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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Captured Heritage

The Scramble for Northwest Coast Artifacts

The heyday of anthropological collecting on the Northwest Coast took place between 1875 and the Great Depression. The scramble for skulls and skeletons, poles, canoes, baskets, feast bowls, and masks went on until it seemed that almost everything not nailed down or hidden was gone. The period of most intense collecting on the coast coincided with the growth of anthropological museums, which reflected the realization that time was running out and that civilization was pushing the indigenous people to the wall, destroying their material culture and even extinguishing the native stock itself.

400 pages

Table of Contents

Preface to the Reprint


1 Prelude

2 Secretary Baird and Judge Swan

3 The French and German Competitors

4 The North American Rivals

5 Museums, Expositions, and Their Specimens

6 The American Museum and Dr. Boas

7 The Field Museum and Dr. Newcombe

8 A Declining Market

9 Successful Collecting in Thin Country

10 Epilogue

11 Themes and Patterns



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