Dyak Man, Singapore, Standing, Portrait, Facing Left


This photograph is from the Frank and Frances Carpenter Collection at the Library of Congress. Frank G. Carpenter (1855–1924) was an American writer of books on travel and world geography, whose works helped to popularize cultural anthropology and geography in the United States in the early years of the 20th century. Consisting of photographs taken and gathered by Carpenter and his daughter Frances (1890–1972) to illustrate his writings, the collection includes an estimated 16,800 photographs and 7,000 glass and film negatives. In Java and the East Indies; Java, Sumatra, Celebes, the Moluccas, New Guinea, Borneo, and the Malay Peninsula (1923), part of his Carpenter's World Travels series, Carpenter wrote: “Among many of the Dyak tribes a man is not considered ready for marriage until he has killed several people and secured their heads, and men frequently cut off a head to celebrate a funeral. The warriors have regular baskets for carrying home the trophies and every house of any importance has several heads hung upon the wall. Different tribes have their own ways of cutting off human heads and curing them.” The Dyak, or Dayak, people are indigenous to Borneo.

Last updated: May 29, 2013