Comanche Warriors, with White Flag, Receiving the Dragoons

  • George Catlin, Comanche Warriors, with White Flag, Receiving the Dragoons, 1834-1835, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.353

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“In the midst of this lovely valley, we could just discern amongst the scattering shrubbery that lined the banks of the watercourses, the tops of the Camanchee wigwams, and the smoke curling above them. The valley, for a mile distant about the village, seemed speckled with horses and mules that were grazing in it. The chiefs of the war-party requested the regiment to halt, until they could ride in, and inform their people who were coming. We then dismounted for an hour or so; when we could see them busily running and catching their horses; and at length, several hundreds of their braves and warriors came out at full speed to welcome us, and forming in a line in front of us, as we were again mounted, presented a formidable and pleasing appearance. As they wheeled their horses, they very rapidly formed in a line, and ‘dressed’ like well-disciplined cavalry.” The dashes of pigment indicating formations of dragoons and Indians reflect the speed with which George Catlin sketched this scene. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 2, no. 41, 1841, reprint 1973; Truettner, The Natural Man Observed, 1979)

Comanche Warriors, with White Flag, Receiving the Dragoons
On View
Not on view.
24 x 29 1/8 in. (61.1 x 73.9 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.

Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Ethnic – Indian – Comanche
  • Occupation – military – soldier
  • History – United States – westward expansion
  • Western
  • Figure group – male
Object Number
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