No announcement yet.


  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Earrings

    In early times both men and women of the Omaha/Ponca had their ears pierced for the first time at a very early age, usually about 3 or 4 years old, when they could walk on their own. Ear piercing was considered a “rite of passage” and the family of the child would gift the person doing the piercing in a very generous manner. Both male and female would then wear earrings the rest of their lives. (Abe Conklin, Ponca/Osage, 1986)

    Consequently, during the Hethuska dance ceremony it was only natural for men to wear earrings.

    For other tribes, such as the Pawnee, the amount of ball and cone silver earrings worn, at one time had to do with war honors. (JoJo Lane, Pawnee, 1988)

    The most common early style of earring wwere:

    1. A silver wire loop.

    2. A silver wire loop with a number of variations of items either threaded through the silver wire loop, or dangling from the silver wire loop, such as:

    a) a silver bead or beads
    b) a trade bead or beads
    c) a silver bead and dangling silver cone
    d) a piece of shell
    e) a length of silver chain hanging from the loop
    f) a length of silver chain hanging from the loop with stamped silver dangle
    g) a bone hairpipe or hairpipes

    3. Hook earring with a number of silver dangle variations.

    Today, stamped trade-silver or German silver pieces linked together in a variety of shapes and patterns, or silver ball & cone earrings, are the norm for most men’s earrings used by straight dancers.

    Some examples from the past:

    The Watchful Fox - Sauk & Fox - 1847

    Sauk & Fox man - 1858

    Woman's Heart - Kiowa - 1867

    Sitting In The Saddle - Kiowa - 1867

    Kicking Bird - Kiowa - 1868

    One Who Strikes The Chiefs First - Pawnee - 1868

    White Horse - Pawnee - 1868

    Gives To The Poor - Pawnee - 1868

    Long Dog - Pawnee - 1868

    Wah-Com-Mo - Sauk & Fox - 1868

    Medicine Horse - Otoe - 1869

    Knife - Iowa - 1869

    Kicking Bird - Kiowa - 1870

    White Horse - Kiowa - 1870

    Bird Chief – Arapaho – 1871

    Chewing Elk – Comanche – 1872

    Lone Wolf - Kiowa - 1872

    Black Dog – Osage – 1876

    Black Crow - Ponca - 1877

    Standing Bear - Ponca - 1881

    Standing Bear - Ponca - 1881

    White Swan - Omaha - 1883

    Yellow Smoke - Omaha - 1883

    Bright Eye - Omaha - 1883

    Cannot Do It - Sauk & Fox - 1890

    Shining River - Sauk & Fox - 1890

    Comanche man – 1892

    Ne-kah-ka-lah – Osage – 1893

    Tall Chief – Osage – 1894

    Prairie Turtle - Otoe - 1894

    Bushy Tail - Otoe - 1894

    Frank Corndropper, Paul Buffalo, and Pierce St. John - Osage - 1895

    Willie Gray Eyes - Sauk & Fox - 1896

    Eagle Chief - Pawnee - 1900

    Bacon Rind – Osage – 1900

    Ma-Chet-Seh - Osage - no date

    Man Of Courage – Osage – 1904

    Black Dog – Osage – 1904

    Little Soldier - Ponca - 1906

    Bacon Rind – Osage – 1906

    Red Eagle – Osage – 1908

    Wolf In The Middle – Southern Cheyenne – 1908

    Little Village Maker - Omaha - 1909

    Standing Bear - Omaha - 1909

    Standing Elk - Ponca - no date

    Generous – Osage – 1913

    Walking Dog – Osage – 1923

    Bailey, Garrick, and Daniel Swan.
    2004. Art of the Osage. St. Louis Art Museum, University of Washington Press, Seattle, WA.

    Callahan, Alice A.
    1990. The Osage Ceremonial Dance, I’n-Lon-Schka. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK.

    Feder, Norman.
    1957-a. Costume of the Oklahoma Straight Dancer. The American Indian Hobbyist Newsletter, Vol. 4, No. 1.
    1957-b. Costume of the Oklahoma Straight Dancer. The American Indian Hobbyist Newsletter, Vol. 4, No. 2.
    1961. Plains Indian Metalworking, Part Two. American Indian Tradition Newsletter, Volume 8.

