Native American Ladle by Donald Shaveradmin
by Heinz Ahlers
Donald Shaver is donating a ladle inspired by an original 18th century piece. Don made this treenware ladle of Mulberry he harvested himself and dried for 2 years. He finished the ladle with bear grease bringing out the natural color of the mulberry.. The ladle has 4 sterling silver inlays. The two inlays on the back of the bowl have coin silver pins cut from a dime and the two heart shaped inlays bracketing the handle have brass pins.
This ladle, or bowl, is 7-1/4 inches in length with a 4 inch diameter bowl. With the inlays and carving this is a very artistic piece in a traditional art form. A small chip in the bowl edge is intentionally left there, aging the piece and blending with the natural inclusions in the grain. Overall the workmanship and the finish come across as very period authentic. The original was perhaps a wedding gift or for some other special occasion, perhaps settler or perhaps Native American. This is a great piece for the upscale American Indian reenactor or as plunder stolen from the Cherokee or Shawnee towns by frontiersmen.
Donald and Tina Shaver are regular supporters of the CLF Fundraising Auction. Donald is a well known re-enactor and his photo portraying Tall Tree, a white adoptee of the Shawnee Nation, appears on the cover of the May 2015 Muzzle Blasts. Formerly, Donald was a Native American living history interpreter at Old Fort Harrod State Park and the Friends of Fort Harrod say “He is the best they have ever seen! We are all proud to call him our friend and we appreciate him coming to our Fort.” Donald is currently working at Martin’s Station in Ewing, Virginia, where he is just as enthusiastically received.
His artwork is noted for his careful research and authentic methods and materials. We are grateful to Donald for donating this unique and historically correct item to the 2015 CLF Fundraising Auction.