Top Finds: Mid-19th Century Navajo Ute First Phase Blanket

GUEST: I don’t know an awful lot about it,
except that, uh, it was given by Kit Carson– given to the foster father of my grandmother. APPRAISER: And do you know who made this weaving?
Do you know what kind of blanket it is? GUEST: It’s probably a Navajo, but that’s
about all I know. APPRAISER: So you haven’t had anybody look
at it, or… GUEST: Nobody’s ever looked at it that I’m
aware of. APPRAISER: Well, Ted, did you notice when
you showed this to me that I kind of stopped breathing a little bit? GUEST: Yeah, you did! APPRAISER: I’m still having trouble breathing
here, Ted. GUEST: It took me by surprise, because I,
you know, didn’t think much about it. It’s probably a chief’s blanket, but… APPRAISER: Exactly, and it’s not just a chief’s
blanket. It’s the first type of chief’s blanket made. These were made in about 1840 to 1860,
and it’s called a Ute, first phase. GUEST: A Ute? APPRAISER: A Ute first-phase wearing blanket.
It’s Navajo-made. They were made for Ute chiefs. This is Navajo weaving in its purest form.
All of these things that we see later with diamonds and all kinds of different patterns
comes much later than this. This is just pure linear design. This is the beginning of Navajo
weaving. GUEST: Wow. APPRAISER: And not only that, the condition
of this is unbelievable, unbelievable. We see these… We’ve got a little bit of damage
over there. In spite of the damage, it’s unbelievable. An interesting thing: this is almost like
silk. It’s made from hand-woven wool, but it’s so finely done, it’s like silk. It would
repel water. And this, here, is dyed with indigo dyes. It was a very valuable dye at
the time. And what’s really interesting is right here we have an old repair that was
probably done in the 1860s, and it’s done with raveled bayeta, which is, in itself,
a very important thing in Navajo weaving. So, all involved, it’s an extraordinary piece
of art. It’s extremely rare. It is the most important thing that’s come into the ROADSHOW
that I’ve seen. Do you have a sense at all of what you’re looking at here in terms of
value? GUEST: I haven’t a clue. APPRAISER: Are, uh, are you a wealthy man,
Ted? GUEST: No. APPRAISER: Well, sir, um, I’m still a little
nervous here, I have to tell you. Uh, on a really bad day, this textile would be worth
$350,000. On a good day, it’s about a half a million dollars. GUEST: Oh, my God! APPRAISER: And you had no idea? GUEST: I had no idea. (voice breaking) It
was laying on the back of a chair. APPRAISER: Well, sir, you have a national
treasure. GUEST: Wow! APPRAISER: A national treasure. When you walked
in with this, I just about died. Congratulations. GUEST: Gee! APPRAISER: Congratulations. GUEST: I can’t believe this! APPRAISER: Now, the value of this that I’m
giving is not using the Kit Carson provenance. Provenance is sometimes very difficult to
ascertain. If… if we could do research on this and we could prove without a reasonable
doubt that Kit Carson did actually own this, um, the value would increase again, maybe
20%. GUEST: Wow. Can’t believe it. My grandmother…
you know, were poor farmers. They didn’t… she had… Her foster father had started some
gold mills and, you know, discovered gold and everything, but there was no wealth, no
wealth in the family at all. Boy! (choking up) I can’t believe it! APPRAISER: Congratulations. GUEST: Thank you. Gee… boy…

100 Replies to “Top Finds: Mid-19th Century Navajo Ute First Phase Blanket”

  1. 2:57 – The guy sitting down on bottom right corner of the screen is picking his nose while smiling pervertedly at the blanket. What sick thought's are running through his head? I hope that Moustache disguised as a security guard stop's him from having his way with the blanket

  2. I think this is just about my favorite episode. Donald Ellis gives such a classy, rich, almost ethereal appraisal of this beautiful treasure.

  3. that blanket is so badass. i can just imagine a war battered navajo chief wearing that on his back while riding a horse through the plains during the most important time in the history of native americans. legendary ! i can see why it brought so much money.

  4. This is specifically a horrible story heart breaking because these are the items of the native Americans, who the land was taken from and genocide committed to them.

  5. Yesterday I watched Tigerbelly podcast where they talked about this episode. I just saw this in my recomended… WTF GOOGLE… STOP SPYING ON ME

  6. Listened to the tiger belly episode then this pops up in my recommended videos…

    That’s how I know theyre listening

  7. That ole dude took his glasses off and deadass had lines in his skin from wearing those glasses so many years… what a lad

  8. Love the way security guy in black with headset miraculously appears in the background when he was told what it was worth. 2:55

  9. Kip Carson was a psycho who enjoy killing utes! I’m sure he stole that…. it belongs to our UTE people!!’ Ughhh always taking what’s not yours.

  10. Wonder if it was stolen from a raid, maybe he should consider giving something back to the Navajo people.

  11. Good on the poor old Guy. If yous haven't seen the English ARS please have a look as its equally brilliant. The only "Mistake" I ever seen was Tim Winnnacot was shown a very very old Triblal chiefs war club, He got everything else correct including its value for $150.000 0r £75000 uk pounds, the owner bought it in New Zealand for $50 at a flea market. The vendor said he thought it was probably 100yrs old and a Maori chiefs Trunchen..Anyway Tim said I thought it was from NZ. until another appraiser walking past Said no Tim!!!😮That's from New Guinea!! Tim said where's New Guinea!!?? Other guy said directory North of the cape of Carpentaria!! On the top Of the East side of Australia at the Northernmost point!!! I was stunned because those experts normally understand geography better than a Geography teacher!!! Tim felt rightly embarrassing but said don't be surprised if it fetches up to £85000 mate!! It actually fetched £95000.

  12. His Reaction is Priceless..and that he Named his Grandma makes this Story Amazingly Beautiful..well Deserved Sir !!

  13. With all of the political and racial divisiveness in our country today, it' s heart warming to see all of the kind comments and congratulations to this sweet man. Thank you all !

  14. So this rug is worth $500, 000 but a carved marble statue made in the year 600 in China is only worth$125,000

  15. I just adore this sweet old guy, you can tell that he's kind. Very happy for the unexpected windfall for he and his wife.

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