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Fort Marion Drawings

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Tsistsistas (William Cohoe, 1853-1924), Cheyenne, Central Plains, ca. 1875-78


Learn more about Ledger Art created at Fort Marion

Although Ledger Drawings had occasionally been sold or traded with locally stationed members of the U.S. Army between 1860-70, a comprehensive commercialization of Ledger Art was fully realized with a group of exceptional drawings created between 1875-78 at Fort Marion, in St. Augustine, Florida. Following a massive military defeat of the Arapaho, Comanche, Kiowa and Southern Cheyenne in the Red River War of 1874-75, over seventy young warriors were incarcerated, without trial, for three years at Fort Marion. Provided with paper, crayon, watercolour and ink, approximately twenty-six of the prisoners were encouraged to create drawings of their traditional lives on the Plains. This was partially to satisfy the appetite of tourists frequenting Fort Marion for mementos of their travels, but also to promote the government’s efforts to assimilate Native American warriors into the Euro-American way of life. The works created during this three year incarceration are among the rare instances where individual artists can be identified. In some cases the artist signed their names on their drawings, and in others complete books of Ledger Drawings were annotated by their owners with the name(s) of the artists who created them. Most of the prisoners engaged in drawing were young men in their early twenties, who had not yet achieved significant social standing in their respective Nations. In contrast to personal records of military feats which had dominated earlier ledger art, drawings from Fort Marion frequently depict memories of recent events, such as the arduous journey from Oklahoma Territory to Florida by horse cart, train, and sailboat. Recurring portrayals of hunting and courting scenes as well as entirely new subject matter such as sacred ceremonies also distinguish these drawings from pre-reservation graphic art from the Great Plains. Rather than focusing on the accumulation of power and prestige, drawings from Fort Marion evoke an emotional landscape that is at once traumatic, nostalgic, proud and celebratory. These remarkable drawings constitute a unique record of a pivotal time in American history, and serve to greatly expand our understanding and appreciation of life as it was lived by these young warrior artists, whose world had been left behind.


Status: All
Category: Fort Marion Drawings

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Results: 28

Ledger Drawing P4160e

Ledger Drawing

attributed to Koba (Wild Horse, 1848-1880)
Kiowa
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4160e
LEDGER DRAWING P3922

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Noh Hu Nah Wih (Chief Killer, 1849-1922)
Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P3922
Ledger Drawing P4160f

Ledger Drawing

attributed to Koba (Wild Horse, 1848-1880)
Kiowa
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4160f
Ledger Drawing P4322-221

Ledger Drawing

attributed to Etahdleuh Doanmoe (1856-1887)
Kiowa
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4322-221
LEDGER DRAWING P4224-1

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Nah Hi Yurs (Carl Matches, d. 1914)
Matches Ledger Book
Southern Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4224-1
LEDGER DRAWING P4224-8

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Nah Hi Yurs (Carl Matches, d. 1914)
Matches Ledger Book
Southern Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4224-8
LEDGER DRAWING P4224-12

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Nah Hi Yurs (Carl Matches, d. 1914)
Matches Ledger Book
Southern Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4224-12
LEDGER DRAWING P4022

LEDGER DRAWING

anonymous artist
Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1870
Inventory # P4022
Ledger Drawing P4075a

Ledger Drawing

attributed to Tsistsistas (William Cohoe, 1853-1924)
Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4075a
Sold
LEDGER DRAWING P4075b

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Tsistsistas (William Cohoe, 1853-1924)
Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4075b
Sold
LEDGER DRAWING P4075c

LEDGER DRAWING

attributed to Tsistsistas (William Cohoe, 1853-1924)
Cheyenne
Central Plains
ca. 1875-78
Inventory # P4075c
Sold

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