Missouri people dug cache pits, or holes, inside their houses. They
stored food in them for the winter. A cache pit was like a cellar. Women
dug the pits six to eight feet deep. They shaped each one like a jug.
Then the women lined the cache pits with dried prairie grass and buffalo
hide. The women gathered and dried food during the summer. They placed
it inside the pit. They used ladders to climb in and out. This drawing
shows how a cache pit looked underground. The photograph shows the floor
of a Middle Missouri house. The big holes were cache pits. The smaller
ones were post holes. The shallow hole in the center is a fire pit.
|Figure redrawn by Lynet Dagel from Gilbert L. Wilson, Agriculture of the Hidatsa Indians, copyright 1983 by the South Dakota State Historical Society. Used with Permission.