    Hail, Barbara N.
    1980. Hau, Kola!: The Plains Indian Collection of the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology. Brown University, Bristol, RI.

    Howard, Dr. James H.
    1965. The Ponca Tribe. Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin 195, Smithsonian Institution, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.
    1976. Ceremonial Dress of the Delaware Man. Special Issue, The Bulletin of the Archeological Society of New Jersey, No. 33, Seton Hall University, South Orange, NJ.

    LaFave, Edward J.
    1998. Straight Dance Clothing: How to Dress a Straight Dancer. Whispering Wind: American Indian Past & Present Magazine, Vol. 29, No. 4, Folsom, LA.

    Smith, Jerry.
    1982. Straight Dance Clothes: Getting Them On. Moccasin Tracks Magazine, April Issue, LaPalma, CA.

    Stewart, Tyronne H.
    1968. Dressing a Straight Dancer. The Singing Wire Newsletter, February Issue.

    "Be good, be kind, help each other."
    "Respect the ground, respect the drum, respect each other."

    --Abe Conklin, Ponca/Osage (1926-1995)

  • #2
    cool photos. too bad our lil men with long hair already get teased for having long hair. imagine long hair and earrings...
    The only time its too late to start dancing is when you're dead.


    • #3
      Interesting...thanks for sharing

      But Boss, I am working!!......on finding my next pow-wow that is!


      • #4
        John Straight - Osage - 1912

        John Straight - Osage - 1912

        "Be good, be kind, help each other."
        "Respect the ground, respect the drum, respect each other."

        --Abe Conklin, Ponca/Osage (1926-1995)


        • #5

          "Be good, be kind, help each other."
          "Respect the ground, respect the drum, respect each other."

          --Abe Conklin, Ponca/Osage (1926-1995)


          • #6

            "Be good, be kind, help each other."
            "Respect the ground, respect the drum, respect each other."

            --Abe Conklin, Ponca/Osage (1926-1995)


            • #7
              I read about earrings before! They were worn by both men and women. The richer the tribe, the more expensive earrings. And pierced ears sooner children!


              Join the online community forum celebrating Native American Culture, Pow Wows, tribes, music, art, and history.

              Related Topics


              • Historian
                Choker Necklace
                by Historian
                In general, a choker necklace is any necklace worn in a snug fit around the neck. Among many tribes who straight dance, the choker necklace can be divided into four main categories. I have tried to include examples from the past in each category. In some cases, a photo might show more than one style...
                04-06-2009, 04:57 PM
              • Historian
                by Historian
                Bandoliers are an essential component for straight dancers.

                The pair of bandoliers are most often strings of large trade beads with leather spacers, worn in a loop which extends from each shoulder to the opposite hip.

                Each bandolier consists of one to three strings of...
                03-21-2009, 01:13 PM
              • Historian
                by Historian
                The neckerchief has become an integral part of the modern set of straight dance clothes among the Ponca, Osage, Pawnee, Comanche, Kiowa and other southern plains tribes.

                They are usually made of silk, stain or taffeta and most often seen in solid colors.

                The color of...
                04-06-2009, 02:24 PM
              • Historian
                Grizzly Bear Claw Necklace
                by Historian
                According to Norman Feder,

                “...grizzly claw necklaces were apparently never vary numerous within any one tribe because of the difficulty in obtaining the claws.”
                (Feder & Chandler, 1961, p. 7)

                Even at a time when the great plains family of the grizzly bear...
                03-31-2009, 02:29 PM
              • Historian
                Hair Roach Headdress
                by Historian
                “This headgear is apparently called ‘roach’ in English because of it’s resemblance to the roaching or clipping of a horse’s mane which was considered stylish in the 19th century. The roach headdress of animal hair almost certainly originated in the custom, formerly observed...
                04-10-2009, 12:51 PM



              There are no results that meet this criteria.

              Sidebar Ad