Information for Researchers
Scope and Content
Collection Title: Ethnographic Photographs of California Indian and Sonora
Indian Subjects by Alfred L. Kroeber
Collection Number: Accession
645 photographic negatives;
626 digital objects
Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology.
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
Phone: (510) 642-3681
Fax: (510) 642-6271
Portal URL: https://portal.hearstmuseum.berkeley.edu/
Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English
Information for Researchers
Original materials are restricted and may not be viewed unless permission is granted by
the museum's Director. Photographs should be requested by their catalog numbers.
Copyright has been assigned to the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology. All requests
for permission to publish photographs must be submitted in writing to the museum's media
permissions division, see https://hearstmuseum.berkeley.edu/media-permissions/ for policy
and procedure to request media permission.
Copyright restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials.
Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.
[Catalog number], Ethnographic Photographs of California Indian and Sonora Indian
Subjects by Alfred L. Kroeber, 1901-1930, Accession 4687, The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of
Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley
Digital Representations Available
Digital representations of original pictorial materials are available in the list of
materials below. Digital image files were prepared from selected Library originals by the
Library Photographic Service. Library originals were copied onto 35mm color transparency
film; the film was scanned and transferred to Kodak Photo CD (by Custom Process); and the
Photo CD files were color-corrected and saved in JFIF (JPEG) format for use as viewing
Kroeber's personal photographs and papers are held by The Bancroft Library, University of
Ethnographic photographs by Professor Alfred Kroeber in the collection of the Phoebe
Hearst Museum of Anthropology are works made for hire.
Scope and Content
"Alfred Kroeber and the Photographic Representation of California Indians"
by Ira Jacknis
American Indian Culture and
vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 15-32 (1996)
Ira Jacknis (1952-2021) was a Reserach Anthropologist at the
Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley. In
addition to visual anthropology, his interests included museology, the history of
anthropology, and the art and culture of Indians of Western North America.
Although Alfred Kroeber is universally regarded as the founder of California Indian
1 his important use of the camera as an ethnographic
tool is virtually unknown. In fact, Kroeber was one of the first anthropologists to
photograph California Native peoples.
California has never attracted as many photographers as other regions of Native America,
such as the Southwest.
2 Most likely, this was due to the rapid
depopulation and massive acculturation. By the time of Kroeber's fieldwork at the turn of
the century, there were comparatively few Native people left in the state, and from a naive,
"Anglo" perspective, they did not
look particularly Native. Most of the
earliest surviving photographs of the California Indian are by a handful of professional
3 In the fall of 1892, Henry W. Henshaw
photographed the Pomo living near Ukiah for the Smithsonian's Bureau of American Ethnology.
4 With these pictures, Henshaw became probably the first
California Indian photographer who made his living as an anthropologist -although his
training had been in biology. Several years later, Roland Dixon, a Harvard graduate student
working for the American Museum of Natural History, began to photograph the Maidu in 1899.
About the same time, Pliny Goddard, a Quaker missionary among the Hupa, was also taking
pictures, which he later published as an anthropologist at the University of California.
5 Finally, in 1901, just before Kroeber joined the University,
Dr. Philip M. Jones took a series of Californian Indian pictures for Phoebe Hearst, the
founder of the University's Museum of Anthropology.
When Alfred Kroeber first arrived in California in the summer of 1900, he was still in the
middle of research for the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Born in 1876,
Kroeber had grown up in Manhattan and attended Columbia University. While a graduate student
in the late 1890s, he came under the influence of Franz Boas, who initiated him into
anthropology. During the summers of 1899, 1900, and 1901, Kroeber made three collecting
trips to the Arapaho and other Plains tribes, sponsored by the American Museum. We know that
he used a camera on these expeditions, but the photos do not seem to have survived.
In August 1900, Kroeber was appointed Curator of Anthropology at the California Academy of
Sciences in San Francisco. After six weeks spent reviewing the collections, Kroeber set out
on a collecting trip, first to the north and the Yurok, Hupa, Karuk around the Klamath River
and then south to the Mohave. As the Academy could not afford to pay for collections, which
were usually donated, he left by Christmas.
