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Sioux eagle feather warbonnet. From the collection of David T. Vernon, which is now permanently displayed at the Colter Bay Visitor Center in Grand Teton National Park.
David Humphreys Miller wrote of the head gear of the Sioux and Cheyenne at the Battle of the Little Bighorn:
About fifteen Cheyennes wore eagle-feather war bonnets, of which ten had long trails, while some forty Sioux wore similar feathered headgear. In every war bonnet worn, each feather represented a brave deed performed in battle. (Crown bonnets consisted of about thirty such feathers, but trail bonnets, which might have as many as a hundred, never had fewer than seventy.) Unless all feathers were earned by the wearer, other warriors might snatch the bonnet off his head. Several Sioux and one Cheyenne wore headdresses made from the mane and horns of buffalo bulls. One Sioux had a bearskin headdress, and Sun Bear, a Cheyenne, wore a war bonnet with a single buffalo horn projecting from its center.
The Spirit of Native America: Beauty & Mysticism in American Art by Anna Lee Walters, Chronicle Books, San Francisco 1989, p 81
Custer's Fall: The Indian Side of the Story by David Humphreys Miller, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, NE 1957 p 215 - 252
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