Guide to the Frank Espada Photographs and Papers, 1946-2010
Political activist and documentary photographer. One of his largest projects was the National Endowment for the Humanities grant-funded Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project, 1979-1981.
Collection consists largely of photographic prints, contact sheets, proofs, and negatives relating to Espada's Puerto Rican Diaspora project, his documentary on Chamorro communities in Micronesia, and his work documenting HIV/AIDS outreach and education in San Francisco. Other aspects of the collection include materials from his research and exhibit preparations for his photography projects; teaching syllabi and notes from his various photography courses; exhibit captions; 130 audiocassette tapes from the interview portion of the Puerto Rican Diaspora project; and some miscellaneous manuscript and printed materials from his photography career.
- David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
- Espada, Frank, 1930-
- Frank Espada Photographs and Papers, 1946-2010
- Language of Material
- 42.0 Linear Feet, 16,300 Items
- For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Collection consists largely of photographic prints, contact sheets, proofs, and negatives relating to Espada's Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project, his documentary on Chamorro communities in Micronesia, and his work documenting HIV/AIDS outreach and education in San Francisco. Other aspects of the collection include materials from his research and exhibit preparations for his photography projects; teaching syllabi and notes from his various photography courses; exhibit captions; 130 audiocassette tapes from the interview portion of the Puerto Rican Diaspora project; and some miscellaneous manuscript and printed materials from his photography career.
Collection is open for research.
However, collection may contain materials to which the Acknowledgment of Legal Responsibilities and Privacy Rights form applies. Patrons must sign this form before using this collection.
Also, all or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. Consequently, there may be a 24-hour delay in obtaining these materials.
Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.
The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
The Contact Sheets and Proofs series includes Espada's contact sheets and proofs from his work on the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project, the Chamorro Documentary Project, and his projects documenting San Francisco's Youth Environment Study (YES) in 1989-1990, the Civil Rights Movement in 1964, along with other various small projects. These have been sorted into contact sheets and proofs, arranged by project and then by location or number, using a numbering scheme developed by Espada that reaches across his negatives and contact sheets.
Negatives have been removed to their own non-circulating boxes, beginning at Box 16.
These are not the only proofs present in the collection. There is also a series of Loose Proofs that have not been sleeved, but have been sorted by project. Refer to the Detailed Description for more information on that series.
In addition, a third series in the collection contains Prints from several of Espada's projects.
The photographs from the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project were taken in over 30 locations throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. They have been grouped according to location, using Espada's own numbering scheme to help connect negatives to contact sheets. Missing numbers have been noted below each heading. Most proofs have only a location or event designation, with no matching numbers accompanying the image. Locations including California, Milwaukee, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C. Most locations have sub-groups that are listed in greater detail below. Bulk dates from the project range from 1979-1981, with some as early as 1976.
Missing CA-16, 18, 19, 21, 24, 25, 30, 31.
Missing CH 2, 7, 10, 24.
17 8.5x11 Black and White vintage prints.
Scenes include Kona, Kohala, a macadamia farm, Kukuihaele, Honolulu, Shinko House (Honolulu), a Puerto Rican Softball League, Hilo, and Kalihi Valley.
Missing HI 28, 32, 25.
Missing HI 44, 48, 52, 68.
Missing NY 135.
Missing NY 62.
Includes Harrisburg, Lancaster, Reading, Avondale, and Kennett Square.
Missing PA 10.
Missing PA 53-58, 61, 63.
Missing PA 71, 73, 83.
Excluding 12, 13, 20, 22-25, 42.
Missing 50, 74.
Missing 1, 7, 16, 29.
This subseries includes contact sheets, proofs, and some prints for a range of smaller projects undertaken by Espada, including his photography from the Civil Rights movement and voter registration in New York and the HIV/AIDS crisis in San Francisco.
Missing CR 5.
Missing 10, 11, 13-17, 20, 23.
Missing Number 7.
Missing SRO 4.
Missing Number 6.
Missing Numbers 51, 53, 73, 79-83, 85
Contact sheets and proofs from Espada's documentary project on the Chamorro people, focusing on Micronesia, 1990.
Missing Numbers 29-32.
Missing Numbers 90-96.
Missing 153, 157, 167, 186-188.
The collection's negatives are RESTRICTED and have been removed into their own non-circulating boxes for preservation purposes. Their arrangement parallels the arrangement of the contact sheets and proofs of the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project, the Other Projects, and the Chamorro Documentary Project subseries.
Missing CA 3, 6, 16, 18-21, 24, 25, 30, 31.
Missing CH 2, 7, 10, 24.
Missing HI 10, 35.
Missing HI 48, 52, 64, 68, 71.
Missing GL 5.
Missing 135, 139, 140.
Missing NY 62.
Missing 105, 142, 146, 148, 149.
Missing NY 117.
Missing PA 10.
Missing PA 40, 53-58, 61, 63, 71, 73, 83.
Excluding PRD 7, 12, 13, 20, 22-25, 27, 42, 43.
