I just recently moved and while unpacking boxes, I came across one of my odd purchases from a few years back. I bought this from an antique store, Off Broadway Antiques, in Sauk Centre, Minnesota. According to the owner, Jan Watson, she said,
“I bought this head mask from a boy (age 19) who inherited it from his grandparents who were Christian Missionary Alliance missionaries in Africa. It was said to be owned by the witch doctor of a country they were in. The drilled holes would have long reeds hanging from them to cover his features so the tribe members wouldn’t recognize him. I got this in 1981 and has been in my possession ever since.”
She also mentioned they took it to the University of Minnesota to try and find out more information about it. Unfortunately, she didn’t have much luck, but they did say the paint was positive for blood. She said that made sense because animal blood has been added to paint for thousands of years. Prehistoric cave paintings were created using a mix of powered minerals, fat and animal blood.
Also, if you notice, there are 5 crocodile heads on this mask. According to some, crocodiles are considered to be a sacred animal and have the ability to ward off evil. So, I’m wondering if this is actually a good thing to have sitting in my office unlike some of my friends who thought it was too creepy. Only time will tell….