Cigarette Case

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Specimen Count
From card: "Silver, vertically rectangular box for pack of cigarettes, elaborately decorated with figures applied in relief, stamp decorated and set with blue and green turquoise, initials on front: "L.T.D.L." [initials of collector/donor, presumably].
Note: the swastika design is actually what is usually called the Navajo "whirling log" symbol. It is in no way related to the Nazi swastika. In 1940, in response to Hitler's regime, the Navajo, Papago, Apache and Hopi people signed a whirling log proclamation. It read, "Because the above ornament, which has been a symbol of friendship among our forefathers for many centuries, has been desecrated recently by another nation of peoples, therefore it is resolved that henceforth from this date on and forever more our tribes renounce the use of the emblem commonly known today as the swastika . . . on our blankets, baskets, art objects, sand paintings and clothing." Reference: The Swastika Symbol in Navajo Textiles by Dennis J. Aigner. DAI Press, Laguna Beach, California, 2000. The swastika was also popular in the early 20th century in Europe and North America as a good luck symbol and was sometimes used decoratively in that sense on Navajo-made objects produced for the tourist market.
Record Last Modified
4 Dec 2014
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
Donor Name
Dr. Lucinda D. Templin
See more items in
New Mexico, United States, North America
Accession Date
Object Type
Cigarette Case
Accession Number
USNM Number
Navajo (Diné)