Grandma Elsie's Beaded Keychain

Grandma Elsie

My great-grandmother, known in my family simply as “Grandma,” was born in 1903. She grew up on the Peoria Reservation in Kansas, and as a child was sent to a Native American boarding school for education and assimilation. As an adult, she made so many beautiful things –in fact, many of my memories of her are of her craft: crocheted blankets, beaded jewelry and leatherwork, headdresses.

Her daughter, my Granny, is one of my all-time favorite people who ever existed in the history of the world. I cannot say enough about how incredible this woman was. She was always full of love. She was so much fun to be around. I was with her when she passed on her 83rd birthday, in January 2016.

After she was gone, the sons, daughters-in-laws and the grandchildren went through her belongings. She had a whole collection of beaded leatherwork that Grandma had made. There were plenty for us each to choose one we liked to keep for ourselves. I chose a keychain Granny had on her keys.

Contributed by: Laura McArthur
Created by: Great-Grandmother Elsie Lulu Hobeck
Origin: Peoria Reservation, IL