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Crossing to the North Fork of the Platte River
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Crossing to the North Fork of the Platte River


Description Provenance Credit
Description "At these crossings our goods were placed on Bull Boats ... A number of Sioux were watching our operations all this time, statue-like on the banks, and although we offered them strong inducements to help us, nothing would move them. We fancied we saw an expression fo contempt on their faces. The trappers, becoming enraged, launched at them the choicest anathemas in French. 'Nursing their wrath to keep it warm.' Luckily for the poor Indians, they understood not a word of these nice expletives, and certainly so far as quiet dignity was concerned, they had the best of it." A.J. Miller, extracted from "The West of Alfred Jacob Miller" (1837). In July 1858 William T. Walters commissioned 200 watercolors at twelve dollars apiece from Baltimore born artist Alfred Jacob Miller. These paintings were each accompanied by a descriptive text, and were delivered in installments over the next twenty-one months and ultimately were bound in three albums. Transcriptions of field-sketches drawn during the 1837 expedition that Miller had undertaken to the annual fur-trader's rendezvous in the Green River Valley (in what is now western Wyoming), these watercolors are a unique record of the closing years of the western fur trade.
Provenance William T. Walters, Baltimore, 1858-1860, by commission; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1894, by inheritance; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Commissioned by William T. Walters, 1858-1860

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Period
1858-1860
Medium
wash heightened with white on paper
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
37.1940.8
Measurements
H: 11 13/16 x W: 9 1/2 in. (30 x 24.1 cm)
Geographies
  • USA (Place of Origin)
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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