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Spotlight on White Buffalo Trading Company

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Rhodochrosite. Malachite. Spiny oyster. Fire agate. It sounds like a study list from your third period geology class. But they’re just a small sampling of the rare and semi-precious stones that are available from White Buffalo Trading Company in Overland Park, Kansas.

Owner Pam Minick, whose lineage boasts Potawatomi and Dakota Native American tribes, has personally selected each piece in her store. Nearly every item has been purchased directly from the Native American craftsman who created them. Many other pieces are vintage that Pam has collected through the years.


Beauty of Native American Art

“I’ve had White Buffalo Trading Company for 22 years, and 12 of them have been in Kansas,” stated Pam. “I offer an incredible selection of jewelry, vintage pieces of clothing, beaded coats or jackets, cradle boards, framed art, sculpture, pots, baskets, pottery and so much more. It seems that this type of business has always been a part of me. I really try to bring Native American art into people’s lives and, most importantly, to benefit native people and their families.”


Walking through the door of her establishment is a sensory delight. Case after case features gorgeous, stunning, one-of-a-kind jewelry such as rings, necklaces, cuffs, earrings and more. With this selection, White Buffalo Trading Company could easily be described as a showcase for Native American craftsmanship, while offering a learning experience about their cultures. “I carry the largest selection of fine Native American jewelry in this area, new and vintage pieces,” described Pam. “The quality is wonderful. The stones have been hand selected, and everything is made from sterling silver or 14 karat gold. My white buffalo turquoise is collectible because the last vein is being mined. Most importantly, I stand by everything I sell. If I don’t have it, I’ll try to find it for you.”


Incomparable Service

White Buffalo Trading Company’s list of services is incredible. Pam and her staff focus on custom jewelry fashioned from rare turquoise and other precious stones, jewelry cleaning, ring sizing and repairs, demonstrations, one-on-one bead classes, hand-crafted specialty gifts, a liberal layaway program, free gift wrapping and shipping to anywhere in the U.S. “We have great customer service because we listen to you to understand what you’re looking for in your pieces,” enthused Pam. “We’ll do everything we can to make it happen.”


Pam’s love of offering Native American craftsmanship to the public was instilled in her by her mother, a very successful entrepreneur. She educated Pam on the basics of being a good business person, with a solid sense of right and wrong. “My mother taught me the strict code of honor that she would go by and how you should treat others. She always said, ‘You go the extra mile for people.’ She always gave a fair price to others in her business. Her values made her so successful; she honored people and gifted to others. She had a lot of integrity.”


Native American Tradition

Her mother continues to influence Pam and the White Buffalo Trading Company. Pam offers medicine bags by the Bear and the Raven, which is a concept created by her mother. Medicine bags are small pouches in which sacred articles or medicine objects are carried and kept close to their owner. Designed for an individual’s date of birth, the medicine bag is based on Native American Earth tradition, which offers reverence for nature. Each bag is created to enhance the medicine of an individual’s moon, clan, spirit keeper, totem mineral, totem plant and totem animal to assist them through the “dance of life.” Often worn like a necklace or left hanging on a bed post during the night, these small bags may have many different items in them, such as herbs, crystals, representations of one’s animal token, fetishes, feathers or gifts someone has given you.


“Our medicine bags are supposed to make you feel good,” remarked Pam. “You open it up, see the things inside and remember what makes your heart happy. Each bag comes with two items, and you can add things to it along the way.” Many of them contain fetishes, which are small carvings depicting animals and icons. All of Pam’s hand-carved fetishes are made by Native American artists from the Zuni reservation in Zuni, New Mexico.


White Buffalo Trading Company has served the KC metro area for a number of years. Many of Pam’s clients are repeat customers, and word of mouth has brought in countless others for a visit. “I see White Buffalo Trading Company as a destination store. Many stop because they want to enjoy the experience,” noted Pam. “For people who don’t know about the Native American journey, they’re surprised when they walk in and see our selection. Many come because they want to learn more, and I enjoy offering that experience to them.” HLM


Visit the store at 13328 Metcalf, Overland Park, Kansas, or call 913-789-8858.