Cherokee Traditions: From the Hands of our Elders
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Arts And Crafts: Man in a Coffin 3

Man in a Coffin 3 pattern
Man in a Coffin 3 pattern

This storage basket was made by Lottie Queen Stamper, one of Cherokee's best-known basket weavers. Using rivercane, the basket was woven upwards from a square base and tapers to a circular rim. Walnut hulls were used to dye the cane to achieve the dark brown color; bloodroot gave it an orange color. Its pattern is Man in a Coffin (or Man in a Casket), with "coffins" alternating along a diagonal. Born in the Soco community to Levi and Mary Queen, Lottie first learned how to make white oak and pine needle baskets from her mother. She married into a family that taught her how to make baskets from rivercane. In 1935, at the age of 28, she started making cane baskets and, in 1937, she began teaching basketmaking at the Cherokee School. Over her teaching career, Stamper taught hundreds of girls to weave baskets.


 

Cherokee Traditions:
A project of Hunter Library Digital Initiatives at Western Carolina University
Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual
Museum of the Cherokee Indian

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