Model canoe (tluu), c. 1887, probably Haida, Ft. Wrangell, Alaska, Wood and paint, Gift of Duncan A. White, 1940.6.3.
Model canoes were made by Northwest Coast Indians as toys, or as training models or ceremonial stand-ins for full-sized vessels. Full-sized canoes were sophisticated designs made of a single hollowed log, which villages relied on for travel, transport, and hunting in order to thrive. Nineteenth century explorers and sailors collected canoe models as souvenirs, and they quickly became an important form of tourist art. The red and black crest motif painted on this model canoe is probably a raven.