Dimitar Krustev was a painter, photographer, and writer who travelled in Central and South America to document vanishing cultures. This collection includes materials relating to trips to the Pirre highlands in Darién province of Panama, where he filmed the Choco.
Scope and Contents:
The films in this collection were shot in the Pirre highlands in Darién province of Panama, and document the Choco. According to The Journals of Dimitar Krustev (1996), Krustev filmed with a Bolex in 1971 and again in 1977. The supplemental materials in this collection include a copy of The Journals of Dimitar Krustev, slides taken on his trips to Pirre, and audio cassettes of music (probably recordings of the Choco for the films).
Please note that the contents of the collection and the language and terminology used reflect the context and culture of the time of its creation. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution or Anthropology Archives, but is available in its original form to facilitate research.
This collection is arranged in 2 series: (1) Films, 1971-circa 1977; (2) Supplemental Materials, 1971-circa 1977, 1996
Dimitar Krustev was born in Bulgaria in 1920. He emigrated to the United States when he was 19 because he did not want to live under soviet rule. He was later condemned to death by the Communist Party, leading him to seek American citizenship.
He graduated from the National Academy of Art in Sofia, Bulgaria, prior to his emigration. After reaching the United States, he earned his BA in Commercial Art from Kent State University and his Masters in Art History from the University of Iowa.
Krustev worked for nine years as a graphic artist for Better Homes and Gardens, while simultaneously working as a commissioned portrait artist. He then founded the Des Moines Krustev Studio of Art.
After becoming inspired by Rousseau's concept of the "Noble Savage," he made it his goal to paint and document disappearing, indigenous peoples. In pursuit of this goal, he travelled through Central and South America during the 1960s and 1970s. His student, later wife, Helen Marie came with him on many of these trips. The two travelled frequently between Des Moines and Ajijic, Jalisco, in Mexico for nearly 30 years before they moved to Ajijic in 2000.
In addition to painting, Krustev was an avid photographer and writer. His paintings are held in a number of private collections and have been exhibited around the world.
Bercovitch, Heiyn. "Dimitar & Helen." Lake Chapala Review, February 2005.
"Dimitar Krustev." Des Moines Register, March 3, 2013.
1920 -- Born in Bulgaria
circa 1939 -- Emigrated to the United States
1960s-1970s -- Travelled through Central and South America documenting vanishing cultures
2000 -- Moved to Ajijic, Jalisco (Mexico)
2013 -- Died on February 11 in Ajijic
Krustev's papers and journals are held at the American Heritage Center at the University of Wyoming, and some of his films are held at the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City.
The materials within this collection were donated by the creator, Dimitar Krustev.
The collection is open for research. Please contact the archives for information on availability of access copies of audiovisual recordings. Original audiovisual material in the Human Studies Film Archives may not be played.
The Dimitar Krustev films, Human Studies Film Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Richard Oglesby Marsh (1883–1953) was an engineer, American diplomat and amateur ethnologist who participated in several engineering and ethnological expeditions to Panama. He helped draft the Declaration of Independence and Human Rights of the Tule People of San Blas and the Darien and was the author of White Indians of Darien and several popular articles on Panama.
Scope and Contents:
The Marsh Darien expedition of 1924-1925, the focus of this collection, was sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution together with the American Museum of Natural History, the University of Rochester, the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, the Military Intelligence Division of the U.S. Army, the Canal Zone administration, and the government of Panama. Expedition members included John L. Baer (Smithsonian Institution ethnologist), Paul Benton (Rochester Times-Union reporter), Charles M. Breder, Jr. (New York Aquarium biologist), Raoul Brin (botanist), Charles Charlton (Pathé News cinematographer), Herman L. Fairchild (University of Rochester emeritus geologist), Harry Johnson (taxadermist) Omer Malsbury (Canal Zone Administration), Lieut. Glen Townsend (U.S. Army) and Francisco Pinzón, the expedition cook.
The Marsh Papers include diaries, photographs, correspondence, maps, articles in draft and published form, and miscellaneous papers, chiefly relating to Marsh's experiences as leader of the Marsh Darien expedition to Panama in 1924-1925 and his contacts with the Kuna (also known as Tule). The collection also features materials on the negotiations that took place on the U.S.S. Cleveland with representatives of the U.S. and Panamanian governments and the Kuna Indians during the Kuna uprising of 1925, in which Marsh served as a mediator.
Correspondents include Marsh's wife, Helen Louise Cleveland Marsh; his son Richard O. Marsh, Jr.; and C.L.G. Anderson.
Please note that the contents of the collection and the language and terminology used reflect the context and culture of the time of its creation. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution or National Anthropological Archives, but is available in its original form to facilitate research.
Richard O. Marsh (1883-1953) was an engineer, U.S. State Department employee, and ethnologist who made numerous engineering and scientific expeditions around the world. He was the author of The White Indians of Darien [c1934]. The Marsh-Darien expedition of 1924-1925, the focus of this collection, was sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution together with the American Museum of Natural History, the University of Rochester, the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, the Military Intelligence Division of the U.S. Army, the Canal Zone administration, and the government of Panama.
1883 -- Born in Illinois
1901 -- Enrolled in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1903 -- Employed by the Army Corps of Engineers in Texas
1905 -- Enrolled in the University of Lausanne, Switzerland
1909 -- Married Helen Cleveland in September
1910 -- Appointed First Secretary of the U.S. legation in Panama in April
1912 -- Secretary, American Embassy, St. Petersburg, Russia
1915 -- Elected mayor of Warsaw, Illinois
1923 -- Returned to Panama as employee of engineer George Goethals in June
1924 -- Headed Marsh-Darien expedition to Panama in January
1925 -- Returned to San Blas, Panama Published "Blond Indians of the Darien Jungle" in The World's Work
1931 -- Traveled to Nicaragua
1933-1935 -- Public Works Administration
1934 -- Published White Indians of Darien (New York: Putnam)
1935-1939 -- Chief engineer, Land Utilization Division, U.S. Department of Agriculture
1941 -- Reconnaissance engineer, U.S. Military, North Africa, in December
1949-1952 -- State Road Department, Florida
1953 -- Died, Vero Beach, Florida, on September 4
Additional material relating to the Marsh Darien Expedition is included in MS 4550 in the National Anthropological Archives. Additional Marsh correspondence is contained in the Aleš Hrdlicka papers. On Marsh's adventures in Panama, see James Howe, A People Who Would Not Kneel: Panama, the United States, and the San Blas Kuna (Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998).
The Marsh papers were donated to the archives by Richard O. Marsh, Jr. in 1997.
The Richard O. Marsh papers are open for research.
Access to the Richard O. Marsh papers requires an appointment.
Richard O. Marsh papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Organización comunitaria para el comanejo, oportuniadades y limitaciones : el caso de la Reserva Hidrólogica Filo del Tallo, Darién, Panamá / Eysel Castillo Ororio, Francisco Herrera y coordinación del equipo técnico de CEASPA
Atlas de los recursos marino-costeros de la Provincia del Darién : consultoría para elaborar el plan de manejo costero integral en el Golfo de San Miguel y zonas adyacentes, en el marco del Programa de Desarrollo Sostenible del Darién / preparado por Arden & Price Consulting, University of Miami
Plan piloto de manejo utilizando técnicas de aprovechamiento de bajo impacto, enero 1999 : ubicación: area de Naranzati, Distrito Chepigana, Provincia de Darién / William T. Grauel, Ricardo Pineda M., Manuel Rodes