Hemp and cornhusk flat storage bag, Nez Perce

Made by a female member of the Nez Perce Tribe circa 1835. Acquired by Henry Spalding and sent to Dudley Allen. Purchased by the Nez Perce Tribe from the Ohio Historical Society in 1996.

Hemp and cornhusk flat storage bag. circa 1835  Slightly trapezoid with holes the only evidence of closure. Plain twining hemp with an usual bag construction. False embroidery of dyed and undyed cornhusk. Both side horizontal three triple-hourglass figures. Design area alternates between one lane with false embroidery and one lane unembroidered.

Dimensions H 55.5, W 45.5 cm.

Traditional Knowledge: 

“The decoration of the bags reflected particular family designs. The Nez Perce employed the bags for storing edible roots or bulbs “during harvest time and for winter storage.” The bags would also be used for “ceremonial events, such as wedding trade, burials, or feast gatherings and ‘giveaways’ during memorials of a deceased member of the family village, or Tribe." Allen Slickpoo Sr. 1995