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18th/19th c. Native American Gaming Tray

18th/19th c. Native American Gaming Tray

A rare Native American Ash burl gaming tray in original untouched surface.


Constructed from a single body of burl wood via pole lathe turning with an exuberant array of natural grain. A shallow dish such as this was used in early Native American culture to play a game called "Hubbub", a nickname given by early European settlers in the 17th C. when observing players play, crying out "Hub" "Hub".


A grouping of early dice constructed of various materials were used in play and placed in the tray and flipped when the tray was struck upon a folded blanket. The shallow profile of the tray served as a vehicle to both flip the dice and serve as a playing field. Prizes were often played for which included kettles, beaver hides, Wampompeage, hatchets, knives ect.


Other examples of gaming trays survive today, being constructed of basketry with wooden examples being more scarce, especially in burl. Well aged creating a wonderful thin and delicate undulating rim tapering down into a smooth and semi flat interior. Survives in an excellent state of original condition. Northeast, likely Woodlands Indians. Ca. 1780.


See "North American Burl Treen" by Steven S. Powers for a similar example. 10" x 10 1/2" x 1 3/4"T.

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