Davidson, Florence Edenshaw (1896 - 1993)

Culture/Community

Haida (Masset)

Biography

Florence Davidson (Raven clan) first started assisting her mother sewing button blankets when she was a child. She also was an established basketmaker, who wove with both cedar bark and spruce roots. Her father was Charles Edenshaw, a master carver. She learned to weave from her mother, Isabella, a well-known weaver of her time with works in museum collections. Her grandfather was chief at Kiusta, near North Island; he was a sea-otter hunter. Florence Davidson was from the Raven Clan, and her husband Robert Davidson Sr. was from the Eagle Clan. She and her husband lost their home and all their possessions in a fire in 1951, and they went to Vancouver to buy new household goods and clothing. At that time she also bought navy and red material, and boxes of different sizes of pearly buttons, making her first button blanket with a bear design on returning home, which she gave to her daughter Virginia. Her other daughters, Emily and Clara, were also given blankets, as was Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. Her grandson, Robert Davidson, made the designs for her in later years.