These “image essays” gather together striking images on the same theme from across the books in the exhibit.
Men filled the pages — and the images — of American travel narratives and geography books. When those men were American, they were typically presented as paragons to be admired: sailor, captain, navy officer, explorer, manufacturer. When those men were indigenous, they were usually given full bodies and social contexts. At best indigenous men represented the exotic; at worst, the simply inferior. Only American men were deemed to be rational agents, capable of operating anywhere in the world.
Hover over any image to see source information; right click on any image to see a larger version; look under Research Resources for guides to all images in the digital exhibit.