The Pendleton Tribute Series pays homage to the American mills that pioneered the weaving of Indian trade blankets. Pendleton was one of five major mills that produced these often dazzling, geometric patterned blankets during the “golden age” of the trade blanket in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The blankets were originally made for sale and trade to Native Americans. Inspired by authentic Indian designs, they quickly became objects of prestige for tribal members and later popular among Americans throughout the country.
Blankets from Racine Woolen Mills of Racine, Wisconsin, were notable for their excellent quality. The mills specialized in nearly square fringed blankets, also called shawls, which were worn primarily by Native American women.