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Bruce Brown's 100 Voices...
The Sioux war club on the right is a trade item obtained from the whites. The club on the left is a mace with a swinging beaded head. These three clubs are from the collection of David T. Vernon, which is now permanently displayed at the Colter Bay Visitor Center in Grand Teton National Park.
The Sioux war club below purports to have been used at the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Here is an excerpt from the James D. Julia auction catalog entry for this item, which sold for $54,625 in October 2007:
- SIOUX WAR CLUB USED AT THE LITTLE BIG HORN. Beaded and fringed war club having a long rawhide handle and a stone head measuring over 5" long. The entire club is over 24" long. The lower end of the handle is wrapped with beaded buckskin with a piece of braided horsehair at the butt. This club was picked up on the battlefield by Private William O. Taylor, 7th Cavalry who helped bury the Custer dead on June 28, 1876. Taylor collected a number of artifacts that day, including arrows removed from the bodies of some of the dead soldiers, bullets and this superb example of an Plains Indian war club. After his Army service, Taylor placed his mementos in the Massachusetts Memorial Hall Museum, established in 1880, where they were exhibited for many years. The club is listed in a 1920 catalog of the museum collection. The club and the other artifacts were eventually deaccessioned and passed into other hands. This is one of the most historically important artifacts documented to have come from the Battle of the Little Big Horn. PROVENANCE: Accompanied by statements from a previous sale, a copy of Taylor's published account of his participation of the Battle of the Little Big Horn, and a machine copy of the appropriate pages of the Massachusetts Museum inventory. CONDITION: Excellent condition. 4-32364 DM165 (35,000-55,000)
The Spirit of Native America: Beauty & Mysticism in American Art by Anna Lee Walters, Chronicle Books, San Francisco 1989, p. 108
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