An 1879 sketchbook filled with drawings of Native Americans from eastern Washington has been recently acquired by Watzek Library.
Charles Erskine Scott Wood accompanied General Howard to eastern Washington to negotiate with local Indian tribes two years after Chief Joseph’s band was captured in 1877. During the 1879 trip, Wood carried this sketchbook, in which he kept detailed drawings of the landscape and many of the chiefs he encountered. After years of being passed down to members of the Wood family, the Lewis & Clark College Special Collections recently acquired this journal. The journal will be joined with a much larger collection of Wood family documents that were acquired in 2003. Wood is an important historical figure not only for his role in documenting U.S. government relations with western tribes, but also for his work as a cultural leader in both Portland and San Francisco. Wood was one of the founders of the Multnomah County Library and the Portland Art Museum. He also worked as an attorney and advocate for a number of radicals during the progressive era including Marie Equi and Emma Goldman.
A complete finding aid for the Wood collection can be viewed here. In addition to being filled with sketches by a talented artist, the book serves as the only surviving documentation of Wood’s role in this negotiation. The Special Collections is planning to exhibit this book and other materials from its Wood collection during the 2011-2012 academic year.