Artifact of the Week: Moccasins

Where did the word "moccasin" come from?

How are these similar to, and different from, modern shoes?



Answers:

Where did the word "moccasin" come from?

The word "moccasin" was taken from the Algonquian name for their leather shoes. When European settlers came they adopted the design and used it themselves. Over time the word came to loosely refer to leather shoes of any kind.

How are these similar to, and different from, modern shoes?

In their most basic form, moccasins are leather stitched together to cover the foot, but they can be made from a wide variety of patterns. They might only cover the foot, or they might be more like boots. They can also be decorated, for example with beads or embroidery.



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