Typescript relating to Edward Sheriff Curtis

Scope and Content

This small collection consists of a) one photocopied corrected typescript of 'Edward Sheriff Curtis: Visions of a vanishing race', by Jane Jordan Browne (unpublished, 1967). Also included is b) one volume listing the contents of the Curtis photograph volumes (722 images in 20 volumes), late 20th c., presumably created by Library staff to be used in accessing the Curtis Collection whilst held at the University Library.

Administrative / Biographical History

Edward Sheriff Curtis (1868-1952) was an American photographer, who documented images of more than eighty Native American tribes from throughout North America, taking pictures of all aspects of traditional Indian life. The images were produced in a multiple volume limited edition study North American Indian (1907-1930), and were photographed over a thirty year period from 1895. The project was supported by Theodore Roosevelt and partially funded by J. Pierpont Morgan. One of these sets ('number IV') was owned by the University of Exeter Library, having been presented by the Royal Library at Windsor. The set (known as the Curtis Collection) was sold at auction in 2001, as the University's research interests in this area had waned.

Curtis was born in Wisconsin and grew up in Seattle. He was a self-taught photographer and became a partner in a photographic studio in 1892. Through George Grinnell, he was appointed Official Photographer to the Harriman Alaska Expedition of 1899, where he developed interests in North American Indian culture.

Jane Jordan Browne (d 2003) was a Chicago-based literary agent, whose clients included Edward Curtis. She originated from California, graduating from Smith College and UCLA, but began work as an editor in New York (Hawthorn Books, Thomas Y. Crowell, Macmillan Educational Services) before moving to Los Angeles to work for an architecture magazine, where she wrote Architectural Digest of Celebrity Homes. She founded Multimedia Product Development, Inc. (now Browne and Miller Literary Associates), in 1971, and was also a founding member of the Board of Directors of the Illinois Center for the Book. Other publications include Where towns had walls (1970).

Access Information

Usual EUL arrangements apply.

Other Finding Aids

Single item.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Charlotte Berry, Archivist, 5 January 2005, and encoded into EAD 2 June 2005.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual EUL restrictions apply.

Custodial History

Acquired by the University Library via a member of the Department of English, subsequently transferred from the University Main Library.

Related Material

It has not been possible to locate any archive collections relating to Curtis or Jordan Browne in the United Kingdom.


Biographical information taken from notes by Mike Gidley, lecturer in English, University of Exeter, and the website of Browne and Miller Literary Associates.

It is not known whether this collection has been used as the basis for publication.