Incised Knife Sheath
Artifacts Group 1 / Group 2 / Group 3

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Plains Indian (Ojibway) Quilled Knife Sheath


The early rawhide parfleche containers were not painted, but rather were incised. Buffalo rawhide had the hair slipped off by soaking the green (untanned) hide. Next, the epidermal layer (outer layer) of skin was cut and peeled away to reveal the corium or true skin as a white design. The top of this case is porcupine-quilled in the dyed colors of red, yellow and natural white. The tin cones would have been obtained in trade at a high cost. The side of the rawhide case had a wedge cut-out for a belt.

The shape of the par fleche knife case shows that it was for a metal trade knife. The earlier knives were from the bone shoulder blade which were contained in rectangular cases.



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