The Theodoor de Booy collection consists of photographic negatives and prints made by de Booy from 1912 to 1918. The materials largely relate to various archaeological expeditions undertaken by de Booy on behalf of the Museum of the American Indian, Heye Foundation to such places as the Bahamas, Jamaica, Dominican Republic's Island of Saona, Cuba, Venezuela's Island of Margarita, and Trinidad. The West Indies views represent excavation sites, archaeological activities, and antiquities presumably felt to be related to the Indians of the West Indies. In addition are city street scenes, landscapes, and seascapes; plantations; native peoples and their dwellings, social customs, and agricultural practices; and U.S. military activities in the region as well as a few negatives made in New York at the Museum of the American Indian.
Negatives Arranged by negative number (N04070-N04362, N04489-N05070, N06068-N06098). Prints Arranged by print number (P00286, P00287).
Theodoor de Booy was born in 1882 in Hellevoetsluis, Netherlands. The son of a vice-admiral, he received his education from the Royal Naval Institute of Holland; in 1906, at the age of 24, he immigrated to the United States. During a 1911 trip to the Bahamas, he explored several caves and mounds and, based on his discoveries, published an article in the American Anthropologist entitled "Lucayan Remains on the Caicos Islands." This trip affirmed his interest in antiquities, and in 1912 he accepted one of the first positions on George Gustav Heye's "scientific staff," who were charged with collecting American Indian specimens throughout the Western Hemisphere for the Museum of the American Indian collections. De Booy's appointment was as field explorer for the West Indies. From 1912 to 1918, as an employee of the Museum, de Booy conducted archaeological expeditions to and excavations in the Bahamas, Jamaica, Santo Domingo, Cuba, Venezuela, and in Trinidad. After 1918, de Booy worked for a short time at the University of Pennsylvania Museum and then joined the State Department Inquiry as a specialist for South America. A casualty of the influenza epidemic of 1918-1919, de Booy died in Yonkers, New York, at the age of 37.
Historically, the Museum of the American Indian, Heye Foundation managed all photographic and related manuscript collections separately. This collection description represents current management practices of organizing and contextualizing related archival materials.
Access is by appointment only, Monday - Friday, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm. Please contact the archives to make an appointment.
Some restrictions: Cultural Sensitivity
Indians of the West Indies -- Social life and customs Search this