He had this old blanket sitting on the back of a chair. On a whim, he brought it to an expert. When he finds out what it’s REALLY worth, his reaction is priceless…
This man had an old blanket in his family for as long as he can remember. Family legend had it that Kit Carson, the famous frontiersman of the early 19th century, gave it to this guy’s grandmother’s foster-father.
Appraiser Donald Ellis knows a thing or two more about the blanket. It’s a Navajo Ute First Phase Wearing Blanket, he tells the owner. It was probably woven in the mid-19th century. So what does that mean?
The blanket represents “Navajo weaving at its purest form,” Ellis says. “This is just pure linear design. This is the beginning of Navajo weaving.”
The owner is impressed. So impressed, in fact, that he almost immediately goes monosyllabic. “Wow,” he says.
The hand-woven wool blanket is so tightly constructed that it would probably repel water, Ellis says. The stripes are made with authentic indigo dye. This blanket was probably made for a Navajo chief.
“On a really bad day,” Ellis tells the stunned owner, “This textile would be worth $350,000…on a good day it’s about half a million dollars.”
This is when the owner’s emotions really take over.