Henry B. Brown drawings

Finding aid prepared by Brooke M. Black.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens
Manuscripts Department
The Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2191
Email: reference@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
© 2002
The Huntington Library. All rights reserved.


Descriptive Summary

Title: Henry B. Brown drawings
Dates: 1851-1852
Collection Number: mssHM 62464 (1-43)
Creator: Brown, Henry, active 1850-1859
Extent: 43 items in 3 boxes
Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2191
Email: reference@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
Abstract: This collection contains forty-two pencil drawings primarily of California Native Americans, California landscapes, Mexico, and Central America, drawn in 1851 and 1852 by American artist, and later United States Consul to Bermuda, Henry B. Brown.
Language of Material: The records are in English.

Administrative Information

Access

The entire collection is open for qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, please go to following web site .

Publication Rights

The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Henry B. Brown drawings, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

Acquisition Information

The collection was purchased from Catherine C. Abbott, December 13, 2000.

Biographical Note

Henry B. Brown was probably born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in January 1816. In the 1840s, he worked as a portrait artist and engraver, and in 1851 he traveled to San Francisco with his friend Jacob Bailey Moore. Brown worked for Moore for the next several months, gathering specimens and making drawings in the California countryside. In March of 1852, he was commissioned by John Russell Bartlett, head of the U.S.-Mexico Boundary Commission and a friend of Moore, to draw views of landscapes and Indians in Northern California, assist with collecting Indian vocabularies, and make maps of the area, with a view towards contributing to Bartlett's book "Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua" (1854). Brown traveled to New York in the late summer of 1852, and presumably drew his coastal scenes of Mexico and Central America during the trip. From 1856 to 1859, he served as US Consul for Bermuda. Little is known of his life after that date; his health was poor at the time of his resignation in 1859, and he may have died in late 1860 or soon after. He should not be confused with the Maine artist Harrison Bird Brown (1831-1915) or with the escaped slave Henry "Box" Brown (b. 1816).

Scope and Content

This collection contains pencil drawings drawn in 1851 and 1852 by American artist, and later United States Consul to Bermuda, Henry B. Brown. The forty-two drawings are arranged according to their five general subjects: California Native Americans (7), California landscapes (24), Mexico (4), Central America (6), and Other (1). Although the exact Indian tribes in Brown’s drawings are not known, it is believed that they are the Maidu, Nomlaki, Patwin, Wintun, and/or the Shasta Indians because those tribes lived in the areas in California where Brown was traveling. These drawings include portraits of Indians and scenes of daily life in Indian villages. Five of these drawings have been published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, and Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua by John Russell Bartlett. The twenty-four drawings of California landscapes include views of mining camps, a quartz mill, San Francisco, Marysville, Mount Shasta, Grass Valley, the Sacramento River, and Nevada City. The ten drawings of Mexico and Central America include views of Acapulco, the Gulf of California, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and El Salvador. Also included in the collection is an undated drawing of the Susquehanna river in Port Deposit, Maryland, and a blank sheet of paper that was probably used as a mount for one of the drawings. The titles used are the titles supplied by the artist. Several of the drawings have sketches or inscriptions on the verso. A number of the Brown drawings have also been published in An Artist's Portfolio: the California Sketches of Henry B. Brown by Thomas C. Blackburn.

Alternative Form of Materials Available

Visit the Huntington Digital Library   to view digitized items from this collection.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  

Subjects

Brown, Henry B., active 1850-1859 .
Artists -- California -- 19th century.
Drawing, American -- 19th century.
Indians of North America -- California -- Portraits.
Maidu Indians -- Portraits.
Mines and mineral resources -- California -- Pictorial works.
Mining camps -- California -- Pictorial works.
Nomlaki Indians -- Portraits.
Patwin Indians -- Portraits.
Shasta Indians -- Portraits.
Wintun Indians -- Portraits.
California -- Pictorial works.
Central America -- Pictorial works.
Grass Valley (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
Mexico -- Pictorial works.
Mount Shasta (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
Nevada City (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
Ometepe Island (Nicaragua) -- Pictorial works.
Port Deposit (Md.) -- Pictorial works.
Sacramento River (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
Sacramento Valley (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
San Francisco (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.
San Juan del Sur Bay (Nicaragua) -- Pictorial works.
Susquehanna River -- Pictorial works.
Tehama County (Calif.) -- Pictorial works.

