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Published: 29 August 2020

By Andy Ross

Documenting Native American life

The photographer, Edward Sheriff Curtis was working in the early Twentieth Century to make a record of what were thought to be the vanishing cultures of Native Americans. 

A new book has been added to the library collection that brings together many of the photographs he took during his travels. As a record of the ways in which people dwelt, where they lived and what they wore, these images have been invaluable in recording histories and a particular time. 

The photographs show in detail the clothing and costume people wore and used: beadwork, barkcloths, hides and skins, amongst other, more manufactured cloths. This is a fascinating record for anyone interested in dress and costume, some of which can be seen here

Edward Sheriff Curtis was written by Joanna Cohan Scherer and published by Phaidon in 2008. The book will be available to read in the library once the studio reopens.