Courtesy British Museum, London, England

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Fishing Spear

Native North Americans from the West Coast, the Arctic, and the Northeast used leisters or three-pronged spears for snaring fish. These long-handled spears were useful in the Northeast for spearing salmon, sturgeon, and other species during their spawning runs. This 19th-century example has an iron spear head centered between two angular wooden prongs. Prior to European contact, all three prongs would have been wooden or bone. The spearís head is bound to the wooden shaft with twine.

Date: 1800 - 1900 
Topic: Tools 
Materials: Wood, iron
Dimensions: L: 50.3 in. (128 cm.) 
Accession #: 4961


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