Forms/Genres

Drawings California 19th century.
Drawings Central America 19th century.
Drawings Mexico 19th century.
Sketches California 19th century.
Sketches Central America 19th century.
Sketches Mexico 19th century.

Bibliography

Bartlett, John Russell. Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua. New York: D. Appleton & Company, 1854.
Blackburn, Thomas C. An Artist's Portfolio : the California sketches of Henry B. Brown, 1851-52. Banning, California: Malki-Ballena Press, 2006.
Emanuels, George. California Indians: An Illustrated Guide. Walnut Creek, California: Diablo Books, 1991.
Heizer, Robert F., ed. A Collection of Ethnographical Articles on the California Indians. Ramona, California: Ballena Press, 1976.
Hine, Robert V. An Artist Draws the Line. American Heritage, February 1968, Volume XIX, Number 2: 28.
Hine, Robert V. Bartlett's West: Drawing the Mexican Boundary. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1968.
Kroeber, Theodora, Albert B. Elsasser, Robert F. Heizer. Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush. Socorro, New Mexico: Ballena Press, 1977.
Merriam, C. Hart. Studies of California Indians. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1955.
Powers, Stephen. Tribes of California. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1877.

Container list

Box  1

Items 1-14

Item 1

Cal[ifornia] Indian Boy, Wylacker Tribe near Shasta - from Life 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (1)

Physical Description: 38 x 26 cm. Pencil with watercolor and gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “Reddings, near Shasta.”Published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, on cover and page 193.
Item 2

No-e-nne boy: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (2)

Physical Description: 21 x 19 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 3

California Indians - Women, Upper Sacramento Valley: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (3)

Physical Description: 26 x 20 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “Doubtless Chino village near Munroe’s Ranch Upper Sacr[amento] River.” Published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, page 194.
Item 4

Interior Indian House near Colvin, Cal[ifornia] 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (4)

Physical Description: 26 x 38 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On front: “House,” title is on verso. A very similar drawing is published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, page 176, and in Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua by John Russell Bartlett, p. 30 and on the cover of A Collection of Ethnographical Articles on the California Indians, edited by Robert F. Heizer.
Item 5

Cal[ifornia] Indians Sacreficing [sic] to their Dead Friends: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (5)

Physical Description: 26 x 38 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “Ceremony called Hapi[?] by Uba River Tribes.” Published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, page 192.
Item 6

Chinoh Council House, near Munroe’s, Sac[ramento] R[iver]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (6)

Physical Description: 26 x 38 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: Two faint sketches of figures; the complete sketch of one is published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, page 269.
Recto:
Verso:
Item 7

Summer Lodges California Indians near Shasta 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (7)

Physical Description: 26 x 38 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “Summer Lodges,” “Original of Woodcut in Bartlett, Personal Narrative, Vol. II, p. 31, 1854.” Published in Drawn from Life: California Indians in Pen and Brush by Theodora Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, page 189 and 190, and in Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua by John Russell Bartlett, p. 31.
Item 8

Near Grass Valley Cal[ifornia]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (8)

Physical Description: 20 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 9

On the Sacramento near Shasta Head of Great Sacramento Plain April 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (9)

Physical Description: 27 x 42 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 10

Head of Sacramento Valley looking down from above Shasta City: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (10)

Physical Description: 26 x 39 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: Four sketches of figures and illegible word.
Recto:
Verso:
Item 11

Shasta Peak from Tehama about 100 miles distant: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (11)

Physical Description: 19 x 30 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “Tehama, Sacramento River, Cala. 1852.”
Item 12

