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Two Circa 1888 American Indian Cabinet Cards
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $1,185
Two circa 1888 cabinet cards, each picturing a different American Indian chief. The first is a formal studio photograph capturing Chief Rain-In-The-Face seated while holding a rifle. This very example appeared as Lot 558 in the September 7, 2005, Cowan's Auction of Indian Arts, where it realized a final sale price of $1,380. Chief Rain in the Face (1835-1905), whose Indian name was Canku-Ota, was a member of the Hunkpapa Sioux tribe. He participated in both the Fetterman Massacre and the Battle of the Little Big Horn. A fierce warrior, it was reported that he killed Tom Custer and cut out his heart on the battlefield, however, that act was never verified (he himself strongly denied that report repeatedly in the years that followed). The second cabinet depicts a bust-length image of Chief Joseph. Like the other cabinet offered in this lot, this very example appeared in the September 7, 2005 Cowan's Auction of Indian Arts (Lot 556), where it realized a final sale price of $920. It should be noted that while Chief Rain-In-The-Face is identified in preprinted text on the cabinet mount, the identification of Chief Joseph is based solely on a handwritten ink notation below the photo. Chief Joseph (1840-1904), whose Indian name was Hin-mah-too-yah-lat-kekt, was a member of the Nez Perce tribe. Both cabinet cards (4.25 x 6.5 inches) were produced by photographer "D. F. Barry" of West Superior, Wis, who, as noted in his advertising text on the reverse, sells "Photographs of all the noted Indians." The Chief-Rain-In-The-Face photograph displays three tiny ink blemishes, the largest of which was done to fill in a small abrasion along the base, otherwise in Near Mint condition. The Chief Joseph photograph is in Excellent to Mint condition. Each mount displays light handling wear and is in Excellent condition overall. Total: 2 cabinet photos. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000+. SOLD FOR $1,185
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