This is an early circa 1780-1800’s spontoon war tomahawk attributed to the Huron Native American Indians of upper New York state. The piece is from the Wellington Collection of Long Island, New York where it was purchased by the current owner, author Mark Francis. The war club features a forged iron “spontoon” head that is likely French blacksmith made. During the U.S. Revolutionary War, a weapon referred to as a spontoon and sometimes a pike was regularly used, a spear with a spike or blade at the end. These spontoon blades were later traded to the Native Americans during the 18th and 19th Century’s. The axe head blade is secured onto the solid wood haft with old tiny nails and square nails. The entire haft shows an old hardened wrap of buckskin and has an old twisted wrist throng at the end. The wrap was most likely applied to the haft using hide glue or a sap and then wetted, which would have caused it to harden and stiffen for better use. The head shows two upward curled basal processes and a median ridge running down both sides of the blade, both documented early authentic weapon features. Provenance: From the famous Wellington Collection of Long Island, New York; pictured in “The Mark Francis Collection of American Indian Art” (2009) on page 128, figure 200; pictured in “Rare American Indian Weapons” (2018) by on page 40. This is truly a rare and early Eastern Woodlands weapon with wonderful provenance. The war club measures 24”L with an axe head that is 7.25”L.
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