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Image from web page 28 of “Individual identification methods for the identification of individuals, living or dead” (1918)
Indian Tattoos

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Identifier: personalidentifi00wild
Title: Personal identification approaches for the identification of individuals, living or dead
Year: 1918 (1910s)
Authors: Wilder, Harris Hawthorne, 1864-1928 Wentworth, Bert, 1857- joint author
Subjects: Identification
Publisher: Boston, R. G. Badger

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Text Appearing Before Image:
magistrates. Railroads, photography, and telegraphiccommunication have multiplied the implies of investigation in vain. Each day it takes place that malefactors succeed in deceiving the judge in regardto their true personality, and therefore escape the consequences of their former The Issue 23 crime. This is so frequently the case that a witty lawyer-common oncelaughingly remarked – and perhaps he was only half in jest-Thisuncertainty in regard to identity will cease only on the day when the lawprescribes that a number shall be branded upon the shoulder of everychild whose birth is reported to the Mayor.* Whimsical though thisproposal is, it is literally carried out among numerous primitive peoples, andthe absolute identity of individual bodies is rendered virtually certainby the use of numerous artificial marks, such as tattooing, scarification andthe like. In such instances, where the members of even neighboring villages areheld in a lot suspicion, the very first effort is to mark all the members of a

Text Appearing After Image:
Figure 2. A Haida heraldic emblem, 1-half organic size. This was taken di-rectly from the back of a native of the Thunder-bird gens, and represents this creature,a well-liked character in their mythology. (Following Swan.) offered community to insure them against becoming killed at sight by theircountrymen, who may possibly not know them personally and may possibly mistakethem for members of some other tribe. As a result, the very first and most importantmark is that of the village or gens to which the person belongs, afterwhich far more detailed info could be conveyed in the identical way. Therefore, in the two Haida Indians from British Columbia shown right here(Figure 1), the tattooed patterns are heraldic emblems signifying theirtotem, or family members. The man is of the Wolf gens, and has the design and style of thesupernatural wolf, the waska, split in halves, upon his back. Thewoman belongs to the gens of the 3ear, and has the head of that animalupon her breast also entire bodies of the very same upon both forearms andupon each legs. The eagles

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