Friday, January 4, 2019

26 Amazing Vintage Photos of First Nations People Before the 1900s

Alex Ross (1851–1894) came to Calgary, Alberta in 1884 and set up a photographic studio at the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Osler Street. He had previously worked for a photographer in Winnipeg, but felt the time was right to strike out on his own and establish his own business.

He quickly became well-known for his photographs of the First Nations people in the Calgary area, especially the Tsuu T'ina (called Sarcee at that time) and the Blackfoot. Some of the photographs were taken outdoors, but many more were carefully-posed studio shots. By 1891 the studio seems to have closed, and three years later Ross died at the relatively young age of 43.

Blackfoot man with knife, 1885

Blackfoot woman and child in the late 1880s

Blackfoot woman and baby on her back, 1886

Blackfoot warrior with sword, 1887

 Blackfoot man with rifle, Alberta, 1887

Blackfoot man in blanket, 1886

Blackfoot boys, 1886

First Nations man and his wife, 1886

 First Nations camp near first Hudson's Bay Company store at Fort Calgary, Alberta, 1886

 Crowfoot, head chief of the Blackfoot, 1887

Crowfoot, chief of the Blackfoot, 1887

Chief Owl of the Blackfoot, 1886

Bobtail, Cree chief, Alberta, 1886

 Blackfoot women, 1880s

First Nations man in blanket, 1886

Sarcee moving camp near Calgary, 1887

Sarcee man, 1887

Sarcee camp west of Calgary, 1886

Rabbit Carrier of the Blackfoot, 1887

Rabbit Carrier of the Blackfoot, 1886

Joseph, Blackfoot man, 1887

Two Sarcee girls, 1887

Two of the first pupils at the Blackfoot Anglican School, 1886

Three young Blackfoot men, Calgary, Alberta, 1887

Three young Blackfoot men, 1887

Sarcee woman, Katie, and her baby, 1887

(Photos from Glenbow Museum) 

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