That is a very interesting tipi liner, have not seen that one before. If you ever find out where you copied this from, please let me know!
It was undoubtedly once in a museum (based on the generic blue cloth in the background), although many of these were eventually sold to private collectors. Someone did put numbers next to many of the scenes, so there must have been a document with comments or descriptions.
Great detail on the red war cape and turban / head cover.
Great discussion. First, I was privileged to attend the opening ceremonies of the Diker exhibition at the Seattle Arts Museum last evening and must say that seeing things "for real" is another whole universe-sized realm of wonderment! More on this later. As I capitalize below I am not shouting but EMPHASING... :-)
Now, on to Crow scouts on 25 June 1876...and the several narratives that talk of their "dressing" for battle to include wearing eagle "breath feathers" to help their journey to the other world if they were killed. They went forward, until four of them were "released" from their duties by Custer via Bradley. Two - Half Yellow Face and White Swan - were ordered to go with Reno and they did. And from that we have the wonderful telling of the battle by White Swan in the art shown in my book. Sorry, dT...but they did "go forward" until told to leave. Curley did as did White Man Runs Him, Hairy Moccasin, and Goes Ahead. This is probably left to another discussion topic but for now...they lived because they followed orders. I discuss this at some length in the White Swan biography.
The vignette above from the White Swan painting now curated at the Buffalo Bill Cody Center of the West was NOT done by White Swan. ALL other examples of this event DO NOT show the two individuals attired as shown in this particular piece. I have a fairly firm idea of who "helped" in this particular painting but this vignette is not by White Swan's hand.
I'll go through all his art once more - only the Little Big Horn art is in Rubbing Out Long Hair - and by the weekend be able to post some other examples of robe wearers I'm sure.
Yesterday I also set in motion a second printing of Rubbing Out Long Hair. Enough interest has been expressed to do so and viola' - let me know if interested.
Thanks for the plug about Rubbing Out Long Hair...really good to have it back in print.
Here is the caped vignette NOT painted by White Swan (although it is his event) next to other events painted BY White Swan in the Dyck muslin. The oeuvre of the caped event appears only once in all of White Swan's art - this once - and comparison with that known to be by White Swan and this depiction shows clearly not by his hand. I've directly seen almost all his art - excepting the Burgess drawings, the robes in Browning and Nebraska State Historical, and the Snite muslin - and am most certain he did not paint this version. Now, the rest of the Dyck muslin IS White Swan. It is just this one vignette.
I thought for a long time that perhaps a non-Indian artist had "helped" but Bill Holm has convinced me it is by an Indian.
Bearing in mind what their purpose seems to be, I don't suppose there is any photographic evidence of Lakota wearing war capes, though I wonder if Black Bull (by Goff, I think) is wearing a cape in this photo or whether it's just a very loose neckerchief?
I agree, but... I think there were several types of cape. Some clearly have designs painted on them; some are the plain red capes seen in the pictures earlier in this thread; some are decorated with feathers; some are animal skins (with or without designs); some seem to be nothing more than plaid blankets tied around the neck - the kind of material used as shawls by women (though I have seen it used as breechclout material in photos of the Plateau tribes).
You can see some of the variations here:
Do we assume ANY blankets worn in this fashion implies some kind of protective charm?
Berlo thinks that the red capes may be the wrapping cloth of the man's medicine bundle:
Red Hawk drawing
Ghost Shirt Protecting a Sioux Escapes Berlo p.212 “… the red cloaked warrior wears what may be simply the wrapping cloth of his protective “wotawe,” or medicine bundle, which warriors into battle for proectection… For example, Sitting Bull’s wotawe is a green trade cloth painted with elk and dragonflies, which he is said to have worn in the fight against Custer in 1876.”
Mary Collins Collection
Okicinintawa Kills an Enemy Berlo p.184 “… tbis may be the wrappring material of his war medicine bundle, which would have served as a protective cloak.”
High Backbone by Bad Heart Bull:
His garb is described by Helen Blish as a “red mantle and cap.” This is a copy of one of the drawings (246), though I may have taken some liberties with the original colour scheme. There are three drawings identified as featuring being High Backbone (plates 246, 254 and 279), but a man with a cape and the same headgear appears in 249; his blanket is lighter, but there are occasional inconsistencies in BHB’s drawings (for example, High Backbone doesn’t have a beaded strip down his leggings in 254, but does in the other plates) and he is armed as in the other drawings with carbine and coup stick AND he is in the same sequence of drawings, depicting the fight with the Crow known as The Battle When They Drove Them Back to Camp (1869/70), so I suspect it’s safe to identify him as the same man.
I think Kingsley’s idea that this cap and cape outfit represents some sort of society regalia needs looking into, but the illustrations we have in this thread are the ONLY examples I’ve come across. There are none, for example, in Red Horse’s drawings nor are there any in the Black Hawk ledger; moreover, at the moment, I’m only aware of one photographic representation and that’s of the Arikara (or Hidatsa) man who has the “cap” but not the cape.
I am surprised that there isn't a Lakota historian who knows the answer to this.
Pehaps Gregor is close. If the red blankets were prized as a symbol for burial, then anyone who wore one into the battle ... is saying that he is prepared to die. Therefore the red cloak, when worn in battle, would make the statement - "I am willing to fight to the death".