An American Indian solution in Palestine?

When I am talking with non-Native audiences, and even when talking with Tribal friends, I sometimes say that I feel like I am body-surfing on a wave of pro-Indian sentiment in the country. I say that a big part of this is based on recognition of non-Native—read mostly white male—failures in dealing with the natural world. We haven’t been so smart about fire, fish, and water, and grope now, trying to play catch up with preemptive burns and reintroduction of beaver and bison.Read Rich’s Post →

Edward S. Curtiss at Josephy!

The Josephy Library has been gifted an amazing set of books, Edward S. Curtiss’ THE NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN: THE COMPLETE REFERENCE EDITION.

This is a reprint of the original work done over 30 years at the beginning of the 20th century by the famous photographer. The publisher, CHRISTOPHER CARDOZO FINE ART, says it is “An affordable re-creation of Edward Curtis’ original masterpiece, the Complete Reference Edition is finished with a hardcover and printed on archival, acid-free Finch Opaque paper.”Read Rich’s Post →

The Josephy Center—Tenth Anniversary

Yesterday the Josephy Center for Arts and Culture celebrated ten years of life as a non-profit, and a few months more of programming. Last year, at nine, we purchased the old log bank building that has been our home since the beginning. Anne Stephens, who first conceived of a new arts center in Joseph, was honored last night, as was Cheryl Coughlan, the Center director for over nine of our years. I too was thanked, and got to say a few words of thanks. And to report on a unique and wonderful gift from the Josephy family.Read Rich’s Post →

It’s the Land!

This weekend “media tycoon” Byron Allen told a TV audience that he now owned the Weather Channel and intended to bid on the Denver Broncos. While the NFL is in a dispute over the lack of Black coaches in the league, Allen intends to be the first African-American owner of an NFL team. NFL rosters have, of course, long been filled with African-American players. The league is more than 60 % Black, but coaches are few, and owners none.

In another, quieter announcement this week, President Joe Biden nominated Harvard University Native American Program Executive Director Shelly C. Lowe to serve as the 12th chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Lowe is a citizen of the Navajo Nation and grew up on an Arizona reservation. The National Endowment for the Humanities is our national institution that celebrates “culture.”Read Rich’s Post →

The words were always there

Every day of reading and rethinking our country’s history brings new ideas; some days, epiphanies. Today’s epiphany is about words—who has them, keeps them, and pays attention to them. What they might mean for tomorrow.

Claudio Saunt’s Unworthy Republic: The Dispossession of Native Americans and the Road to Indian Territory, sparks today’s thoughts. The message of the book is in the title. For approximately ten years, from 1830-1840, the Indian Removal Act legislated and then aimed to carry out the removal of all—supposedly about 80,000—American Indians remaining east of the Mississippi River to the West, to some vague but increasingly real place called Indian Territory. The Act destroyed the lives of scores of tribes and thousands of Indians, while it enriched others.

Read Rich’s Post →

Notes on Library holdings

Our volunteer cataloger, Shannon Maslach, is getting some help. Whitman college student Erik Anderson is our summer intern—and he is flying! We are concentrating on cataloging books from the Josephys, but sneaking in books from other sources that are important to Indian and Pacific Northwest history. There are hundreds  books still in boxes, but Erik is moving fast. And we are part of the SAGE network of libraries in Eastern Oregon, administered out of Eastern Oregon University, so you can go to  to mark his progress and check our holdings.
Alvin Josephy subscribed to and collected many journals having to do with Western and Indian history and affairs. We are—slowly—processing them, putting each journal and our holdings on its own Excel spread sheet. But I thought people might like to have a general idea of what we are putting on the shelves.  You might also have recommendations as to which journals it will be important to “fill in” missing volumes, and which ones we should be subscribing to (knowing that we have a tight budget). 
One other note: it is sometimes obvious that Alvin collected a particular journal—e.g., The Colorado Magazine—as he worked on a particular book—in this case the Civil War in the West. There I found Alvin’s fine pencil highlights in articles by Harry Kelsey on the Sand Creek Massacre. As we move forward, I will be looking at all of those interesting individual journals—e.g. the ones from Canada having to do with the fur trade—and trying to capture particular issues addressed. 
So here is a first sort of our periodical holdings (we have some indexes, for OHQ and Amer Heritage):  
Alberta Historical Review—1956-59. Some
American Heritage—1957-2003. Most
American West—1962-89. Most
Arizona and the West—1963-86. Many
Artifacts—1972-78. Some
Audubon—1969-83. Most
The Beaver—1972-78. Most
California History—1965-81. Some
The Call Number, Library, U of Oregon—1959-69. Most
Century Magazine–1882– vols 1-6
Chronicles of Oklahoma—1950-60. Some
Colorado Magazine—1962-68. Some
Fortitudine: Bulletin of the Marine Corps—1982-90. Most
Great Plains Journal—a few
Idaho Yesterdays—1957-81. Most
Journal of American History—1974-77. Some
Journal of Arizona History—1987-90. Most
Journal of the West—1964-96. Most
Kansas Historical Quarterly—1962-72. Most
Missouri Historical Bulletin—1954-80. Most
Montana: The Magazine of Western History—1953-2005. Most
Oregon Historical Quarterly – 1908—present.  Most
Quarterly: Northeastern Nevada Historical Society—1985-86
The Record: Friends of Washington State College Library—1956-65. Most
Western Historical Quarterly—1970-2005. Most
Western History Association Newsletter—1965-69. Most
Western Writers of America’s Roundup—1966-88. Most
The Westerners Brand Book (New York Posse of Westerners)—1954-72. Most
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