Start of a War Party

Accession Number

Start of a War Party

Edward S. Curtis

Artist Nationality
American (North American)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
photogravure on paper

9 1/2 in x 12 5/8 in (24.2 cm x 32 cm);14 3/8 in x 19 7/16 in (36.5 cm x 49.3 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Stephen M. Taylor

Subject matter
This image of a group of Teton Sioux, or Lakota, is from The North American Indian (1907-1930), a twenty-volume series created by Edward Curtis in order to document the lives of Native Americans in diverse regions of the Western United States. This limited edition volume was financially supported by J.P. Morgan, and promoted by Theodore Roosevelt. The resulting works have been criticized and celebrated for their portrayal of Native American life. Curtis often included anachronous props and clothing and presented rituals that had not been performed in years in order to support an idealized and romantic reading of a “vanishing race.”

Physical Description
This is a photograph of a party of horses and riders. The subjects prepare to head to battle, with spears and regalia. Behind them is a tipi and prairie landscape.

Primary Object Classification

Collection Area

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Equus caballus (species)
Lakota (culture or style)
Native American
costume (mode of fashion)
horseback riding
men on horseback
modern and contemporary art
war horses

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& Author Notes

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