Among Unknown Tribes
327 pages, 8 1/4 x 11 3/4
235 b&w photos
Release Date:01 Jun 2014
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Among Unknown Tribes

Rediscovering the Photographs of Explorer Carl Lumholtz

University of Texas Press

Internationally renowned as an exciting guide to unknown peoples and places, Norwegian Carl Lumholtz was a Victorian-era explorer, anthropologist, natural scientist, writer, and photographer who worked in Australia, Mexico, and Borneo. His photographs of the Tarahumara, Huichol, Cora, Tepehuan, Southern Pima, and Tohono O’odham tribes of Mexico and southwest Arizona were among the very first taken of these cultures and still provide the best photographic record of them at the turn of the twentieth century. Lumholtz published his photographs in several books, including Unknown Mexico and New Trails in Mexico, but, because photographic publishing was then in its infancy, most of the images were poorly printed, badly cropped, or reworked by “illustrators” using crude techniques.

Among Unknown Tribes presents more than two hundred of Lumholtz’s best photographs—many never before published—from the archives of the American Museum of Natural History in New York and the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo, Norway. The images are newly scanned, most from the original negatives, and printed uncropped, disclosing a wealth of previously hidden detail. Each photograph is fully identified and often amplified by Lumholtz’s own notes and captions. Accompanying the images are essays and photo notes that survey Lumholtz’s career and legacy, as well as what his photographs reveal about the “unknown tribes.” By giving Lumholtz’s photographs the high-quality reproduction they deserve, Among Unknown Tribes honors not only the Norwegian explorer but also the native peoples who continue to struggle for recognition and justice as they actively engage in the traditional customs that Lumholtz recorded.

Bill Broyles is a research associate at the University of Arizona’s Southwest Center.
His previous books include Desert Duty: On the Line with the U.S. Border Patrol, Sunshot:
Peril and Wonder in the Gran Desierto, and Our Sonoran Desert. Ann Christine Eek is a photo historian, photographer, and digital supervisor in the
Department of Documentation at the University of Oslo’s Museum of Cultural History. She has
written studies and created exhibitions of the photographs of Roald Amundsen and Carl
Lumholtz for her museum, including People Meeting People: Explorer Carl Lumholtz’s
Photographs from Mexico 1890–1910. Phyllis La Farge has worked extensively as an editor and author. Her latest book is
Painted Walls of Mexico, a vivid photographic look at many aspects of the artfully decorated
walls found throughout the country. Richard Laugharn is a photographer who has documented the Pinacate region chronicled by
Lumholtz in New Trails in Mexico. His current work involves photographing individual desert
plants over time. Eugenia Macías Guzmán is an anthropologist with a special interest in Carl Lumholtz and
his work among indigenous people in Mexico. She’s currently part of the curatorial and
research team for the Modern Art Museum-INBA in Mexico City.


Bill Broyles

Timeline. Carl Sofus Lumholtz in Brief

Chapter 1. Carl Lumholtz and His Photographs

Ann Christine Eek

Folio One. Photographs from Carl Lumholtz's Unknown Mexico Expedition

Bill Broyles and Phyllis La Farge

Chapter 2. Looking for Lumholtz

Phyllis La Farge

Chapter 3. What Photographs Can Tell Us: Carl Lumholtz and Shaman Rubio

Eugenia Macías Guzmán

Folio Two. Photographs from Carl Lumholtz's New Trails in Mexico Expedition

Bill Broyles and Phyllis La Farge

Chapter 3. New Trails and Entwined Legacies: Carl Lumholtz's Sonoran Desert Photographs

Richard Laugharn

Chapter 4. A Man of Qualities: Lumholtz and the Museum

Phyllis La Farge

Reflections. A Life Among Unknown Tribes

Bill Broyles, Ann Christine Eek, and Phyllis La Farge

Notes for Photographic Plates





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