Editor's note: The following article, with notes, was rekeyed and reprinted on October 6, 2003 in Resource Library Magazine with permission of the Nebraska State Historical Society. The article was previously published in Nebraska History Volume 64, No. 3 (Fall 1983), pp. 325-340. Images accompanying the text in the Nebraska State Historical Society publication were not reproduced with this reprinting. If you have questions or comments regarding the article, or if you have interest in obtaining a copy of the NH issue containing the article, please contact the Nebraska State Historical Society directly through either this phone number or web address:


A Journey Through the Nebraska Region in 1833 and 1834: From the Diaries of Prince Maximilian of Wied

Translated by William J. Orr, Edited by William J. Orr and Joseph C. Porter



One hundred and fifty years ago a curious group of three Central Europeans, booked on the steamboat Yellowstone, made their way up the usually sluggish, but sometimes treacherous Missouri River, traversing the eastern boundary of what is now Nebraska. At their head was a short, bustling figure of fifty, attired in much the same green, distinctively German hunting garb worn during his ceaseless forays in the forests along the Rhine. This was Prince Maximilian of Wied who was traveling under the pseudonym, Baron Braunsberg, to avoid attracting unwanted attention to his august station.

Already renowned as an explorer of Brazil, admired for his diligent collection of tropic fauna and penetrating observations of the region's tribes, the Prince now hoped to duplicate his achievement on the far different, but no less challenging, terrain of the western prairie. Accompanying him was his retainer, a skillful huntsman and expert taxidermist, David Dreidoppel, whose deftness in stalking and luring game and whose deadly aim would soon gain this odd-sounding foreigner the respect of the most seasoned fur-trappers and hardened warriors.

Undoubtedly, the most handsome figure of the three was a young Swiss artist, Karl Bodmer, who was attired in an elegant manner unfamiliar to these rough regions and who sometimes even sported a parasol. Already he had painted several delicately lovely watercolors of the lush landscapes of eastern America and was about to commence an equally stunning series of Indian portraits, the marvel of his compatriots, both white and Indian, and a source of continual wonder and admiration many decades hence.

A meticulous observer, Maximilian chronicled the entire expedition in his voluminous diaries, which are one of the earliest records of the Upper Missouri region and of Nebraska. And though his travels are less well-known to scholars and to the general public than those of Lewis and Clark, Brackenridge, Long, Bradbury, and Catlin, Maximilian's findings are no less important.

Prince Maximilian of Wied was born on September 23, 1782, at the ancestral palace of Neuwied, not far from Koblenz at the junction of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. [1] At this time the prince of Wied was only one of over 300 rulers and independent aristocrats in a then disunited Germany. Later, during the wars of the French Revolution, the principality was annexed by one of France's German satellites and then, after 1815, incorporated into Prussia. As the eighth child in a family of ten, with several elder brothers, young Maximilian had no prospect of ever heading the family estate. As a Protestant, the Prince likewise could not look forward to the kind of prestigious ecclesiastical career open to younger sons of the aristocracy in Catholic Europe. Very early his interests and education turned to the study of natural history, which aristocratic leisure and family wealth provided ample opportunity to pursue.

Of his youth and education little is known. Apparently he briefly attended in 1800 and 1801 the University of Götingen, where he studied under the celebrated Johann Friedrich Blumenbach (1752-1840), a founder of physical anthropology, who, of all his teachers, exercised the most unmistakable influence. In 1802 the Prince entered the Prussian military, and in 1806 was captured by the French shortly after Prussia's catastrophic defeat at Auerstedt. Upon his release Maximilian resumed on his own initiative the study of natural history. Though surviving biographical documentation for this period is scanty, it is nonetheless clear that he had already become a passionate student of natural history and restless collector, whose specimens would eventually comprise thousands of birds, reptiles, and mammals from all over the world.

