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Catalog Number 2.10
Object Name Basket, Trinket
Collection Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Hupp Collection
Collector Rosalie Hupp Baldwin (d)
Description (Heather Martin 10/16/2016) This is a glass bottle covered in coiled basketry. The coil foundation is a bundle of pine needles and the binding weft is a commercial cotton string. The workface is the exterior and the work direction is to the right. The basket is made with interlocking stitches that are widely spaced and have a predominantly down-to-the right slant. To replace exhausted weft strands, the weaver knotted new string to the end of the previous string on the interior of the basket where it is well hidden. The basket is started with a tight spiral and then woven using the bottle as a form. The basket is woven beyond the rim of the bottle and then decoratively folded out and downward. The coil ending is tapered, with the final stitch anchored into the stitch directly below it in the previous coil. Under the folded rim there are two coiled rings attached with string on either side of the basket. These rings are made of a single large coil that is separated into two faux coils with a string that runs along the inside of the ring and then pierces the coil to capture each weft stitch on the exterior. The exterior of the basket has been coated with pitch or another similar substance that is abrading away on the base, rim, and rings of the basket. Objects covered in basketry such as this were commonly made for sale during the 20th century.

Coiled baskets made with pine needle foundations have not been documented in Native American cultures prior to contact with Europeans. In the twentieth century, these baskets were made by Native communities throughout the United States, particularly in the south. It has been suggested that Native American pine needle baskets were influenced by African American baskets made of sweet grass, a technique that is believed to have originated in Africa and brought to the United States along with slavery (Perdue, Jr. 1968). Additionally, Mrs. M. J. McAfee, a Caucasian woman from Georgia, claims that she invented the pine needle basket when she had no access to materials to make hats for her family during the Civil War (McAfee 1911). McAfee developed the technique into an artful craft and began teaching classes to Caucasian women. In 1917, William C. A. Hammel, the Superintendent of City Schools of Greensboro, North Carolina, advocated for teaching pine needle basket making in schools to encourage students to be resourceful when finding materials and to be creative and artistic while making a craft that has both economic and utilitarian value (Hammel 1917). With so many possible origins and so many communities making pine needle baskets, it is difficult to attribute the origin of this basket to any location or community within the United States. This is consistent with Mary Wahl's attribution in which she gave numerous possibilities for an origin for this basket.
Material glass, pine needles, string
Place of Origin Unknown
Provenance (Heather Martin 10/16/2016) Unknown
Date Collected: 1910-1920
Dimensions H-5 Dia-3.5 inches
Imagefile 004\210-2.JPG
Caption 2.10 side of basket showing rings