In late spring of the following year, Kroeber was offered a position in the new museum and
department of Anthropology at the University of California, then being formed under the
patronage of Phoebe Apperson Hearst.
7 At its inception, the
program's mission was collecting and research; teaching was to be postponed. At the museum,
Kroeber began with an unspecified curatorial position and was officially appointed curator
in 1908; he became the Museum's director in 1925.
8 His initial
academic position was that of instructor (1901-06), although he did not start teaching until
spring of 1902.
9 Gradually, teaching occupied more of his
Alfred Kroeber was overwhelmingly a literary person.
10 He had
been an English major in college, taking a master's in the subject in 1897. Accordingly, as
an ethnographer his preferred subjects were language and myth, his preferred medium, pencil
and notebook. Working, however, in an embracive, Boasian framework,
11 Kroeber made use of mechanical recording devices--cameras and especially
phonographs--to document Native life.
Like all ethnographers, Alfred Kroeber's specific fieldwork practice stemmed from his
fundamental conception of the ethnological project. Three aspects deserve attention here:
the creation of an objective record, the need for survey and comparison, and the
construction of an "ethnographic present."
Kroeber took from his mentor Franz Boas a multi-media approach to recording Native
cultures--including texts (primarily in Native languages), ethnographic observations, sound
recordings, artifacts, as well as photographs. All were discrete objects in some way, and
all could ultimately be preserved in a museum or archives.
Commenting on Kroeber's fieldwork methodology, historian Timothy Thoresen has noted that, "A
trip that began with a search for baskets among the Yurok, for example, might well result
also in notebooks full of lists of names for Yurok habitation sites with estimated
population, information on house types, statements of both reported and observed practices,
and several myths with comments on the informants."
Kroeber, however, the visual world of photographs and artifacts was secondary to the verbal
realm of linguistic notes and texts (folklore), and an examination of his field work
activity reveals that he spent relatively little time in artifact collecting, and even less
Kroeber spent much of the first decade of his career in intensive fieldwork among the
Indians of California. Though broad, this research was essentially shallow, at least during
these early years. Confronted by the enormous cultural, social, and linguistic diversity of
Native California, Kroeber's response was survey and mapping.
As he noted to Boas in 1903, "virtually all of my field work has been essentially
15 In that year, this on-going work was formally
institutionalized as the Archaeological and Ethnological Survey of California, with the
financial support of Phoebe Hearst.
16 Kroeber's dedication to
survey explains the great diversity of Native groups that he recorded in just a few short
years, and it may have discouraged him from focusing on the minute and concrete aspects of
culture best captured by the camera.
Ultimately, in fact, photography could not answer the ethnological questions that Kroeber
asked. His research was dedicated to the reconstruction of a Native past that no longer
17 As he explained in the preface to his summarizing
Handbook of the Indians of California, his mission was
to "reconstruct and present the scheme within which these people in ancient and more recent
times lived their lives. It is concerned with their civilization --at all events the
appearance they presented on discovery, and whenever possible an unraveling, from such
indications as analysis and comparison now and then afford, of the changes and growth of
18 Kroeber went on to explain that he was
omitting "accounts of the relations of the natives with the whites and of the events
befalling them after such contact was established."
19 He would,
he added, consider post-contact culture only when necessary to "form an estimate of an
ancient vanished culture." The lives of Native Californians had changed immensely since
contact, especially in such crucial aspects of material culture as clothing and houses. Even
their bodies had changed, with significant degrees of intermarriage. The camera could be of
little use in documenting "the appearance they presented on discovery." It could not record
a vanished culture.
As most of Kroeber's fieldwork, especially of Californian peoples, was sponsored by the
University of California, it is not surprising that all of his surviving original
photographs are in the collections of the Hearst Museum of Anthropology (formerly, the Lowie
Museum), at the Berkeley campus. Although museum records make it difficult to determine
precisely which photographs are Kroeber's, 636 images appear to have been taken by him.
