This piece was purchased from a Michigan estate who inherited these early beaded pieces from Henry W. Andrews who collected them in the 1870's while he worked for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The collection purchased includes early examples of Huron, Ottawa, Eastern Sioux, Chippewa, Potawatomi, Winnebago and other tribes that were not donated directly to the New York Museum of the American Indian in 1914. A remarkable guide to identifying these pieces is to be found in "The Art of the Great Lakes Indians" by Richard Pohrt and the Flint Institute of Arts 1973.
This Potawatomi hair binder is virtually pristine example of Great Lakes beadwork utilizing the trade bead color palette of the 1850's with representative period colors of virtually all available hues. The Germantown wool fringe is over 27" long and still in excellent condition. As is the early patterned linen cloth to which the fringe is attached. The sash was edged after the loom work was completed with lovely corn yellow beadwork. The strong coloration and patterning so characteristic of early Potawatomi beadwork makes this 1860's piece so rare and valuable. Beadwork is 2 3/4" wide total sash length over 87".
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