The Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division preserves and makes available thousands of pictures related to the history and culture of Indigenous North Americans. The vast majority of these images are photographs. Other material includes drawings, engravings, lithographs, posters, and architectural drawings. Most of these images have documentary importance. Some reflect the artistic development of graphic art and photography.
While pictorial material relating to American Indian and Alaska Native cultures was produced as early as the fifteenth century, the Prints & Photographs Division's holdings in this area are strongest for the period 1860 to 1940. Most of these pictures, particularly those made before the mid-twentieth century, were produced by European Americans. Acquiring works by members of tribal communities is a collecting priority for the Division. Use the links on the left to explore the Prints & Photographs Division's collection material related to American Indian history and culture.
Please note that terminology in historical materials and in Library descriptions does not always match the language preferred by members of Native communities, and may include negative stereotypes. Item descriptions often include direct transcriptions of original captions. The Library includes the historic captions because they can be important for understanding the context in which the images were created.