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Collecting the Weaver's Art

Collecting the Weaver's Art

The William Claflin Collection of Southwestern Textiles

Laurie D. Webster

ISBN 9780873654005

Publication date: 12/09/2003

This is the first publication on a remarkable collection of sixty-six outstanding Pueblo and Navajo textiles donated to the Peabody Museum in the 1980s by William Claflin, Jr., a prominent Boston businessman, avocational anthropologist, and patron of Southwestern archaeology. Claflin bequeathed to the museum not only these beautiful textiles, but also his detailed accounts of their collection histories—a rare record of the individuals who had owned or traded these weavings before they found a home in his private museum. Textile scholar Laurie Webster tells the stories of the weavings as they left their native Southwest and traveled eastward, passing through the hands of such owners and traders as a Ute Indian chief, a New England schoolteacher, a renowned artist, and various military officers and Indian agents. Her concise overview of Navajo and Pueblo weaving traditions is enhanced by the reflections of noted artist and Navajo textile expert Tony Berlant in his foreword to the text.


  • Laurie D. Webster is an independent scholar and textile consultant, and Visiting Scholar in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Arizona.
  • Tony Berlant is an artist and author, and collector, curator, and expert on Navajo textiles.

Book Details

  • 160 pages
  • Peabody Museum Press
  • Foreword by Tony Berlant