The Bezhigoogahbow Library at Leech Lake Tribal College has been the recipient of a donation of the republication of the Native American Indian series by Edward S. Curtis. Curtis, who set out to record western Native American Tribal life at the beginning of the twentieth century, published his work in 20 volumes of text and photos, along with 20 volumes of portfolio prints. The Christopher Cardozo Fine Art Gallery of Minneapolis undertook the first custom republication of the series. According to the CCFA website “each book is hand bound in bonded leather with archival linen-finished paper, and gilded with the highest artisan bookmaking standards”.
Multiple grants from private foundations provided the funding for donations to numerous tribal libraries across the Midwest. Leech Lake Tribal College and White Earth Tribal and Community College received a set of these amazing limited editions. Along with the 20-volume set of books were 5 portfolio books including 723 prints. Curtis’s photographs are known worldwide by their sepia-tone, and often the haunting intensity of expression by the subjects.
The Bezhigoogahbow Library hopes to engage students and community in the beauty and knowledge contained in the Curtis Collection. The books will be stored in the College’s archive room under climate and humidity controlled conditions, and will be available for study by appointment. One volume will be on rotating display in the Library.
Christopher Cardozo, publisher, is recognized as the world’s leading authority on Edward Curtis. Leech Lake Tribal College will plan a presentation event with Mr. Cordozo in the spring of 2019.
The Leech Lake Tribal College is a two-year degree granting institution open to the public, but mainly serving the population of the Leech Lake Area. Approximately 10% of the student population is non-Native. Degree programs include: Business Management, Early Childhood Education, Indigenous Leadership, Liberal Education, Liberal Education – STEM, Forest Ecology, Law Enforcement, and Integrated Residential Builder. The Leech Lake Tribal College was named the #1 Community College in the nation by WalletHub in their recent 2017 rankings. WalletHub’s analysts compared more than 700 community colleges across 14 key indicators of cost and quality and Leech Lake Tribal College came out on top.