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Klamath storage basket

ca. 19th Century
19th Century
8 in. x 13 in. (20.32 cm x 33.02 cm)

Native American, Native American

Object Type: Baskets
Creation Place: North America, United States
Medium and Support: Hazel or willow warp shoots; conifer root weft; bear grass and maidenhair fern overlay
Credit Line: Found in Collection
Accession Number: 1969.81
Technique: Twined basket with a full-twist overlay (design in fully visible on interior and exterior). Bear grass makes up the background overlay and the design are done in maidenhair fern.

Design: Really stunning and bold example of a wax’poo design, also called a friendship design. This design looks quite like the one on page 129-131 of Kroeber, which he describes is an apxanko’ikoi design of the Karuk. He says this is an unusual variation for the Karuk, with the double line through the middle of the main design. The design is in odd numbers.

Structure: The edge is a little unevenly trimmed, maybe it used to have a different edging. It has a really fine weave and is in great shape and very strong. There is a blue smudge on the inside (paint?). The base is very strong and has a woven stick to support the base for stability.

Cultural affiliation notes: The record just says Klamath and there is some ambiguity here about whether that means lower Klamath River groups like the Hupa, Yurok, and Karuk - or NE California Klamath region groups like the Klamath/Modoc, Pit River, Shasta, etc. The This one looks much more Hupa, Yurok, Karuk to me - in terms of the materials, the design, and some structural elements like the button/start.

Citation: Kroeber, Alfred L. “Basket Designs of the Indians of Northwestern California.” University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 2, no. 4 (1905): 105-164

Jesse Dutton-Kenny, Visiting Researcher, October 26th - 27th & 29th - 30th, 2020

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:


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