Lot 293    

Go-Won-Go Mohawk, Indian Princess & Wild West Show Performer, Personal Knife, Medal, & Photographs
6/21/2012 - American History, Including the Civil War
Lot includes Go-Won-Go Mohawk's knife with sheath; bronze presentation medallion; and 7 photographs. 

Go-Won-Go Mohawk (1860-1924), also known as Caroline, was born on August 11, 1860 on the reservation in Gowanda, Cattaraugus County, New York, to chief and medicine man Dr. Alan Mohawk, and moved to Green, New York, at age one, living there until the death of her father in 1869. In 1870, Go-Won-Go moved with her mother, Lydia Hale Mohawk, to Painesville, Ohio, where she continued her education. Go-Won-Go was a self-proclaimed "Indian Princess" with many talents. In addition to being a terrific athlete and sportswoman, Go-Won-Go was considered the first Indian actress to perform on the American stage. During the early 20th century, the two primary plays she starred in were "The Indian Mail Carrier," which she wrote and produced, and Lincoln Carter's "The Flaming Arrow."

According to her own authority, she briefly appeared with Buffalo Bill Cody and Wild Bill Hickok in Cody's Wild West Show, where her role required a masterful display of horsemanship, riding two horses at once while standing on their backs. Go-Won-Go was purportedly given the bronze medal of Buffalo Bill and Pawnee Bill in profile, included with this grouping, by Cody himself in remembrance of this performance. The medal measures approx. 1.5 in. in diameter. Go-Won-Go was also an advocate of Native American Rights and was given a pair of white horses by President Harding in recognition of her efforts for this cause. 

Go-Won-Go married Captain Charlie Charles (1835-1926), a white gentleman, in Paterson, New Jersey on May 20, 1889. Charles was an ex-Army officer and former actor who became her stage manager on the Vaudeville Circuit. Charles had also performed with Buffalo Bill following the Indian Wars. Go-Won-Go owned a large home in Edgewater, New Jersey, which was close in proximity to the home and business of the consignor's grandfather, Lorentz Kleiser. Her chauffeur was also the gardener to Mr. Kleiser. Go-Won-Go kept her white stallions at this home in Edgewater, and when they passed, the stallions were buried with an elaborate Indian ceremony in the orchard behind the home of the consignor's grandfather. 

A highlight of this fine lot is Go-Won-Go's knife and sheath, measuring 9 in. long. The knife is a true western American blade, with a hilt that is fastened with copper rivets cut from telegraph wire. The knife, along with the bronze medal, were given to the consignor's grandmother, Mrs. Lucy Kleiser, in recognition of her devoted work with the Camp Fire Girls, which incorporated much Native American lore into its activities. The knife and medal have since descended in the family to the current owner, who was told by his relatives that the knife was an acting prop with a lead blade. However, he later discovered that the blade was made of the finest steel.

Accompanying the knife and medal are 5 photographs of Go-Won-Go, including a cabinet card of her dramatically posed with her knife, and two additional cabinet photographs of Go-Won-Go, one by Wood of New York, the other by Rhoads of Philadelphia. In addition, the lot features 2 large format photographs, one with applied paper label that reads Gowongo Mohawk by a memorial wreath of her deceased lover, 6 x 8 in., mounted,  the other a large photo postcard of Go-Won-Go in her later years, 8 x 10 in. A large photo postcard of her manager and companion, Captain Charley Charles is included with the lot, as well as a souvenir cabinet photograph of Buffalo Bill by Stacy of Brooklyn, New York. 

Go-Won-Go continued to tour and perform until her health failed in 1924. She died in Edgewater, New Jersey at the age of 58. The items featured in this lot provide a unique glimpse at her many accomplishments as a performer. 
Sold: $0.00
Price includes
Buyer's Premium
      Ask a Question

