Posted 4 years ago
I just got this the other day. It is a small basket woven by an artist from the Makah Tribe. It is 3 inches in diameter by two inches deep, and has great coloring and no damage whatsoever still after over 100 years. The Makah tribe started weaving these baskets around the year 1860. In the 1860s, the Makah people at Neah Bay developed a cottage industry producing trinket baskets. Through the 1930s, they wove thousands of small colorful baskets for sale. Eventually, plaited bases and rims and commercially available raffia replaced the more labor-intensive fully twined bases and twisted cedar bark. This one looks to be made between 1870 and 1890, right in the middle where the rims and bottoms of these baskets were changing again. The fact that the rim is just like how they started making them in 1860 and the bottom is like they started making them around 1890 and after is why I say this. Also, the geometrical design is more from the earlier years than after 1890 when Ducks and Boats started to make an appearance on these trinket baskets.
The inner rim is very early and uncommon - instead of being composed of the more usual cedar bark (see my other Makah Baskets on my page to see the cedar bark rims), it was woven of the same beargrass material and recessed so that the lid fits nicely to the body of the basket. The Colors, natural and green and yellow are still vibrant after all this time. And the weave is very fine. A great addition to my collection of Native American basketry! Enjoy the pictures.