Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

otter skin bag
  • unknown Lakota maker
  • otter skin bag, 1861–1889
  • Where object was made: Fort Yates, Dakota Territory (present-day North Dakota), United States
  • otter skin, wool, silk, metal, beading
  • Object Length/Width: 103 x 22.5 cm length is nose to tail, width at back feet
    Object Length/Width: 40 1/2 x 8 7/8 in length is nose to tail, width at back feet
  • Gift of H. Greissinger
  • Not on display
  • 2007.1377

The complete otter skin is sewn into a bag with an opening from chin to breastbone. The front feet have a tan wool panel beaded with light blue and white leaf-like designs, and a light blue silk ribbon border.The back feet have a tan felt panel with a silk ribbon border, but the beaded design is in light blue and white with tan beads. The tail has a black wool panel beaded in a botanical design with red, tan, light blue, and colorless beads. There is a formerly green silk ribbon border around the panel. Six tufts of silk ribbon in light blue and white run down the center of the back and tail. Buttons are sewn in place of the eyes.