ROSE – Learn the intricate skillset of a lifelong Cherokee craftsman in a new exhibit at the Saline Courthouse Museum. “Vyrl Keeter: Points of Origin” is open to the public from May 4 –to June 26 and showcases the Cherokee National Treasure’s private collection, as well as handcrafted items available for sale.
A Cherokee Nation citizen from Muskogee, Keeter was named a Cherokee National Treasure in 2016 for flint knapping and has been knapping stone into arrowheads, spear points and blades for most of his life. He also makes hatchets, knives and other one-of-a-kind tools, working with naturally occurring materials such as chert and obsidian in addition to manufactured storefront glass.
“Vyrl has traveled around the country searching for materials and demonstrating both his technique and his enthusiasm to teach others,” Krystan Moser, Cherokee Nation cultural collections and exhibits manager, said. “His dedication to preserving his art form is visible in each unique piece skillfully shaped from stone.”
The exhibit features items available for purchase, including handcrafted rivercane blowgun and dart sets, knives as well as stand-alone blades and points.
The Saline Courthouse is the last of nine district courthouses built in the 1800s by the CN. After years of ongoing work to restore, preserve and modernize the structure, the CN reopened the site in August as a cultural museum. It is at 55870 S. 490 Road in Rose.
For information, call (877) 779-6977 or visit www.VisitCherokeeNation.com.