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Great Plains Collection

The Great Plains: A Tapestry of History and Culture Immerse yourself in the captivating tales of the Great Plains, a vast region that stretches across North America

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Mormons caught in a prairie blizzard en route to Utah

Mormons caught in a prairie blizzard en route to Utah
Mormon hand-cart company struggling across the plains to Salt Lake City. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Bison dance of the Mandan Native Americans in front of their medicine lodge

Bison dance of the Mandan Native Americans in front of their medicine lodge
MANDAN: BISON DANCE, 1844. Bison dance of the Mandan Native Americans in front of their medicine lodge. Aquatint engraving, 1844, after Karl Bodmer

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Buffalo soldiers charging to the rescue

Buffalo soldiers charging to the rescue
Captain Dodges black troopers to the rescue in the west. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century Frederic Remington illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Young Crow Indian

Young Crow Indian
A Crow boy in dance costume, 1905. Printed reproduction of a photograph by Edward Curtis

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Native American attack on a western stagecoach

Native American attack on a western stagecoach
Western stagecoach fighting off Native Americans on the plains. Printed color halftone reproduction of a Frederic Remington illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: PLAYING CARDS, c1915. A cowboy and a Native American man seated on a blanket

PLAYING CARDS, c1915. A cowboy and a Native American man seated on a blanket and playing cards on the Great Plains. Photograph, c1915

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: PETALESHARO II (1823-1874). Also known as Man Chief. Chaui or Grand Pawnee Native American chief

PETALESHARO II (1823-1874). Also known as Man Chief. Chaui or Grand Pawnee Native American chief. Photographed at the James E. McClees studio in Washington, D.C. 1858

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: CHEYENNE CHIEF, c1910. The Cheyenne chief Two Moons. Photographed by Edward S. Curtis, c1910

CHEYENNE CHIEF, c1910. The Cheyenne chief Two Moons. Photographed by Edward S. Curtis, c1910

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: SITTING BULL (1834-1890). Sioux Native American leader

SITTING BULL (1834-1890). Sioux Native American leader

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: LITTLE BIGHORN MONUMENT. Monument on Custers Hill, containing all the bones found at the site of

LITTLE BIGHORN MONUMENT. Monument on Custers Hill, containing all the bones found at the site of the Battle of Little Bighorn. Photograph by Stanley Morrow, c1876

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: QUANAH PARKER (1845?-1911). Native American Kwahadi Comanche leader. Photographed c1895

QUANAH PARKER (1845?-1911). Native American Kwahadi Comanche leader. Photographed c1895

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Fort Dearborn, on the site of Chicago

Fort Dearborn, on the site of Chicago
Fort Dearborn in 1803, on the south side of the Chicago River. Hand-colored halftone reproduction of an illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: A cowboy, Honeycut, on the horse White Star on the plains of Montana

A cowboy, Honeycut, on the horse White Star on the plains of Montana. Photographed by Laton Alton Huffman, August 1904
MONTANA: COWBOY, 1904. A cowboy, Honeycut, on the horse White Star on the plains of Montana. Photographed by Laton Alton Huffman, August 1904

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: PNAT2A-00002

PNAT2A-00002
Red Cloud, or Mahpiua Luta, Oglala Sioux chief, in quilwork shirt, 1890s. Albertype reproduction of a photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Crow chief

Crow chief
Crow Indian chief in a traditional war bonnet and clothing, circa 1900. Digitally colored halftone of a photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: PNAT2P-00002

PNAT2P-00002
Red Cloud, or Mahpiua Luta, Oglala Sioux chief, in quilwork shirt, 1890s. Albertype reproduction of a photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: PNAT2A-00041

PNAT2A-00041
Sitting Bull. Hand-colored halftone of a 19th-century photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: NATI2A-00016

NATI2A-00016
Earth lodge of the Omaha tribe, Great Plains, 1800s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: USA, Kansas, Dodge City, city sign with cowboy silhouettes

USA, Kansas, Dodge City, city sign with cowboy silhouettes

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: USA, Oklahoma, Bartlesville, Price Tower, only skyscraper designed by Frank Lloyd Wright