Generally, especially in his early years, Kroeber employed a smaller, more portable camera
(with 3 1/2 by 3 1/2 inch film), instead of the larger glass-plate devices used by many
Kroeber's photography naturally corresponds to the people, places, and dates of his more
general ethnographic fieldwork. Some of his pictures were taken in 1901, but most of his
early photography came in 1902, when he spent several months in the field. For the following
few years, academic duties kept him close to home. The next substantial body of
photographs--in fact, the bulk of his work in this medium--were produced in 1907, when he
took many portraits as part of a survey of the physical anthropology of California natives.
Undoubtedly, he was also impelled by the knowledge that the department's founder and
benefactor, Phoebe Hearst, would be drastically reducing her funding in 1908.
21 Kroeber's last ethnographic photographs were twenty images of the
Seri of Baja California, taken in March of 1930.
Although Kroeber collected artifacts from at least eighteen different groups before
1918--when he finished work on the
photography was much more restricted. Only three groups were substantially documented--the
Yurok (220), Hupa (133), and Yahi (121). Five more were modestly recorded--Karuk (37),
Cahuilla (35), Mohave (34), Yokuts (20), and Seri (20), and four were subjects of
essentially miscellaneous photography--Round Valley Reservation (6), Luiseo (4), Wintun (3),
and Southeastern Pomo (3).
The Yurok were virtually the first California group that Kroeber encountered, and they
were, by far, the principal subject of his ethnography over his long career.
22 In contrast to other Native groups, which Kroeber usually
photographed only once, the Yurok were visually documented repeatedly--in 1901, 1902, 1906,
and 1907. Of these pictures, 89 depicted people and 72 were of scenery and sites.
The second-most popular subject of Kroeber's photography was Ishi, the last Yahi Indian,
who lived at the Anthropology Museum of the University of California from September, 1911
until his death in March of 1916. In May of 1914, Kroeber took Ishi and a research team back
to Ishi's homeland in the Deer Creek area of Tehama County, in northeastern California. For
a month, Ishi demonstrated the now-vanished customs of his people, which Kroeber and his
friends documented in about 150 images (about one half of the Ishi photo collection at the
Another relatively large body of Kroeber photographs were of the Hupa of the Trinity River
area, also in Northwestern California. All his Hupa photographs were taken in 1907,
nominally for the physical anthropology survey. Generally, Kroeber had left Hupa ethnography
and photography to his University colleague Pliny Goddard, just as he had left recording of
the Pomo to his student Samuel Barrett, and the Maidu to Roland Dixon's expeditions,
sponsored by the American Museum of Natural History.
Without doubt, the major subject of Kroeber's photography was people, most taken on his
1907 survey of physical anthropology. The second most common is scenery, with material
culture (houses and artifact production/use) a distant third.
Although not remembered today as a museum anthropologist, Kroeber actually did a fair
amount of artifact collecting.
23 Unlike other ethnographic
photographers--men like James Mooney or even Franz Boas--however, Kroeber took very few
pictures of portable objects (baskets, drums, bows, etc.). In several pictures, he did
record in a field setting artifacts that he subsequently collected for the Museum, for
instance, a Yurok door and some baskets.
Architecture--family and sweat houses--was the principal subject of his material culture
images. In keeping with his salvage motives, Kroeber recorded only the old-style plank
houses that were rapidly becoming obsolete instead of the western-style milled frame houses
in which most Yurok were living at the time. However, among the several important shots of
house interiors, one can discern tin cans and other items of modern life.
Kroeber took very few shots of technological process, of objects being made and used. Most
in this category depict fishing along the Klamath River. Furthermore, with one notable
exception, Kroeber took no sequence shots of related stages in a given activity (e.g.,
pottery-making or dancing).
25 The principal exception occurred
during the 1914 trip with Ishi to Deer Creek (see below).
Kroeber took many pictures of scenery in Native territory, especially in the Klamath River
area. While at first glance these images, with no sign of human occupation, appear to be
devoid of ethnological interest, closer investigation (documented in the writing of Kroeber
and his colleagues) reveals that they illustrate sites important to Native mythology or
ritual. Following, perhaps, the cultural emphases of a riverine people, Kroeber also linked
some of his photos spatially, constructing a panorama along a river or mountain valley by
taking two or three contiguous and overlapping shots.
