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Jan 25, 2020
1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
"Hardship, Greed, and Sorrow: An Officers Photo Album of 1866 New Mexico Territory"
New Mexico History Museum

Please join us for a talk by author Devorah Romanek, and joined by Hannah Abelbeck, New Mexico History Museum Photo Archivist, and Jennifer Nez Dennetdale, Associate Professor of American Studies, University of New Mexico, on this compelling book which captures a fraught and complex moment in the history of the American Southwest.

In the aftermath of the Civil War, the New Mexico Territory endured painful years of hardship and ongoing strife. During this turbulent period, a US military officer stationed in the territory assembled an album of photographs, a series of still shots taken by one or more anonymous photographers. Now, some 150 years later, this remarkable volume reproduces the anonymous officer’s “souvenir album” in its totality.

Offering an important glimpse of the American Southwest in the mid-1860s, the photo album places the photographs in historical context in connection to the Civil War and Reconstruction periods, including the French intervention in New Mexico and the internment of Navajos at the Bosque Redondo Indian Reservation.

In addition to containing what may be the earliest extant photographs of Navajo Indians, the album features both studio and field images of U.S. Army officers, Mexican politicians, and various sites throughout New Mexico. 

Books for purchase will be made available from the Museum Foundation shop, located in the History Museum.

Free Auditorium event-bottled water only please


Devorah Romanek is an anthropologist and Visual Culture expert and is currently Curator of Exhibits at the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico.


Jennifer Nez Dennetdale is Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of

New Mexico and the author of Reclaiming Diné History: The Legacies of Navajo Chief

Manuelito and Juanita.


Hannah Abelbeck is the Photo Archivist with the New Mexico History Museum, Santa Fe, NM.


Daniel Kosharek, previously the Photo Curator at the New Mexico History Museum, Palace of the Governors, Santa Fe, NM.


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