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American Indian Weapons

A blend of innovation and artistry, American Indian weapons reflected a means of protection, resource for hunting, and vehicle for the decorative arts. From finely honed arrowheads to beaded and painted war clubs, American Indian weapons highlight the rich history of these cultures and the ways in which they hunted and defended themselves.

Rudimentary weapons have accompanied humans since their earliest days on the planet. Basic clubs, axes, and spears were used by humankind’s earliest ancestors and were honed from easily accessible materials. As time progressed, weaponry became more refined and more elegant, with decorative motifs and inlaid metals accentuating the handles of bows, hilts of swords, and the sheaths of knives.

American Indians added to this decorative tradition with elaborate painting and beadwork designs, creating beaded handles that often culminated in a matching beaded pendant. Such decoration was often used to commemorate achievements in the field of battle, or included as a symbol of the strength and perseverance of the owner. Today, antique American Indian weapons serve as a reminder of their strength as well as a reflection of artistic expertise.


Quick Facts

  • The oldest documented spear discovered in North America dates to roughly 11,000 B.C. The spear, featuring a fluted tip, has archaeologists rethinking connections between prehistoric and American Indian cultures
  • The axe known as the "tomahawk" was derived directly from American Indian culture. A weapon developed by the Algonquin tribe of predominately northeastern North America, the name itself is a 17th-century Spanish iteration of an Algonquin term for the weapon
  • An Apache painted hide shield appeared in early 2015 at auction at Sotheby’s New York. The shield sold for $62,000, one of the highest prices for such an artifact

Recommended Items at Auction

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Hand Forged Iron Pipe Tomahawk
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Hand Forged Iron Pipe Tomahawk
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$55015 Bids
Carved Iron Spike Wood Ball Club
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Carved Iron Spike Wood Ball Club
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1257 Bids
Hand Forged Pipe Tomahawk
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Hand Forged Pipe Tomahawk
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$2506 Bids
Lot of 3 Horn Tips, 2 Oval Painted Indians, Shell Arrow, Little Pottery Head, Etc
Dec 07, 6:00 PM EST
Lot of 3 Horn Tips, 2 Oval Painted Indians, Shell Arrow, Little Pottery Head, Etc
by Homestead Auctions
Est: $0- $0
$216 Bids
Rawhide Wrapped Stone War Club
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Rawhide Wrapped Stone War Club
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1755 Bids
10 Hand Forged Arrow Tips
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
10 Hand Forged Arrow Tips
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1755 Bids
Collection of Texas & Florida Arrowheads
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Collection of Texas & Florida Arrowheads
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$705 Bids
Beaded Apache Indian “Crazy” Knife Sheath
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Beaded Apache Indian “Crazy” Knife Sheath
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$2505 Bids
American 1865 Cutlery Company Knife
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
American 1865 Cutlery Company Knife
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$805 Bids
Zuni Inlay Hunting Knife With Sheath
Dec 10, 10:00 AM MST
Zuni Inlay Hunting Knife With Sheath
by EJ'S Auction & Appraisal
Est: $0- $0
$455 Bids
American Indian Arrow Points and Tools
Dec 10, 10:00 AM CST
American Indian Arrow Points and Tools
by Link Auction Galleries
Est: $100- $150
$1505 Bids
Hand & Ball Effigy Carved War Club
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Hand & Ball Effigy Carved War Club
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1505 Bids
Stone Bi Pointed War Club
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Stone Bi Pointed War Club
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1504 Bids
Beaded Knife Sheath with Indian Trade Knife
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Beaded Knife Sheath with Indian Trade Knife
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$704 Bids
Crow Beaded and Tacked Knife Scabbard / Knife
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Crow Beaded and Tacked Knife Scabbard / Knife
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1254 Bids
Quilled Buffalo Scrotum Knife Sheath
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Quilled Buffalo Scrotum Knife Sheath
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$2004 Bids
Collection of (27) Artifacts
Dec 10, 9:00 AM EST
Collection of (27) Artifacts
by Chupp Auctions & Real Estate, LLC
Est: $25- $2,000
$754 Bids
Rawhide wrapped Bi Point Stone War Club Buffalo Tail Drop
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Rawhide wrapped Bi Point Stone War Club Buffalo Tail Drop
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1253 Bids
10 Indian /Primitive Trade Knives
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
10 Indian /Primitive Trade Knives
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1503 Bids
3/4 Grooved Axe
Dec 10, 9:00 AM EST
3/4 Grooved Axe
by Chupp Auctions & Real Estate, LLC
Est: $25- $2,000
$753 Bids
Collection of 10 Arrowheads
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Collection of 10 Arrowheads
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$503 Bids
Copper Headed War Axe
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Copper Headed War Axe
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$603 Bids
Sioux Hard Hide Sheath
Dec 10, 9:30 AM EST
Sioux Hard Hide Sheath
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1503 Bids
Beautiful Full Groove Axe
Dec 10, 9:00 AM EST
Beautiful Full Groove Axe
by Chupp Auctions & Real Estate, LLC
Est: $25- $2,000
$503 Bids

Sellers Who Sell American Indian Weapons


Chupp Auctions & Real Estate, LLC

Chupp Auctions & Real Estate, LLC

Col. Christie Hatman, Auctioneer

Col. Christie Hatman, Auctioneer