Cowboys and Indians (without the cowboys) magic lantern slide


The magic lantern was very popular in America at the turn of the 20th century. Millions of slides were produced for audiences eager to be entertained and learn about the world beyond their town or city. By the 1920s, when today’s slide was probably made, ‘Cowboys and Indians’ films were the staple diet of cinema movies and this lantern slide is an interesting mix of a popular subject and educational intent. As you can see, it came with a two-sided explanatory card which is clearly aimed at children.



These are Sioux Indians, today known as Native Americans or First Nation people. In this photograph, they are posing for the camera, dressed as movie audiences would expect. In reality, by this time, native Americans had lost the long and often vicious battle to maintain their traditional lifestyle, had accepted that they were no longer dominant in their own country and were reliant on Government hand-outs.  

If you found this interesting, please share it with your family and friends. If you’re not reading it on my ‘Magic Lantern World‘ website, then please visit. There are over one hundred illustrated articles about Victorian slide projection and links to my historical photo-booklets on Amazon, my Ebay shop for magic lantern slides and Etsy store for historical photo greetings cards with a twist. You can read about my authentic Victorian magic lantern shows and talks on ‘Optical entertainments before the movies’ and lots more!


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