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Tools for Life on the Lake

The tools on this page relate to two activities going on in the photo at right, showing Cheshiahud and his wife Madeline outside their Portage Bay cabin in the late 19th century.  Madeline is cooking and Cheshiahud is carving a canoe.

This Native American carving tool comes from the Olympic National Park in Port Angeles.  It is slightly different in design from the one in Cheshiahud’s hand.  Before White settlers brought iron, these tools were bladed with slate.

By the time this photo was taken, Madeline may have used wooden matches to light fires.  In her youth, however, she must have been familiar with a traditional fire making kit, comprised of wood and twisted strands of cedar bark, like the Duwamish example to the right, which dates from the first half of the 19th century.


Canoe carving tool.  Olympic National Park.  http://oceanexplorer.noaa.gov/projects/02tribal/canoe_tech/media/tech6_600.html.  Accessed 12/1/08

Fire making kit.  Courtesy of the Burke Museum.  http://www.washington.edu/burkemuseum/collections/ethnology/collections/search.php?query=duwamish&x=34&y=9&archives=1&ethno=1&mode=keywords.  Accessed 12/1/08

©2008 Vaun S. Raymond vaun@u.washington.edu

First People