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Native American Church kettle drum / Unknown


Black iron kettle with three tripod legs. The "ears" have been removed.

Curatorial Remarks

The head of the drum would have been required to be kept tight, so the marbles allow for the head of the drum to be adjusted during the ceremony. The leather drum head would have been heated over the fire to allow for stretching. The church house would have owned the drum kettle and the drum parts. The drum itself was a standard cast iron kettle of a particular size, and then they would have modified the kettle to suit their needs. Water drums and kettle production became an expensive trade over time. Glass marbles were the common item for use with stretching the leather deer skin hide across the top. Drum marbles and drums were only used during a peyote meeting.

Tags: Native American Church, kettle drum, deer hide, cast iron
People: Kiowa
Places: Southern Plains, Oklahoma
Purpose: peyote meeting

From interviews with Dr. Garrick Bailey, 2018-2020 University of Tulsa, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology

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Accession No: 
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