Danny Pierce. Little No Name: Word and Picture. Kent, Wash.: Red Door Studio, 1959. 38 x 25 cm.
Limited edition of 100 copies, signed by the author. "This book is about the petroglyphs on the cliffs at Vantage, Washington. It is not an attempt to tell why but how they were put there."
"This is the first of my limited edition endeavors. I was teaching a class in printmaking at the Seattle University. One of my students, Sarah Spurgin, a professor at the Washington Central College in Ellensburge, who made the 225 mile trip three days a week to attend, told me about the Indian petroglyphs at Vantage, Washington. The following weekend my family and I drove over the Cascades to Vantage. We walked about 4 miles on the old C.C.C. trail to the site of the art work. We spent the day exploring the cliffs along the Columbia River. It was like a treasure hunt. Night falls early on the desert and this was not an exception. As the trail was crumbly in places we walked out in single file holding hands. It was a beautiful night filled with stars that reflected back from the black waters of the river below us. The idea for the story of Little No Name came to me on the trail.
"We went back to Vantage every weekend for several months collecting research material before the dam below Vantage would drown the petroglyphs beneath rising water.
"When I began working on the blocks a student in my drawing class at the Burnley School of Professional Art posed for the Indian boy. At this time I took my prints to Dr. Vern Ray, the authority on the Plateau Indians of Eastern Washington, to check my accuracy in depicting clothing, etc. He was very helpful and said he was pleased I checked with him. I purchased an old Gordon Platen press from the local printing shop for $50.00, paid $5.00 to have it moved into the studio. I printed the edition of 100 books by turning the fly-wheel by hand. I chose Indian Red, Yellow ocher and black inks to enhance the primitive mood.
"I am not a master at printing type although I worked in a sign shop for awhile, but I decided to cut the text in wood rather than using metal hand-set type. I am pleased with the results, but never again.
"The binding I took to a bindery in Seattle. They stapled the loose pages together and 10 volumes were put in the covers backwards. Fortunately my margins were wide enough that they could be rebound. I was unhappy that the books did not lay flat.
"Little No Name was submitted to the exhibition ‘Books West of the Mississippi' sponsored by the Rounce and Coffin Club, San Francisco. The show went on a national tour and the edition went out of print the first year."