While such an approach was not unknown among ethnographic photographers of his time,
27 Kroeber's extensive interest in this sphere reveals an acute
sensitivity to Native world view. Native peoples of Northwestern California regarded their
surroundings as the sites of great events during mythic times. In adopting this perspective,
Kroeber recalls the Native interests revealed in photographs by George Hunt, the Kwakiutl
assistant of Franz Boas.
28 What is striking, for our argument,
is that these pictures are devoid of a physical or surface meaning. That is, they derive
their significance from intangibles, from what is not seen, and thus, they are yet another
sign of Kroeber's interest in a primarily verbal ethnography.
Most of Kroeber's photographs of people were taken on his 1907 physical anthropology
survey. While many are indeed the kinds of head shots, posed in linked frontal and profile
pairs, that would be suitable for such a survey, many are of groups of children, whole
figures shot from a distance, which would be of little use for any scientific investigation.
By Kroeber's time, such physical type photography had a long tradition in anthropology, but
one that would not last much longer.
29 Kroeber measured many of
these individuals (keyed to his field notes in the museum's photo catalogue).
Generally, people are dressed in their everyday, western attire; a few wear ceremonial
regalia. Kroeber made no effort to dress them in aboriginal clothes, unlike Edward Curtis or
even Franz Boas.
30 Kroeber probably did this because he did not
intend to use the photos for public consumption, and/or because it would have taken too much
time and effort away from his priority of writing.
Many of the people Kroeber photographed were related; in separate shots he recorded
generations of grandparents, parents, and children. At least on his 1907 survey, his
photography was actually quite comprehensive; he was able to take pictures of 93 Hupa people
(21 men, 14 women, and 58 children) out of a total population of 420.
The photographs of Ishi are the largest body of Kroeber's portraits. He shared the
photographic duties on the 1914 expedition with Dr. Saxton Pope, Ishi's friend and
physician. Given Pope's keen interest in archery, it comes as no surprise that he took most
of the pictures of Ishi using bow and arrow.
In many respects, this Ishi series is unusual in Kroeber's oeuvre. While living in San
Francisco, Ishi wore white man's clothes--typically, trousers, shirt, jacket, and shoes.
Although Ishi went up to Deer Creek in western clothing, Kroeber had him strip down for
performances to be documented by the camera (sequences documenting fire-making, bow and
arrow-making, hunting, fishing). In these images, Ishi wears a loin-cloth that he may never
have worn before coming into the white man's world. Yahi men had formerly worn a variety of
animal skin robes, blankets, and aprons.
32 In fact, although
Ishi and his family were attempting to flee from "civilization," he lived his entire life in
a world formed by the white man. Along with glass-bottle projectile points and metal spoons,
the Yahi of Ishi's time also used cloth hats and denim bags.
The marked differences between the Ishi corpus and the rest of Kroeber's photographic
portraits is a reflection of the special place that Ishi occupied in his research. First,
Ishi was a major public sensation, and Kroeber may have felt more of a compulsion to "dress
up" (or rather "down") Ishi. Perhaps significantly, he used a larger, 5 by 7 inch camera for
the Ishi series, thereby ensuring a better, more detailed image. More generally, with an
ethnography predicated upon salvage and the vanishing Indian, Kroeber believed that Ishi was
the closest he had come to an untouched California aboriginal. These would be the
photographs that he could never get.
PUBLICATION OF PHOTOGRAPHS
Alfred Kroeber used relatively few photos in his publications, and when he did, they are
minimally captioned. His most extensively illustrated publication is his summary reference
Handbook of the Indians of California.
34 In the photographs, like the text itself, he supplements his
own research with the work of his students and colleagues.
Generally, Kroeber presented his images very closely to how he originally photographed
them, with little cropping, enlargement, or retouching. In his captions, he used his
pictures to construct an "ethnographic present." None of the people illustrated in the
Handbook are identified by personal name, which were
often known to Kroeber. For instance, pictures of Ishi shooting a bow and drilling fire are
identified as "Yahi" instead of with Ishi's name.
