David Cusick painting of three Indians wearing diverse costumes

David Cusick painting of three Indians wearing diverse costumes

Tuscarora artist David Cusick in 1827 painted these three Iroquois “in diverse costumes” with two carrying weapons while one holds a pipe. Cusick is thought to have been born around 1780 on the Oneida reservation in central New York. His younger brother, Dennis, also was a watercolor painter; David Cusick, as well, was a veteran of the War of 1812, a physician and an early student of Haudenosaunee oral tradition. His 1828 “Sketches of Ancient History of the Six Nations,” the later editions of which he illustrated, is thought to be the first English-language account of indigenous history and myth written and published by a Native American. (Collection of the New-York Historical Society)

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