Nation/Clan: Tonawanda Band of Senecas/Snipe Clan
WPA Indian Arts Project Ancestor: Robert Tahamont (great-grandfather)
I never knew how to sew or bead until I had my son. My mother told me that I was to sew and bead his outfit when it came time to get his name. I was upset at the time because she had made many outfits for her children and other family members. However, this pushed me to learn how to sew and bead. She gave me a book that had some designs in it and their meanings. When my son got older he started to develop a keen eye for material and designing beadwork. Together we came up with some pretty neat pieces that he will be able to pass down one day.
Jamie Jacobs also brought back quillwork and designs from the late 1700’s to 1800’s and through him I began to learn about period specificc pieces. I learned how to hand sew and do different stitches in order to complete a 1790’s style men’s shirt. I prefer sewing to any other craft, but I’m getting more comfortable beading and prefer the Seneca style of at work.