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About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Meskwaki Indians

Meskwaki Indians

From my wife's grandfather. A group of postcards of Meskwaki Indians from the early 1900s in Tama, Iowa.
Can you date the car in this picture? They look like Kodak photos turned into postcards. All have the names of those in the photographs written on them. No other postcards have modern machinery, but a few have people dressed in "contemporary clothes" along with traditionally clothed people that discerning Shorpy-ites may be able to pin to date ranges. I will post them if there is interest. View full size.

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My Grandfather

The man to the left is my grandfather, George Buffalo Sr. and to the right is James Ward. Both men are of the Meskwaki tribe in Tama, Iowa. Photographs of the "Tama Indians" were often taken during the annual pow-wow and made into postcards for resale. I'd date this photo at about 1918 - 1919 judging by my grandfather's approximate age here. Their dress is traditional Meskwaki except for the headdresses, which were gifts and of Siouan origin.
I would love to see more of the photos in your collection. I'm sure the Meskwaki Historical Preservation Department would appreciate high quality scans of your collection.

Mary Young Bear at 641-484-3185

[You can try contacting the member directly by clicking on the member name (after "Submitted by" above the photo) and then the Contact tab on their profile. -tterrace]

Real Photo postcards

There was a line of "Realphoto" postcards in the early 20th century which were actual emulsion prints, albeit black and white. They scan much better than halftone or hand-colored postcards, with real detail, like the magnificent picture here. This could be such a card, or a similar competitor. The car appears to be 1915-1920 vintage. The ceremonial outfits display excellent floral pattern beadwork or quillwork typical of the midwestern tribes and the Great Lakes region, quite a contrast to the more geometric patterns of the Plains cultures. I would certainly like to see more!

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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