NA-2501 A Fine Tlingit Fighting Knife with Orca Effigy Pommel
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Circa 19th Century
An excellent Northwest Coast dagger with a finial masterfully carved as an orca (killer whale) effigy, of gunstock walnut, inlays of abalone in the eyes, teeth, dorsal fin, and tail fins, curved atop the handle in a fluking form. The handle is tightly wrapped with the original cord down to the hilt. The blade is steel of probable Russian origin, and is original to the piece. It is possible to have been fashioned from an earlier captured military weapon. A custom metal stand is included with the dagger.
Dimensions: Height: approx. 17 in. (43.2 cm.)
Provenance: This dagger was de-accessioned from the Heye Foundation (Museum of the American Indian) about 40 to 50 years ago, and has been in only one private collection in the U.S. Midwest since that time. The number is inscribed on the hilt. The Heye Foundation Accession Number is 2/8704 although the last number is very faint.