New Brunswick Museum, Saint John, N.B., X6186


basket, 1900-1910

maker: Molly Sacobie (Wolastoqiyik)

dyed and woven ash splints with braided sweetgrass

8 x 16 x 16 cm

gift of the maker

Molly Sacobi(e), also known as Mary Sacobi, was born Mary F. Francis in 1875, the daughter of Mary A. Francis and Thomas De France. She resided in Pleasant Point, Maine for a period prior to her marriage at the age of 17 to 22-year-old Michael Sacobi of St. Mary's, New Brunswick. Mary and Michael shared a common Wolastoqew cultural heritage, and both identified as Roman Catholic. Although the marriage officiant recorded her name as "Mary De France," Mary signed the certificate using her mother's surname variant: "Mary Francis." After their marriage in 1893, the couple lived in York County, New Brunswick where Michael worked as a labourer while both he and Mary produced handcrafts for sale. Her talent for making baskets in an antiquated style prompted Curator William McIntosh to approach Molly for help in building the Museum's traditional basketry collection in 1911. She produced at least four baskets for the Museum, "copied from an ancient type…no longer made." Although we do not have a record of Molly's death, it is likely that she long outlived her husband, who died of tuberculosis in 1914, at the age of 46.