These fabulous beaded leggings on blue Stroud cloth were a gift to General Cook in 1870-1871 by Chief Red Cloud at the Pine Ridge Agency and was given along with a quilled war shirt, fully beaded moccasins, pipe bag with pipe and a percussion rifle along with other items.
These are classic leggings from the period of the Indian Wars. The bead work is sinew sewn onto brain tanned elk or deer hide and is in perfect condition. One legging has moth damage as shown in the photos. The bottoms are edged in yellow Cavalry braid.The leggings measure 36" long x 12"wide.
The Indian items that we are selling are from the John Cook collection that was amassed prior to 1872. These items were consigned to my store by the person who inherited them from the 85 year old son of the Civil War General John Cook. This collection represents Treaty surrender weaponry such as knives, guns and tomahawks as well as gifts of clothing, pipe bags, and Catlinite carved pipes. General Cook served as Indian Superintendent at the Pine Ridge Reservation in the early 1870's following Red Cloud's War and these items are closely associated with the Ogalala Chief Red Cloud and the Brule Chief Spotted Tail (Sinte Geleska). Many items represent gifts from these two individuals specifically as well as other notable war leaders during this tumultuous time period for the Lakota and Cheyenne peoples.
When the consignor inherited this large collection it had been well preserved in a large airtight tin meat storage container thus accounting for the excellent condition of the beadwork, quillwork and brain tanned leather pieces.
I would like to emphasis that these are pre-reservation items acquired before 1872 and represent a truly unique and extremely valuable historical collection. The surrendered weaponry consisted mostly of outdated single shot percussion trade rifles of various grades made by Leman in Lancaster Valley, Pennsylvania. One of these was a gift to Red Cloud by William Bent and later "surrendered" to General Cook (who noted that the Chief was now seen carrying a new model Henry rifle). The quilled and beaded war shirts, bags and moccasins represent a unique glimpse into the history of a proud people and cultural heritage.
Included in the purchase is a photo copy of the book about General Cook by his son and the personal notes taken in interviews with his son by the consignor. If a collector chooses to buy the majority of the collection I will include the original signed copy of the book and the original notes.
Beaded Lakota Sioux Stroud Cloth Leggings 1870
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