Exceptionally rare late 19th century catalogue of the Arts and Crafts of the Totem Indians; collected by Captain D.F. Tozier and Classified by Professor W.H. Gilstrap
Arts and Crafts of the Totem Indians.
Tozier, Captain D. F.$5,500.00
Item Number: 96143
Tacoma, Washington: Central News Co, c. 1890.
Rare example of one of the earliest collector catalogues devoted to Native American crafts. Oblong octavo, bound in a full original re-purposed North American Indian woven basket with leather beaded ribbon bound in, paper title label to the front panel, classified and illustrated with photographs by W. H. Gilstrap, Curator of the Ferry Museum in Tacoma Washington. Signed by the author on the title page. In near fine condition. Exceptionally rare and desirable, OCLC lists only one copy with none having appeared at auction since 1945.
The present volume is one of the earliest collector catalogues devoted to Native American crafts, billed as a "curio collection" in the Ferry Museum in Tacoma Washington. Little scholarship is paired with the photographs other than identification, marking it as more of a sales prospectus than museum catalogue. "D. F. Tozier, it will be recalled, was an officer of the U. S. Revenue Service who had accumulated a collection stored at the Ferry Museum in Tacoma. A native Georgian, he had entered the service in 1865 and, after duty on the Atlantic, the Gulf, and the Great Lakes, was transferred to Port Townsend in 1891, assuming command of the Grant three years later. It was commonly reported that Tozier had accumulated much of his mass of material by theft or 'by the exercise of a show of force and authority.''' (Cole, 2011). On one occasion a complaint was laid by the B. C. provincial police alleging that the officers and men of the Grant had illegally traded with the Indians at Ucleulet, selling them illicit whiskey and stealing a headpiece from a native's house. Much of Tozier's collection was sold to to George Gustav Heye and became part of the Heye Foundation, Museum of the American Indian, New York, and was later deaccessioned by the Museum.