These Indian war period full hide, fringed leggings, were part of a gift of clothing and weaponry from Spotted Tail to General Cook in 1870-1871. The leggings are fabulous and well preserved and are made from two full hides of a Prong Horned Antelope that has been yellow ochred and painted with horse hooves (representing stolen ponies). The perfectly intact early three color beaded strip is on brain tanned buffalo hide which was typical in this time period. Bead colors are clear cobalt blue, clear wine red and French chalk white. The sinew sewn beading is in perfect condition. Fully fringed edges and fringed edge ties complete the piece. Some slight wear to the bottom fringed tabs but no damage, this just shows that it was worn before it was gifted and only increases it's value. This set of leggings was given to General Cook along with a quilled and painted war shirt, pipe bag, pipe, moccasins, tomahawk, breastplate and weaponry along with other items. Leggings measure 36"long and 21"wide at the bottom tab. 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 The surrendered weaponry consisted mostly of outdated single shot percussion trade rifles of various grades made by Leman in Lancaster Valley, Pennsylvania.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 purchase is a photo copy of the book about General Cook by his son and personal notes of interviews with General Cooks son taken 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 notes.
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