Coiled Basketry in British Columbia and Surrounding Region (Summary 1 of 5)
(numbers in the text in parentheses refer to a page in the text)
Thompson [woman] TEkwitlexkEn and Kowlalp making baskets, 1918. Photograph by James A. Teit, Lantern slide, Canadian Museum of Civilization, 36293-LS
Coiled Basketry in British Columbia and Surrounding Region remains one of the most important resources on N'laka'pamux Basketry. The research was compiled by James Alexander Teit in the early part of the 20th century, when the basket-making tradition was still very much alive. Indeed the text mentions that by the time of its compilation (pre-1928), coiled basketry had almost disappeared among the Shuswap and the Okanagon, but that "the Lillooet and the Thompson probably manufacture as many now as they ever did" (133). Later in the Introduction, mention is made that many groups had ceased making baskets by 1850. Other groups in the lower mainland and the coast made baskets, such as "the Sechelt, Squamish, Stalo or Lower Fraser, the Nootsak, the tribes of Puget Sound, and the Cowlitz, all of whom live not far from the Lillooet and the Thompson and their southern neighbors..." (133). It seems to have declined with the death of a number of basket-makers, although there are initiatives to keep the basket-making craft and tradition alive, as well as to promote its continued appreciation.
The work consists of over 365 pages, illustrated with 94 plates and more than 120 in text illustrations demonstrating methods and techniques, along with a description of the materials used. The Introduction discusses the influence of Thompson and Lillooet basket-making on neighbouring groups. It would seem that the tradition of coiled basket-making from cedar roots was native to the Cascade region of British Columbia and Washington, where "the people lived more or less sedentary lives" (141).
Boas, Franz, ed., Haeberlin, H.K., Teit, James, Roberts, Helen. "Coiled Basketry in British Columbia and Surrounding Region." Forty-first Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, 1919-1924, Washington, DC 1928, pp. 119-484.