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Twined basket cap, Northeast California (Klamath, Modoc)

20th Century
4 1/8 in. x 8 in. (10.48 cm x 20.32 cm)

Native American, Native American

Object Type: Baskets
Creation Place: North America, United States, NE California, Oregon Border
Medium and Support: Possibly Tule warp and Conifer root weft. Bear grass and fern for the overlay.
Credit Line: Gift of an Anonymous Donor
Accession Number: 1945.145
Technique: Twined basket. Full twist overlay. Overlay is fully visible on the interior and the interior is much rougher than on many other hats. Likely conifer root base weft with bear grass overlay. The darker overlay material is the style of maidenhair fern but it’s not shiny enough. It is likely another fern or a dyed root. Same woven edge finishing style as on 1948.36.

Design: Design is not as typical for hats I’ve seen from more coastal communities, but it is same geometric style.

Structure: It’s much more flexible and less strong than the Hupa, Yurok, and Karuk hats, more likely the inland style of using a tule warp rather than hazel or willow which would give a lot more flex. There is some hair stuck in the button! This hat has a very flat top and is more of an inland shape for caps.

Cultural affiliation notes: This does not look Hupa, Yurok, Karuk, though there are similar design and material conventions. The start/center/button is too different, it’s quite a bit deeper than expected for their hats. The black overlay material is also different, and the edge finishing is different. The weave is rougher too, not as fine. Also doesn’t have the three sections or design conventions of the more coastal caps. It’s likely from a nearby but more inland community like Klamath/Modoc, Astarawi, etc. Looks Astarawi according to similar hats in sources like Bibby’s Essential Art.

Citation: Bibby, Brain. Essential Art: Native Basketry from the California Indian Heritage Center. Berkeley: Heyday Publishers, 2012.

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

  • Height ad diameter Dimensions: 4 1/8 x 8 in. (104.78 x 203.2 mm)

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