Before the Shadow Catcher: Predecessors of Edward S. Curtis - 2/25

Thursday, February 25, 2016 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Edward S. Curtis's twenty-volume The North American Indian became a landmark work published in the early 20th century. Several others, however, preceded Curtis in documenting Native American culture, language, and portraits. Among these were George Catlin, George Gibbs, and Lt. Lorenzo Lorain, all of whom worked along the lower Willamette River in the 1850s. Stephen Dow Beckham’s presentation will include images by these other visual documentarians and establish the historical context in which Curtis produced his images of the "vanishing Americans."

Beckham is a noted American historian known for his work with Native Americans and the American West, especially the Pacific Northwest and the Lewis and Clark Expedition. He has authored many works, and is a Professor Emeritus of History at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon.

Beckham earned his bachelor's degree in history and biology at the University of Oregon in 1964. He earned a master's degree and PhD in history/anthropology at University of California, Los Angeles in 1966 and 1969, respectively. Since 1977 he has been teaching at Lewis & Clark College. Beckham is also considered to be a leading authority on Indian law. He has been called as an expert witness in many land-use issues, including reservations, casinos, and fishing rights. He also is the lead instructor for the Indian Law Summer Program at Lewis & Clark Law School.

Additionally, Beckham has helped to develop many museums and exhibits both in the Pacific Northwest and around the world. Some of his projects include The Literature of the Lewis and Clark Expedition touring exhibit, the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center in The Dalles, the National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center in Baker City, The High Desert Museum in Bend, and Oregon, My Oregon at the Oregon Historical Society.

Lake Oswego City Hall
380 A Avenue
Lake Oswego, OR 97034