35 Nor did
Kroeber date any of his photographs in captions until after 1940, when he began to publish
his research in collaboration with his students. By then, these images had achieved a kind
of historical significance.
In fact, Kroeber seems to have made the most extensive use of photographs quite late in his
life, when he co-authored two important monographs with younger colleagues. Both were on
Northwestern California subjects--on World Renewal ceremonies and fishing. In the former
volume, there is a comparison between an 1890s photo by Augustus Ericson and a 1902 version
by Kroeber of the same Yurok sweat house, with a consideration of the changes, and the
latter volume includes a good deal of analysis based directly on photographic evidence.
36 Given the marked difference between these approaches and
those publications authored solely by Kroeber, one may conclude that such photographic
sophistication was due to Kroeber's student colleagues.
Research on the visual imagery of California Indians has not progressed enough to allow us
to make an adequate comparison of Alfred Kroeber's work with those of his colleagues: fellow
ethnographers such as Roland Dixon, Pliny Goddard, C. Hart Merriam, and John P. Harrington;
students like Samuel A. Barrett and Edward W. Gifford; collectors John W. Hudson and Grace
Nicholson; and professional photographers such as Augustus W. Ericson, who preceded Kroeber,
and Edward Curtis, who came after.
A few comparisons strike one, however. Conspicuously absent in Kroeber's oeuvre are the
ceremonial images of the Hupa and Yurok taken by his predecessor, Augustus W. Ericson.
39 Ericson had to overcome a good bit of resistance to take these
pictures, and perhaps Kroeber's need to establish rapport encouraged him to respect Native
wishes. Another possible reason was that Kroeber's summer trips did not coincide with the
usual times of these ceremonies. Compared to Edward Curtis, Kroeber seems to have recorded
Indian people as he found them, not dressing them up in archaic clothing (with the notable
exception of Ishi) or in ceremonial regalia which they wore only at special occasions.
Alfred Kroeber's photographs have come to serve as some of our principal sources for the
visual image of Native Californians. They were featured prominently in the major
photographic album devoted to the subject,
as well as the recent magazine,
News from Native
40 Perhaps the most interesting and most extensive use of his
pictures was by his widow, Theodora Kroeber, in her influential biography of Ishi.
41 Relying heavily on the 1914 Deer Creek series, Mrs. Kroeber
followed her husband's lead in situating Ishi as a pre-contact aborigine, further
contributing to the creation of a mythical, in fact, timeless, "ethnographic present."
In the last decade, however, Native Californian cultures have been restored to their
temporal position. The recent revitalization of these cultures has generated an intensive
search for any and all records of earlier times. Native people are now the most interested
and dedicated users of these ethnographic collections. Alfred Kroeber's photographs have
been given a relevance and active use that would probably have surprised but not displeased
1 Robert F. Heizer, "History of Research," in California,
ed. Robert F. Heizer, Handbook of North American Indians, 8, ed. William C. Sturtevant
(Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1978), 8; Sylvia Brakke Vane, "California
Indians, Historians, and Ethnographers," California History 71 (1992):335. For
invaluable assistance in locating and evaluating the Kroeber photographs, I would like
to thank Mary Johenk, undergraduate at University of California, Berkeley. For
stimulating conversations and guidance, I thank Eugene Prince, photographer, Hearst
Museum, and Sally McLendon, City University of New York.
2 Unfortunately, there is no comprehensive review of
California Indian photography; see Theodora Kroeber and Robert F. Heizer, Almost
Ancestors: The First Californians (San Francisco: Sierra Club, 1968). For
pre-photographic representations in drawings, paintings, and etchings, see Theodora
Kroeber, Albert B. Elsasser, and Robert F. Heizer, Drawn from Life: California Indians
in Pen and Brush (Socorro, NM: Ballena Press, 1977).
3 Peter E. Palmquist, "Mirror of Our Conscience: Surviving
Photographic Images of California Indians Produced Before 1860," Journal of California
Anthropology 5 (1978):163-78.
