A month or two later Cohn received a photograph from the purchaser, accompanied by a letter. “You know the basket, herewith photographed, which I purchased from you. Have you any more by the same weaver, or of as good a weave? If so, how many, and at what price? Wire reply at my expense.”
Then Mr. Cohn awoke, and he’s been awake ever since. He wired his list of Dat-so-la-le’s baskets, but he has had no reply, and that was twenty-five years ago. He then made arrangements with Dat-so-la-le and her husband. He provides them house, food, clothing and a certain amount of cash yearly, and he takes all the work Luisa makes. Every basket as soon as begun is noted as carefully as every breeding of a thoroughbred horse or dog. Also the date the basket is finished. It is then numbered and photographed and either offered for sale at a certain price, which is never changed, or is put in the safety-deposit vault of the bank, to await the time when such aboriginal masterpieces will be eagerly sought after by the growingly intelligent and appreciative of our citizens, for their museums or collections, as specimens of work of a people—the first American families—who will then, possibly, have passed away. The photographs, here reproduced, are of some of Dat-so-la-le’s finest work.
[Illustration: Susie, the Washoe indian basket maker, and narrator of indian legends]
[Illustration: Jackson, the Washoe indian, telling traditions of his people about Lake Tahoe and Fallen Leaf Lake]
[Illustration: Lake Tahoe near Tahoe Tavern, looking south]
INDIAN LEGENDS OF THE TAHOE REGION
As all students of the Indian are well aware these aboriginal and out-of-door dwellers in the forests, canyons, mountains, valleys, and on lake and seashores are great observers of Nature, and her many and varied phenomena. He who deems the Indian dull, stolid and unimpressionable, simply because in the presence of the White Race he is reserved and taciturn, little knows the observing and reflecting power hidden behind