USA, Oklahoma, Bartlesville, Price Tower, only skyscraper designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, built in 1956

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Pioneer family on the Oregon Trail

Pioneer family on the Oregon Trail
Covered wagon of a homesteader family heading west with their belongings. Hand-colored engraving combined with a photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: SITTING BULL (c1831-1890). Sioux Native American leader. Photographed by David F

SITTING BULL (c1831-1890). Sioux Native American leader. Photographed by David F. Barry, 1885

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: NEBRASKA: SETTLERS, 1886. The Chrisman Sisters in front of a sod house in Goheen Valley

NEBRASKA: SETTLERS, 1886. The Chrisman Sisters in front of a sod house in Goheen Valley, Custer County, Nebraska. Photograph by Solomon D. Butcher, 1886

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Building the railroad to Bismarck, North Dakota, 1870s

Building the railroad to Bismarck, North Dakota, 1870s
Laying railroad track in winter across the Missouri River at Bismarck, North Dakota, 1879. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: USA, Oklahoma, Elk City, Parker Drilling Rig 114, Worlds Largest Inland oil

USA, Oklahoma, Elk City, Parker Drilling Rig 114, Worlds Largest Inland oil drilling platform

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Tipi camp at night, Lakota Sioux Tipis, Custer County, Black Hills, Western South Dakota

Tipi camp at night, Lakota Sioux Tipis, Custer County, Black Hills, Western South Dakota, USA

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: CYNTHIA ANN PARKER (1827-1865). American frontierswoman and Native American Cherokee captive

CYNTHIA ANN PARKER (1827-1865). American frontierswoman and Native American Cherokee captive, mother of Comanche chief Quanah Parker, pictured here with her infant daughter, Topasannah

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Color lithograph, 1845, by James Ackerman after George Catlin

Color lithograph, 1845, by James Ackerman after George Catlin
SIOUX LACROSSE PLAYERS. Color lithograph, 1845, by James Ackerman after George Catlin

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Telegraph poles following the transcontinental railroad

Telegraph poles following the transcontinental railroad
Linemen stringing telegraph wire beside the transcontinental railroad on the Great Plains, 1860s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Trading post at Fort Laramie, Oregon Trail

Trading post at Fort Laramie, Oregon Trail
Beaver trap on a Hudson Bay blanket in the reconstructed trading post at Fort Laramie, Wyoming. Digital photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Oregon Trail pioneers passing Chimney Rock

Oregon Trail pioneers passing Chimney Rock
Covered wagons passing Chimney Rock, a landmark on the Oregon Trail, Nebraska. Hand-colored woodcut combined with a photograph of Chimney Rock

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Mormon Trail hand-cart

Mormon Trail hand-cart
Mormon hand-cart replica on the Oregon/Mormon Trail, Scotts Bluff National Monument, Nebraska. Digital photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Sioux Nation at Standing Rock Reservation, ND, 1890

Sioux Nation at Standing Rock Reservation, ND, 1890
Taking a census at the Sioux Standing Rock Agency, North Dakota, 1890. Albertype reproduction of a photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Wolf-skins disguising Native American hunters

Wolf-skins disguising Native American hunters
Native Americans in wolf skins stalking buffalo. Hand-colored woodcut of a 20th century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Blackfeet horsemen, 1850s

Blackfeet horsemen, 1850s
Blackfeet warriors carrying guns on horseback, 1850s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Omaha Indian village of tipis

Omaha Indian village of tipis
Part of the hoo-thu-ga, a circle of dwellings of the Omaha tribe. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Putting in seed on a bonanza farm, 1800s

Putting in seed on a bonanza farm, 1800s
Seeding grain on a bonanza farm, North Dakota, early 1890s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Native Americans meet Lewis and Clark at Council Bluffs

Native Americans meet Lewis and Clark at Council Bluffs
Lewis and Clark meeting with Native Americans at Council Bluffs, Iowa. Hand-colored woodcut by Patrick Goss, a member of the expedition

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: Buffalo herd in South Dakota

