Beads 24 (2012)
In Memoriam: Roderick Sprague, 1933-2012, by Karlis Karklins
An archaeologist, educator, and a pioneer in North American trade bead research, Dr. Roderick Sprague passed away in Moscow, Idaho, on 20 August 2012. A staunch supporter of the Society of Bead Researchers, he served as its president from 2004 to 2007, and chaired the Editorial Advisory Committee for a good number of years as well. He also contributed a number of useful articles, news items, and reviews to both the Society’s publications. His moral support and the useful comments and suggestions he made concerning these publications will be sorely missed.
Heirloom Blue-Glass Melon Beads of the Tani Tribes, Northeast India, by Barbie Campbell Cole
The Tani tribes of Arunachal Pradesh in India’s remote northeast wear various heirloom necklaces including those composed of highly distinctive melon-shaped beads of wound turquoise-blue glass. These are unique to central Arunachal and were already of considerable age and very highly prized in the early 19th century. The beads have local names which appear to link them to Tsari, one of Tibet’s most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites. For centuries, the hostile animist Tanis were bought off by the Tibetan government with ornaments and other gifts in return for not robbing the Tsari pilgrims. This article seeks to determine if the Tani melon beads were part of this Tsari “barbarian tribute,” as well as where and when they were made, and why they were traded into this region of Northeast India and not elsewhere.
Chemical Composition of 16th- to 18th-Century Glass Beads Excavated in Paris, by Laure Dussubieux and Bernard Gratuze
Dating from the 16th-18th centuries, 63 glass artifacts (mostly beads) recovered from two sites in Paris, France, were investigated using chemical analysis in an attempt to determine their place of origin. The late-16th-century material from the Jardins du Carrousel consisted of small, monochrome drawn beads with a soda-lime composition. Attributed to the 17th and 18th centuries, the beads recovered at the adjacent site of the Cours Napoléon were more diverse in shape, color, and composition. Although provenance attribution was difficult due to a lack of comparative data, it was possible to identify an increasing variety of glass recipes after the 16th century that revealed a growing interest in glass beads in Europe.