Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
Toward the end of the 19th century and into the early 20th century, the United States was working actively to assimilate indigenous peoples into mainstrean American society. At the same time, "nostalgia for things Indian began to grow, particularly in the East where Indians had all but disappeared from view," (Herman). Some white Americans, including photographer, Edward S. Curtis, feared "that Anglo culture would soon overwhelm all American Indian cultures" (Smithsonian), and actively worked to document those cultures.
The identity of the photographer and whether they were documenting the indigenous culture or traveling as a tourist is unknown. The images, to a very limited degree, document indigenous people of the Acomoa Pueblo, Apache, Hopi, Laguna Pueblo, and Navaho tribes in the American southwest, in current day Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma.
Herman, Doug. "Denali and America's Long History of Using (or Not Using) Indian Names," Smithsonian Magazine, September 3, 2015 (https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/denali-america-history-using-indian-nomenclature-180956497/)
Smithsonian: "Edward S. Curtis: Frontier Photographer," https://www.sil.si.edu/Exhibitions/Curtis/curtis-navigation.htm
This collection consists of nine photographs presented on cardstock which were captioned, presumbably, by the photographer. The images were taken using the Kodak No. 2 camera, which was first sold in 1900 and served as one of the first widely available cameras, being both portable and inexpensive.
Images document, to a very limited degree, the indigenous people of the Acomoa Pueblo, Apache, Hopi, Laguna Pueblo, and Navaho tribes in the American southwest, in current day Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. Images are of peublos and people (including Juanita, widow of Chief Manuelito, unidentified women, Hopi dancers preparing for the Snake Dance, and unidentified people preparing horses for travel). White Americans are present in the photographs, including General Alexander McDowell McCook (1831-1903) and spectators who were apparently watching the Hopi Snake Dance.
Folder titles are taken directly from the captions on the images and the language should be considered in the context of the time in which the images were created. Mispellings and variations of spellings within the original captions were retained.
Sold by McBride Rare Books, 2022.
- University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
- Finding Aid Author
- Holly Mengel
- Finding Aid Date
- 2023 August 16
- Access Restrictions
This collection is open for research use.
- Use Restrictions
Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.