Silhouette: "Plains Indians"


U.S. Department of the Interior Museum

U.S. Department of the Interior Museum

This is one of five zinc silhouettes created in the summer of 1939 specifically for the Indian Affairs alcove in the original exhibitions of the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum. The silhouette was constructed from plate glass, chrome plating, molding, and zinc at an average cost of $35.31 per foot. The scene from left to right depicts: a tree; a male Indian wearing a headdress and riding on horseback; two smaller, more distant male Indians on horseback holding spears; a female Indian carrying an infant on her back and riding a horse or burro that is pulling a load-bearing litter; a running dog; a seated dog; two distant teepees; a seated male Indian with a feather in his hair; a standing younger male Indian holding a spear; a seated or kneeling figure (possibly female); a standing male Indian wearing a headdress holding a spear, with his proper right leg bent and resting on a rock; and three large teepees. The silhouette was originally displayed in a high, recessed backlit niche near the ceiling.

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  • Title: Silhouette: "Plains Indians"
  • Date Created: 1939
  • Physical Dimensions: H 20, W 118.75, D 2.125 inches
  • Provenance: INTR 02644
  • Subject Keywords: North America, Native American, American Indian, silhouette, horse, dog, tipi, teepee, headdress, Plains
  • Type: Silhouette
  • Rights: U.S. Department of the Interior Museum
  • Medium: zinc, wood, steel