Page:Firemaking Apparatus in the U.S. National Museum.djvu/54

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568 l^EPORT OF J^fATloNAL MUSEUM, 1888. LowEi{ : Srixi) i Set. I by W. J. Fislier. i drill is a thick, tolerably bard piece of close- grained wood like the hearth. The mouth- piece has uo regular block for the teeth-grip, but has a crescentic gash ou each side in- stead. It is set with a socket of a rock resem- bling marble. Nearly all the mouth-pieces south of Norton Sound are in the sha[)e of seals, or other long animals. Cord handles are used attached to a thick thong of buck- skin. Fungus is used for tinder and a blaze is started with cones of the larch. These are kept in the box, the lid of which is tied on with a thong. Kadiak, the lowest limit of the western Es- kimo, is as far south as the four part tire-drill extends by specimens in the Museum (tig. 41). The hearth is of cedar wood with three cen- tral holes with a connecting groove. It is neatly finished. The drill is also of cedar and bears the marks of the use of the thong; the top has also been used in the socket of a rest. The drill approaches in length those used for twirling between the hands by the In- dians. While the Aleutians use tliut and steel, or a stone containing quartz and pyrites, struck against another stone, they still make use of the four-part drill at certain times. Hunting parties, says Mr. L. M. Turner, carry the drill to use when their matches run out. It takes two men to work it, one holding the hand rest and the other pulling the thong. The s[Mndle is made of harder wood, so as to wear the light dust which ignites, from the hearth. A mo- ment only is necessary to get fire; this is fed with tinder made of willow catkins and povr- dered charcoal. Sometimes, in order to get fire, they hold tinder at the mouth of a gun and ignite it by firing oft' a light charge of loose powder. Possessed of four methods of getting fire, the Alcutijni is sui)erior to more fortunately situated i)eopie who depend wholly ou matches.