This bag is a lady's southeastern-style handbag of a type seen in the 19th century, combining wool and silk. Each side has a different design. How much earlier than the 19th century bags of this type existed I can't say, although bags of similar design were used by colonial white women and European women, and it's entirely possible that Indian women picked up on those bags very early. As you know, we simply don't have much material from the 18th century southeastern natives (other than ceramic or metal items that could survive in the ground). Most people think that if you can't prove they had it then they didn't have it. I KNOW they had bags like this in the 19th century. There is at least one reference (Spanish, near Pensacola) to women's leather bags from the 17th century, but there's not detail about the shape of the bag or the decoration, if any.
Copy and photo by Doug Rogers.