The Chilkat ceremonial blanket was recently discovered on the auction block in Paris and was purchased by the U’mista Cultural Society with a $27,368 grant from the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Made some time between 1865 and 1871, the blanket is now on display at the U’mista Museum in Alert Bay, on the northern tip of Vancouver Island.”
Rare aboriginal blanket comes home to Island - Times Colonist
Alert Bay is a place that is dear to me. I’ve visited twice in the past, and nearly wrote my masters thesis on the U’mista Cultural Society’s repatriated potlatch mask collection. (I ended up writing about phenomenal artist Mowry Baden instead).
Hearing about this blanket, from my brother who works at the Department of Canadian Heritage, made me secretly cross my fingers that it could go back. Now that it’s home, I’m excited to be able to go and visit it soon.
Here’s a video of the story: