Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Historic Paddle Illustration: Digby Mi'kmaq Canoe Photo

The free online library at Archive.org has a great book outlining the extensive history of the Native culture on the East Coast.  Twelve thousand years : American Indians in Maine by Bruce J.  Bourque is a thorough publication that features some photos beyond just the Maine border to include First Nations groups from Canada. Among one particular shot in the appendix section is photo A-18 featuring a Mi'kmaq group with canoe in front of a bark wigwam. 

The two standing gentlemen at the far right and far left are each holding up an inverted paddle clearly showing the shape of the blade.

April 2020 Update: The three men standing in the photo have been identified as (Left to Right): Malti Pictou, Jerry Lonecloud, John McEwan, all noted canoe guides. The image source is from the Nova Scotia Museum, photo by Harry Cochrane or Ralph N. Harris, NSM 97.31)


Brnowl22@gmail.com said...

Where are most of your patterns taken from, old paddle designs or do you make your own designs.

Murat said...

I try to reproduce paddles from old photos or illustrations. Often use photoshop to blow up the image to scale and work from printed paper templates. There's a bit of creative license used because you can't really see the blade thickness so in that case the wood stock used dictates the final dimensions. Before the Covid issue, I had started visiting some museum collections to get more detailed measurement data on some historic paddles.

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