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Miscellaneous, Beaded Umbilical Fetish, Plains Indian, American Eagle, Vintage, 168

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What a treasure!

This beautiful beaded American eagle is actually an umbilical fetish. What’s an umbilical fetish? Sounds kinda gross, right? It’s not, it’s very cool. In preparation for a child’s birth, it was a tradition for a female relative or relatives -- mothers, aunts, grandmothers -- of the unborn infant to bead two identical pouches in the shape of an animal whose spirit traits they wanted the child to possess. When the newborn’s umbilical cord fell off, it would be inserted into one of the pouches and sewn up. The matching pouch would contain nothing but stuffing and serve as a decoy, confusing, and diverting evil spirits who may want to harm the child or take over their spirit. When the child reached the proper age, the fetish amulet would be presented to him or her to guard, and it became a form of personal protection worn around the neck or attached to their clothing. 

Fetishes are made from brain-tanned hides and are hand-beaded. This particular amulet is in the shape of an eagle, with a cross beaded upon his chest and an iteration of the American flag on either wing and accented with long leather fringe. It’s in excellent vintage condition, with natural aging to the still supple leather. 

And we know what you’re wondering… No, we’re not sure whether there is an umbilical cord in there. The only way to know would be to open it up. Odds are 50/50!

  • materials: brain-tanned hide, seed beads
  • dimensions: 8" x 4"
  • weight: 75 grams
  • condition:  good vintage condition with natural aging, leather is still supple
  • style number: JM168
in stock
All returns on jewelry subject to exchange or store credit only.
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PRODUCT DISCLAIMERS

INDIAN ARTS & CRAFTS ACT DISCLAIMER

In the absence of a specific assertion or certification to the contrary, Double D Ranch does not warrant, represent, or suggest that any particular item or product which is sold or offered for sale by Double D Ranch in any forum or venue of sale is created or produced by any Indian or Indian Tribe, is an Indian product, or was created by any Indian arts and crafts organization as such terms are defined by the laws of the United States, or the laws of any other jurisdiction, including without limitation, the Indian Arts and Crafts Act and rules set forth by the Indian Arts and Crafts Board.

Double D Ranch supports the goals of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act and the Indian Arts and Crafts Board to prevent fraudulent advertisement, support truth-in-advertising, and prohibit misrepresentation in the marketing of Indian arts and crafts products within the United States.


VINTAGE & OLD PAWN JEWELRY DISCLAIMER

  • Many of the jewelry items we sell are antique, vintage, and/or pre-owned. We acquire these pieces from dealers in New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada, who work exclusively with Native American jewelry and art. That means they had a life before we found them, and they may show evidence of that previous life; signs of wear, dents, scratches, oxidation, broken stones, etc. We strive to be accurate and transparent in our descriptions of these pieces.

  • Jewelry items are not photographed to scale. We’re not trying to be tricky, our clothing items aren’t photographed to scale either (imagine how large that catalog would be!). Please check the description for the item’s dimensions and feel free to email us with any questions.

  • We are not gemologists. We choose pieces based on their overall aesthetic and how well they accessorize the Double D Ranch collection. Due to the high quality of laboratory-made stones and the influx of fake “Native American” jewelry from the Middle East, we rely heavily on our vetted suppliers to maintain a level of confidence in the quality of stones, provenance, and authenticity of each piece. We try our best to accurately describe the stones in our jewelry items but cannot absolutely guarantee them.

  • We celebrate aging. In ourselves, and in our jewelry. We want the true age of the piece to be represented, so we do not perform any type of cleaning or polishing. If the item is oxidized when we acquire it, that is precisely how you will receive it.