You are here:

Native American Culture/wooden purse, bows and arrows


Indian Artifacts
Indian Artifacts  

Indian Artifacts
Indian Artifacts  
I have an old purse that looks to be carved out of a single piece of wood. The hinges, clasp and handle appear to be made of iron. When the door is pulled open, a storage area is revealed. The purse is approximately 7 inches tall.
I also have 2 hand made bows and 2 hand made arrows. Everything is in very good condition which makes me wonder if they are authentic items made by American Indians from years ago.
Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your time.

This looks like it may have been a collections box, for a church or possible a stage coach. Is there a reason you feel it is some kind of Indian made item? It also may have had some trading post use, but I am not familiar with any traditional American Indian items made using wrought iron and heavy lumber such as this.

Bows: Without any provenance, there is just not enough to go on in determining that these are Indian made and not hobbyist made, and whether they have any age or are replica items made to resemble older ones. I may be able to tell you more with some close-up detail images of the feather flight attachments and the points as well as how the ends of the bow were set up. Hope this helps.

Native American Culture

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Richard Sutton


As a direct reservation trader in all aspects of American Indian arts since 1985, I've answered questions regarding cultural property issues, origins of traditional crafts, materials and techniques, collecting, authenticity, symbols and, of course, repairs! We have operated a retail gallery since that time, bricks and mortar until 2007 and online since 1996. Our online operation closed in 2/2015, to allow me to finally write full-time. My writing site can be found at I'll be adding a book or two from our trader experiences under the pen name of W.T. Durand and the rest of my fiction is under my own name. We are not "New Age" practitioners of adopted American Indian religious ceremonies or combined philosophies. If you are seeking such knowledge for spiritual reasons, we will only provide answers that address factual information on these subjects. Unless one is raised in a traditional, American Indian family with language, culture and religious belief intact, we don't believe that simply applying the trappings or cultural property of a given traditional group will give a non-Indian (Native if you prefer)any insight other than the academic.


My primary focus is on Southwester American Indian Nations and their people, but I also have experience in Plains and Northeastern traditions, having engaged in active trade and retail since 1985 and study for most of my life. I am not claiming any expertise at all in the work, techniques, lifeways or crafts that are made by the Native People of Mexico. They are not the same, either linguistically or culturally but certainly their crafts deserve discussion and appraisal by those who are able to provide real information.

I was a guest on Fox Network "Lifestyles" program, during the 1990s, to discuss how to tell forgeries, and authenticating jewelry as Native American work. I have also written extensively for our website, and our Ebay Store.

UofO, 1970 active in the Authentic American Indian Arts business and direct Trader since 1985. Graphic Designer and published novelist.

©2016 All rights reserved.