red cedar bark and dye, largest: 7 x 8.75 x 8.5 in (17.8 x 22.2 x 21.6 cm) / smallest: 4.75 x 6.25 x 6 in (12.1 x 15.9 x 15.2 cm).
Estimate: $1,200— $1,800
A Tsimshian Family Collection, Lax Kw'alaams (Port Simpson), B.C.;
Acquired from the above in 1915 by Charles Marius Barbeau, the famous Canadian ethnologist and folklorist, considered to be one of the founders of Canadian anthropology;
Estate of the above; acquired December 1995 from the estate of the above by Dr. George and Mrs. Joanne MacDonald, Cantley, Quebec;
Estate of Dr. George MacDonald.
The four baskets have square bases and rounded bodies. Their rims are lined with rolls of cedar and held to the baskets by cedar stitching. While not necessarily woven by the same maker, they fit snugly one inside the other. They were kept as a set of nesting baskets and passed down as family heirlooms in a Tsimshian family living at or near Lax Kw'alaams (Port Simpson), B.C. before being collected by Marius Barbeau in 1915.