Photographs collected by Wiliam Edwin Safford while on US Navy expeditions to Chile, Easter Island, Ecuador, Guatemala, Panama, Peru, and Samoa. They depict Indigenous peoples and activities, towns, scenic views, and the crew of the USS Mohican and members of the US Navy. There are also photographs of Guatemala made by Alberto. G. Valdeavellano and J. A. Gonsalves. The Easter Island photographs were possibly made by William J. Thomson, paymaster on the Mohican.
William Edwin Safford (1859-1926) was a United States Naval officer from 1880-1902 who took part in Navy expeditions and collected specimens for the United States National Museum. Safford joined the crew of the USS Mohican in South America and participated in its expedition to the South Pacific (1886-1888). In 1891-1892, he commanded an ethnological expedition to Peru and Bolivia for the Chicago Columbian Expedition. He served in the Spanish American War and was vice-governor of Guam in 1899-1900. In 1902, he resigned from the Navy and took an appointment as an economic botanist with the United States Department of Agriculture.
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 76-26
Location of Other Archival Materials:
Additional photographs of the expedition to Easter Island can be found in the National Anthropological Archives in Photo Lot 97.
Additional photographs collected by Safford can be found in National Anthropological Archives in MS 3366.
The Smithsonian Institution Archives holds the William Edwin Safford Papers, 1894-1925 (SIA RU007275).
Records relating to Safford's collecting expedition in South America can be found in the Smithsonian Institution Archives in SIA RU000189.
Safford's ethnographic data about Samoa can be found in the National Anthropological Archives in MS 2956.
The collection is open for research.
Access to the collection requires an appointment.
Photo lot 76-26, William Edwin Safford photograph albums relating to Easter Island, Samoa, and South America, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution