Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Eastern Woodlands Indian Mocotaugan or Crooked Knife

This Eastern Woodlands Indian artifact, called a Mocotaugan by the Cree (pronounced “mah-kuh-TAW-gun”) is also called a “crooked knife.” It was an anthropologically important, intriguing, and sometimes beautiful woodworking tool typically used to split or carve wood for basket-making and canoe building.

My crooked knife (circa 1850) has a chip-carved ash handle with blade made from an old file, the blade is held in place with copper wire wrapping (partially missing). It is approximately  8.5" long.

Watch Caesar Newashish, a Native American of the Attikamek nation of the Manouane reserve in Quebec, use a crooked knife as he builds his bark canoe. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRFCxxAKafc

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