A mid-1800s birchbark maple sugar container
Birchbark maple sugar container
For hundreds of years, maple sugar and maple syrup have been important products for Wisconsin Indians, providing basic seasonings for food such as grains, breads, and teas. Each spring, maple sap is tapped from trees for processing into sugar. Once processed, the sugar could be preserved in containers for use the rest of the year. This small container was made by Rosalie Dousman, a Catholic missionary to the Menominee in the mid-1800s, was crafted in the Menominee style from porcupine quills.