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Chief Sky Eagle / George Sky Eagle
Birth name: George Pewash
(1886? - 1955)

Crop from a production still from KING OF THE STALLIONS (Monogram, 1942).
 George Pewash was born November 15, 1886 in Michigan and he and family are on the 1908 Durant census rolls of Chippewa and Ottawa tribes of Michigan.

Family trees on have his father as Samuel Okemahkeketo Pewash (1864 - 1910) and mother was Theressa Nanagoonse O-Ge-Maw-Ke-Ge-Do Alexander. His father re-married and second wife was Catherine O-Ge-Maw-Ke-Ge-Do Neongaby (1866 - 1923).

He did portray Native Americans in a few films.

But his main occupation was performing at Wild West Shows, rodeos, circuses, as well as many public appearances and charity events.

His act consisted of roping, riding, and Native American rituals. Daughter Dorothy - billed as "Princess Sunbeam" - was featured and demonstrated her trick riding skills. And Sky Eagle was an expert shot with a bow and arrow.

(Courtesy of Don Swinford)

L-to-R are Chief Yowlachie, George Sky Eagle, Ric (Rick) Vallin, Chris Willow Bird, and Chief Thunder Cloud in a lobby card from KING OF THE STALLIONS (Monogram, 1942; alternate title of CODE OF THE RED MAN).

On the trail of George Pewash / George Sky Eagle / Chief Sky Eagle.

  Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Chief Sky Eagle:

Michigan Family History website has George, his parents, and several more Pewash family members listed in the Durant rolls, which is the 1908 census of Chippewa and Ottawa tribes of Michigan. Enter the name Pewash in the search box:

World War I draft registration dated June 5, 1917 for George Pewash. He was Indian; born November 15, 1886 in Michigan; has wife and one child; lived in Omena, Leelanau County, Michigan; and was a farmer:

In the 1920 census, 33 year old George Pewash (born Michigan about 1887), wife Helen, and daughter Dorothy were living in Leelanau, Michigan. He was Indian and occupation was Day Laborer. Living next door was 50 year old Katherine Pewash (which may be his step-mother) and her son and daughter:

In the 1940 census, George Sky Eagle (born Michigan about 1890), wife Helen, and daughter Dorothy were living in Rosemead, Los Angeles County, California. His race was Indian and occupation was "Theatrical - Movie and Rodeo Work": had the World War II draft registration dated April 27, 1942 for George Sky Eagle. He was Indian; born November 15, 188? in Omena, Michigan; he was 5 foot, 8 inches tall and weighed 165 pounds. Home address was 1162 East Valley Boulevard, Rosemead, California. Contact was wife Helen at that address. His employer / occupation was "Self - Performer - free lance".

Death certificate - George Sky Eagle was born November 15, 1888 in Michigan to Sam Sky Eagle and Theresa Alexander (both born Michigan). Race was "American Indian" and occupation was "Showman - Show Business". He and wife Helen lived at 3937 North Walnut Grove Avenue, Rosemead, California. He passed away on March 6, 1955 at Los Angeles County General Hospital and primary cause of death was uremia. Stewart-Barber Funeral Home was the funeral director and interment at Rose Hills Memorial Park.

Death and funeral announcement for George Sky Eagle in the March 9, 1955 Whittier, California News. He passed on March 6, 1955 and survivors were wife Helen and daughter Dorothy:

Find A Grave has a photo of the marker for George Pewash Sky Eagle (1888 - 1955) who is interred at Rose Hills Memorial Park, Whittier, Los Angeles County, California:

Find A Grave notes that daughter Dorothy Mae 'Princess Sunbeam' Pewash Sky Eagle (1913 - 1989) was cremated:

Great article in the March 10, 1966 Waco, Texas News-Tribune - Bill Sky Eagle remembers his grandfather, Chief Sky Eagle ... and mentions that his Native American lineage was Ottawa:

Articles and photo ops.

Long before his days in Hollywood, Sky Eagle performed with the Miller Bros. 101 Ranch Show:

  • July 10, 1909 Billboard had a lengthy status report on the Miller Bros. 101 Ranch Wild West Show: "The Indian war dance by the Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapahoe Indians was enlivened the past week by the solo snake dance, presented by Geo Sky Eagle and three live snakes ..."
  • May 24, 1913 New York Clipper had a report of the Miller Bros. and Edward Arlington's 101 Ranch Wild West Show. Performers included "Chief Sky Eagle and band of Cheyennes".

April 11, 1912 Los Angeles Times paper has a photo of a very young George Sky Eagle who was participating in a marathon in Los Angeles:

December 9, 1938 Pomona, California Progress Bulletin newspaper has a photo of Chief George Sky Eagle using a bow and arrow at a golf tournament:

Photo of Chief Sky Eagle at the 1940 Western Washington Fair in Tacoma, Washington:

October 6, 1939 Bakersfield Californian paper has a photo of "Chief Sky Eagle, expert bow and arrow shot, and lovely Indian Princess Sunbeam, trick rider, will perform at the Bakersfield Frontier Days Rodeo ... at the Kern County Fairgrounds":

Photo in the August 16, 1941 Tacoma Times newspaper of Princess Sunbeam, daughter of Chief Sky Eagle, at the Tacoma Rodeo:

August 7, 1942 Gallup, New Mexico Independent paper had an announcement. Headline: "Featured Stars of Ottawa Tribe to Appear Here." Article excerpts: "First appearance here of representatives of the Ottawa Indian tribe ... for this year's Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial ..." ; "Chief Sky Eagle ... with his daughter Sunbeam, and wife will present fancy riding and roping acts, and demonstrate archery shooting." :

February 16, 1948 Honolulu Advertiser paper has a photo of Chief Sky Eagle and Princess Sunbeam with the 1948 Hopalong Cassidy show and rodeo at the Honolulu, Hawaii Stadium:

Crop / blowup of George Sky Eagle from another lobby
card from KING OF THE STALLIONS (Monogram, 1942.

Below - Chief Sky Eagle and daughter Dorothy ("Princess Sunbeam") with the 1948 Hopalong Cassidy show and rodeo at the Honolulu, Hawaii Stadium.

Article from Feb 16, 1948 The Honolulu Advertiser (Honolulu, Hawaii)

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