Desert Peoples / Native Peoples

Carrying or Burden Basket

Carrying or Burden Basket

Cahuilla (attributed)
ca. 1900

Cahuilla: Sáqahval (specific name), ne’at (general term)
Chemehuevi: nengapive
Mohave: kari

Baskets are one of the oldest utilitarian art forms in Southern California. Indigenous communities associated with the land now a part of Joshua Tree had several types of baskets, each with a particular use, including cooking, gathering, sifting, gifts, and ceremonial offerings.

This basket was found in a cache in Cahuilla territory along with plant seeds, an olla, and a metal pan repaired with pitch. The metal pan dates from 1895 – 1910 and indicates that this family group was still coming to the area, even as the presence of miners, cattlemen, homesteaders and ranchers increased. The Cahuilla, Serrano and the other associated tribal groups continue traditional harvests of seeds and other plant materials today.

Yucca, black juncus, red juncus, deer grass. Coiled construction with grass foundation.
H 29.5, D 47.5 cm
Joshua Tree National Park, JOTR 8887