Cherokee Traditions: From the Hands of our Elders
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Arts And Crafts: Arrowhead and Man in a Coffin

Arrowhead and Man in a Coffin pattern
Arrowhead and Man in a Coffin pattern

This lidded basket was made by Cherokee basket weaver Carol Welch. Lidded baskets such as these were used to store foodstuffs and household goods. The double weave makes for a tight basket; some double weave baskets are even waterproof. The basket and cover are rectangular, one fitting inside the other. The top and base are different patterns. The diagonal bands of color that run from cover to base are from two different dyes; dark brown from butternut and orange from bloodroot, both plants native to the western North Carolina region. The design on the basket's base is the Arrowhead; the cover is Man in a Coffin with the "coffins" forming a band around the top of the basket. The double weave method is a complex weaving technique used by skilled Cherokee weavers. Carol Welch learned to weave white oak baskets from watching her mother. She later learned how to weave rivercane and honeysuckle baskets while attending Cherokee Indian School under Lottie Stamper.


 

Cherokee Traditions:
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Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual
Museum of the Cherokee Indian

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