In mid-1811 Maximilian resumed studies at Götingen. At this time, too, he apparently first began to ponder seriously a voyage to distant lands, perhaps to North America.[2] Napoleon's debacle in Russia and the ensuing outbreak of the "Wars of Liberation" in Germany interrupted his plans. In 1813 he re-enlisted in Prussian service, attaining the rank of major in the Third Brandenburg Hussar Regiment. During the allied invasion of France in 1814, he was involved in various battles and also earned an Iron Cross. Yet even in the midst of this exhausting campaign with its carnage, he found a few moments when he could desist from pursuing the retreating French and turn instead to reptiles which he pickled in brandy and transported on horseback.[3] Following a triumphal entry into Paris, he befriended Alexander von Humboldt, and evidently it was the example of this celebrated explorer of Spanish America that persuaded the young Prince of Wied to direct his sights to Brazil rather than North America, the goal of earlier plans for travel in the New World.

In June, 1815, accompanied by Dreidoppel and his gardener Simonis, he set sail from England, arriving at Rio de Janeiro two months later. In Brazil, as during his later expedition to North America, the Prince showed little interest in the politics or the social institutions of the lands he visited; his primary purpose was to assemble as many plant and animal specimens as possible, both for study and to augment his growing collections, and then to observe the region's Indian tribes. Accompanied by his two countrymen, the ornithologist, Georg Wilhelm Freyreiss, and the botanist, Friedrich Sellow; his retainers; and a retinue of Portuguese huntsmen, guides, interpreters, and pack carriers, Maximilian plunged into the partially explored tropical hinterlands of eastern Brazil. Two years he spent tramping through endless treacherous thickets and forests, fording countless rivers and streams, encamped in rude settlements or in the open air, ever on the alert for venomous snakes or hostile Indians. All the while he collected countless exotic animals and plants and visited such wild tribes as the Puns, Botocudos, and Camacans - some only recently emerged from cannibalism - whose customs and languages he carefully and dispassionately recorded.[4] And if all these activities were not sufficient to exhaust a lesser man, this tireless explorer also found the time to compose several accurate, if unpolished, sketches and watercolors, which later experts have lauded as a priceless and accurate rendition of the landscapes, costumes, and tribes of early 19th century Brazil.[5] All told, it was a fascinating and memorable journey, and with mixed feelings, no doubt, Maximilian finally returned to Europe in 1817.

It was this expedition which largely shaped Prince Maximilian's subsequent career as explorer, naturalist, and ethnographer. Clearly he nurtured the fondest memories of this land's verdant, luxuriant landscapes, teeming with some of the most diverse and exotic wildlife on the globe. For the Prince, even the sublime but barren majesty of the North. American prairie suffered by comparison. Moreover, his contacts with Brazilian tribes decisively influenced his views regarding American Indians as a whole. As the sections of his diary published here indicate (see for example the entry of May 5, 1833), Brazil provided a standard to contrast his later observations along the Missouri. Even more important, his experiences in South America confirmed the belief he undoubtedly acquired from his revered teacher Blumenbach regarding the fundamental unity and equality of the races of humanity. Though hardly oblivious to such unsavory practices as cannibalism, Maximilian nonetheless ascribed much of the Indians' savagery and hostility to the cruelty and treachery suffered at the hands of European interlopers. In the Indians, as well as in the downtrodden black slave population, he espied the same intellectual and spiritual potential found in the dominating race.[6] For him this capacity was amply demonstrated by the fact that the children of Indians, once removed from their rude environment, demonstrated an intelligence comparable to that of whites.[7]

If anything, Maximilian's empathy toward native Americans was enhanced even further by his contacts sixteen years later with the more advanced plains tribesmen of North America whose spiritual and cultural level he felt was notably higher - thanks in part to their closer contact with white civilization.[8] At the same time, this sympathy was tempered by detachment and objectivity. One of his major objections to the work of his renowned, if quixotic contemporary, George Catlin, was the American artist's excessive partiality and "exaggerated and poetic descriptions" of his Indian subjects.[9] As the diary sections published here also indicate, neither was the Prince blind to any conditions of degradation and degeneration he might encounter.

