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Beadwork Masterpieces: Native American Bandolier Bags

People of the Prairies

Prairie peoples who made bandolier bags include the Ponca, Oto, and Omaha, who came to Nebraska in the 1700s or earlier, as well as the Winnebago and Potawatomi, who came here as a result of U.S. government policies in the nineteenth century. Sac, Fox, and Iowa peoples also made bandolier bags.


Jack LeClair and Bob View
Jack LeClair and Bob View,
identified as Ponca, about 1910.

The bandolier bag on the horse has repetitive woven designs that are closely related to those of the Omaha and Winnebago.
Source: Nebraska State Historical Society
[order photo] [RG2066-3-1]


The Oto occupied the prairies of western Missouri and eastern Nebraska from the 1600s to the mid 1800s. In 1854 they were forced onto a reservation in southeastern Nebraska and were moved to Oklahoma in 1881. Not commonly known to produce bandolier bags, the Oto sometimes used them, as this photograph shows.

Group of Oto people about 1920
Group of Oto people about 1920.

Note the man on the far right with the bandolier bag.
Source: Nebraska State Historical Society
[order photo] [RG2064-1-2]

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Last updated 7 February 2005  

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