Edward S. Curtis Digital Collection
Preview up to 100 items from this collection below. Photographer Edward S. Curtis devoted two decades to making “The North American Indian,” an early 20th century photography and text project studying Western tribes.
Letter from Edward S. Curtis to Harriet Leitch, December 29, 1950
Letter from Edward Curtis to Harriet Leitch repeating some of the news shared in his letter of December 17, 1950. He discusses his poor health leading to the necessary step of stopping his work on "The Lure of Gold" before moving on to recounting the Christmas holiday. He adds that he has decided to have a new picture taken of himself on his 83rd birthday to replace the one taken many decades ago that was used to promote "The North American Indian." Curtis writes "I hope you will be pleased with the Birth Day picture. Knowing my age you may be surprised."
Date: 1950-12-29View this item
Letter from Edward S. Curtis to Harriet Leitch, May 11, 1950
Letter from Edward Curtis to Harriet Leitch in which he further discusses the Pan-American Scientific Research Association expedition to the Amazon. Curtis describes the route the expedition would take up the Amazon River to the town of Manaus where they would establish their headquarters for the duration of the trip. Curtis notes that the expedition is now unlikely to move forward due to friction in the group directed towards the leader, Fred J. Matzler. He writes "No words can express my disappointment in the collapse of the Pan American Expedition. During all my active life time I have wanted to see the Amazon and the Andes Mountains."
Date: 1950-05-11View this item
Letter from Edward S. Curtis to Harriet Leitch, July 11, 1949
Letter from Edward Curtis to Harriet Leitch, apologizing for his slow response and explaining he is deep in his work on "The Lure of Gold." He writes that the size of the project is overwhelming and he is ""praying that I will live long enough to finish the job." Curtis discusses his climbs of Mount Rainier and his friendship with Ella McBride. He notes that she was one of the few women to summit the mountain unassisted and describes her as "my star helper" both in climbs of Mount Rainier and later, as an assistant in his photography studio. He writes that she lived with the Curtis family and was like a second mother to his daughters.
Date: 1949-07-11View this item
Letter from Edward S. Curtis to Harriet Leitch, March 12, 1951
Letter from Edward Curtis to Harriet Leitch describing his trips to Alaska with the Harriman Expedition and on other occasions. He encourages Leitch to review the volumes on the Harriman Expedition at the Seattle Public Library and states "If I had time to spare, I could write a fat book on the story of the expedition."
Date: 1951-03-12View this item