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Du-cór-re-a, Chief of the Tribe, and His Family

Artist
George Catlin, born Wilkes-Barre, PA 1796-died Jersey City, NJ 1872
Sitter
DU-CUR-RE-A
Date
1830?
Type
Painting
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
29 x 24 in. (73.7 x 60.9 cm)
Credit Line
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.
Object number
1985.66.199-206
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This hastily sketched group may have been one of George Catlin's first attempts at Indian portraiture in the West. “The Winnebagoes,” he wrote, “are the remnant of a once powerful and warlike tribe, but are now left in a country where they have neither beasts or men to war with; and are in a most miserable and impoverished condition. The numbers of this tribe do not exceed four thousand; and the most of them have sold even their guns and ammunition for whiskey. Like the Sioux and Menomonies that come in to this post, they have several times suffered severely with the small-pox, which has in fact destroyed the greater proportion of them.” Catlin probably painted this work at Prairie du Chien in 1830. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no.52, 1841, reprint 1973; Truettner, The Natural Man Observed, 1979)
Data Source
Smithsonian American Art Museum
See more items in
Smithsonian American Art Museum Collection
Department
Painting and Sculpture