The process and consideration of traditional lacrosse stickmaking from pre-eminent craftsman Alfred Jacques, recorded at his workshop at Onondaga.
Producer Brett Barry records Alf Jacques at his workshop at Onondaga Nation. Photo by Jim O'Connor
From Onondaganation.org: "Lacrosse at Onondaga is considered sacred. It is a game that was given by the Creator, to be played for the Creator, and has been known to have healing power. Because of this, it is also known as the Medicine Game. The game in its original form is played between two groups, usually divided up between clans or young men versus old men. Since women are respected for providing life and are to protect this gift, they do not play lacrosse."
The Haudenosaunee were the originators of lacrosse, but according to the earliest known lacrosse rulebook, written by Montreal dentist William George Beers (1869), Rule IX Section 6: "No Indian must play in a match for a white club, unless previously agreed upon."
Alf explains the time-intensive nature of traditional lacrosse stick-making.