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Elizabeth C. Hegemann collection, 1923-1934


Overview of the Collection

Creator: Hegemann, Elizabeth Compton, 1897-1962
Title: Elizabeth C. Hegemann collection,
Inclusive Dates: 1923-1934
Quantity: 61 photographic images (61 salon prints), exhibit booklet
Identification: MS-194
Repository: Museum of Northern Arizona
3101 N. Fort Valley Rd.
Flagstaff, AZ 86001
928-774-5211 ext. 256 or 269

Biographical Note

Elizabeth Compton Hegemann (20 March 1897- 8 April 1962) was born in Indian Hill, Ohio. Her maternal grandfather was Charles G. Gove, founder of the El Cajon Valley Company, was well known in the Southwest and Hegemann spent many summers in California when she was growing up. On an annual trip to the Grand Canyon, Hegemann met her first husband, Michael Harrison, of the National Park Service. They were married in 1925. They shared an interest in Southwest Native American culture and built relationships with the Navajo, Hopi, and Supai peoples, attending ceremonies and collecting arts and crafts. The two separated in 1928; Hegemann then made her home in Tuba City in the Navajo Reservation to be closer to her friends and the trading posts.

1929, Hegemann married Harry Rorick and together their purchased the Shonto Trading Post, which they ran successfully for the next decade. Hegemann detailed her experiences during this time in her book, Navaho Trading Days, which is an important work because it recounts life on the Navajo Reservation during an important period of transition. The government began better funding the Navajo Agency and as a result the Navajo community became less isolated.

Hegemann married Anton Hegemann after she left the Navajo Reservation. She spent the rest of her adult life in Southern California, Arizona, and New Mexico and she left a significant record of the Southwest's Native Americans during the 1920s and 1930s.

Hegemann passed away after a long illness on 8 April 1962.

A more detailed biography of Hegemann is included in the introduction of her book, Navaho Trading Days.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of salon prints from an exhibit. A list of captions for the exhibit of her photographs written by Hegemann is also included. Hegemann’s photographs are mostly of Navajo, Hopi, and some Havasupai subjects. There are images of the Grand Canyon as well. John Wetherill and his family are among the non-Native American subjects.


Conditions Governing Use

Unpublished and published manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Related Material

Copy negatives are also available at The National Anthropological Archives and Human Studies Film Archives at the Smithsonian (Photo Lot 81A) and the Arizona State Museum. It is possible that copy negatives also exist at the University of New Mexico.

The University of California, Davis has material on Hegemann in their Harrison Collection.

The Huntington Library has an Elizabeth Hegemann collection consisting of prints and negatives mostly used in Hegemann’s book, Navaho Trading Days, as well as images from trips taken to Arizona, southern California and New Mexico.

Controlled Access Terms

Geographic Name(s)
Grand Canyon (Ariz.)
Grand Canyon National Park (Ariz.)
Hopi Indian Reservation (Ariz.)
Navajo County (Ariz.)

Havasupai Indians
Hopi Indians
Navajo County (Ariz.) -- History

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Elizabeth C. Hegemann collection, MS-194 [Box Number]. Museum of Northern Arizona. Flagstaff, Arizona.

Acquisition Information

Hegemann donated the copy negatives and descriptive captions to the Museum of Northern Arizona in June 1961 (Accession #194b) from which the salon prints were created.

Processing Information

Processed in July of 2010.


No further accruals are expected.


Hegemann, Elizabeth Compton. 1963. Navaho trading days. [Albuquerque]: University of New Mexico Press.

Container List

1-4 Salon Prints, 1923-1934