Pipe based on one collected by Morgan in 1849. Carved by Ernest Smith. 1936 RMSC Collections.


Close-up of pipe bowl.
Ernest Smith. 1936.
RMSC Collections.

Ernest Smith (1907-1975), Tonawanda Seneca craftsman/artist of the Heron Clan, carved this wooden pipe as part of his work with the Indian Arts Project. He based the design on the stone pipe with human face effigy illustrated in Pl.17 of The 3rd Annual Report to the Regents of the University. Smith began the piece on September 2, 1936 and it took him 23.5 hours to carve the piece. It is made from cherry wood and has a willow pipe stem.

Although Smith is known primarily as an artist, he did carve a few pieces during the 7 years he worked in the Indian Arts program.

[click here to see a picture of a similar pipe collected by LH Morgan.]

Reproduction of Red Jacket medal made by Bert Blueskye. 1935.
RMSC Collections.

Photograph of original Red Jacket medal now housed at the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society.


Ely Parker wearing the Red Jacket medal. Photo courtesy of The Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland, Ohio.

Red Jacket received this medal from President George Washington in 1792. The Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society purchased the medal from Minnie Sacket Parker after her husband Ely's death. In his book, The Life of General Ely S Parker (1919), Arthur C. Parker wrote the following description of the medal:

The obverse shows Washington in uniform, bareheaded, facing to the right, presenting a pipe to an Indian chief, who smokes it; the Indian is standing and has a large medal suspended form his neck. On the left is a pine tree, at its foot a tomahawk; in the background a farmer plowing. Below is engraved: George Washington, President, 1792. The reverse shows the arms and crest of the United States on the breast of an eagle, which holds an olive branch in its right talon, a sheaf of arrows in its left, and in its beak a ribbon with the motto, E Pluribus Unum; above, a glory breaking through clouds surrounded by thirteen stars. The medal is oval, six and three fourths by five inches, with raised rim and ring at top. (Parker, 1919: 327)

In May 1935, Indian Arts Project craftsman, Bert Blueskye, a Seneca from the Cattaraugus Reservation, rendered his own copy of the Red Jacket Medal. It is an exact copy of the medal. It took 39 hours to replicate the medal in silver.

[click here for more information about Red Jacket]


IAP Pincushion.
Edith Kennedy. 1935.
RMSC Collections.

Edith Kennedy, a Seneca from Cattaraugus Reservation, made this pincushion in September 1935 as part of the Indian Arts Project. It took her 69 hours to sew and bead the cushion. Kennedy's rendition of Morgan's piece is identical in pattern, though she chose to bead the zigzag pattern along the edging in white instead of blue. She also changed the style of the top hanging ribbon.

[click here to see a lithograph of the original pincushion collected by LH Morgan.]


Beaded pocketbook.
Lillian Blackchief, 1935.
RMSC Collections.

Lillian Blackchief (1908-1990), a Seneca craftsworker from Tonawanda' s Beaver Clan, made this pocketbook in March 1935 as part of the Indian Arts Project. I took her 40.5 hours to complete. Although the pattern of this piece is based on the pocketbook collected by Morgan in 1849, Blackchief chose to exclude some of the detail edging found in the original. This pocketbook was on display at the World's Fair in New York City.

[click here to see the lithograph of the original pocketbook collected by LH Morgan.]

Beaded workbag.
Gertrude Ninham. 1935. RMSC Collections.

Gertrude Ninham, a Seneca from Cattaraugus Reservation, worked 68 hours to complete this workbag in August1935. She duplicated the pattern on the one collected by Morgan for the New York State Museum in 1849.

[click here to see a lithograph of the original workbag collected by LH Morgan.]


Grass mat necklace.
Inez Blackchief, 1935.
RMSC Collections.

Tonawanda Seneca Inez Blackchief (1900-1962) of the Deer Clan made her own version of the Lewis Henry Morgan grass mat necklace during her work with the Indian Arts in November 1935. It took her 55 hours to weave the grass and bead the medallions. Although the number of medallions are the same as in the original Morgan piece, Blackchief used only white beads and created her own designs on each medallion.

[click here to see the original grass mat necklace collected by LH Morgan.]

War club. Franklin Reuben, 1936. RMSC Collections.

A war club, patterned after the one in the Morgan Report, was made by Franklin "Hank" Reuben in March 1936. Reuben, a member of the Turtle Clan at the Tonawanda Reservation, took 42 hours to carve it. The club is made from hickory.