Red River Metis Quilled Hide Knife Sheath with Dag Knife From the Collection of Marvin L. Lince, Oregon

sinew-sewn on softly tanned buckskin and expertly quilled using porcupine quills dyed in red, blue, and cream; sheath with birchbark liner; thin hide fringe, hanging from edge of sheath, is banded with wrapped quillwork and finished with loops, length 13.5 in.  Unmarked Sheffield-made knife; handle composed of water buffalo horn, bone, and brass rivets, length 14 in., length of blade 7.5 in. x width 2.5 in. ca 1830
The knife was made in Sheffield, England; the handle was carved from water buffalo horn, which probably came from India.  This type of a "dag", a "stabber", or a "beaver tail", was a presentation gift given to chiefs by British officials who were seeking their favor, much like peace medals and trade guns.  The bottom edge of the handle has neatly scalloped edges, and the old Sheffield grind marks extend under the handle, proving that the blade was ground before blade and handle were assembled.  It has not been polished or sharpened since.
The sheath, which was made for this knife by a woman, has flower designs that are delicately outlined with line quilling on the front.  It features 30 quilled loops across the front, 22 quilled side hangs, and the original birch-bark liner. (Painter 2002: 38)
Exhibited: 1990-1992 Plains Indian Museum, Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Cody, WY

2001  Taylor, Colin. Native American Weapons
2002  Painter, John. A Window on the Past: Early Native American Dress from the John Painter Collection

Provenance:From the Collection of Marvin L. Lince, Oregon; Ex John Painter Collection, Ohio; Ex Kurt Schindler, Germany; Ex Howard Roloff, British Columbia

Estimate: $45,000 - $55,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium


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