Missing PRD 48, 50, 55, 72-75, 77, 79, 81, 84, 90, 91.
Missing 14, 16, 26.
Missing 55, 66, 86, 87.
Missing CR 1-3, 8, 9, 13, 16, 26, 27.
Missing Numbers 11, 12.
Missing OSY 4, 11, 15, 22, 23.
Missing SRO 4.
Missing Numbers 6, 40.
Missing 51, 53, 73, 80-82, 85.
Along with the sleeved proofs that have been filed with the contact sheets in the Contact Sheets and Proofs series (above), the collection contains thousands of loose proofs that are sorted by event or location, but have not been matched to a contact sheet or negative. This series includes proofs from the Puerto Rican Diaspora and the Chamorro Documentary projects, as well as miscellaneous, unlabelled proofs.
Proofs have been sorted by project and location, and any accompanying information has been transcribed below. Each box contains smaller shoebox-style boxes of proofs, so container types are designated as 21.1, 21.2, and so on, to distinguish between the smaller boxes held within the larger containers.
Espada's teaching career is documented in this series, which includes re-foldered class binders as well as evaluations, class rosters, handouts, and other course materials about photography.
Another large sub-series includes materials from the preparations and edits for Espada's book, The Puerto Rican Diaspora: Themes in the Survival of a People, which was published in 2006.
The supporting documentation for the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project offers insight into the work done by Espada to win the grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as the work he completed during the grant period through site visits, newsletters, and reports. Several folders relate to interviews, including some summaries, quotes, and transcripts. The audiocassette tapes for these interviews are a separate series in the collection. Another component of this subseries is the exhibit preparation and logistics: the project was exhibited in 45 venues over a 15 year period. Finally, there is third-party supporting documentation about Puerto Rico and the various communities highlighted by Espada in the project.
The Chamorro Documentary Project materials, dating 1989-1990, include information about the different locations photographed by Espada, as well as notebooks and exhibit materials.
The remainder of the series includes some supporting documentation about some of Espada's other projects, including HIV/AIDS outreach, Civil Rights, and the Real Alternatives Program. Other materials honor Espada, including some city proclamations.
Approximately 260 black-and-white gelatin silver prints, many matted and signed by Frank Espada. Most prints relate to the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project and contain portraits of Puerto Rican communities in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, California, Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Washington DC, and Puerto Rico itself. Other notable prints date from the Civil Rights Movement in 1963 and 1964, including voter registration drives, school boycotts, and the March on Washington; the Chamorro Documentary Project, with photographs from Guam in 1990; and Espada's documentation of HIV and drug use in San Francisco. Photographs include captions and are encapsulated in mylar for preservation and safer handling by patrons.
Prints have been boxed by size, with photographs grouped within boxes as best as possible by content (Puerto Rican Diaspora project materials have been sub-grouped by location, if possible). Each box list below includes the size of the box, which closely reflects the size of the print (15x19 prints are within a 16x20 box, for example). Some prints were assigned a number by Espada as part of his internal documentation for the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project. These have been included when present on the print.
The majority of this series consists of interview cassette tapes 1-129 (a total of 160 interviews) from the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project. There are also three videos of interviews with Espada.
Oversize manuscript materials, including proclamations, essays or writings by Espada, and certificates from Espada's photography courses.
More information on Frank Espada can be found on his website: http://www.frankespada.com/
|1930||Born, Utuado, Puerto Rico|
|1939||Emigrated with his family to New York City|
|1952||Married Marilyn Espada|
|1967||Joined the City-Wide Puerto Rican Development Program|
|1979-1981||Received National Endowment for the Humanities grant for the Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project|
|1985-2010||Taught photography courses and workshops in San Francisco, CA|
|1989-1990||Worked with Mid-City Coalition for HIV Prevention|
|1990-1992||Chamorro Documentary Project|
|2006||Published The Puerto Rican Diaspora: Themes in the Survival of a People|
- Espada, Frank, 1930-
- Puerto Rican Diaspora Documentary Project.
- Puerto Ricans--Pictorial works.
- Chamorro (Micronesian people)--Pictorial works.
- Photography of immigrants.
- Documentary photography.
- Portrait photography.
- AIDS (Disease)--United States--Prevention--Pictorial works.
- Micronesia--Pictorial works.
- Puerto Rico--Pictorial works.
- New York (N.Y.)--Puerto Ricans--Pictorial works.
- Hawaii--Puerto Ricans--Pictorial works.
- Pennsylvania--Puerto Ricans--Pictorial works.
- Contact sheets.
- Vintage prints.
- Gelatin silver prints.
- Negatives (photographic)
- Archive of Documentary Arts (Duke University)
[Identification of item], Frank Espada Photographs and Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.
The Frank Espada Photographs and Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a purchase in 2010.
Processed by Meghan Lyon, January 2011
Encoded by Meghan Lyon, January 2011
This collection is minimally processed: materials may not have been ordered and described beyond their original condition.
Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.
This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.
Accessions in this collection: 2010-0230