Papers and photograph collection of James and Stevey Bruce, anthropologists, photographers, and filmmakers, specifically of
New Guinea native tribes. The collection contains mainly narratives (scripts) to films of his expeditions, plus many photographs
and slides. Bruce made expeditions from 1961 to 1982 to New Guinea to study, photograph, and film tribes inhabiting many of
the islands, including the John Frum Cult on Vanuatu Island, a cult based on a belief system around the Gods living in the
USA, who are responsible for the "magical" appearance of manufactured items that cannot be fashioned from the jungle or sea;
and other tribes inhabiting Malaita, Solomon Islands and tribes in Indonesia. Many of his photographs, taken principally by
his wife Stevey Bruce, are of ceremonial dances and rituals and document the ceremonial dress of the native tribes as well
as depicting village life.
James Stuart Bruce was born in Butte, Montana June 12, 1919. At the age of six he and his family moved to the island of Cyprus
where his father was the managing director of Cyprus Mines Corporation. James Bruce lived in Cyprus from 1926 to 1938 and
spent three years at school in Beirut, Lebanon. He then attended Pomona College and graduated with a B.A. in 1942. From
1942 to 1945, James Bruce served in the Army Corps of Engineers with duty in New Guinea and the Philippines. His service
in New Guinea brought him in contact with native tribes and contributed to his interest in studying New Guinea tribes later
on in his life. After the war, from 1947 to 1954, James Bruce was self-employed as a ceramic manufacturer in Pasadena, California.
2.00 linear feet
(2 archives boxes and 2 oversize folders)
Publication rights are held by the creator of the collection.
Collection is open for research.