Nevertheless, even so keen and enlightened an observer as Maximilian could at times succumb to ethnocentricity or show glaring insensitivity to the cultures he encountered. This fallibility was most clearly demonstrated at the close of his Brazilian journey when this explorer - who, ironically, often condemned slavery in both Brazil and later in the United States - purchased both a black and a young Botocudo, Quack, and brought them back to Germany. The black died soon afterwards. Quack, however, lived on for over a decade, adapted partly to Germany, but also fell prey to periodic spells of drunkenness, punctuated by romps in the snow and bouts of pneumonia, and died in 1833 while the Prince was in America.[10] Despite such an apparently clear-cut case of uprooting and maladjustment to so alien and lonely an environment, the Prince, while in North America, seriously pondered bringing back yet another Indian but hesitated, realizing the likelihood of the native's homesickness and the heavy expenses of a return journey which would ensue.[11]

After his return to Germany, Max immediately plunged into publicizing the results of his expedition. First and most important was his two-volume narrative of the Brazilian journey - based on his copious diaries - which was accompanied by a volume of engravings based on his sketches, in which the Indian subjects were significantly altered - at the expense of accuracy - to make them appealing to contemporary European taste. In format this work served as a model for the later account of his North American journey. In rapid succession there followed a four-volume work on Brazilian natural history, a lavishly illustrated color platebook of Brazilian fauna, as well as numerous articles. Even today, Brazilians gratefully acknowledge their debt to this intrepid naturalist who did so much to familiarize the world with the unique flora and fauna of their homeland, and even more, appreciate his careful and dispassionate observations that are often still the major source of information about now long-vanished tribes.

Even amidst these tireless scholarly labors, the Prince was already beginning to contemplate yet another journey before age should overtake him and the relentless advance of civilization ravage the wilderness he longed to observe and record. As early as 1822, he was broaching to friends the idea of a journey to Labrador and the American West: "From Labrador one could then go south into the plains of the Missouri and Mississippi where Lewis and Clarke [sic] made their dangerous bear hunts and this would surely be rewarding."[12] On other occasions he wondered whether Mexico and Central America might instead offer the richest yield to an eager zoologist, or whether Russia and the Caspian region might actually provide the most appropriate arena for his endeavors. [13] In the end, though, the United States held the most powerful attraction for him, and beginning in the mid 1820s, he began to study North American natural history. By 1830 the Prince was ready to depart, but the outbreak of revolution and national upheavals in Europe deferred his plans.

On his next journey he was wisely determined to delegate to others some of the myriad responsibilities that had over-burdened him in Brazil. Above all, he needed a reliable artist to record American landscapes and tribesmen. In 1832 he discovered a young Swiss painter, Karl Bodmer (1809-1893), who had gained some acclaim for his landscapes of the Rhine and Moselle region. Though hitherto Bodmer had virtually no experience in portraiture, Maximilian had sufficient confidence in his skill and potential to engage him for the expedition. Thus, well before he ever embarked on American soil, the Prince had made perhaps the most significant decision of the entire journey. For, despite his inexperience, the artist readily adapted to the demands of his assignment and created in addition to his beautiful landscapes assuredly some of the finest American Indian portraits ever painted.[14] In addition, Maximilian had hoped to hire a young military engineer to undertake geographical and mathematical observations in North America, but the refusal of his superiors to grant a lengthy leave of absence precluded these plans. In April, 1832, Maximilian, accompanied once more by the trusty Dreidoppel and by Bodmer, set sail from Holland on his second and last great voyage to the New World.

After more than two years on the American frontier - the details of the journey are related below - Maximilian returned to Germany, only to discover that assembling his collections and publicizing the results of his expedition would prove a no less complicated, frustrating, and in many respects even lengthier process than the journey itself. Unlike his experiences in Brazil, Maximilian had ambivalent feelings about his sojourn in North America. Not only had he found the western prairies monotonous and depressing, he deplored the rudeness of the Americans and their disdain for natural history and other refinements of civilization. Then too, the harsh climate and primitive conditions of travel proved more arduous for this fifty-year old voyager, who suffered severe gastrointestinal bouts reminiscent of cholera along the Ohio, as well as a near-fatal brush with scurvy during a harsh winter on the Upper Missouri. Because the United States had been more thoroughly explored than Brazil, his own observations and collections in natural history, though by no means insignificant, proved less momentous than in the case of his earlier investigations in South America. His discouragement was compounded in 1835 when he learned that the steamer Assiniboine, while transporting his massive natural history and ethnographic collections from the Upper Missouri and Rocky Mountain region, had exploded and sunk. Yet, in spite of these setbacks, the Prince also recognized that his observations of North American Indian tribes were at least as thorough as those from Brazil and that in the over four hundred watercolors and sketches of Bodmer - particularly of the Indians - he had assembled a priceless and unparalleled treasure.[15]

