Textiles  of the North American Southwest
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Mayo Sarape
ca. 1960
Sonora, Mexico

Catalog Information

Eugene H. Boudreau Eugene H. Boudreau (b. 1934) collected this sarape in the early 1960s in Bacabachi, Sonora, Mexico.

After serving in the U.S. Marine Corps, Boudreau studied geology at the University of California at Berkeley, graduating in 1959. That same year he began working as a mining geologist and first visited Mexico, traveling through the states of Sonora and Sinaloa. Both states had been major mining centers since the early Spanish colonial period, and he initially directed his attention toward mines in the area.

Soon, however, he became intrigued by the Mestizo and Indigenous residents of the area and began collecting information about their history and lives as well as textiles and other articles they produced. In 1960 he extended his travels into the rugged Sierra Tarahumara, located in the States of Sinaloa and Chihuahua, visiting Indigenous communities where no other scholar had ever been. Over the course of more than forty years, he has conducted extensive research and collecting in the area and has produced a series of important books and articles about the history and culture of the people there.

In the 1990s, he donated his collection of ethnographic objects and photographs to the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. Since then he has made several more collecting trips into the Sierra Tarahumara.

Top: Eugene H. Boudreau, 1985, Santa Rita, Municipio de Batopilas, Chihuahua, Mexico. National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution, Boudreau Collection, Photo Lot 99-47

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