Includes: 1) Eskimo man with harpoon. Undated. 2) Man running at seal seals in rookery. July 7, 1892. 3) Natives fishing and drying fish. Undated. 4) Man clubbing seals. Undated. 5) Eskimo whaling and walrus camp, Icy Point, Arctic Ocean, Alaska. Lookout created of drift logs. 1891. 6) Interior or Stick Indians spearing fish in the canon of th Fraser River. 1891. 7) Fishing from kaiaks. 1872. 8) View of settlement and fishing trap. Undated. 9) Aleutians striking humpback whales: off Akootan Island, Bering Sea. Undated. 10) Aleutians sea-otter hunters in camp, Tigalda, Aleutian Chain. 1891. 11) Europeans clubbing and skinning seals. 1891. 12) Man with clubs on edge of rookery, St. Paul Island. 1891. 13) Fishing from kaiaks, Captains Harbour. 1872. 14) Seal rookery. 1872. 15) Dropping an Aleutian sea Otter hunting Party of A---tanak Island. 1892.
Caption, if any, or brief description: USNM Item Number 1 Route from Amakdjuak to Sessikdjuak ?; USNM Item Number 2 Hudson Strasse und Frobisher Bay von Nijuipa ?; USNM Item Number 3 Kuste der Hudson Strasse von King's Cape bis North Bluff; USNM Item Number 4 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 5 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 6 Number 6 not found; USNM Item Number 7 ... ? West Kuste der Cumberland ... Sundes ? w ? Frobisher Bay; USNM Item Number 8 Thru 31 October; USNM Item Number 9 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 10 List of place names ?, may belong with one of the maps; USNM Item Number 11 Route from Frobisher Bay to "Armakdjuang" Lake Amadjuak; USNM Item NUmber 12 Unidentified map; "Kagiluktung"?; USNM Item Number 13 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 14 Unidentified map with short Eskimo text on reverse; USNM Item 15 Unidentified map with mathematical equations on reverse; USNM Item Number 16 Unidentified map with mathematical equations on reverse; USNM Item Number 17 and 18 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 19 Unidentified map; notes not legible, but do include the word "Tinera' kdjuak" which could be Tinikdjuarbing or Cumberland Sound; USNM Item Number 20 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 21 Unidentified map;
USNM Item Number 22 Map with islands marked by numbers which appear to correspond with the numbered names in Number 26; USNM Item Number 23 Suh lu ack juv; USNM Item Number 24 Kinawah, Kingowa or Kingua ?; USNM Item Number 25 Unidentified map; USNM Item Number 26 Numbered list of Eskimo place names ?; see Number 22; USNM Item Numbers 27-32 Unidentified maps; notes not legible. List of place names ? with illegible notes on reverse. Unidentified maps (on both sides of sheet). Kuste von Hudson Bay. Printed map with illegible notes on reverse. Karte I Pokkuk ? 26th October.
NAA MS 169270
Most of the maps are not identified as to the precise area they represent except by Eskimo place names. Other notes on the maps include a short text in Eskimo and some notes in German and English; most of these notes are illegible, because Boas used a shorthand system of his own in writing many of them, and his handwriting is very difficult to read even when not abbreviated.
Reverend James Owen Dorsey (1848-1895) was a missionary and Bureau of American Ethnology ethnologist who conducted extensive research on Siouan tribes and languages.The papers of James Owen Dorsey comprise mostly ethnographic and linguistic materials on various tribes of the Siouan language family as well as tribes from Siletz Reservation in Oregon. These materials include texts and letters with interlineal translations; grammar notes; dictionaries; drawings; and his manuscripts. In addition, the collection contains Dorsey's correspondence, newspaper clippings, his obituaries, and reprints.
Scope and Contents:
This collection contains James O. Dorsey's research and writings as a BAE ethnologist, as well as his earlier work as a missionary among the Ponca. The vast majority of the collection pertains to his research on Siouan-Catawban languages, including the Dakota and Dhegiha languages, Chiwere, Winnebago, Mandan, Hidatsa, Tutelo, Biloxi, and Catawba. His research on Athapascan, Kusan, Takilman, and Yakonan languages from his field work at Siletz Reservation are also present, as well as some notes on the Caddoan languages. Dorsey's research files include linguistic and ethnological field notes, reading notes, stories and myths, vocabularies, drawings, and unpublished and published manuscripts. The collection also contains Omaha, Ponca, Quapaw, and Biloxi dictionaries that he compiled and materials relating to his work editing Steven Riggs' Dakota-English Dictionary. Additional noteworthy materials in the collection are Teton texts and drawings from George Bushotter and drawings by Stephen Stubbs (Kansa), Pahaule-gagli (Kansa), and George Miller (Omaha). The collection also contains Dorsey's correspondence, newspaper clippings, obituaries, and his collection of reprints.