For these reasons the Prince decided to publish an account of his North American journey, to be illustrated even more lavishly than his earlier Brazilian opus by an aquatint atlas based on Bodmer's original watercolors. While Maximilian composed the text - relying again on copious manuscript diaries kept during the expedition - Bodmer left for Paris to superintend the lengthy and often frustrating process of engraving and hand coloring needed to produce the deluxe atlas. Eventually a two-volume German edition appeared between 1838 and 1841,[16] followed by a three volume French translation in 1840-1843,[17] and a significantly abridged one-volume English version in 1843.[18]

Considering the time pressures, delays, and petty wrangling that dogged the publication project from the outset, it was an impressive achievement notwithstanding. In large part, Bodmer's art - then as today - served as the expedition's major basis for renown. Eighty-one magnificent aquatints accompanied Maximilian's narrative. In some cases these differed noticeably from the original watercolors. Thus, many of their serene subjects assumed more wild, frenzied countenances to fit the preconceptions of European viewers. Some landscapes, too, were altered to imbue them with a more romantic allure (see the juxtaposed original and aquatint version of Blackbird's Grave, plate Nos. 12 and 13). A few aquatints have no prototype at all, leading one to infer they were devised for purely illustrative purposes. In many instances, however, these and the original watercolors or sketches were virtually identical. Whatever the case, for over a century Bodmer's aquatints remained one of the most valuable and definitive portrayals of the Plains Indian and American frontier.

Unfortunately, all too often the Swiss artist's masterwork has tended to overshadow the contribution of his princely patron. The original German edition of Maximilian's travel narrative was, in fact, a masterful distillation of his field diaries, demonstrating as well a thorough acquaintance with the most recent European and American ethnographic and travel literature.

In their lifetime the achievement of the two men never received the fullest recognition it deserved. Ironically, the aquatint atlas, the most spectacular facet of their publication, also made it too expensive for all except the wealthiest bibliophiles. Due to the prohibitive cost the work went virtually unreviewed on both the European continent and in the Anglo-Saxon world.

Especially unfortunate, English-speaking readers, and particularly Americans, who were most likely to be interested in the Prince's expedition, were also left with the least satisfactory of the three editions. In order to reduce the work to the dimensions of a single quarto volume, the translator, H. Evans Lloyd, ruthlessly excised the original German text. Over sixty years later that prolific and tireless editor, Reuben Gold Thwaites, decided to reissue Maximilian's Travels in the Interior of North America in his "Early Western Travels" series, thus at last making the Prince's work more accessible to a wider, less affluent audience. Thwaites knew that appendices from the original German edition, such as the vocabularies of several Indian tribes, had been cut, and he restored them to his reprint edition. Not being a German scholar, he could not, however, judge the deficiencies of the Lloyd translation and its alteration of the main body of the original text. Aside from often loosely translating the original German, Lloyd excised numerous passages. These cuts included Latin binomials for the many species of flora and fauna observed by Maximilian, Indian names and subdivisions of the tribes recorded by the Prince, supposedly irrelevant footnotes indicating the sources of much of his information about the natural history and ethnology of North America, and passages about "indelicate" matters likely to offend contemporary Victorian sensibilities. This edition with its woeful omissions has been the basis for most scholarly assessments of Maximilian's expedition.