Nevada City, Cal[ifornia]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (12)

Physical Description: 18 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

Item 13

At Nevada City, Cal[ifornia]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (13)

Physical Description: 18 x 25 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 14

At Nevada City 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (14)

Physical Description: 19 x 25 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

Box  2

Items 15-28

Item 15

Nevada City, Cal[ifornia]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (15)

Physical Description: 18 x 25 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

Item 16

Quartz Mills near Nevada City: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (16)

Physical Description: 20 x 25 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor and gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 17

Groups of Oaks near Munroes and Coast Range from Munroes: drawings [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (17)

Physical Description: 13 x 40 cm. Two drawings. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 18

Lawsons Peaks, Sierra Nevada from Reddings Ranch Sacramento River: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (18)

Physical Description: 26 x 40 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: “View on the Sacramento River Shasta.”
Item 19

Head of Sacramento Valley and Shasta Peak: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (19)

Physical Description: 19 x 40 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 20

At Munroeville Looking West: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (20)

Physical Description: 13 x 40 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 21

Coast Range from Tehama: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (21)

Physical Description: 13 x 39 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: Sketch of a man sitting.
Recto:
Verso:
Item 22

The Buttes from foothills near Marysville, Cal[ifornia]: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (22)

Physical Description: 16 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 23

Roses Bar, Uba River 1851: drawing (1851).

Call Number: HM 62464 (23)

Physical Description: 18 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 24

At Gold Hill, California: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (24)

Physical Description: 18 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 25

On Deer Creek near Nev[ada] City: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (25)

Physical Description: 19 x 26 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 26

Above Reddings Ranch on the Sacramento: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (26)

Physical Description: 20 x 37 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 27

Mouth of Cañon, Shasta road, California with Trinity Mountains 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (27)

Physical Description: 21 x 27 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 28

Lassons Peak, Sierra Nevada: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (28)

Physical Description: 26 x 41 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Box  3

Items 30-43

Item 29

Fire at San Francisco Sketched from P. O. May 1851: drawing (1851).

Call Number: HM 62464 (29)

Physical Description: 22 x 30 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 30

Untitled [drawing shows Goat Island and the San Francisco Bay]: drawing [1851].

Call Number: HM 62464 (30)

Physical Description: 19 x 28 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

On verso: various sketches.
Recto:
Verso:
Item 31

Goat Island and Contra Costa, San Francisco Bay: drawing [1851].

Call Number: HM 62464 (31)

Physical Description: 15 x 27 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

Item 32

Coast of Mexico Pacific: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (32)

Physical Description: 19 x 44 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor and gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 33

Mexican Coast, 150 miles NW Acapulco: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (33)

Physical Description: 15 x 43 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 34

Near Cape Corrientes Gulf California: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (34)

Physical Description: 15 x 44 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 35

White Islands Above Acapulco: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (35)

Physical Description: 15 x 44 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor.

Scope and Content Note

Item 36

Harbour of San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua from the Town 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (36)

Physical Description: 20 x 40 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 37

Nicaragua: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (37)

Physical Description: 16 x 43 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 38

Guatamala [sic] from the Pacific: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (38)

Physical Description: 13 x 44 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 39

Near San Salvador Central America: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (39)

Physical Description: 17 x 43 cm. Pencil on paper with watercolor and gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 40

Nicaragua: drawing [1852].

Call Number: HM 62464 (40)

Physical Description: 11 x 43 cm. Pencil on paper.

Scope and Content Note

Item 41

Omotepee [sic] from Virgin Bay Lake Nicaragua sketched in 1852: drawing (1852).

Call Number: HM 62464 (41)

Physical Description: 13 x 42 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 42

Port Deposit Susquehanna: drawing [n.d.].

Call Number: HM 62464 (42)

Physical Description: 13 x 20 cm. Pencil on paper with gouache.

Scope and Content Note

Item 43

Blank sheet of Paper - probably once used as a mount for one of the drawings.

Call Number: HM 62464 (43)

Scope and Content Note