Guide to the Drawings of Indians and California Scenery

Guide written by Mary W. Elings
Funding for creating the digital archive of this collection was provided by the Library of Congress through the California Cultures Project.
The Bancroft Library
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
Phone: (510) 642-6481
Fax: (510) 642-7589
© 2005
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Drawings of Indians and California Scenery

Collection number: BANC PIC 1980.022--A

The Bancroft Library

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, California
Funding for creating the digital archive of this collection was provided by the Library of Congress through the California Cultures Project.
Guide Written By:
Mary W. Elings
Date Completed:
February 2005
© 2005 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Collection Summary

Collection Title: Drawings of Indians and California scenery
Date (inclusive): circa 1851-1854.
Collection number: BANC PIC 1980.022--A
Creator: Brown, Henry B., fl. 1850-1859.
Extent: 53 drawings and 26 hand-drawn copies after original drawings : b&w ; various sizes. 67 digital objects
Repository: The Bancroft Library
Berkeley, California 94720-6000
Abstract: Includes images of mining camps, mining activities and local Native American peoples chiefly from areas around Sacramento, Marysville, Nevada City, Shasta City and Coloma.
Languages represented: Collection materials are in English and Spanish
Physical location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.

Information for Researchers


RESTRICTED ORIGINAL DRAWINGS. Use of originals only by permission of the appropriate curator. Inquiries concerning these materials should be directed, in writing, to the Curator of Pictorial Collections, The Bancroft Library. Please use digital facsimiles when possible.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to The Bancroft Library. All requests for permission to publish or reproduce must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-6000. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.
Copyright restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Drawings of Indians and California Scenery, BANC PIC 1980.022: [item number]--PIC, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

Alternate Forms Available

Digital reproductions of items are available.

Related Collections

Henry B. Brown papers, 1851-1853.

BANC MSS 80/54 c
C. Hart Merriam papers

BANC MSS 80/18

(Notes related to Henry B. Brown and John Russell Bartlett in Carton 19, folder 52 and 58 and in Carton 18, Folder 123)
Drawings by Henry Box Brown [sic], 1851-1852

The Huntington Library (mssHM 62464 (1-43))
Henry B. Brown letters to Susannah Calhoun

California Historical Society (CHS MS 231)

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Bartlett, John Russell, 1805-1886.
Indians of North America -- California -- Pictorial works.
Mines and mineral resources -- California -- Pictorial works.
Ranches -- California -- Pictorial works.
California -- Pictorial works.
Shasta, Mount (Calif. : Mountain) -- Pictorial works.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information

The Henry B. Brown drawings, along with a small amount of related correspondence, were received by The Bancroft Library with the papers of C. Hart Merriam in 1979. Merriam acquired the Brown material from an unknown source prior to 1966. Related Brown drawings were retained by Merriam family members at the time Merriam's papers were give to the library. In 2000 these drawings were acquired by the Huntington Library, San Marino, Calif.


Additional material is not expected.

Processing Information

The Drawings of Indians and California scenery were processed for digitization by LuAnn Sleeper and Mary W. Elings as part of the California Cultures project. The digitization was carried out by the Digital Imaging Lab at UC Berkeley.

Biographical Information

Henry B. Brown is believed to have been born in Cambridge, Massachusetts in January 1816. In the early 1840s, Brown worked as a portraitist, engraver, and illustrator. Brown arrived by ship in San Francisco in May 1851 and set up residence in the Post Office building where he began working for postmaster Jacob Bailey Moore. In late 1851, Brown left San Francisco to tour the California countryside, making illustrations of scenery and points of historical interest. Brown travelled through mining camps and settlements along the Yuba River east of Marysville, and in the vicinity of Grass Valley and Nevada City.
In 1852, John Russell Bartlett, Commissioner of the United States and Mexican Boundary Commission, was introduced to Brown by Jacob Bailey Moore. Bartlett commissioned Brown to gather information on native languages and create drawings and sketches of California scenery and the various Indian peoples and their activities. Throughout 1852, Brown travelled up the Sacramento River valley to Shasta City capturing images and local vocabularies for Bartlett.
In 1854, several of Brown's drawing were published in Bartlett's Personal Narrative of Explorations and Incidents in Texas, New Mexico, California, Sonora, and Chihuahua . From 1854 to 1859 Brown resided in Bermuda and in 1856 was appointed U.S. Consul for Bermuda. He resigned three years later and nothing was heard of him again.
Several 20th century biographical dictionaries of American artists conflate Henry B. Brown's identity with both New England artist Harrison B. Brown and escaped slave and abolitionist Henry Box Brown. The research of Dr. Thomas C. Blackburn in preparation of a study of Henry B. Brown and his California drawings has largely untangled this confusion, and is the basis of the preceding biographical sketch.

