Alaska Native Collections – Sharing Knowledge

Related Objects

Armor collar

ladaxaa “armor collar”
Language: Lingít

There’s a root in there and you bite it, hold onto it with your teeth, so that [the collar] doesn’t slip too far down. And if it appears somebody is going to club you then you raise your shoulders up; the helmet hits [the collar] and your head doesn’t get banged. There’s room inside the helmet so you don’t get hurt.

—Clarence Jackson, translating George Ramos, 2005

This wooden collar fit beneath a warrior’s helmet to cover and protect his face and neck. Notches at the top allowed him to see out, and a small round hole in the center was provided for breathing. Inside the collar is a spruce root loop that he gripped in his teeth. To make this collar a craftsman first shaped a piece of hard spruce burl into a plank, then scored it with parallel grooves and bent it in a circle. Crest designs are carved on the front.

Culture: Tlingit
Region: Baranof Island, Southeast Alaska
Village: Sitka
Object Category: War
Dimensions: Width 31cm
Accession Date: 1884
Source: John J. McLean (collector, U.S. Signal Service)
Museum: National Museum of Natural History
Museum ID Number: E074343