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Belle Vue, Indian Agency of Major Dougherty, 870 Miles above St. Louis

1832 George Catlin Born: Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 1796 Died: Jersey City, New Jersey 1872 oil on canvas 11 1/4 x 14 3/8 in. (28.5 x 36.6 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr. 1985.66.381 Not currently on view


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Belle Vue is a lovely scene on the West bank of the river, about nine miles above the mouth of the Platte, and is the agency of Major Dougherty, one of the oldest and most effective agents on our frontiers. This spot is, as I said, lovely in itself; but doubly so to the eye of the weather-beaten voyageur from the sources of the Missouri, who steers his canoe in, to the shore, as I did . . . It was a pleasure to see again, in this great wilderness, a civilized habitation; and still more pleasant to find it surrounded with corn-fields, and potatoes, with numerous fruit-trees, bending under the weight of their fruit.” George Catlin painted this landscape during a voyage along the Missouri River in 1832. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 32, 1841; reprint 1973)

Keywords

Ethnic - Indian

Figure group - male

Landscape - river

Landscape - United States - Belle Vue

Travel - water - canoe

painting

paint - oil

fabric - canvas

metal - aluminum - support added