Scope and Content of Collection

The drawings are mainly by Henry B. Brown with a few by J.R. Bartlett. The collection includes some copy photos "by Merriam" of Brown's drawings. Subject matter includes images of mining camps, mining activities and local Native American peoples chiefly from areas around Sacramento, Marysville, Nevada City, Shasta City and Coloma.
Views of and relating to Indians show native peoples, including the Nisenan, of the Sacramento area doing various chores (mending nets, etc.), Simmon Peña Storms who served as an interpretor and Indian Agent near Grass Valley, stacks of acorns in Colusa County, Yuba [Uba] River Indians gambling, Chino Indians near Munroe's, a Chino village, etc. Other drawings depict Reddings Ranch near Mt. Shasta, Sierra Nevada views from Sacramento, Grass Valley scenes, mine diggings near Nevada City, Mt. Shasta and vicinity, etc.

List of Items


BANC PIC 1980.022--A (folder 2 : 1) [Papagos Hut] [1854]


BANC PIC 1980.022--A (folder 2 : 2) Geysers, California : from sketch by J. R. Bartlett [1854?]


BANC PIC 1980.022--A (folder 2 : 3) The Golden Gate [1854?]


BANC PIC 1980.022:00--A [Interior of a house, Sacramento River Indians in 1851 or 1852, H.H. Brown] [1854]


BANC PIC 1980.022:01--A S. P. [Simmon Peña] Storms, Interpreter [&c], Indian agency - near Grass Valley, California, 1851 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:02--A Reddings Ranch, Cal [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:03--A Interior, Reddings ranch, near Shasta, Cal [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:04--A Sutters Fort &, Sierra Nevada from Sacramento [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:05--A Munroe Ranch Sac River 1852 [Sacramento River] 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:06--A Entrance to Quartz vein at Gold Hill, Grass Valley [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:07--A [View of hills] [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:08--A(recto) Diggings near Nevada City [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:08--A (verso) [Meadow with grazing animal; near Nevada City?] [1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:09--A Near Shasta Cal[ifornia] : Reddings Ranch from E[ast] side of Sac. River 1852 [Sacramento River] 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:10--A Shasta Peak from near Shasta City [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:11--A Shasta Peak from above Shasta City, Canon upper Sacramento & Shasta Peak [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:11--A Shasta Peak from above Shasta City : Canon upper Sacramento & Shasat Peak [1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:12--A [View of town, possibly San Francisco?] [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:13--A Table Hill and Point Pablo [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:14--A Junction of Sac. & Feather Rivers 1852 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:15--A Near [river bar?] Uba River [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:16--A Mouth of Susquehanna from near Port Defiant [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:17--A Colusa, stacks of acorns [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:18--A [Two women, one carrying an infant and another carrying baskets] [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:19--A (recto) California Indian Mending Net from Life 1852 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:21--A (verso) [Indian baskets] 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:19-- A (verso) [seated figures] [1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:20--A Chino Lodge Sac.River 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:21--A (recto) Uba river Indians gambling 1851 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:21--A (verso) [Indian baskets] 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:22--A (recto) Indian old women making acorn meal [ca. 1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:22--A (verso) [Woman with child in carrier] [1851-1852]


BAN PIC 1980.022:23--A Mottol[?] : Sac. River 1852 [seated male, Sacramento River region] [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:24--A Chino Village Sac. River. Chino Indians near Munroe's 1852 [Sacramento River] 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:24b--A Chino Village near Munroe's (Munroeville). 1852 from pencil sketch by H. H. Brown [after 1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:25--A Indian sitting, Indian on horseback and American with arms [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:26--A Noeruus[?] 1852 [Two figures standing by the tree] 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:27--A (recto) Indian Girls making bread of acorns, Uba River 1851 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:27--A (verso) Branching Pine, California [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:28--A (recto) Cottonwood, Indian Village, Cal[ifornia] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:28--A (verso) [Mother and child, legs and face] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:29--A Tehama Lodge 1852 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:30--A (recto) Sacramento River Indians 1851-1852 1851-1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:30--A (verso) Sacramento River Indians 1851-1852 1852


BANC PIC 1980.022:031--A [Headdress?] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:32--A (recto) Sacramento River Indians [three Indians standing by a tree] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:32--A (verso) [Indian] 1851


BANC PIC 1980.022:32a--A [Hand] [1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:33--A (recto) Colusa spinning[?] [male figure, mother and child, and others] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:33--A (verso) [Standing and seated figures] [1851-1852]


BANC PIC 1980.022:34--A [Wylacher?] Indian [a Indian standing and holding a long pole or spear] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:35--A [Indian figures] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:36--A [Indian group] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:37--A Colusa woman [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:38--A [Male figure] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:39--A Hopi [male smoking pipe] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:40--A [Indian figures] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:41--A [Indian] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:42--A(recto) [Mother and child, and other figures] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:42--A (verso) [Indian figures] [ca. 1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:43--A [Seated figure] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:44--A [Indian figure] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:45--A (recto) [crossed legs (sitting position)] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:45--A (verso) [Indian standing wrapped in blanket] [ca.1850]


[An Indian tribe and one laying down with legs up] null


BANC PIC 1980.022:46--A (recto) [Seated group] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:46--A (verso) [Indian figure profile] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:47--A [Two seated figures] [ca.1850]


BANC PIC 1980.022:48--A [Chest and torso of figure] [ca. 1850]