An Artist Reunites Members of the 1898 Indian Congress – Atlas Obscura

The man in the sepia photo, known as White Swan of the Crow nation, stands with a striped shirt and elaborate feathered headdress. With a hint of a smile on his face, his left hand palms a holstered pistol. Another image shows a woman of the Arapahoe nation, in a blouse richly decorated with neat rows of large, sewn-on beads. Yet another depicts Black Wezel of the Blackfoot nation, seated and sporting a Western-style suit and shirt, a round earring dangling off his left ear. They were all attendees of the 1898 Indian Congress in Omaha, Nebraska, which happened at the same time as the Trans-Mississippi & International Exposition. The world’s fair managers invited an unprecedented number of members of Native American nations to participate, and camp out, mostly in tepees, on the Expo grounds. The individuals of the Indian Congress were treated by the organizers as a ticket-selling spectacle—part ethnological exhibit and, due to visitor demand, part “Wild West” show. For three months, the 500 people there were showcased in traditional dress in an overtly rustic encampment, where they performed dances, rituals, and sham battles for more than two million visitors. But it was also the la

Source: An Artist Reunites Members of the 1898 Indian Congress – Atlas Obscura