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Culture:Alaska Native; Yupik or Iñupiat
Title:Snow goggles
Date Made:19th or early 20th century
Place Made:North America; United States; Alaska
Measurements:overall: 1 1/4 x 5 5/8 x 2 1/8 in.; 3.175 x 14.2875 x 5.3975 cm
Narrative Inscription:  On bottom in black ink: "Esquimaux Snow Spectacles" and "4"
Accession Number:  MH 2003.26.3
Credit Line:Gift of Anna B. Clarke (Class of 1876) and Transfer from the Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections
Museum Collection:  Mount Holyoke College Art Museum

This object is under review for NAGPRA-sensitivity.

Recent updates to NAGPRA (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act) require consent from lineal descendants and/or affiliated Native American Tribes or Native Hawaiian Organizations before displaying or researching cultural items. We have removed the public image of this belonging until we can learn more about the wishes of affiliated Tribal officials or the descendants of those who made it.

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Missionary Cabinet. Wooden goggles with two eye slits, indentation for bridge of nose, smooth front, roughly carved back, and two holes on each side for straps. There are traces of potentially sinew fibers tied to each hole. In the back, the fibers are wrapped around a black material keeping the straps in place. The insides of the eye slits are blackened with soot or graphite, providing additional protection from the glare of the sun. Snow goggles were made out of multiple materials, including bone and various types of wood, but because wood is easier to carve and more available, it is more common. These could have been made for the tourist trade, but they also show signs of wear, indicating use. Listed as #4 in the “Catalogue of Cabinet of Articles sent by Missionaries to Mt. Hol. Fem. Sem. all before 1892” under American Indians. On the bottom of the goggles, “Esquimaux 4” and “Snow Spectacles” are written in black ink.

indigenous people; Native American

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