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2020

Early photographs are rare enough for most families, even more so for those living on reservations and allotted tribal lands across the west. This makes the Bureau of Indian Affairs Industrial Surveys, taken nationwide to document family's living and farming conditions, a welcome and rich resource.

 


Edward Kirkaldie and family, Fort Belknap Reservation (https://catalog.archives.gov/id/100382521)

 

 

The original records, organized by BIA agency, were sent to the BIA Commissioner in Washington DC. The surveys were then bound and today are found at our Washington DC branch. These unfortunately have not been digitized but some BIA agencies saved local copies and NARA field units have worked to digitize and make these available online, such as those seen here in this blog post.




Blackbull, a 52-year-old Blackfeet, along with his granddaughter. (https://catalog.archives.gov/id/292953)

 


For a deeper dive into the genesis of the surveys and how to research, read more here;
https://www.archives.gov/publications/prologue/2017/fall/bia-surveys


And for inquires into the overall collection, reach out to;
archives1reference@nara.gov