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New York in New York County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

George Gustav Heye

 
 
George Gustav Heye Marker image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, December 1, 2018
1. George Gustav Heye Marker
Inscription.  George Gustav Heye

George Gustav Heye, founder in 1916 of the Museum of the American Indian and its director until 1956, was unique in both his enthusiasm and his broad interest in native life. His passion for collecting began in 1896, when he purchased an Apache deerskin shirt on a railroad construction job in Arizona. From then his energy and inherited fortune were spent accumulating the largest private collection of Native American objects in the world.

Heye liked nothing better than to descend personally upon an American Indian community, buying everything in sight. While others focused on highly significant objects, Heye wasn’t satisfied until he’d brought every last object and shipped everything back to New York. As one Native American is reported to have said, remembering a visit from the museum’s founder: “If we were left with our underwear we were lucky!”

That scope makes Heye’s collection uniquely valuable as a material record of those native communities. As Linda Poolaw, Delaware Grand Chief, says, “If Gustav Heye hadn’t collected those things back then, we would not have then today to look at.
George Gustav Heye marker site image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, December 1, 2018
2. George Gustav Heye marker site
The bank of markers to the right of the entrance.
Now, over a hundred years later, my people can see what we had, and it is not lost.”
 
Location. 40° 42.266′ N, 74° 0.833′ W. Marker is in New York, New York, in New York County. Marker is on State Street near Bowling Green. Touch for map. The marker is one of several in a bank to the right of the main entrance to the National Museum of the American Indian. Marker is in this post office area: New York NY 10004, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. American Merchant Marine (here, next to this marker); Sharing the Circle (here, next to this marker); Places of Exchange (here, next to this marker); “North America” sculpted by Daniel Chester French (here, next to this marker); The Marketplace (here, next to this marker); Drawn To The City (a few steps from this marker); Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House / National Museum of the American Indian (within shouting distance of this marker); ...to Manhattan (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New York.
 
More about this marker. The marker is one of several in a bank to the right of the main entrance to the National Museum of the American Indian.
 
Categories. AnthropologyArts, Letters, MusicNative Americans
 
Inset image. Click for full size.
1923
3. Inset
George Gustav Heye and his wife Thea pose with Zuni elders in front of the Heye Foundation building on 155th Street and Broadway in 1923.
Inset and captions image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, March 14, 2019
4. Inset and captions
Fifteen native artists traveled to sites representative of the four directions in preparation for the collaborative exhibition “This Path We Travel: Celebrations of Contemporary Native American Creativity.”
Jose Montafio (Qulla)
Arthur Amiotta (Oglala Lakota), LeVan Keola Sequerra (Native Hawaiian), Frank LaPena (Wintu-Nomtipom), Harold Littlebird (Santo Domingo-Laguna Pueblo), Dan Namingha (Tewa-Hopi)
Jane Lind (Aleut)
Inset image. Click for full size.
5. Inset
Intertribal pow wows have become popular events, drawing native and non-native cultures together to celebrate this hemisphere’s first people.
Inset and captions image. Click for full size.
6. Inset and captions
Twenty-three native people from throughout the Western Hemisphere were invited to select objects from the Museum’s Collections for the exhibition “All Roads Are Good: Native Voices on Life and Culture.”
Paula Quispe Crux (Quechua), Alejandro Flores Huatta (Quechua)
Bonafacia Quispe Fernandez (Qulla), Thomas Huanca Laura (Qulla)
The National Museum of the American Indian (and Federal Bankruptcy Court) image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, 1999
7. The National Museum of the American Indian (and Federal Bankruptcy Court)
Formerly the Alexander Hamilton Custom House. The marker bank is to the right of the entrance.
 
More. Search the internet for George Gustav Heye.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 10, 2019. This page originally submitted on March 20, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. This page has been viewed 78 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on March 20, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.   7. submitted on March 22, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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