The Lost Journals of Sacajewea

Debra Magpie Earling; illustrated by Peter Rutledge Koch
Berkeley, CA: Editions Koch, 2010

Complete PDF Prospectus

The Lost Journals of Sacajewea began as a project during the bicentennial of the Lewis and Clark expedition. In the Spring of 2005, the Missoula Museum of Art had two exhibitions running simultaneously that were critical responses to the celebratory afflatus that customarily surrounds such events. I was at the museum to open my exhibition Nature Morte when I saw, hanging in the next gallery, a fragment of a poem that accompanied Native Perspectives on the Trail: A Contemporary American Indian Portfolio. I was introduced to the author, Debra Magpie Earling, and based on that fragment, I proposed a collaboration. Over the next few years we met occasionally and worked sporadically on the concept while we each pursued our own busy and demanding schedules. By 2006 Debra had completed the writing, and in 2009 I collected the last photographs that I wished to accompany the text. Printing began in late 2009 and was completed in January 2010.

Debra is a member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation. She has been published in journals and anthologies and her novel Perma Red received the American Book Award, the Mountains and Plains Bookseller Association Award, and a Spur Award. She received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2008.

The typeface is a version of the historic Fell types presumed to be the work of Dutch punchcutter Dirck Voskens and interpreted by Jonathan Hoefler in a conscious attempt to reproduce the imperfect image that the Fell types left on paper when printed in the 18th Century. The Fell types have been described as “retaining a retrogressive old-style irregularity” which somehow seems appropriate given our purpose here in this book.

The text is printed on Twinrocker Da Vinci hand-made paper at Peter Koch Printers and bound at the press by Jonathan Gerken. The smoked buffalo rawhide cover paper was designed and hand-made by Amanda Degener especially for this edition at Cave Papers in Minneapolis, Minnesota.The spine is beaded with trade beads and small caliber cartridge cases.

The images were prepared by Donald Farnsworth at Magnolia Editions and printed on Kozo hand-made paper with the assistance of Jonathan Gerken and Tallulah Terryll.

Book; 80 pp.    10 x 15.5 inches   65 copies.       $12500.00