Mrs. Rockefeller goes vogueJanuary 18, 2011
One day about 1975 David Rockefeller and his wife Peggy came into our gallery. They were occasional visitors to Santa Fe and while they didn’t buy much from us it was fun to chat with them as they wandered through our space.
Mrs. Rockefeller was interested in the fifty or so pairs of beaded Indian moccasins that were hanging from the ceiling in one of our rooms. Most of the moccasins were late 19th century and all were stuffed with tissue paper that helped preserve their form. And they were in pretty good shape considering they had previously been worn by teepee Indians around the mountains in Montana and Wyoming.
Well, Mrs. Rockefeller sat down and pointed out several pairs that she would like to look at. We thought it was a little funny when she started removing the tissue and trying the moccasins on. No one had ever done that with us before because those things were antique collector pieces, and they weren’t cheap. Soon, tissue paper and beaded moccasins littered the floor.
Finally Mrs. Rockefeller found a pair of Blackfoot moccasins that she liked. A giant smile rose from her face as she paced back and forth testing the fit. “There,” she said, picking up her designer shoes and dropping them in a trash can by the desk. Everyone was calm as she wrote a check and headed for the door with her bewildered husband in tow. But when the screen slammed there was a wild dash as three stampeding female bodies flung across the room and clanked upon that poor little trash can. No one was seriously hurt but it was so funny. I’m glad my wife wasn’t there because she might have been killed.
After retiring from the Air Force in 1970, I built an art gallery in Santa Fe that my wife and I ran for seventeen years. Since then, my energies have been directed toward excavation of a large Indian pueblo and writing books about art and exploration. I hope you enjoy my blog!