Their Lasting Influence

Part 20 of the Nicolas Point Exhibit   ( « Previous )

Listen to the Tour:

Explore the Drawings: (click images to open in slideshow)


Artist: Nicolas Point, S.J. (1799-1868)
Medium: Pencil on Paper
Lender: Midwest Jesuit Archives

Although they failed in creating a reduction, Point’s experiences did expose this part of the New World to life beyond the Rockies. Christianity spreading into the region, even into the Blackfoot tribe. A Blackfoot chief agrees to be Baptized along with his 26 lodges. Pierre Ignace and Damas, son of Chief Gabriel, display their crosses prominently in a testament to the Jesuit’s success. But the reduction never materialized, and the final piece shows the Native Deputation to Washington D.C. in 1851, several years after Point left the area. The Northern Rockies had been opened to the rest of the nation.

Written and narrated by Liam Brew.

Part 20 of the Nicolas Point Exhibit   ( « Previous )

3 thoughts on “Their Lasting Influence

  1. This is a marvelous on-line exhibit. It is great to see the Point drawings utilized to interpret the encounter between the Jesuits and the native people of the mountain west. The text does a great job introducing the drawings with nuance and cultural sensitivity. The exhibit will be a wonderful resource for students and teachers.

  2. This is a fantastic exhibit. I was not aware that the French Jesuits tried to begin a reduction in North America. I wasn’t even aware we had these wonderful drawings in our archive. I hope that there will be more of these exhibits. Kudos.
    Mike Garanzini, SJ

  3. This was very fun to read and look at, Liam.

    The images themselves I think tell an interesting story of how much information (trust?) the tribe shared with Point. Obviously, Point could not have been there for every event (or the Jesuits in general). Are these events he is imagining? Or are being told about? There are lots of great details about everyday life and life amid the plains in these drawings. I look forward to seeing them in person this summer.

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