Volunteer Docent for Ed Drew Photography & Modoc War History Exhibit


Cause Areas


Thu Jun 30, 2016 09:00 AM - Wed Nov 30, 2016 09:00 PM


678 Mission StreetSan Francisco, CA 94105

Courtesy of Artist, Ed Drew


California Historical Society is looking for a volunteer passionate about California history and ready to share it through engaging, interactive exhibition group tours as a group tour guide. You would have several months of trainings including individualized research, tours of the exhibtion, special presentations, and one on ones with the Docent Manager. The trainings will provide the tools you need to give an engaging, fun, interactive tour that can engage audiences of all ages.

Exhibition Information

Native Portraits: Contemporary Tin-Type Photography by Ed Drew


The Sensationalist Press and the Modoc War, 1872-1873

Native Portraits: Contemporary Tintypes by Ed Drew In 2014, photographer Ed Drew was commissioned by Klamath Tribal Health & Family Services to make portraits during several intensive, "talking circle" weekends, in which participants recounted their experiences with racism, abuse, drug addiction, crime, and tragedy. The resulting series, The People of Klamath Falls, pictures individuals descended from the Klamath and Pit River Paiute tribes of southern Oregon and the Modoc Indians of northern California.

In their stories, Drew found connections to his own struggles with his identity as an African American. He was also drawn to the larger history of conflict between Native Americans and the United States government. Drew describes the project’s intent to "redefine the tribal people in the area as no longer the victims of the injustices brought upon them by the U.S. government, but as strong and powerful people of today." By using the tintype process, a popular portrait medium in late-nineteenth-century America, he connects the past to the present and re-contextualizes contemporary Native Americans as the protagonists of their own stories. Drew won the trust of the people he photographed when he ran fifteen miles alongside them (in sandals) during a relay race to Lava Beds National Monument, the site of the Modoc War (1872-73) between the United States Army and the Modoc people-the only major Indian War fought in California.

Native Portraits: Contemporary Tintypes by Ed Drew will be presented alongside Sensational Portrayals of the Modoc War, 1872-73, an exhibition of vintage photographs and newspapers drawn from CHS Collections. The exhibition features carte de visite portraits by Louis Heller of Modoc Indians after they were taken into custody and stereographic views by Eadweard Muybridge (who was commissioned by the government to document the war) picturing the desolate Lava Beds and non-Modoc Indians reenacting battle scenes for his camera.


  • Public Speaking
  • Photography
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Research
  • Critical Thinking

Good Match For


Requirements & Commitment

  • Must be at least 16
  • Orientation or Training
  • Maximum six hours a month
  • Interest in Education, worked in non profit before, visitor services/costumer services background
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