Seth Eastman Painting

The Case:

A Decatur, Illinois man purchased a painting on eBay from a seller in Belfast, Northern Ireland that depicts a scene of traditional Native American life.

Our contributor, a longtime student of the history of the American West, says the image appealed to him because it was strangely familiar, almost iconic in its imagery. The painting bears the initials “S.E.” and the seller’s web page reads “Seth Eastman, American Painting, Oil on Canvas.”

Could this painting be an authentic work of artist and military officer Seth Eastman -- and an accurate depiction of Native American life in the mid-1800s?

History Detectives examines how Eastman carried out government policies of Native American removal while capturing on canvas what many believed was a doomed way of life.

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Season 6, Episode 2

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The Indian Removal Act

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