Engraved woodblock of an "Indian mask from the northwest coast of America"

This engraved woodblock of an “Indian mask from the northwest coast of America” was prepared by the Government Printing Office in Washington, D.C.; the image was published as Plate XIV.23 (p.173) in an article by William Healey Dall (1845-1927) entitled “On Masks, Labrets, and Certain Aboriginal Customs with an Inquiry into the Bearing of Their Geographical Distribution” in the Third Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian, 1881-82. According to the annual report, the image shows a “dancing mask used by the Indians of Cape Flattery, Washington Territory” and was originally drawn by J.G. Swan (1818-1900).
Currently not on view
Object Name
Object Type
Wood Engraving
date made
Bureau of American Ethnology
Government Printing Office
Dall, William H.
original artist
Swan, J. G.
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
engraving (overall production method/technique)
overall: 6.3 cm x 5 cm x 2 cm; 2 1/2 in x 1 15/16 in x 13/16 in
place made
United States: District of Columbia, Washington
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Native Americans
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Graphic Arts
Cultures & Communities
Science & Mathematics
Wood Blocks for early Bureau of American Ethnology Publications, Graphic Arts Collection
Wood Engravings, Graphic Arts Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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