Sunday, December 29, 2013

Pow Wow

a friend in Montreal sent a card showing young dancers at a pow wow....the original Algonquian word pau wau, translated to mean a healing activity in which holy men danced in sacred ceremonies. Today its a social activity but participants still dance to honor the ancestors and to thank elders.
Happy New Year Ben and merci for the nice card!

Saturday, December 21, 2013


California has a rich native history but sadly most communities were impacted by the arrival of Europeans with unknown diseases and the forced labor of the Spanish mission system. Later native people were affected by the arrival of American gold miners, driven from their lands and once again decimated by disease and violence. Those who survived continued some of their traditional activities such as gathering wild foods & plants; many of California's native communities were skilled basket makers and used them to store foods as well as sell or trade for manufactured items. Native artists also sold baskets to collectors and museums; today these art objects can be found in some very expensive art galleries.
This basket was made in 1905 by Mrs Dick Francisco, using sedge root, redbud, bracken fern root and deer grass. The artist was a member of the Yokut community who lived near San Francisco and Bakersfield. When this basket was made there were perhaps only 600 tribal members remaining.
My collection is very pleased to have such a lovely card!