With the completion of the publication project which occupied them for nearly a decade, the two men pursued divergent careers. Embittered by his enormous investment of time and effort in which turned out to be a financial fiasco, Bodmer came to lament the supposed dissipation of the most productive years of his life. He retreated to the forests of Fontainebleau south of Paris, establishing peripheral contacts with the Bohemian artist colony which began to form there after 1849. Hardly ever did this artist - one of the greatest portraitists of the American Indian - depict a human figure again! His output consisted almost exclusively of forest and animal scenes, some skillfully executed, others unabashedly sentimental to appeal to the popular taste of his own day. For a time Bodmer achieved a minor reputation among the Barbizon School, which included such celebrated rural and landscape artists as Jean-François Millet and Thodore Rousseau. But evidently during the last decade of his life his fortunes declined, and he died in poverty and obscurity in Paris in 1893.[19]

Maximilian's twilight years, on the other hand, were ones of quiet, productive contentment. During the 1840s he dreamed of yet another distant expedition - either to Baltic Russia or the Caucasus region. But for various reasons - one of them being Bodmer's initial reluctance to accompany him - he eventually abandoned these plans.[20] Age, too, was becoming an impediment even for so vigorous an outdoorsman, and gradually he reconciled himself to less strenuous excursions in Europe:

I am now 60 years old, and at that age one doesn't travel much any more. In 50 more years the world will have achieved an entirely different appearance! Railways, steamship travel will have made distances entirely insignificant, journeys to distant lands will become walking tours, and whatever goes on in men's heads - this, too, can bring about big changes. For me the greater part of my life is already past, and thus now I can still only be glad for the past and those friends who have lived through these times with me. In my immediate surroundings a hobbling study of nature and hunting will provide me - as long as my health holds out - satisfactory, pleasant activity.[21]

Despite this resigned prediction, a good quarter century of study and labor remained. Even without distant journeys, the Prince continued his incessant collecting by mail, obtaining fauna from locales as diverse as Greenland, India, and the Dutch East Indies. At one time his live collections at Neuwied included specimens as diverse as North American grizzly bears and eggs of a Java python, which he vainly sought to incubate and hatch. Despite the remoteness of the ancestral estate from the major centers of scientific inquiry, Maximilian made prodigious efforts to remain abreast of contemporary works on natural history and exploration, often bartering exotic stuffed animals for costly and precious volumes.

Due, in part, to advancing age, it was not possible for Prince Maximilian to publicize the results of his North American expedition with the rapidity and thoroughness that had been possible in the case of his works on Brazilian natural history. Then too, it took him years to reacquire, by purchase or exchange, some of the specimens lost with the sinking of the Assiniboine. Only in the 1850s did his scholarly output on North American natural history finally reach significant proportions. His principal publications included a series of articles on his observations of North American birds,[22] a catalog of North American mammals published both as serial articles and as a separate book, [23] and, just two years before his death, an inventory of North American reptiles illustrated with magnificent handcolored engravings by Bodmer.[24]

Maximilian himself would have been the first to admit the limited import of his work in this field. His second journey to the New World brought no discoveries. His most sustained and unhurried observations were carried out in a region - the Eastern United States - already well-combed by American naturalists. And even had his collections from the remote, partially explored western regions survived, his investigations along the Missouri were severely hampered by the pace of steamboat travel, the unruliness and uncooperativeness of rude engagés, and his understandable reluctance to collect specimens and observe life in regions overrun by hostile Indians.

Clearly it was as an ethnographer that Maximilian made his grandest contribution. His published narrative of the journey to North America contained the same detailed and dispassionate observations that distinguished his studies in Brazil. If anything, his American account was even more thorough. Regrettably, apart from this work, Maximilian wrote little else about North American Indians. In 1842, to be sure, he published a review of Catlin's Letters and Notes, often severely criticizing the American's observations and thus in the process providing sometimes valuable additions to his own earlier work.[25] Unfortunately, because this piece appeared in a relatively inaccessible German scientific journal, it has remained unknown to American historians and ethnologists. Many years later, in 1863, Maximilian delivered a lecture to Rhenish naturalists, in which once more he upheld the thesis propounded by Blumenbach regarding the common origin of Indian races in both North and South America.[26] On the whole, however, in anthropology as in natural history, Maximilian shunned theorizing and was reluctant to engage in wide-ranging synthesis, comparing his observations with those of other world explorers. He was largely content to report what he observed as accurately, conscientiously, and objectively as possible. And if at times this modesty lends a certain dryness to his work, still one can only regret that this acutely observant explorer did not again visit and observe still other vanishing races.

