Native American

Hair Ornament

Artist: Unknown
Culture/People: Caddo
Place: Binger, Oklahoma
Media: Stroud, trade tacks, tin, horsehair, and German silver.
Dims: 22 x 5.25 x 1 in. (55 x 13.3 x 2.54 cm).
Date: c. 1900
RTC No: NA0506
Gift of Ralph T. Coe, 2011

Description

The Caddo tribe originally came north from the Texas/southeastern area of the US, and are related to the Pawnee. They settled in central-western Oklahoma. Their ceremonialism is heavily allied to their Turkey Dance, which is a woman’s prerogative during which men served only as onlooking participants. The Caddo hair ornaments are very special to the women who make and wear them. They rarely appear outside the community context.

The German silver band at the bow’s midpoint is adapted from an Indian child’s bracelet made by neighboring tribes and dates early in the 20th c. Such hair-ties were worn vertically, tied into the hair of the dancer at the back of the neck.

Watch artist Tracy Newkumet Burrows speak about this piece on Collections Spotlight, May 2020.

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