Medicine Case

Crow, Montana

American

Medicine Case, ca. 1870-1880

  • On View

Buffalo rawhide, elk hide fringe, red and black wool cloth, and paint

Dimensions: 17 3/4 × 48 1/2 in. (45.1 × 123.2 cm)

Museum purchase from the Chandler/Pohrt Collection, 1985.31

The fringe attached to this medicine case was an important element in Native American attire. Fringe originally functioned to wick water away from the object but later became an ornamental aspect of clothing and accessories. Since it required a great amount of time to individually cut and attach strips of hide to an object, items with fringe were associated with status.

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