The Benson Latin American Collection

Richard E. Barthelemy Photograph Collection on the Tarascan Indians of Michoacán, 1975-1978

Descriptive Summary

Creator Barthelemy, Ricardo
Title Richard E. Barthelemy Photograph Collection on the Tarascan Indians of Michoacán
Dates: 1975-1978
Abstract Photographs and supporting material documenting the Tarascan Indians of Michoacán, Mexico.
Accession No. 1991-02
OCLC Record No. 33285690
Extent 50,000+ items
Language Spanish
Repository Benson Latin American Collection, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Sketch

Photographer Richard (Ricardo) Barthelemy was born in 1916 in Minnesota. Prior to beginning his photographic record of Tarascan Indian culture, Barthelemy worked as a furrier in Minnesota; spent three years as a wartime army glider pilot; was a science teacher, writer, and inventor of high school laboratory equipment; and was Public Education Coordinator for the Minnesota Museum of Natural History at the University of Minnesota. In 1973 he moved to the Mexican village of San Juan Nuevo Parangaricutiro, Michoacán, located some 300 kilometers west of Mexico City. In 1975 he took up photography and spent the next three years photographing the area's inhabitants, the Tarascan Indians. Barthelemy died in 1988.

Scope and Contents Note

Photographic prints and negatives, slides, transparencies, notes, audiocassettes relating to the Tarascan Indians of Michoacán. The culture of the Tarascan Indians is recorded through images of their people, places, arts, crafts and customs in 25,000 photographic prints, 25,000 negatives, 132 black-and-white 35-millimeter slides, 87 oversized exhibition photographs, and seven transparencies, made during the years 1975-1978. Supporting materials include written notes and eight audiotapes dictated by Barthelemy that provide date and location information for the photographs.

The collection is organized into two series: I. Photographic material, and II. Supporting material. Items are arranged numerically. No item description of the photographs is currently available. Contact the Benson Collection Rare Books and Manuscripts Reading Room for more information.


Access Restrictions


Use Restrictions

Standard copyright restrictions apply.

Index Terms

The Richard E. Barthelemy Photograph Collection is classified under the following Subject Headings in the University of Texas Libraries catalog:
Michoacán de Ocampo (Mexico)--Photographs
Tarasco Indians--Photographs

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Cite as: Richard E. Barthelemy Photograph Collection, Benson Latin American Collection, University of Texas Libraries, the University of Texas at Austin.

Box and Folder Inventory


25,000 contact prints numbered 0-1543.


25,000 negatives 0-1552.


Six cassette tapes of Ricardo Barthelemy dictating descriptions of his photographs. With handwritten note dated January 1988.


132 35mm slides.


7 mounted, described transparencies.

Oversized Exhibition Prints

87 14x20 black-and-white prints. 30 of the prints have detailed descriptions.