Acquired in 2001.
deep x 14" wide at top.
3 3/4" wide at base.
25" long hide dangles
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For years a "burden basket" was just used for carrying
like food and wood. With the
basket slung on
back and secured
by a strap across
the forehead, and hide
strips bearing metal jingles,
managing a burden
was both easier to carry and protected
from hungry critters. Such baskets were
but often were decorated as works
of art, perhaps
to "lighten" the load. Their individual touches
accents enhanced their attractiveness
both within and
outside tribal cultures.
Apache burden basket weaving faded in
the during the Great
Depression, when affordable commercial containers became easier to acquire and
were removed from
In recent years,
had a re-surgence.
Mary Jane Dudley of the San Carlos
Apache band has benefitted from the
Burden baskets also play a major role
in Apache culture.
They are worn ceremonially
by young girls
A great amount of time, skill and patience
goes into the process of harvesting cottonwood branches,
and collecting willow strips and
devil's claw to weave into
these components must be "cured" to
enough to weave.
Mary Jane Dudley created her first basket
at the tender
age of 13 under the tutelage
who in turn
had learned from Mary Jane's
This time-consuming and painstaking process
is thus handed down through generations. It is deeply woven into San Carlos Apache culture.
For the artist, no price is great enough to
fully compensate for the time and tradition
that goes into a basket.
Fortunately, it is also a labor of love.
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Myers , FL. 33908