Begging Dance, Sauk and Fox

Media - 1985.66.439 - SAAM-1985.66.439_1 - 64605
Copied George Catlin, Begging Dance, Sauk and Fox, 1835-1837, oil on canvas, 19 5827 12 in. (49.770.0 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.439
Free to use

Artwork Details

Begging Dance, Sauk and Fox
Not on view
19 5827 12 in. (49.770.0 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Ceremony — Indian
  • Indian — Sauk and Fox
  • Ceremony — dance — Begging Dance
Object Number

Artwork Description

“The Begging Dance is a frequent amusement, and one that has been practiced with some considerable success at this time, whilst there have been so many distinguished and liberal visitors here. It is got up by a number of desperate and long-winded fellows, who will dance and yell their visitors into liberality; or, if necessary, laugh them into it, by their strange antics, singing a song of importunity, and extending their hands for presents, which they allege are to gladden the hearts of the poor, and ensure a blessing to the giver.” George Catlin initially sketched this scene at a Sac and Fox village in 1835. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 56, 1841; reprint 1973)