Elitha and Leanna -Details

 

This is an indirect portrait of two sisters, Elitha and Leanna, who were 14 and 12 in 1846 when they got stuck in the Sierra with the Donner Party. 

I discovered their sacred bond and strength, and took these pictures on the same day and place they were rescued 167 years earlier.

On Feb. 22, 1847, they left with the first rescue party in a journey across the summits.

 

"It was a bright Sunday morning when we left the cabins [with the rescue party] […] Finally, the last ration [of food] was issued in the evening. This was intended for that evening and the next morning, but I was so famished I could not resist the temptation to eat all I had […]. Next morning, of course, I had nothing for breakfast. […] My sister saw my distress, and divided her piece with me."

 

Leanna recalling her rescue, quoted in "History of the Donner Party, A Tragedy of the Sierra"

C. F. MCGLASHAN EDITED BY GEORGE H. AND BLISS MCGLASHAN HINKLE, 1940   --  http://www.sup.org/books/title/?id=2916

Elitha / Feb. 22 1847 - Feb. 22 2014
Elitha / Feb. 22 1847 - Feb. 22 2014

Diptych 1 on 2 2014 Ink pen, cut-out, linocut, needles, nails and ink on color photograph 20" x 20"

Leanna / Feb. 22 1847 - Feb. 22 2014
Leanna / Feb. 22 1847 - Feb. 22 2014

Diptych 2 on 2 2014 Cut out and peeled print, watercolor, ink pen, linocut and needles on photograph, 20"x 20"

Elitha, middle right area
Elitha, middle right area

Needles and drawing, photograph cutout.

Elitha, upper area
Elitha, upper area

Drawing and ink work.

Leanna, detail of the upper area
Leanna, detail of the upper area

Photograph peeled off with watercolor and drawing.

Leanna, center
Leanna, center

Drawing and watercolor on area where photograph has been peeled off.