“ THE CHIEF CELEBRATES HIS NEW HAT ”
How did he happen to come by the top hat? Where did the jacket come from? Were they a gift? Did he trade for these items or were they acquired from an unlucky settler? I love leaving mysteries in my sculptures. Good works of art never answer all your questions. They leave you wanting more.
Here are a few answers: The chief is a Mandan Indian. Men of that tribe often grew their hair ‘til it reached the ground. In the fall, women would take a sticky substance and wrap it around long lengths of individual groupings of hair. The of the pipe bowl is made of Catlinite (commonly referred to as pipestone). This stone was named after the painter George Caitlin. He was the first white man to visit the mine where this stone is quarried. An amazing fact: No single tribe laid claim to this area of stone quarrying. It was held as sacred and allowed access to all for the purpose of acquiring the stone to make bowls for smoke pipes.