Inside the Peabody Museum: July 2014


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Stars, Stripes, and Tobacco

Favorite Things: Australian Aboriginal Spear Points

Free Summer Admission for Military Families



Beaded tobacco pouch with stars and stripes design. Dakota, Sioux. PM 33-77-10/1777

Stars, Stripes, and Tobacco 

Tobacco pouches were traditionally worn and used by many Native American peoples as a way to carry tobacco, small tools, pigments, and other important small personal goods. Both men and women wore tobacco pouches around the neck or looped around a belt because their clothing did not contain western-style pockets.

The use of glass beads to decorate clothing and other objects grew in popularity following their introduction by Europeans in the 16th century. Glass beads were easy to acquire through trade and, compared to traditional quillwork, the process of beading was time efficient and required little labor. Over time, traditional geometric beading patterns were influenced by Western ideas. By the 19th century, floral patterns and patriotic symbols, such as the eagle and early American flags on this pouch, became popular motifs for Native American artists. Contemporary Native American artists continue to use patriotic symbols in their work, and beading remains a popular medium.

This panel pouch was collected between 1890-1933 by Charles Alexander Eastman, 1858-1939, a Santee Dakota man. Eastman attended Dartmouth College and graduated from Boston University School of Medicine in 1889. Following his graduation from medical school, Eastman was a physician for the Bureau of Indian Affairs and was stationed on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota where he treated victims after the Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890. Among other notable achievements, he became a prominent Native American activist and writer and was awarded the first Indian Achievement Award in 1933. --Allison Meadows McLaughlin, Curatorial Assistant

Shawn Rowlands

Watch a video of Shawn Rowlands on Australian Aboriginal Kimberly points.

Favorite Things:  Australian Aboriginal Spear Points

Choosing a favorite group of objects from a collection of roughly 1,000 isn't easy, but Shawn Rowlands gave it a try. He is an Indigenous Australia Curatorial Fellow at the Peabody Museum and during his year-long research residency, Dr. Rowlands is sharing his expertise and improving documentation and stewardship of the Peabody’s roughly 1,000 Australian ethnographic items. His research explores how historic collections of Aboriginal material culture have been used to fabricate both Aboriginal identity and national identity in Australia. Of particular interest are the technological aspects of cross-cultural exchange and their (mis)characterization within museum records.

Dr. Rowlands earned his PhD in Australian History from the University of New England. He is currently a research assistant at the University of New England and Queensland Museum, where he has been working on a catalogue of Queensland Aboriginal material (in press). Other publications include “Entangled Frontiers: Collection, Display and the Queensland Museum, 1878-1914,” Journal of Australian Colonial History (2011).

drinking beer in vietnam by T.C. Cannon

Drinking Beer in Vietnam by T.C. Cannon. On view in Wiyohpiyata: Lakota Images of the Contested West

Free Summer Admission for Military Families

The Peabody Museum offers free admission to the nation’s active service members, including National Guard and Reserve, and their families from Memorial Day, May 26, 2014 through Labor Day, September 1, 2014.

The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card (dependent ID), or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, which includes active duty U.S. military - Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, as well as members of the National Guard and Reserve, U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps - and up to five family members.

Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America. Leadership support has been provided by MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families. To find participating museums and plan your trip, visit

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