ORONO, Maine — Passamaquoddy basketmaker Gerald “Butch” Jacobs will conduct a free public basketmaking demonstration from 10 a.m. to noon Friday, June 3, at the University of Maine’s Hudson Museum in the Collins Center for the Arts.
Jacobs is the grandson of Angela Barnes, a member of the renowned Neptune basketmaking family from Pleasant Point. He learned to make baskets from Dennis Lewey, who taught him how to make traditional Passamaquoddy fish-scale baskets.
Jacobs harvests brown ash, pounds it and creates a wide variety of work and fancy basket forms.
The program is one in a series of three events that the public, Maine school students and area visitors are invited to watch. Participants can learn about Maine Indian brown ash and sweetgrass basketry, how it has been passed down within their communities and families, and the challenges to passing on the tradition in the midst of cultural, economic and environmental change.
The program is supported by grants from the Betterment Fund, Maine Community Foundation, and a partnership of the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance and the Hudson Museum.