Nov 25, 2014 - Sale 2368

Sale 2368 - Lot 343

Price Realized: $ 8,125
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 1,500 - $ 2,500
(GUATEMALA.) Archive of Elizabeth Turner Miller's two extended tours of the Mayan ruins. One box (1.2 linear feet) including 8 scrapbooks containing hundreds of photographs; 4 reels of 16mm film, and other papers; various sizes and conditions. Vp, 1940-43

Additional Details

Elizabeth Turner Miller (1911-1985, later Peuleche) of Baltimore was a commercial artist who took two extensive tours of Mayan ruins in 1940. Travelling with archaeologist Benjamin Turner Kurtz (a cousin) and photographer John Henry Coon, and a woman identified by family members as singer Carol Long, she visited Quiriguá, Guatemala; Copán in western Honduras; Chichen Itza in Yucatán; and several more. She described her trip in two articles for the Bulletin of the Natural History Society of Maryland, May 1941 and April 1943.
This collection includes 4 reels of film from the trip, and 8 scrapbooks of professional-quality photographs (apparently taken by Kurtz and Coon respectively according to a letter in the collection). The film appears to date from the June 1940 trip, and shows Miller with her travelling companions scaling Chichen Itza, attempting to drive a battered Ford through the jungle, a visit to Mexico City, and more. Also included are Miller's travel diaries, passport, manuscript notes, publications, a book inscribed by Kurtz with a photograph from the trip, and two pamphlets inscribed to Miller by anthropologist John Peabody Harrington. Though Swann does not have film-viewing capacity at the gallery, a DVD transfer of the film is included in the collection, and portions of the film may be seen in a post on the gallery's blog at A more detailed description of the whole collection is available upon request.