piyopyóot’alikt' (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt's) drinking cup

Cultural Narrative: 

This drinking cup was owned by and constructed by Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) chief piyopyóot’alikt (Peo Peo Tholekt). These drinking cups were used regularly by Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) warriors as they traveled. Since the drinking cup was attached to a strap, warriors could easily hold onto the strap and drop the drinking cup into a stream or river to get water. The drinking cup functioned like a canteen that could be used to carry water throughout piyopyóot’alikt' (Peo Peo Tholekt's) travels.

Though it is unknown when piyopyóot’alikt (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt) originally made his drinking cup, evidence indicates he carried his drinking cup throughout the Nez Perce War of 1877 and after the war ended, including the eventual retreat by the Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) warriors and his travels to Canada. After the Nez Perce War concluded, piyopyóot’alikt (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt) and many other Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) warriors and their families could not return to their reservation in present day Lapwai, Idaho as they were considered "non-treaty" Native Americans. piyopyóot’alikt (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt) and others risked being shot if they returned to the reservation, so they were forced to travel a great distance away for their safety, eventually settling in Canada. After a few years, piyopyóot’alikt (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt) and his family were eventually able to return to the Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) reservation in the modern day Lewis-Clark Valley.

piyopyóot’alikt' (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt's) drinking cup is constructed from a qoq’áalx? (buffalo) horn and 24.5 cm in length. It has rawhide and tanned hide straps threaded through each side of the mouth of the cup for carrying and dropping into water sources for water. After piyopyóot’alikt' (Chief Peo Peo Tholekt's) death, his niece Susie Redheart gave the drinking cup to L.V. McWhorter.

Image 1: This photo shows an overview of the drinking cup from above. One can see the different color graining of the qoq’áalx? (buffalo) horn and a white sticker reading "208" or "288" on the left hand side/tip of the horn. The sticker is likely related to museum cataloging/inventory information.
Image 2: In this photo, one can see inside the mouth/drinking end of the drinking cup. The drinking cup strap on the left hand side is much lighter in color than the strap on the right hand side. It is possible the strap on the left hand side is made of rawhide, while the strap on the right hand side is made of tanned hide or both straps were tanned hide with the dye on the left hand strap eventually wearing away.