Tirelessly productive until well into his eighties, Prince Maximilian finally died on February 3, 1867. Within a few years of his death his voluminous collections, priceless manuscripts, and incomparable paintings began to be dispersed throughout the world or else remained long forgotten. First to be sold was his natural history collection containing over 4,000 stuffed birds, 600 mammals, and 2,000 fishes and reptiles, which the Museum of Natural History in New York acquired in 1870.[27] As early as the 1840s, the Prince had donated a few Indian artifacts which eventually became a part of the Museum für Völkerkunde (Museum for Ethnology) in West Berlin. In 1904 a far larger, even more valuable remnant of his priceless assemblage of Plains Indians costumes and artifacts went to the Linden Museum in Stuttgart, where they remain today.[28]

In this country it was known even before the First World War that the archives at Neuwied contained substantial manuscript and pictorial material relating to Maximilian's exploration of both Brazil and the western frontier of North America.[29] In 1918 Addison Sheldon, one of the early directors of the Nebraska State Historical Society, actually visited Neuwied and viewed portions of this collection, taking back a bust of the celebrated explorer as a memento of his visit. Yet, to judge from the tenor of his account, the more spectacular items were concealed from this representative of the recently victorious American army. Sheldon, in fact, remained one of Maximilian's most fervent admirers, lavish in his praise of the Prince's account of early Nebraska and the western frontier.[30]

The most spectacular rediscovery of Maximilian's legacy occurred decades later. After the Second World War a Koblenz museum director, Dr. Josef Roeder, while doing research at the Wied family archives, uncovered Maximilian's diaries, notebooks, and correspondence, as well as over 400 of the original watercolors and sketches of Karl Bodmer. Though the Swiss artist's mastery in portraying the Plains Indians had long been acknowledged thanks to the aquatints, his original watercolors, apart from a brief unheralded exhibition in Paris in 1836, had never been viewed by the public before. Thanks to efforts of Roeder, Prince Karl Viktor of Wied, and various American scholars and cultural officials in Germany, these paintings were exhibited in West Germany and the United States. In 1959 Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Wied sold the entire Maximilian collection to M. Knoedler and Company in New York. In 1962 the Northern Natural Gas Company of Omaha (now InterNorth, Inc.) purchased the North American collection, consisting of the Bodmer watercolors and Maximilian diaries, letters, and scientific notebooks, and placed them on permanent loan at the Joslyn Art Museum.

From the outset scholars recognized the value of Maximilian's diaries and correspondence as a source for the history of the early American frontier. A careful examination of the diaries and letters reveals much material lacking in the published accounts-and especially in the deficient English translation already mentioned. The sections published here relating to the Prince's journey through Nebraska are, for example, about twice as lengthy and much more detailed than the corresponding published version. Roeder himself undertook invaluable preliminary research into the life and explorations of the Prince of Wied and also transcribed the second of three volumes of the Maximilian diaries written in an antiquated script, unfamiliar even to the vast majority of Germans today. Following the 1962 acquisition of the collection, Mildred Goosman, former Curator of Western Collections at the Joslyn Art Museum, assembled much valuable material relating to the Maximilian-Bodmer expedition and helped publicize its value. Dr. Emery Szmrecsanyi of Omaha transcribed an even more extensive number of manuscripts. Yet, considerable labor remains before Maximilian's work can finally be published. Above all, it must be translated and annotated, but in addition still further transcription, document collection, and background research are required. The excerpts edited here - relating to Maximilian's journey along the Missouri River in the area contiguous to modern day Nebraska, first upstream in 1833 and then downstream in 1834 - are the first substantial publication of Maximilian's original journals. In a few years all of Maximilian's diaries, letters, and other manuscripts concerning his travels in North America will be published by the University of Nebraska Press.


