Negatives relating to Edward Sheriff Curtis collection of photographs of native American Indians

Scope and Content

Assorted negatives relating to the Edward Curtis collection of photographs of native American Indians.

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.

Conditions Governing Access

Usual EUL arrangements apply.

Acquisition Information

These negatives were probably created during the time that the Curtis Collection was held at the University Library, prior to its sale in 2001. There may be some relation between this collection and the large exhibition prints contained within MS 275.

Other Finding Aids


Archivist's Note

Description created by Rob Ford, 16 Apr 2007.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual EUL restrictions apply.

Related Material

See also: EUL MS 182 ('Edward Sheriff Curtis: Visions of a vanishing race', by Jane Jordan Browne (unpublished, 1967)), and EUL MS 275 (Photographs and display boards relating to exhibition on 'Visions of a vanishing race', by Edward Sheriff Curtis, 1970s-1980s).


These photographs have been published and it seems likely they have been taken from 'Visions of a vanishing race', 1967.