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19th Century Lithographs of Native Americans

Identifier: MS-2016-03

Content Note

This collection contains fourteen lithographs of 19th century Native Americans which were initially published during the 1830s and 1840s. The images mainly represent prominent members of the Cherokee, Chippewa (also spelled Chippeway and Ojibwa), Menominee, Fox, Sauk, and Seneca tribes.


  • 1835 - 1844

Literary Rights

Literary rights were not granted to Wichita State University. When permission is granted to examine the manuscripts, it is not an authorization to publish them. Manuscripts cannot be used for publication without regard for common law literary rights, copyright laws and the laws of libel. It is the responsibility of the researcher and his/her publisher, to obtain permission to publish. Scholars and students who eventually plan to have their work published are urged to make inquiry regarding overall restrictions on publication before initial research.

Biographical / Historical

The lithographs in this collection are based on paintings by James Otto Lewis (1799-1859) and Charles Bird King (1785-1862). Working for the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) during the 1820s, Lewis attended treaty ceremonies and drew pictures of the persons and events he observed. These efforts became paintings during the mid-to-late 1820s and early 1830s. Lewis’s portraits were eventually adapted by others into lithographs which he published with corresponding biographical sketches as The Aboriginal Port-Folio in 1835-1836.

Also during the 1820s, Charles Bird King was commissioned by Thomas McKenney, the Superintendent of the BIA, to paint portraits of Indians in order to document what the latter believed to be a vanishing people. Paintings by King and others were eventually adapted as lithographs for the book, History of the Indian Tribes of North America, which was authored by Thomas McKenney and James Hall and published in three volumes between 1836 and 1844.


6.0 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Dennis Coffey, 2010

Processing Information

JZ, 2015-10

19th Century Lithographs of Native Americans
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Wichita State University Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives Repository

Special Collections and University Archives
Wichita State University Libraries
1845 Fairmount
Wichita KS 67260-0068