River Cane Chronicles Part I

To prepare the harvested river cane for dyeing, Jim Long – Cherokee weaver and basketmaker – cuts a six-foot long stalk in half, then expertly wields his knife to peel off strips. He gets an average of six strips for a piece of cane this thick. He then uses his knife to smooth over the high spots of the cane’s joints.He’s then ready to bundle the cane and tie it so that he can curl it into his dyeing drum. He’s preparing this cane for a class he teaches on weaving. WATR has been awarded a grant from a Cherokee arts agency to find rivercane along the Tuckaseigee for Cherokee artisans to harvest and use.


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