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Excerpt from the Thaw Catalog: The Klamath and Trinity River tribes (Yurok, Hupa, Karuk) were highly stratified and placed great emphasis upon personal wealth, consisting of dentalia shells, obsidian blades, white deer skins, woodpecker scalps, and other ceremonial goods. They had many dances and feasts, at which these elegant elk antler spoons were used by the men; the women ate with mussel shells. (c.f. Goddard 1903, pl.16; Conn 1979, figs. 369 & 370; Miles 1963, p.184) Elk antlers were the property of aristocratic families. To prepare the spoons, sections of antler were cut into flat pieces and steamed until they were flexible. When the spoon shape had been cut out, it was allowed to harden, and then smoothed by grinding. A great variety of shapes was made, but all retain a slender febrile vitality of scale, often with zig-zag stem configurations.
depth 2 in ; length 6.25 in ; width 2.25 in