4 Sally McLendon, "Preparing Museum Collections for Use as
Primary Data in Ethnographic Research," in The Research Potential of Anthropological
Museum Collections, eds. Anne-Marie Cantwell, James B. Griffin, Nan A. Rothschild
(Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 376, 1981), 203.
5 Pliny E. Goddard, Life and Culture of the Hupa (University
of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 1, 1903), 1-88.
6 Kroeber reported that most of his Arapaho photos had been
destroyed in the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906. To date, the surviving
prints to which he referred have not been located in the American Museum's collections.
Alfred L. Kroeber to Clark Wissler, 19 October 1906, Dept. of Anthropology Archives,
American Museum of Natural History (AMNH).
7 Timothy H. H. Thoresen, "Paying the Piper and Calling the
Tune: The Beginnings of Academic Anthropology in California," Journal of the History of
the Behavioral Sciences 11 (1975):257-75.
8 Kroeber retired from the Museum in 1947, serving as
director emeritus until his death in 1960.
9 Kroeber's academic positions were: instructor (1901-06),
assistant professor (1906-11), associate professor (1911-19), full professor (1919-46),
professor emeritus (1946-60).
10 . . . Theodora Kroeber, Alfred Kroeber: A Personal
Configuration (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1970).
11 Ira Jacknis, "Franz Boas and Exhibits: On the Limitations
of the Museum Method of Anthropology," in Objects and Others: Essays on Museums and
Material Culture, ed. George W. Stocking (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1985),
75-111; "The Ethnographic Object and the Object of Ethnology in the Early Career of
Franz Boas," in Volkgeist as Method and Ethic: Essays on Boasian Ethnography and the
German Anthropological Tradition, ed. George W. Stocking (Madison: University of
Wisconsin Press, 1996), 185-214.
12 For a critical statement of Boas's "objective" and
collecting orientation to ethnology, see his 1903 testimony to the Smithsonian committee
investigating the Bureau of American Ethnology, in Curtis M. Hinsley, Jr., Savages and
Scientists: The Smithsonian Institution and the Development of American Anthropology,
1846-1910 (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1981), 268; and Jacknis,
"The Ethnographic Object and the Object of Ethnology."
13 Timothy H. H. Thoresen, "Kroeber and the Yurok,
1900-1908," in Yurok Myths, by Alfred L. Kroeber (Berkeley: University of California
Press, 1976), xxi.
14 Regna D. Darnell, "The Development of American
Anthropology, 1879-1920: From the Bureau of American Ethnology to Franz Boas" (Ph.D.
dissertation in Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania, 1969), 299-318; Harner and
McLendon in Eric R. Wolf, "Alfred Kroeber," in Totems and Teachers: Perspectives on the
History of Anthropology, ed. Sydel Silverman (New York: Columbia University Press,
1981), 58-60; Thomas Buckley, "Kroeber's Theory of Culture Areas and the Ethnology of
Northwestern California," Anthropological Quarterly 62 (1989):15-26.
15 Alfred L. Kroeber to Franz Boas, 19 May 1903, AMNH.
16 Alfred Kroeber and Frederic W. Putnam, The Department of
Anthropology of the University of California (Berkeley: University of California,
17 Thomas Buckley, "'The Little History of Pitiful Events':
The Epistemological and Moral Contexts of Kroeber's Californian Ethnology," in Volkgeist
as Method and Ethic: Essays on Boasian Ethnography and the German Anthropological
Tradition, ed. George Stocking (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1996),
18 Alfred L. Kroeber, Handbook of the Indians of California
(Bureau of American Ethnology Bulletin no. 78, 1925), v.
19 Kroeber, Handbook, vi.
20 Actually Kroeber seems to have used a variety of camera
formats, including 2 1/2 by 3 1/2, 3 1/4 by 3 1/4, 3 1/2 by 5 1/2, 4 by 5, 5 by 7, 6 1/2
by 8 1/2, 8 by 10 inches. Such a diversity within a few years is a little surprising; it
is not clear if these were all Museum cameras. He never seems to have used glass-plate
21 Thoresen, "Paying the Piper."
22 Thoresen, "Kroeber and the Yurok."
23 Ira Jacknis, "Alfred Kroeber as a Museum Anthropologist,"
Museum Anthropology 17 (1993):27-32.
