Nunavut Collection, photo courtesy of Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth Government of Nunavut, Copper-bladed, dagger-like knife with antler shaft and handle, Accession Number 984.006.012.

Copper blade knife

This Inuit copper bladed knife is from the Kugluktuk (Cambridge Bay) area and was collected by David Brien. O'Brien was the Northern Science Officer for the Department of Indian & Northern Affairs in Coppermine from 1961-1963, and then in Cambridge Bay until 1964. Then he was posted back to Ottawa and became the first Tourist Development Officer for the NWT. He travelled widely in the eastern and western arctic for the next 3 years until he left the government in 1967.

Inuit used copper extensively in the Central Arctic where they had a supply of it. However, other groups would travel to trade with Copper Inuit to secure a supply.

If copper was not available, many other types of materials would have been used for blades.

Inuit designed many varieties of knives for different purposes. This knife would have been for stabbing and quick kills.