So far, so good.
But as a Crow Nation leader took off his own woven headgear and placed it atop the president's head, the die was cast.
Obama, who was adopted by the Crow Nation in 2008 and named "One who helps people throughout the land," quickly took off the hat and held it before handing it back. He appeared far more comfortable with the blanket, which he wore draped over his suit for a couple of minutes.
“What an amazing honor, and what a kind gesture for the honor song and the blanket and the hat,” Obama told the crowd. "I have to say I’m also very glad that you also have a blanket for Michelle so she doesn’t steal mine. She would, too. I’m just saying.
“But that was very moving, and is a reminder of the great friendships that we’ve developed over the last eight years,” he added.
The president joked that even though he developed a close connection with the Crow while running for the White House, he was careful to devote plenty of attention to other tribes, as well. "And my brothers at Crow Nation, brothers and sisters here, I may be an adopted son of the Crow Nation, but I try not to play favorites," he said.
Obama, for those who are checking, is not the first commander in chief to sport tribal headwear. Calvin Coolidge, who signed the Indian Citizenship Act of 1924, was adopted into the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in 1927 when he was visiting South Dakota's Black Hills. Coolidge, accompanied by wife Grace, wore the headdress long enough to pose for a photo with her along with Rosebud Yellow Robe and Chauncey Yellow Robe from the Lakota tribe.
Although some aides warned against the move, Coolidge was undeterred. "Well, it's good for people to laugh, isn't it?" he retorted.