The collection consists of photographs relating to American Indians, which were submitted to the copyright office of the Library of Congress in and around the early 20th century. Many of the photographs are studio portraits as well as photographs made as part of expeditions and railroad surveys. It includes images of people, dwellings and other structures, agriculture, arts and crafts, burials, ceremonies and dances, games, food preparation, transportation, and scenic views. Some of the photographs were posed to illustrate literary works, including Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's Hiawatha, while others depict paintings or other artwork.
The collection was formed from submissions made to the Library of Congress as part of the copyright registration process. In 1949, arrangements were made to allow the Bureau of American Ethnology to copy the collection and some negatives were made at that time, largely from the Heyn and Matzen photographs. The project was soon abandoned, however, as too large an undertaking for the facilities of the BAE. In 1957-1958, arrangements were begun by William C. Sturtevant of the BAE to transfer all of the photographs from the Library to the BAE.
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 59
See others in:
Library of Congress Copyright Office photograph collection of American Indians, 1860s-1930s (bulk 1890s-1920s)
In 1965, the Bureau merged with the Smithsonian's Department of Anthropology to form the Smithsonian Office of Anthropology, and in 1968 the Office of Anthropology Archives transformed into the National Anthropological Archives.
Consists of 20 photos of drawings by Robert Ormsby Sweeny, made in Minnesota in 1852.
Contents: 4489: Artist's titles: [1.] Interior Dakota Bark house. [2.] Dakota or Sioux women Tanning and dressing skins. [3.] Dakotas telling stories and preparing for a hunting party. [4.] Bark hunting lodge of Dakotas or Sioux Indians. [5.] "Fire hunting" of the Sioux. [6.] Sioux spearing fish. [7.] Shakapes and Le petite Corbeaus bands playing ball at Shakapes village. [8.] Dakota Doctor or Sorcerer preparing charms for the sick. [9.] Dakota Doctor exorcising the evil spirit from the sick. [10.] Dakota medicine men showing their secret charms to each other. [11.] Dance Worship of Oank-tay-hee Taku-wakan- The supernatural giant. [12.] Dakota Indians dancing the Sun Dance. [13.] Bark Houses or Summer Lodges of Dakotas. [14.] Return Dance of a successful War party of Dakotas. [15.] Begging Dance of the Dakotas or Sioux. [16.] Dakota or Sioux squaws gathering Wild Rice for Winter food. [17.] Dog Dance of the M'de wakan ton Sioux or Dakotas. [18.] Dakota or Sioux Indians racing ponies. [19.] M'de Wakanton wan Dakota burial place, "Black Dogs Village" Minnesota. [20.] Wa-pa-ton Sioux or Dakota Ceremonies of the Thunder Bird "Travers des Sioux."
NAA MS 4489
Filed: Dakota original prints (no negatives). Mounted in album.
Purchased 1956 from the British Museum for reference only. Publication permission as well as additional prints sould be obtained directly from the British Museum, which owns the originals.