George Catlin (1796-1872), "Wi-jun-jon, an Assineboin Chief. Going to Washington; Returning to his home."
George Catlin (1796-1872)
"Wi-jun-jon, an Assineboin Chief. Going to Washington; Returning to his home."
from The North American Indian Portfolio
Published: London, 1844.
Lithograph with original hand-coloring
Sheet size: approx. 19 3/4 x 12 3/4”
Framed size: 31 x 24”
Ref: Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 55, 1841; reprint 1973
George Catlin first met the Light in St. Louis in December 1831, when the Assiniboinewarrior was en route to Washington to meet President Andrew Jackson and tour the city. Catlin recalled that the warrior appeared for his portrait sitting “plumed and tinted . . . [and] dressed in his native costume, which was classic and exceedingly beautiful.” Wi-jún- jon returned home to the northern Plains eighteen months later a decidedly different man---dressed apparently in a “general’s” uniform and sharing what to his fellow tribesmen were astonishing accounts of the white man’s cities. They eventually rejected his stories as “ingenious fabrication of novelty and wonder,” and his persistence in telling such “lies” eventually led to his murder. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 55, 1841; reprint 1973)
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