This is a nice old umbilical cord fetish with the classic old colors of white heart reds, old pinks, and periwinkle blue. Legs have tin trade cones. The underside has sewn slit and UNUSUAL beaded four winds cross. No beads or cones are missing. Body is approx 3" X 6" not counting legs. It appears to be representative of a lizard. Price: $650
In many Indian tribes, babies are presented with this when they are born. For the Northern Arapaho, boys receive lizards, the symbol of long-life and wisdom, while girls are given a turtle. According to the Arapaho creation story, a turtle dove to the bottom of the ocean and retrieved a mouth-full of clay from which the earth was created. Since that day, turtles have been considered the mother of the world and a symbol of fertility. These are used to hold the baby's umbilical cord and provide good luck. Some tribes tied them onto the baby's cradleboard. There it is served as the child's first toy. In other Indian cultures, the child's mother wore them . Old photographs show women with them dangling in a full circle around their waists, one for each of their children. Arapaho tradition maintains that when you see baby's crawling around in the dirt, they are looking for their umbilical cord, so if you save the cord in this for them, they always know where to find it.