24 Yurok wooden door (1-11855), collected in May, 1907
(Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology, accession 288).
25 See Ira Jacknis, "Franz Boas and Photography," Studies in
Visual Communication 10 (1984):2-60; "James Mooney as an Ethnographic Photographer,"
Visual Anthropology 3 (1990):179-212.
26 In June, 1907, Kroeber recorded the Yurok "Medicine for
the Dead" on nineteen wax cylinders (37 min., 30 sec.), translated in Alfred L. Kroeber,
Yurok Myths (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976), 305-07. "The formulist
here addresses 19 landmarks (rocks that embody or contain spirits) beginning upriver and
ending at the mouth of the Klamath at Requa." Richard Keeling, A Guide to Early Field
Recordings (1900-1949) at the Lowie Museum of Anthropology (Berkeley: University of
California Press, 1991), 81. Many of Kroeber's scenic shots were used by his student
Thomas T. Waterman in his Yurok Geography (University of California Publications in
American Archaeology and Ethnology 16, 1920), 177-314.
27 For Mooney, cf. Jacknis, "James Mooney."
28 Ira Jacknis, "George Hunt, Kwakiutl Photographer," in
Anthropology and Photography, 1860-1920, ed. Elizabeth Edwards (New Haven: Yale
University Press, 1992), 146.
29 Jacknis, "Franz Boas and Photography"; Elizabeth Edwards,
"Photographic 'Types': The Pursuit of Method," Visual Anthropology 3 (1992):235-58.
30 Jacknis, "Franz Boas and Photography."
31 William J. Wallace, "Hupa, Chilula, and Whilkut," in
California, ed. Heizer, 176.
32 Jerald Jay Johnson, "Yana," in California, ed. Heizer,
33 Robert F. Heizer and Theodora Kroeber, eds., Ishi, The
Last Yahi: A Documentary History (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979),
35 Kroeber, Handbook, pl. 78. Of course, "Ishi" was not his
real name, which he refused to divulge. Ishi, meaning "man" in Yahi, was given to him by
Kroeber (Theodora Kroeber, Ishi in Two Worlds: A Biography of the Last Wild Indian in
North America (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1961; deluxe, illustrated
edition, 1976), 127-29.
36 Alfred Kroeber and Samuel A. Barrett, Fishing Among the
Indians of Northwestern California (University of California Anthropological Records 21,
1960), 152; Alfred Kroeber and Edward W. Gifford, World Renewal: A Cult System of Native
Northwest California (University of California Anthropological Records 13, 1949), 29-30,
37 Several of Kroeber's physical-type portraits and most of
his metric data were published by Edward W. Gifford as part of his summary of California
Anthropometry (University of California Publications in American Archaeology and
Ethnology 22, 1926), 217-390. Gifford also includes a list of published portraits of
Californian Indians (345-46). Interestingly, Gifford did not seem able to incorporate
visual data into his analyses, using them more as confirmation and as illustrations. For
a discussion of racial type photography in nineteenth century anthropology, see Edwards,
38 As Sally McLendon points out (pers. comm.), not all these
"photographers" took their own pictures. The wonderful images associated with Grace
Nicholson, for example, were probably taken by her field associate, Carroll S. Hartman
(see McLendon, "Preparing Museum Collections," 213-18). She also notes that few
photographers represented Indians from all over the state. Unlike Kroeber and Curtis,
most worked among the Native peoples around their homes. There is still much research to
be done on this subject.
39 Peter E. Palmquist with Lincoln Kilian, A.W. Ericson. The
Photographers of the Humboldt Bay Region, 7 (Arcata, CA: Peter E. Palmquist, 1989),
95-97; revised edition of Fine California Views: The Photographs of A.W. Ericson
(Eureka: Interface California Corporation, 1975).
40 T. Kroeber and Heizer, Almost Ancestors, as well as the
recent magazine, News from Native California, edited by Malcolm Margolin (Berkeley:
Heyday Books, 1987 ).
41 T. Kroeber, Ishi in Two Worlds.