2.5 linear ft.
This collection mainly consists of glass plate negatives, film negatives, and prints by Edward H. Boos, a photographer in Missoula, Mont., from 1897 through 1907. Broadly, the photographic subjects include the Missoula, Mission, and Flathead valleys in Montana; Kootenai, Salish and Pend'Oreille families on Montana's Flathead Reservation; and Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park, all at the beginning of the 20th Century. Some more specific photograph subjects include the Boos home, the Daly Horse Ranch near Hamilton, Mont., logging near Hamilton, the 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps, the Missoula Mercantile, and a Fourth of July parade in Missoula.
Edward Boos was born in Kentucky on 1 Apr. 1877. His family moved to Helena, Mont., while he was in grade school. He attended the University of Montana in Missoula in 1896 but did not complete a degree. In that same year Boos began working as a freelance correspondent for several newspapers in the Missoula area. During the summer of 1897 Boos accompanied the U.S. Army 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps on its experimental overland trip from Fort Missoula to St. Louis, Mo. The company traversed 1,900 miles over difficult terrain and through taxing weather conditions in an attempt to prove that bicycles could replace horses for troop transport and reconnaissance. Boos submitted accounts of the expedition as they traveled. His accounts were prepared for the Daily Missoulian, but some were also published by newspapers along the route and a few were subsequently reprinted by national and international newspapers. After the Bicycle Corps expedition Boos continued to produce photographs for western Montana newspapers. Sometime around 1900 he purchased his own camera and began photographing people and landscapes in the Missoula and Flathead valleys. Boos was particularly interested in recording life among the Kootenai, Salish and Pend'Oreille families of the Flathead Reservation as the 20th century began. He conducted a series of photographic portrait sessions at various sites across the reservation, mostly completed between spring and fall of 1905. According to a 1935 newspaper story, many of these portraits were developed at night under a canvas cover so the photographer could share the portraits directly with his subjects. Throughout the time period Boos continued to photograph landscapes and events in the Missoula and Flathead Lake areas. In 1906 Boos accepted an advertising manager position with the Missoula Mercantile Company (MMS) and married Annie Hammond, cousin of MMC co-owner Andrew Hammond. Edward Boos ended his newspaper work but continued to periodically take photographs. Boos remained with the MMC for the next thirty-one years. In Sept. 1935 an "Indian Jubilee" celebration was held in St. Ignatius, Mont. This event was the first public exhibition and print sale of Boos's Flathead Reservation portraits. Edward H. Boos died of a heart attack on 26 Sept. 1937.
The material described in this catalog record is located in the collections of the K. Ross Toole Archives, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana--Missoula.
The Mansfield Library's Archives and Special Collections also holds Mss 346, another collection of Boos photographs.
Finding aid in the repository and on the Internet.