Pair of Moccasins
Arts of the Americas
The Jarvis Collection
Many of the articles in this case (and the adjacent clothing case), some of the earliest and finest Eastern Plains pieces in existence, were collected by Dr. Nathan Sturges Jarvis, a military surgeon stationed at Fort Snelling, Minnesota, between 1833 and 1836. Most items were made by the Eastern and Middle Dakota (Sioux) or by the peoples of the Red River region, including the Red River Métis, Anishinabe, Plains Cree, and Salteaux. Some of the objects were purchased by Jarvis, and some may have been given to him in exchange for his medical services.
These works demonstrate indigenous ingenuity in combining trade materials such as cloth, metal, and glass beads with traditional hides, pipestone, and porcupine and bird quills. For comparison, a few examples collected later by Nathan Jarvis, Jr., during his army service in the Western Territories among the Apache and other Plains peoples are also included. These items clearly show the later indigenous preference for multicolored glass trade beads.
Hide, glass beads
4 x 3 3/4 x 9 1/2 in. (10.2 x 9.5 x 24.1 cm) (show scale)
Henry L. Batterman Fund and Frank Sherman Benson Fund
Prior to 1848, provenance not yet documented; by 1848, acquired by Nathan Sturges Jarvis; 1848, gift of Nathan Sturges Jarvis to the New-York Historical Society, New York, NY; 1937, loaned by the New-York Historical Society to the Brooklyn Museum; 1950, purchased from the New-York Historical Society by the Brooklyn Museum.
Pair of moccasins made of hide with beaded geometric designs in green, yellow and white. There are two beaded cross motifs (possibly a star) on the vamp of each moccasin. The triangular design down the front might indicate deer hoof, rope, person, rope deer hoof or buffalo hoof. The sinuous beading along the side may indicate pathways. Note: design signification cannot be definitely determined as abstract designs can mean different things according to each maker. The cuff of each moccasin has been cut into points.
Condition fair. Beadwork stable. Cuffs are slightly stiff.
This item is not on view
Possibly Tsuut'ina. Pair of Moccasins, 19th century. Hide, glass beads, 4 x 3 3/4 x 9 1/2 in. (10.2 x 9.5 x 24.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Henry L. Batterman Fund and Frank Sherman Benson Fund, 50.67.19a-b. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 50.67.19a-b.jpg)
overall, 50.67.19a-b.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2005
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