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Raffia Basket

Raffia Basket

© Memorial Hall Museum, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association

The work of the Pocumtuck Basket Makers is distinguished from that of the Deerfield Baskets Makers by its emphasis on decorative detail. The Pocumtuck Basket Makers' raffia baskets often feature organically-shaped handles and colorful designs which have been incorporated into the fabric of the piece as the basket maker coils raffia strips around reed structural supports. This raffia basket's handles were made "by continuing the reed." In this way, the handle was integrated into the basket, and thus was solved the perennial problem of "the difficulty in fastening them neatly and firmly" to the vessel.1 The natural malleability of the reed allowed for handles with a wide variety of unique shapes.

  1. Gertrude Ashley and Mildred Porter Ashley, Raffia Basketry as an Art, (Deerfield: Published by the Authors), 1915, second edition 1921, 16.

Pocumtuck Basket Makers
H. 1.625" x Diam. 6"