All Images

Dr. Earl Flint, U.S. Medical Doctor and Archaeologist, CDV
Lot # 120 - Dr. Earl Flint, U.S. Medical Doctor and Archaeologist, CDV
CDV by Charles D. Fredrick's & Co., New York, inked identification on verso Dr. Earl Flint, Granada, Nic'a / Via Panama & Realyo. Dr. Flint was an American physician and archaeologist noted for discovering ancient human footprints in hardened lava along the shores of Lake Managua in ... > Item Details
J.N. Choate Cabinet Cards of Spotted Tail & Other Sioux at the Carlisle School
Lot # 188 - J.N. Choate Cabinet Cards of Spotted Tail & Other Sioux at the Carlisle School
Lot of 2 cabinet photographs, each with J.N. Choate's Carlisle, PA backmark, the first a studio portrait of Spotted Tail & Iron Wing, as identified on mount below image; and a group portrait of the No. 3 Sioux Rosebud Agcy / Black Crow/ Two Strike / White Thunder / Spotted Tail / Iron Wing, ... > Item Details
Thomas Jefferson & James Madison Signed Land Grant, Plus
Lot # 372 - Thomas Jefferson & James Madison Signed Land Grant, Plus
Lot of 2, including:  Land grant, 1p, vellum, approx. 11.5 x 15.5 in. Washington (DC), 14 March 1804. Signed by Thomas Jefferson (President 1801-1809) and James Madison (Secretary of State 1801-1809, President 1809-1817). For Lieutenant William Evans, for 1,076 acres of land in southwestern Ohi... > Item Details
General F.W. Benteen Photograph by D.F. Barry
Lot # 240 - General F.W. Benteen Photograph by D.F. Barry
Silver gelatin photograph of General F.W. Benteen, 6.75 x 9.25 in., mounted in cardstock with closing cover, 9 x 12.75 in., photograph and mount include Barry's blindstamp, portrait also signed in white ink Barry Photo, plus cardstock folder's verso features printed paper stamp advertising B... > Item Details
35-Star American Flag, Signed <i>Dr. L.B. Putnam 1866</i>
Lot # 75 - 35-Star American Flag, Signed Dr. L.B. Putnam 1866
Wool bunting, 72.5 x 115 in., with 35 hand-sewn, single-applique cotton stars configured in 6/6/6/5/6/6 horizontal rows. The fly is constructed of 13 machine-stitched, wool bunting stripes. The canvas hoist includes 3 whip-stitched eyelets, and is signed along the lower margin on front and top right... > Item Details
Wounded Knee Massacre Boudoir Photograph by George Trager
Lot # 193 - Wounded Knee Massacre Boudoir Photograph by George Trager
Albumen boudoir photograph, untitled, but identified as the area of the battlefield southwest of the council circle, littered with bodies. The man standing in front of the horse is a relic hunter holding moccasins and other souvenirs scavenged from the dead and wounded. Lacking a studio imprint, but... > Item Details
Union Colonels, Army of the Gulf, Eight Civil War CDVs
Lot # 30 - Union Colonels, Army of the Gulf, Eight Civil War CDVs
Comprising six different uniformed officers (plus one duplicate in civilian clothing) with a vignette of a seventh officer in civilian dress, all colonels with distinguished service in the Army of the Gulf under General Banks. Five of the seven colonels later served as brigadier general or were awar... > Item Details
Sgt. <i>George F. Masson,</i> 5th Virginia Cavalry, Quarter Plate Ambrotype with Daguerreotype of Masson as a Boy
Lot # 7 - Sgt. George F. Masson, 5th Virginia Cavalry, Quarter Plate Ambrotype with Daguerreotype of Masson as a Boy
An outstanding clear plate ambrotype of a casually posed wartime cavalryman sporting an imported Continental saber and belted Colt Navy revolver. He wears a grey six button shell jacket edged with tape trim having corporal’s chevrons and cloth epaulettes. Inside the case penciled on a loose pi... > Item Details
Drakes Photograph of Chief Ed LeClair, Ponca
Lot # 204 - Drakes Photograph of Chief Ed LeClair, Ponca
Toned silver print, 3 x 5.5 in., on 5 x 8 in. cream mount, featuring a standing LeClair in feather headdress and full trail, long otter skin, pictorial breach cloth, holding a catlinite pipe and quilled stem, also wearing beaded vest, heavily fringed leggings, and silver armed cuffs. With Drake'... > Item Details
Breckinridge Family Archive
Lot # 359 - Breckinridge Family Archive
Approx. 165 items, including 130+ photographs, cased images, & portraits, plus 35+ paper items and newspaper clippings. Since Kentucky was established as a state in 1792, the Breckenridge family has gained notoriety not only in Kentucky but also in national politics. To date, the family has i... > Item Details
