Ephraim George Squier letters to Charles Eliot Norton
The first letter, dated Apirl 26, 1855, Squier describes how many pages that he has written of "foolscap" and how many pages of proof that he has to read before his passage to Europe. He mentions his work "Waikna" and his hopes for selling it. He also mentions a book on the geography, toposgraphy of Honduras and San Salvador.
In the second letter, dated May 16, 1855, he writes that there is "no dialogue in "Waikna", few principles and less brag but that it is a true and faithful book about the country". It has a "good deal of description, is amusing in places and stupid as a whole". There is much teasing of Norton in the letter as he describes his work including future publications of his books in Germany, France, and Spain. He also writes about his dread of "Society" and that he is traveling with Governor Henry B. Anthony of Rhode Island. Source: James Turner, "The Liberal Education of Charles Eliot Norton"; Terry A. Barnhart, "Ephraim George Squier and the Development of American Anthropology"
- April 26 and May 16,1855
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Biographical / Historical
The concept of the evolution of Western Civilization which informed Norton's prolific writings rested on the "historicist principle that specifics of time and place shaped ideas and institutions. Squier showed him concretely how archaeology provides tools for deeper understanding of the slow evolution of civilization. Archaeology, as an ethnological or cultural science, could become the great revealaer of humanity's upward path.
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- Guide to the Ephraim George Squier letters to Charles Eliot Norton
- Rose Oliveira
- 21 May 2021
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- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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