Collection: Fry

Item Number: Fry0169

Category: Knife

Region: Arctic

Tribe: Eskimo

Period: 1825-1850

Materials: Bone, steel and wood

Description: Unusual older Eskimo knife with steel, Hudson Bay style blade, with no visible markings. The shape of the blade and cutouts are characteristic of early imported trade blades. The bone and wood handle is riveted in place with crude rivets. The bone is joined in a manner consistent with the way in which harpoon forshafts, of bone and ivory, were scarf cut and joined by the Eskimos of Northern Canada when metal was first introduced into the Arctic. It is also similar in construction to the long snow block cutting knives on which the bone handles are similarly pieced together and riveted to native copper or steel blades. The shape of the hardwood handle on this knife has not been observed on any other. Opinions on the origin of this knife or knife style would be greatly appreciated. It would be interesting to know if similar examples exist.

Dimensions: 22"


Paul Gray, Old Chatham, N.Y.
John Molloy, New York, N.Y., and Santa Fe, N.M.


Lure of the Arctic, Cincinnati Art Museum, October 2007 - January 2008

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