Louis-Joseph de Montcalm de Saint-Veran, French General, Seven Years' War, ANS
Lot # 306 - Louis-Joseph de Montcalm de Saint-Veran, French General, Seven Years' War, ANS
ANS, 1p, 6 x 7.75 in., Carillon, 25 September 1759. Approved Feb. 1759. In French. Montcalm de Saint-Veran, Louis-Joseph de (1712-1759). Montcalm is best known for his spirited defense of Canada against the British during the French and Indian War. He was defeated and mortally wounded in the Battle ... > Item Details
W. G. Chamberlain CDV of <i>Ouray, Chief of the Ute Indians</i>
Lot # 208 - W. G. Chamberlain CDV of Ouray, Chief of the Ute Indians
Albumen cdv with Chamberlain's Denver, Colorado, backmark, circa 1868. With ink title inscription on verso. Ouray’s coat, made of dark blue wool, saved-list trade cloth with strips of porcupine quillwork on the arms and shoulders, and leather fringes, is now in the National Museum of the A... > Item Details
George Custer Photograph by D.F. Barry
Lot # 239 - George Custer Photograph by D.F. Barry
Silver gelatin photograph of Custer, 8 x 10 in., mounted in cardstock with closing cover, 10.75 x 16 in., photograph and mount include Barry's blindstamp, plus cardstock folder's verso features printed paper stamp advertising Barry's Superior, Wisconsin studio. Photograph copied from the... > Item Details
Gentleman Wearing Large Blaine Campaign Ribbon, Quarter Plate Tintype
Lot # 151 - Gentleman Wearing Large Blaine Campaign Ribbon, Quarter Plate Tintype
Quarter plate tintype of a bearded gentleman wearing a large James G. Blaine ribbon badge. This is the only portrait of a Blaine supporter we have seen that is larger than a sixth plate, indicating the rarity of this particular size. A high quality studio photograph in mint condition. Uncased. > Item Details
William Notman Photograph of a Plains Cree Family & Travois
Lot # 211 - William Notman Photograph of a Plains Cree Family & Travois
Albumen photograph titled in the negative 1817 Cree Indian with Traverse, Calgary, with the individuals identified in the negative as Kenepequoshes (Son of a Snake) and Kustkita Au Musqua (Black Bear & Papoose), signed in negative by Notman & Son's, Montreal, 7.5 x 9.5 in., on cream-colored mount, 9... > Item Details
Attack on the Overland Stage Budweiser Chromolithograph
Lot # 282 - Attack on the Overland Stage Budweiser Chromolithograph
Vibrant 20th century advertising lithograph after the painting Attack on the Overland Stage produced by O.E. Berninghaus ca 1860, 23.75 x 36.75 in. (sight), housed in original wooden frame with ?metal plaque attached, which reads: Attack on the Overland Stage / Presented by Anheuser-Busch, Inc. St. ... > Item Details
General James Longstreet, Group of Five CDVs
Lot # 34 - General James Longstreet, Group of Five CDVs
Lot includes four different common Anthony/Brady views of General Longstreet in uniform, with a scarce post-war view in civilian clothes taken soon after the war. Three of the military views are engravings and one is a copy shot. None are autographed. "Old Pete" became a Major General in October... > Item Details
Abraham Lincoln Signed Presidential Appointment
Lot # 138 - Abraham Lincoln Signed Presidential Appointment
Appointment, partially printed, 13.25 x 17.25 in. (sight), framed, 20.5 x 25.25 in. 9 August 1861. Appointment of Nathan Barker as Quartermaster of Volunteers with the rank of Captain. Signed by Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) as President (1861-1865), and Simon Cameron (1799-1889), as Secretary of War ... > Item Details
Mexican CDV of Two Cowboys
Lot # 258 - Mexican CDV of Two Cowboys
CDV of two cowboys with pistols in their belts, identified on verso as W.S. Harris and Friend, and with the studio hand stamp of Juan J. Silveira, Minatitlan, Mexico. > Item Details
Chief Joseph Photograph by D.F. Barry
Lot # 171 - Chief Joseph Photograph by D.F. Barry
Silver gelatin photograph of Nez Perce Chief Joseph, 6 x 8 in. (sight), mounted in cardstock with closing cover, 9 x 13 in., photograph and mount include Barry's blindstamp, portrait also signed in white ink Barry Photo, plus cardstock folder's verso features an attached, illustrated biograp... > Item Details
ITEMS 1-20 of 20
SKIP TO PAGE: