Snowshoe Costume




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By Dan Beard

In regard to a proper snowshoe costume, it will probably be found that the mackinaw blanket coat worn by all lumbermen is best adapted to this purpose.

The lumbermen also wear thick wool stockings outside of their trousers and call them leggins. These are very comfortable, but they give the leg a thick, bulky appearance, which can be avoided by wearing knickerbockers and long stockings. Short wool socks can be worn with advantage over the long ones, and tightly rolled down to the top of the moccasin, which will keep out the snow.

The mackinaw coats can be purchased or homemade. Some of these blanket coats are very beautiful and some as gaudy as an Indian chief in war paint. One suit in my costume chest consists of a blue and yellow striped coat and scarlet trousers with a blue plaid, the squares of which are about 6 inches broad. 

This loud clothing I bought at a lumber camp in northern Michigan. Formerly, lumbermen, Indians, and snowshoers wore a red silk or worsted scarf about their middle, but now it is seldom seen, a strap, or the belt of the jacket itself answering the purpose.

There is but one positive rule for the snowshoer concerning his dress and that is he must wear moccasins, but the rest of his clothes may be anything that his taste and comfort direct.

Copy_of_FFHB450.gif (21389 bytes)

The mackinaw coat is shown in several of the diagrams, and Fig. 450 shows the complete winter costume of a lumberman.


The Snowshoe Costume

while not made to be stylish, chic, or smart, nevertheless possesses all these qualities, Fig. 82. It is made of blankets, usually the white blankets, the stripes on the blankets adding an artistic and decorative effect to the clothes. 

This blanket suit is a modification of the old lumberjack's costume, and as this is a modification of the Northern Indian's costume the whole thing is as truly American as the buckskin clothes of Boone or Crockett.

When one's body is clothed with a blanket tunic, known as a parka, the head is protected by a toque, (a knitted cap), which ends with a tassel at the top and is worn in moderate weather. 

In severe weather the toque is pulled down over the ears and brows, and the pointed hood at the back, collar of the parka, is pulled over the toque. Blanket breeches or knickerbockers are also worn and the lower legs covered with heavy woolen stockings.

The snowshoers wear several pairs of stockings, a long pair reaching up over the bottom of the knickerbockers, like golf stockings, and the shorter socks rolled down over the top of the moccasins in a tight roll which prevents the fine snow from sifting into the moccasins.







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Peer- Level Topic Links:
Simple Snowshoes ] Pioneer Snow Shoes ] Chippewa Snowshoes ] Alaskan Eskimo Snowshoes ] Snowshoe Bindings ] [ Snowshoe Costume ] PVC Pipe Snowshoe ]

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How to Build Sleds ] How to Make Snowshoes ] Hudson Bay Capote ] How to Make Skate Sails ] Layering ] Survival Kits ] How to Make Moccasins ] Snow Ballista, Catapult ] Equipment List ]

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Last modified: October 15, 2016.