Dimensions / Weight
Dimensions: 33.5" H x 22" W
Animal skin shirt decorated with beads and strands of human hair.
This shirt is from the J.J. Steffen Collection.
A scalp shirt was worn by the bravest of fighting men. Thus, the making of such a shirt, trimmed with hair from enemy scalps, was both a holy and solemn occasion. Only a warrior who himself possessed a scalp shirt could make one for another warrior. The human hair scalp-locks attached to the shirt have great symbolism. Hair was considered an extension of a person's soul. For an Indian warrior to acquire hair from another was to add his power and strength to his own.