Hawaiian Feather Cape

Title

Hawaiian Feather Cape

Subject

Feather cloaks - Hawaiian

Description

Lost + Found family heirloom found in in the NMNH - Anthropology Dept. collections on the Smithsonian website has new information about a Hawaiian feather cape passed down through the Dixon-Welling family.

Catalog Number:
E128386-0
Specimen Count:
1
Division:
Ethnology
Object Name:
Feather Cape
Index Term:
Cape
Continent:
Polynesia
Country:
United States
Province/State:
Hawaii
Collector(s):
Cogswell, J.
Collection Date:
1837 (pre-1837?)
Accession Number:
019116
Donor Name:
Mrs. Clementine L. Welling
The record notes contains interesting details: 
  1. Collector: J. Cogswell (Rev. Jonathan Cogswell 1782-1864) our great3 grandfather)
  2. Donor:  Mrs. Clementine L. Welling (Clementine Lydia Dixon Welling 1843-1912) our great1 grandmother)
  3. Collection date: 1837 (pre-1837?) The family has no record of how Rev J Cogswell acquired the cape and boa. The Record Collection date of 1837 is the same year his wife, Elizabeth Abbott Cogswell died. 

From card: "Ground of red feathers of the Iiwi (Vestiaria coccinea) [a.k.a. 'i'iwi or Hawaiian Honeycreeper.] Two centrally located crescents, one crescent under the neck, and a vertical crescent on each side of the front of yellow feathers of the Oo (Acrulocercus nobilis). Band of the same yellow feathers around the entire lower border. Upper border and the two front margins have the base color of the ground (red), alternating with tufts of black feathers.

Accompanying this cape is a cylindrical boa of yellow feathers or lei to be worn on the head [number for feather lei is E128386-1]. 23" long.

This is apparently the cape numbered 43 in Brigham's "Hawaiian Feather Work" (Bishop Mus. Mem. 1, p. 68 and fig. 84)." `Ahu`ula, feathered cape, olona fiber (Touchardia latifolia), feathers from `i`iwi (Vestiaria coccinea) and `o`o (Moho nobilis).

Object was on display in National Museum of Natural History exhibit "Na Mea Makamae o Hawai'i - Hawaiian Treasures", 2004-2005.

The object link: 


The Dixon-Welling family sent a request from dixonwellingcollection at gmail.com to WomensHistory at si.edu and has not received a response and hopes to connect soon with the Smithsonian womenshistory.si.edu. Stay tuned. This object will be updated with any new details. 

Creator

Caroline Welling Van Deusen, Project Archivist

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

Text

Files

790463B0-095B-4F10-BDB2-376D67DD0F92.jpeg
Hawaiian Feather Cape donated to the National Museum, DC by Mrs. Clementine Welling

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Date Added
December 26, 2011
Collection
OBJECTS
Item Type
Document
Tags
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Citation
Caroline Welling Van Deusen, Project Archivist, “Hawaiian Feather Cape,” E - A r c h i V e s , accessed March 7, 2021, https://citizenarchivist.omeka.net/items/show/429.