Haunting Photographic Postcard of Chief Keokuk, by Thomas Easterly
Category: Wild West
Item Number: 5643
Photograph [Native American]
Real photograph postcard of Chief Keokuk by Thomas Easterly, foremost American daguerrotypist of the 19th Century. [circa 1910] about 5.5x3.5", sepia toned. Originally photographed 1847. The image shows the leathered face and sad but resolute eyes of the aging chief whose name means "Watchful Fox" and who died only the next year of poisoning. Easterly was best known for his images of Native Americans and the American Mid-West. This photograph of Chief Keokuk is his most famous, and provides an unusually realistic depiction of Native American life in the middle 19th Century. Unlike most photographers of Native Americans at the time, Easterly did not dress his subjects up with false props, instead preferring the documentary novelty of true Native American style and custom. Handwritten in pencil on backside, in full "Mr. W. Weidman from Miss Lavinia Larson...2,12,1913...Borned 1778 or 1780. Died from Poison June 1848." Tiny emulsion loss at edge. Very good condition.