1. On Maximilian's life see Ph[illip}. Wirtgen, Zum Andenken an Prinz Maximilian zu Wied (Neuwied: Neuwieder Anzeiger, 1867); F[riedrich]. Ratzel, "Max Prinz von Wied-Neuwied," Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie, vol. 23, 559-564; Karl Viktor Prinz zu Wied, "Maximilian Prinz zu Wied: Sein Leben und seine Reisen," in Maximilian Prinz zu Wied, Unveröffentlichte Bilder und Handschriften zur Völkerkunde Brasiliens, ed. Josef Röder & Hermann Trimborn (Bonn: Ferd. Dummler, 1954), 13-25; Josef Röder, "Vida e Viagens de Maximiliano, Príncipe de Wied," in Maximilian Alexander Philipp, Príncipe de Wied, Viagem ao Brasil, 1815-1817: Excertos e Ilustraõces (São Paulo: Melhoramentos, 1969), 5-17; Karl Viktor, Prince of Wied, "Maximillian Prince of Wied: A Biographical Survey," Proceedings of the Thirtieth International Congress of Americanists Held at Cambridge 1952, 30 (London, nd,), 193-194; Philip Drennon Thomas, "Maximilian zu Wied," Dictionary of Scientific Biography, 14 vols. (New York: Scribners, 1970-76), vol. 14, 328-329.

2. Maximilian to Heinrich Rudolf Schinz, July 7, 1811, Zentralbibliothek, Zürich. Schinz (1777-1860), a distinguished Swiss naturalist, was a lifelong correspondent of Maximilian's.

3. Maximilian to Schinz, October 22, 1814.

4. On Maximilian's journey to Brazil see Maximilian Alexander Philipp, Prinz zu Wied-Neuwied, Reise nach Brasilien in den Jahren 1815 bis 1817, 2 vols. (Frankfurt: H. L. Brönner, 1820-21). The work was soon afterwards translated into French, Italian, and Dutch but unfortunately only the first volume, which lacks the major ethnographical information, into English. The most recent and accessible edition is in Portuguese: Maximiliano (Príncipe de Wied-Neuwied), Viagem ao Brasil, trans. Edgar SiIssekind de Mendonca & Flavio Poppe de Figueiredo, ed. Oliverio Pinto, 2nd ed., 2 vols. (São Paulo: Companhia Editora Nacional, 1958). See also: Luis da Camara Cascudo, O Príncipe Maximiliano de Wied-Neuwied no Brasil 1815/1817 (Rio de Janeiro: Kosmos, 1977); Afranio do Amaral, "Maximiliano, Príncipe de Wied," Boletim do Museu Nacional (Rio de Janeiro), 7, no. 3 (1931), 187-210; Herbert Baldus, "Maximiliano Príncipe de Wied-Neuwied," Revista do Arquivo Municipal, 74 (São Paulo, 1941), 283-291; see also the catalog of the exhibition, 16 December 1982-22 January 1983, in West Berlin commemorating the 200th birthday of the Prince and his expedition to Brazil: Die Refsen des Prinzen Maximilian zu Wied 1815-1817 in Brasilien (Berlin: Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut, 1982).

5. Josef Röder, "Der zeichnerische Nachlas der Brasilienreise des Maximilian Prinzen zu Wied," in Maximilian, Unveröffentlichte Bilder, pp. 109-15; Hermann Trimborn, "Acuarelas y dibujos inditos del Príncipe Maximiliano de Wied, referentes a la etnografía del Brasil," Anais do XXXI Congreso Internacional de Americanistas São Paulo 1954 (Sao Paulo, n.d.), pp. 245-250; Rlder, "Vida e Viagens de Maximiliano," pp. 10-13; Josef Röder, "Maximiliano, Príncipe de Wied e o Foiclore Brasileiro," in ibid., 93-100. Maximilian's Brazilian sketches are reproduced in Viagem ao Brasil (1969) as well as in the aforementioned (note 4) exhibition catalog.

