Bód-a-sin, Chief of the Tribe

  • George Catlin, Bód-a-sin, Chief of the Tribe, 1830, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.274

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George Catlin probably painted this portrait of Bód-a-sin, chief of the Delaware/Lenape tribe, at Fort Leavenworth (in today’s Kansas) in 1830. Catlin’s efforts from 1830 are generally considered his first attempts at Indian portraits in the West. He later described the tribe: “[They] originally occupied a great part of the Eastern border of Pennsylvania, and great part of the states of New Jersey and Delaware. No other tribe on the Continent has been so much moved and jostled about by civilized invasions; and none have retreated so far, or fought their way so desperately, as they have honourably and bravely contended for every foot of the ground they have passed over.” (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 47, 1841; reprint 1973)

Bód-a-sin, Chief of the Tribe
On View
Not on view.
29 x 24 in. (73.7 x 60.9 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.

Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Portrait male – Bod A Sin
  • Ethnic – Indian – Delaware
Object Number
Linked Open Data
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