Friday, May 17, 2013

Dine (Navajo) child

Victoria in California tagged me and sent this lovely card of a Dine woman and child. I had never seen the photo before and its new to my collection! The image is titled Indian Baby Carriage and easily traced to images held in the Library of Congress. The photo was taken around 1914 and is attributed to the studio of William Pennington & Wesley Rowland. The LOC has a number of Navajo photos with their copyright.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Hopi pottery

I love swapping cards with Michelle out in Albuquerque but this one was sent as a "tag" odd arrangement where postcrossers post their name and someone can then claim one of their offerings. I've only participated a few times and am still not sure what its all about! But I was happy to grab Michelle; we've had wonderful exchanges and I was super pleased to ask for this card! The lovely pots are all at the Heard Museum in Phoenix and Michelle notes that her great grandmother had met Maria Martinez, the famous potter from San Idefonso Pueblo (who was known for her black on black style):  "There's a pretty cool family story about great-grandma and Maria, Maria asked her to watch her pottery in front of the Palace of the Governors while she went to do something. A photographer came and took my great-grandma's photo with Maria's pots. Later, the photo showed up in a newspaper saying my great-grandma was Maria! She was Scottish, and didn't look a thing like her!"

Monday, May 13, 2013

Shopping with Snowbirds

The owners of a nice Native art shop in the tourist town of Saugatuck, Michigan have sent their announcement of 2013 shop opening! During the winter they are down in New Mexico, buying from local artists that they have known for many years and then they are here just for a short summer. I always go up for a fun day with friends Ray & Cindy who find lovely things to buy. Occasionally I pick up something small & affordable (last year I got a Navajo doll) but really I just love to hear the owners' stories of their artist friends and learn facts about all their super neat merchandise. They really care about the artists and their families, plus have an encyclopedic knowledge of SW art.They carry real southwestern art, not the tourist junk, and if money fell from the trees I'd find plenty of old big chunky Navajo silver to buy! They also have a small amount of Great Lakes baskets etc.

We always go to the shop first, then have lunch at a cafe, walk the town a bit, and get ice cream. Most of the shops in the town sell clothing, jewelry, handmade art objects, etc and the local drug store still sells post cards. Its a great way to spend a day and we are already making plans to go soon!
And they do carry fine quality Navajo weavings...well out of my price range!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


A great surprise in my mailbox today, thanks to the organization Friends of New Echota. This group works to maintain the Georgia capital of the Cherokee Nation before removal to Indian Territory, my home state of Oklahoma. Sadly in 1830 the US passed the Indian Removal Act, designed to push all tribes out of the eastern half of the US and resettle everyone west of the Mississippi River. The Cherokees stalled and avoided removal for many years, although some moved on their own. The majority were forcibly removed by the government during the winter of 1838, an event known as the Trail of Tears where perhaps 1/4 of the nation died on the way.
Friends of New Echota will mark the 175th anniversary with a memorial service featuring members of Oklahoma and remainder North Carolina Cherokees. Big thanks to Dr. Donna Myers who knows how much I love postcards!

Trail of Tears (watercolor) by Mack Steele, 1977

Friday, May 3, 2013


This card illustrates our global village: it shows a Mayan site in Guatemala, was printed in Australia and sent to me by a Postcrosser in Europe. She also sent another UNESCO card  featuring the Mayan site of Copan in Honduras from the same series.

Tikal was an important Mayan kingdom during the Classic Period, influencing much of the region and controlling local economics. As a result it was able to build many impressive buildings such as this large temple Mayan kingdoms created complex political alliances and were involved in many wars for territory and captives. These actions plus changes in the amount of resources available to feed large settled populations led to the collapse of many kingdoms including Tikal in the 800s AD.

Temple of the Great Jaguar was built in the 700s. It was the tomb of a king, containing offerings of jade, shell and ceramics. The structure is 154 feet high with a religious temple on the top.


I posted a note on the Postcrossing forum seeking more indigenous cards and had a few wonderful replies including one from Brazil who sends this politely edited card. The text indicates: Indian of the tribe of "Cinta Larga" (Large Belt) at the Aripuana River-Rondonia

The community lives in the western Amazon rainforest of Brazil and has been significantly affected by outsiders who exploit the natural resources of the area including rubber, oil, gold and diamonds.