6. Maximilian, Reise nach Brasilien, I, 77-78, 162; 11, 41.

7. Maximilian to Heinrich Boie, January 8, 1822, Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek, Kiel.

8. See the summary of an 1863 lecture in Verhandlungen des naturhistorischen Vereines der preusnschen Rheinlande und Westphalens, 20 (Bonn, 1863), 55-56.

9. Maximilian, Prince of Wied, "Einige Bemerkungen liber Geo. Catlins Werk: Lettres and notes on the manners, customs and condition of the North-American Indians," Isis (1842), 726, 727.

10. Cascudo, O Príncipe Maximiliano, 118-119.

11. Maximilian to his sister, Luise, December 5, 1833, The InterNorth Art Foundation, Center for Western Studies, Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska; Maximilian to Karl Friedrich Phiipp von Martius, January 6, 1835, Bayrische Staatsbibliothek, Munich. Martius (1794-1868) was an even more celebrated later explorer of Brazil.

12. Maximilian to Schinz, February 6, 1822. Similar plans were also mentioned in letters of March 1 and [after September] 1822, March 29, 1823, and in a letter to Heinrich Boie, November 26, 1823.

13. Maximilian to Schinz, April 23 and June 26, 1826; February 5, 1830.

14. On Bodmer's life see Hans Läng, Indianer waren meine Freunde (Bern and Stuttgart: Hallweg, 1976); William J. Orr, "Karl Bodmer: The Artist's Life and Career," in Karl Bodmer's America (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, forthcoming).

15. Maximilian to Friedrich Boie, September 8, 1834, October 14, 1835, Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek, Kiel; Maximilian to H. Schiegel, March 4, 1836, University Library, Leiden; Maximilian to Martius, January 6 & 25, 1835.

16. Reise in des innere Nord-America in den Jahren 1832 bis 1834, 2 vols. (Koblenz: J. Hölscher, 1838-41).

17. Voyage dans l'intérieur de l'Amérique du Nord exécuté pendant les années 1832, 1833 et 1834, 3 vols. (Paris: Arthus Bertrand, 1840-43).

18. Travels in the Interior of North America, trans. H. Evans Lloyd (London: Ackermann, 1843).

19. For details see Orr, "Karl Bodmer."

20. Karl Viktor, "Maximilian Prinz zu Wied," 23; Orr, "Karl Bodmer"; Maximilian to F. Boie, December 28, 1839; Maximilian to Martius, December 23, 1840; Maximilian to Schinz, July 21, 1841.

21. Maximilian to F. Boie, August 11, 1841.

22. "Verzeichniss der Voge1 weiche auf einer Reise in Nord-America beobachtet wurden," Journal fur Ornithologie, 6 (1858), passim, 7 (1850), passim.

23. Verzeichniss der auf seiner Reise in Nord-Amerika beobachteten Saugethlere (Berlin: Nicolaische Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1862). Also Archiv fur Naturgeschichte, 27 (1861.), 181-288; 28 (1862): 65-190.

24. Verzeichniss der Reptilien, weiche auf einer Reise im nordlichen Amerika beobachtet wurden (Dresden: E. Blochmann, 1865).

25. See source cited note 9.

26. See source cited note 8.

27. J. A. Allen, "On the Maximilian Types of South American Birds in the American Museum of Natural History," American Museum of Natural History, Bulletin II, no. 3 (1889): 209.

28. Walter Krickeberg, Aeltere Ethnographica aus Nordamerika im Berliner Museum fur Volkerkunde (Berlin: Dietrich Reimer, 1954), 10; Axel Schuize-Thulin, Indianer der Prarien und Plains: Reisen und Sammiungen des Herzogs Paul Wilhelm von Warttemberg (1822-24) und des Prinzen Maximilian zu Wied (1832-34) im Linden-Museum Stuttgart (Stuttgart: Linden Museum, 1976).

29. Marion Dexter Learned, Guide to the Manuscript Materials Relating to American History in the German State Archives (Washington, D.C.: Carnegie Institution of Washington, 1912), 322-324.

30. Addison Erwin Sheldon, Nebraska: The Land and the People, 3 vols. (Chicago: Lewis, 1931); 1, 222-223.


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For further biographical information on selected artists cited above please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.

rev. 11/20/10

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