Unusual Antique New England Hourglass Shaped Dark Splint Basket

Sale price $165.00 Regular price $200.00

What an extraordinarily beautiful basket I think this is, and it is one I handle pretty carefully as I believe it is really very old and somewhat fragile. I have looked at lots and lots of antique woven splint baskets, and have found next to none with this sort of hour glass shape. With its narrow neck, it might have been used for holding something live that might have the capacity to jump out! The fixed handle is carved wood--notched just above and just below the lip, and then tapering as it extends downward along the side of the basket, integrated into the weave. Just gorgeous from top to bottom and every side.

Certainly this piece dates to the 19th century, but I think it is possible it is older than that. I purchased it from a dealer who had purchased it, along with a few others in a more distressed state, from a historic home and museum in Newburyport, MA; the bottom of this basket shows the museum accession number for it. 

This basket is in overall good antique condition but certainly shows its age, to my eye only enhancing its beauty. There are a few breaks in, and a portion of unravelling to, the splint wrapping the lip, and a few breaks in the splint of the body--all as detailed in photos. 

It measures 10 3/4" tall without handle, 14 1/2" tall with handle, and 9" across at base.