Gustwah (headdress)

Description: Mohawk artist Towanna Miller created this contemporary headdress called a gustowah. The number and position of the feathers or the position of the hat can signify what clan the wearer belongs to or what position he holds in his culture. This gustowah features a beaded band that depicts a turtle and the Great White Pine Tree, two very important symbols in the Mohawk Nation. The tree represents the unification of the Iroquois Confederacy which include Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga and Seneca. The turtle may represent one of the three Turtle clans of the Mohawk or part of the traditional creation story.
Collection: The Children's Museum of Indianapolis
Copyright: Creative Commons (CC By-SA 3.0);
Subjects: Indians of North America
Woodland Indians
Mohawk Indians
Onondaga Indians
Indians of North America -- Clothing
Clothing and dress

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