Buffalo herd in South Dakota
Free-ranging buffalo herd on the grasslands of Custer State Park, Black Hills, South Dakota. Digital photograph

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: BODMER: MANDAN CHIEF. Mah-to-toh-pa, or Four Bears. Watercolor, 1832-34, by Karl Bodmer

BODMER: MANDAN CHIEF. Mah-to-toh-pa, or Four Bears. Watercolor, 1832-34, by Karl Bodmer

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: BODMER: SIOUX CHIEF. Wahk-Tä-Ge-Li, or Big Soldier, a Yankton Sioux Native American chief

BODMER: SIOUX CHIEF. Wahk-Tä-Ge-Li, or Big Soldier, a Yankton Sioux Native American chief. Aquatint engraving, c1844, after a painting, 1833, by Karl Bodmer

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: BUCKING BRONCO, c1888. Ned Coy, a cowboy from South Dakota riding his bucking horse named Boy Dick

BUCKING BRONCO, c1888. Ned Coy, a cowboy from South Dakota riding his bucking horse named Boy Dick. Photograph by John C.H. Grabill, c1888

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: HSET2A-00007

HSET2A-00007
Families in covered wagons crossing the plains. Hand-colored engraving of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: NATI2A-00179

NATI2A-00179
Sioux brave heralding the sunrise. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century Frederic Remington illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: BUSN2A-00091

BUSN2A-00091
Mountain men greeting each other: " I took ye for an Injin." Hand-colored 19th-century woodcut of a Frederic Remington Illustration

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: BODMER: BLACKFOOT HORSEMAN. A Blackfoot Native American man riding on horseback at Fort McKenzie

BODMER: BLACKFOOT HORSEMAN. A Blackfoot Native American man riding on horseback at Fort McKenzie, Montana. Aquatint engraving, c1844, after a drawing, 1833, by Karl Bodmer

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: GHOST DANCE, c1888. Barbarism Illustrated: The North American Manner

GHOST DANCE, c1888. Barbarism Illustrated: The North American Manner. Contemporary depiction of the Ghost Dance, drawn by John Steeple Davis. Wood engraving, c1888

Background imageGreat Plains Collection: SIOUX ENCAMPMENT, 1891. Group of Minionjou Sioux Native Americans in a tipi camp

SIOUX ENCAMPMENT, 1891. Group of Minionjou Sioux Native Americans in a tipi camp, probably on or near the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Photographed in 1891 by John C. H. Grabill



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The Great Plains: A Tapestry of History and Culture Immerse yourself in the captivating tales of the Great Plains, a vast region that stretches across North America. From the legendary Native American chief Petalesharo II, also known as Man Chief, to the thrilling accounts of Native American attacks on western stagecoaches, this land is steeped in rich history. As you explore further, discover intriguing snapshots frozen in time. Picture a cowboy and a Native American man engrossed in a game of cards on a blanket circa 1915. This image speaks volumes about the cultural exchanges and interactions that occurred amidst these wide-open spaces. Gaze upon the striking portrait of Cheyenne Chief Two Moons captured by Edward S. Curtis around 1910. His dignified presence embodies both strength and resilience—a testament to the indomitable spirit found within these plains. Sitting Bull, Sioux Native American leader extraordinaire, left an indelible mark on this landscape with his remarkable leadership during tumultuous times. His legacy continues to inspire generations who seek courage amidst adversity. Visit Little Bighorn Monument atop Custer's Hill where all bones from the Battle of Little Bighorn were laid to rest—a solemn reminder of past conflicts that shaped this land forever. Quanah Parker emerges as another prominent figure—an influential Kwahadi Comanche leader whose photograph taken around 1895 captures his regal essence and unwavering determination. Venture eastward towards Fort Dearborn, standing proudly on what would become Chicago's bustling cityscape—once an outpost guarding against potential threats while now symbolizing progress and growth. Witness Buffalo soldiers charging fearlessly into action—their bravery etched into every fiber of their being—as they come to rescue those in need across these expansive plains. Step back in time with Laton Alton Huffman's photograph capturing cowboy Honeycut astride White Star on Montana's open range in August 1904.