How Cozy McSparron went from Boxer to Indian Trader and the Weaving that started Sallie Lippincott on the road to Wide Ruins

In 1936, Sallie Wagner Lippincott and her husband Bill moved to the Navajo Reservation as National Park Service employees at Canyon de Chelly, Arizona. 

One of the first people they met was Leon Hugh (Cozy) McSparron who was the Indian Trader at the Thunderbird Ranch (which is now the Thunderbird Lodge and is owned by the Navajo Tribe) at the mouth of the Canyon.

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The Story of the Wide Ruins Weaving

Saturday, September 14, 2019 2:51 PM

The Story of the Wide Ruins Weaving

“From Debutante to Indian Trader,” is the story of a woman born into a privileged life in Wheeling, West Virginia who ended up buying the Wide Ruins Trading Post in 1938, at the age of 32, and transformed the art of Navajo weaving.

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An Incredible Large Rug from the Historic Gap Trading Post

North of Flagstaff, Arizona 85 miles and 45 miles south of Page on Highway 89 you will find “The Gap” Trading Post. It is situated deep into the Navajo Reservation and lies on a paved highway linking Northern Arizona and Lake Powell. 

It wasn’t always that accessible. 

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We'll See You in Salt Lake City!

Sunday, March 31, 2019 8:38 AM

We'll See You in Salt Lake City!

We are headed to the beautiful Natural History Museum of Utah this coming weekend for our annual Navajo Weaving Silent Auction and Sale and Trunk Show of Native American Jewelry!

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A Round Navajo Rug?

Wednesday, March 13, 2019 7:35 AM

A Round Navajo Rug?

There are a few Navajo weavers who make round rugs. These weavings are not common as there are some challenges to creating one. Over the years, we have worked with several women who made them, but they have all passed on.

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Mae Morgan: A Woman and a Weaver to be Admired!

Saturday, January 26, 2019 7:30 AM

Mae Morgan: A Woman and a Weaver to be Admired!

It used to be that the phone would ring four times a year. Rosita Lee would be calling from Crownpoint, NM to say that, “Mom has some rugs she wants to bring up Tuesday.”

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33rd Annual Navajo Weaving and Indian Jewelry Silent Auction and Sale

On November 3 in Denver, we will be holding the 33rd Annual Benefit Silent Auction and Sale of Navajo Weavings (and we have now added Indian Jewelry) to benefit the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History.

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Modern Classic Navajo Chief Designs

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 11:11 AM

Modern Classic Navajo Chief Designs

The Chief Blanket, woven by the Navajo Women of the 1800s, was one of the most prestigious possessions a Southwest American Indian could possess. The blankets were simple and elegant in their design, beautifully woven and accented the body of the weaver. 

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The Chimayo Side of Indian Market

Thursday, August 9, 2018 7:08 PM

The Chimayo Side of Indian Market

After 13 years Sallie Wagner Lippincott and her husband Bill left the Wide Ruins Trading Post, which they purchased in 1938. They were art collectors and their trips took them to diverse parts of the world, from post-war Japan to Santa Fe.

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A Sweet J.B. Moore Crystal Weaving

Friday, April 27, 2018 8:14 AM

A Sweet J.B. Moore Crystal Weaving

We recently came across a very nice example of the type of Navajo rug that was woven in the 1903-1920’s era on the Navajo reservation at the Crystal Trading Post. The post was owned, in fact it was built, by a man named John B. Moore who had traveled much of the west before settling in the beautiful mountain area near the New Mexico and Arizona border. 

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A Unique Yeibichai Weaving by Elizabeth Bitsue

Wednesday, April 18, 2018 7:57 AM

A Unique Yeibichai Weaving by Elizabeth Bitsue

Navajo Yeibichai weavings have been made since the early part of the 1900’s. They depict dancers in a healing or blessing ceremony that is performed after the first frost in the fall. The Yeibichai dancers represent the Yeis, Navajo deities, and are an essential part of the ceremony, which also includes a Navajo medicine man creating sand paintings. 

Weavings depicting the Yei figures first appeared in the Shiprock area of the Navajo reservation. They were encouraged by traders in the area and became a traditional Navajo weaving pattern. The Yeibichai weavings were a natural evolution of the Yei patterns. 

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Old Rugs (Almost) Never Die!

Monday, August 14, 2017 8:12 AM

Old Rugs (Almost) Never Die!

Those of you know me or read this blog regularly, know that I never met a Navajo Rug that I didn't like. Sure, some are more favorite than others, but there is always something to find in a rug that you can like and admire.


So what happens when a weaving is damaged or suffers a color run? What if your dog chews off the corner or your best friend (because you would never) drops a glass of red wine or coffee on your favorite weaving?

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