A Rare Rye Basket

Last week I went to the antique show held in Elverson, generic Pennsylvania. I have attended this show for the past 25 years. It is still a great show with lots of wonderful things. I was excited to find this 19th century rye Easter basket, something that is very uncommon and extremely collectable.

Rye straw baskets were made almost exclusively in Pennsylvania, many brought here by the Germans that settled in Pennsylvania in the early 18th century. When I saw this basket I remembered seeing one in a book I have entitled “Willow, Oak, and Rye” by Jeanette Lazansky. This type of basket would be referred to as an openwork rye basket. Openwork rye baskets were made for special occasions, or just for their sheer beauty. The is the reason why they are so uncommon today. The one I bought is almost identical to the one pictured in a book called “Willow, Oak & Rye” by Jeanette Lasansky, published in 1979.

Certain shaped rye baskets were made for the use in making bread, as shown in this picture below, and many others were used around the house for storage, etc. As a group, rye coiled baskets were discontinued as a basket type earlier then any other basket types. Their demise was caused mostly because of the changes in methods of bread making.

Today these wonderful early utilitarian baskets are sought after by basket collectors.

I hope you enjoyed reading about these baskets today. There is a lot more to tell, and maybe soon I will tell you more about them. I love baskets of all kinds, but I have to say that my favorite is the rye basket.

Look for lots of new item on my website today.



One Response to “A Rare Rye Basket”

  1. Jon Miller Says:

    What publication are the two black/white photos above from?
    Thank you,

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