Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

swan feather headdress
  • United States
  • swan feather headdress, early 1900s–1962
  • Where object was made: United States
  • swan feathers, feathers, silk ribbons, cotton, felt, brass, string, appliqué, dyeing
  • Object Height/Width/Length: 39 x 47 x 201 cm
    Object Height/Width/Length: 15 3/8 x 18 1/2 x 79 1/8 in
  • Source unknown
  • Not on display
  • 2007.7116

The feather headdress has a long trailer. The long white feathers for the stand up portion are topped with blue-green or red feathers at the tips. There is a tassel of white feathers and black feathers inside the stand up portion with one long quill topped with downy white, blue-green, and red feathers.

The front of the headdress is decorated with appliqued ribbon. There are red, green, white, purple, and pink horizontal bands with slight angles.

The long trailer base is red cotton and the underside is a faded blue. The row of long white feathers is wrapped with yellow string at the quill and tipped with blue-green or red runs down the center of the trailer.

The small strips of twisted buckskin have a brass bell and tuft of down feathers in blue-green, white, yellow, or red at regular intervals along the long trailer and the front of the stand up portion. Strips of buckskin also suspend a large feather, downy feathers, and bells at either ear.

It is a grey-green felt cap with red cotton lining with a small floral pattern.