The collection is organized into 6 series: 1) Siouan; 2) Siletz Reservation; 3) Caddoan; 4) General Correspondence; 5) Personal Papers; 6) Miscellaneous & Reprints.
Reverend James Owen Dorsey (1848-1895) was a missionary and Bureau of American Ethnology ethnologist who conducted extensive research on Siouan tribes and languages.
Dorsey was born on October 31, 1848 in Baltimore, Maryland. He exhibited a talent for languages at an early age. At age 6 he learned the Hebrew alphabet and was able to read the language at age 10. In 1867 Dorsey attended the Theological Seminary of Virginia and was ordained a deacon of the Protestant Episcopal Church in 1871. In May of that year, Dorsey traveled to the Dakota Territory to serve as a missionary among the Ponca. Plagued by ill health, Dorsey was forced to end his missionary work in August 1873. By that time, however, he had learned the Ponca language well enough to converse with members of the tribe without an interpreter.
Dorsey returned to Maryland and engaged in parish work while continuing his studies of Siouan languages. His linguistic talents and knowledge of these languages attracted the attention of Major John Wesley Powell. Powell arranged for Dorsey to work among the Omaha in Nebraska from 1878 to 1880 to collect linguistic and ethnological notes. When the Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE) was established in 1879, Powell recruited Dorsey to join the staff.
As an ethnologist for the BAE, Dorsey continued his research on Siouan tribes. His studies focused on languages but also included Siouan personal names, folklore, social organization, religion, beliefs, and customs. He conducted fieldwork among the Tutelo at Six Nations on Grand River in Upper Canada (1882); the Kansa, Osage, and Quapaw in Indian Territory (1883-1884); the Biloxi at Lecompte, Rapides Parish, Louisiana (1892); and again with the Quapaw at the Quapaw Mission (1894). He also worked with Native Americans that visited DC, including George Bushotter (Teton), Philip Longtail (Winnebago), Samuel Fremont (Omaha), and Little Standing Buffalo (Ponca). He also spent time at Siletz Reservation in 1884 to collect linguistic notes on the Athapascan, Kusan, Takilman, and Yakonan stocks.
In addition to his research, Dorsey helped found the American Folklore Society and served as the first vice-president of the association. He also served as vice-president of Section H of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
At the age of 47, Dorsey died of typhoid fever on February 4, 1895.
1st-16th Annual Reports of the Bureau of American Ethnology. 1881-1897.
Hewitt, J.N.B. 1895. "James Owen Dorsey" American Anthropologist A8, 180-183.
McGee, W.J. 1895. "In Memoriam." Journal of American Folklore 8(28): 79-80.
1848 -- Born on October 31 in Baltimore, Maryland.
1871 -- Ordained a deacon of the Protestant Episcopal Church.
1871-1873 -- Served as a missionary among the Ponca in Dakota Territory.
1878-1880 -- Conducted fieldwork among the Omaha in Nebraska.
1879 -- Joined the staff of the Bureau of American Ethnology.
1882 -- Conducted fieldwork among the Tutelo at Six Nations on Grand River in Upper Canada.
1883-1884 -- Conducted fieldwork among the Kansa, Osage, and Quapaw in Indian Territory.
1887 -- Worked with George Bushotter to record information regarding the language and culture of the Dakota.
1884 -- Conducted fieldwork at Siletz Reservation.
1892 -- Conducted fieldwork among the Biloxi at Lecompte, Rapides Parish, Louisiana.
1894 -- Conducted fieldwork among the Quapaw at the Quapaw Mission in Indian Territory.
1895 -- Died of typhoid fever on February 4th at the age of 47.
The James O. Dorsey Papers are open for research. Access to the James O. Dorsey Papers requires an appointment
Manuscript 4800 James O. Dorsey papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Creation of this finding aid was funded through support from the Arcadia Fund.
Digitization and preparation of additional materials for online access has been funded also by the National Science Foundation under BCS Grant No. 1561167 and the Recovering Voices initiative at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History.
Identified as Eskimo from Cumberland Gulf on USNM cat. card number 168,997.
Pencil drawings on thin white paper
Apparently received as gift from Captain John Spicer, Groton, Connecticut through O. T. Mason, USNM, September 11, 1894, along with Eskimo lamp and fire making apparatus (USNM Accession number 28,480). Drawings are not referred to in accession papers.