and all those whose places are near the middle of the rows watch the

descent of the "ball" and try to catch on their sticks the connecting cord

of the double-ball. If one succeeds, she tries to send it down the line

toward the goal of her side; those of the opposite side try to prevent

success to this movement and to send the "ball" in the other direction. The

"ball" should not be allowed to touch the ground from the time it is tossed

until it is lodged on the wicket. The side that lets the "ball" fall to the

ground loses a count, and the side that keeps the "ball" up until it

reaches the goal scores two points, equal to four counts.





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