Summary

Silver brooches were used by chiefs to hold their coats closed at the neck. Until the mid-nineteenth century, brooches about the size of pocket watches were made and after that time larger examples emerged. Women also wore these brooches, and sometimes a number of them on sash belts and hats. Trade silver became a major status symbol amongst North American Woodland groups, and was taken mainly from the eighteenth century trade goods that included silver brooches and hat bands. Round gorgets or breastplates and medals were also handed out to Native American men by officials and the English and French military as part of treaty based exchanges and in order to secure co-operation and goodwill. The metal was remodelled and worn as brooches. However the silver cuffs and hat bands were also popular amongst the Indigenous peoples.

Physical Description

A silver brooch with a scalloped outer edge decorated with two incised undulating lines and a multipointed star type form in the centre. It has a pin attached at the back.

More Information