Delaware Bandolier Bag

1840 - 1860

Delaware (Lenape) women created an entirely new style of beadwork in the decade following the Removal Act of 1830 that forced them west from the woodlands of southwest Missouri to the prairies of Kansas and Oklahoma. Known as the “Prairie Style,” it combined northern and southern Woodland designs and would influence the beadwork of many Plains tribes. Delaware women applied this new style of beadwork to European-inspired bandolier bags which the men wore to complement traditional daily attire. 

This classic Delaware bandolier bag has bold ‘batwing’ designs, an asymmetrical format with alternating color fields and superb contour beading. The foundation was crafted with a variety of early red and indigo blue trade cloths, printed calico, silk, seed beads, and cotton thread. Found in Kansas Indian Territory, this beaded design displays the vintage Delaware color preferences of pink and powder blue combined with new vibrant and hot colors of the plains.

Description provided by the History Museum on the Square

Object Details

Categories: Arts & Culture, People

Date: 1840 - 1860

Subject: Delaware Tribe of Indians

Contributing Institution: History Museum on the Square

Rights: Written permission is required for any reproduction, distribution (including posting on social media, emailing, or transmitting by other electronic means), publication, or further use of the History Museum on the Square Images. For more information on obtaining/using this image, contact the archives of the History Museum on the Square.

Region: Southwest

Type: Textile

Latitude: 37.209336

Longitude: -93.292123

Photographer: Ben Divin