Edward S. Curtis "The North American Indian" Photograph Exhibit

Anita Janda and Kathy Mentjes
Saturday, September 23, 2023 - 10:00am to 11:30am
Washburn Library, 5244 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55419

The nationally known Edward S. Curtis documented 80 Native American tribes in the Western United States back in the 1890's through 1920's, through photographs, recording their music, myths and religion, history, language, and life-styles. 

He grew up in Le Sueur County, Elysian and Cordova Townships.  Because of his father's illness, Edward moved with his family to Seattle area where he interned at photo studios.  He was out photographing various venues, including the Puget Sound beaches, when he met Princess Angeline, Chief Seattle's daughter.  He won two national first place prizes at the National Photographic Convention in 1898 & 1899 for his photos of Indians.  Edward spent 30 years preserving the Native American culture through photographs and text.  He and his team produced 20 volumes which were subscription printed of the 80 tribal nations, took 40,000+ glass photo negatives using the old-fashioned camera.  There are 99 prints of his photographs on display as well as other information at the gallery in Le Center.  Several will be on display at this venue.


Anita Janda - A small town girl graduates from high school, college, and joins the Air Force for three years.  Marries, has three sons and works for a major food company for 16 years.  Divorces and moves back to that small town and finds awesome people and interesting stories.  Teams up with those awesome people to share the Edward Curtis story to the local people who had no idea he existed.
Kathy Mentjes - A family genealogist since the mid 1970's, currently volunteers at the Le Sueur County Genealogy Center in Elysian.  Enjoys substituting at the area Public Libraries and was a 35-year elementary librarian for the Waseca Schools.  Interests include reading, researching, quilting, photography, and her new grandson and his parents.  Lives in the hamlet of Cordova which sparked the interest in the Curtis family.