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Guide to the International History of Photography collection, 1885-1951

Abstract

Collection dates from 1885-1951 and comprises ten vintage photographic prints by individuals considered to be master photographers. The prints are intended to represent major formats, techniques, and genres of the 19th and 20th centuries. Photographers whose prints are in the collection hail from Europe, the United States, and Mexico: Eugène Atget (printed by Berenice Abbot), Alvin Langdon Coburn, Manuel Alvarez Bravo, F. Holland Day, Peter Henry Emerson, Lewis Hine, Aaron Siskind, Ralph Steiner, Alfred Stieglitz, and Minor White. Formats range from photogravures to gelatin silver prints, with the latter predominating; all are black-and-white and matted. Subjects include rural landscapes, individual and group portraits, and urban streetscapes. Acquired by the Archive for Documentary Arts at Duke University.

Descriptive Summary

Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Creator
Duke University. Rubenstein Library.
Title
International History of Photography collection 1885-1951
Language of Material
English
Extent
3.0 Linear Feet, 10 Items
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

The International History of Photography collection dates from 1885-1951 and comprises ten vintage photographic prints by individuals considered to be master photographers. The prints in this collection were acquired and assembled by the Rubenstein library staff, in part to provide students the opportunity to view and study original works from the world's foremost photographers as well as to learn about the major formats, techniques, and genres of the 19th and 20th centuries. Photographers whose prints are in the collection hail from Europe, Mexico, and the United States: Eugène Atget (printed by American photographer Berenice Abbot), Alvin Langdon Coburn, Manuel Alvarez Bravo, F. Holland Day, Peter Henry Emerson, Lewis Hine, Aaron Siskind, Ralph Steiner, Alfred Stieglitz, and Minor White. The print by Eugène Atget, "Flower Man," was printed by well-known American photographer Berenice Abbot, who purchased part of Atget's negative archive in 1928. Formats range from photogravures to gelatin silver prints, with the latter predominating; all are black-and-white and are matted. Subjects include rural landscapes, individual and group portraits, and urban streetscapes.

Researchers must wear gloves when handling the prints. Prints should always be picked up and supported with two hands. The prints cannot be removed from the mats, but researchers may open the window mat to see the full print. The Visual Materials Archivist must be consulted prior to any display of the photographs.

Acquired by the Archive for Documentary Arts at Duke University.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research. However, the prints cannot be photocopied or reproduced.

Researchers must wear gloves when handling the matted prints. Prints should always be picked up and supported with two hands. The prints cannot be removed from the mats, but researchers may open the window mat to see the full print. The Visual Materials Archivist must be consulted prior to any display of the photographs.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

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.

Contents of the Collection

Alvin Langdon Coburn: Wyndham Lewis, 1916 Feb. 25
6 1/8 x 8.5" photogravure, 11x14" mat
Box 1
Lewis Hine: Young mill boys, Gastonia [N.C.], 1912 Oct. 23
4.5 x 6.5" gelatin silver print, 11x14" mat
Box 1
Peter Henry Emerson: Towing the Reed, published in "Life and Landscape on the Norfolk Broads (1886)," 1885
Platinum print, 16x20" mat
Box 1
Minor White: Sandblaster, 1949 [San Francisco]

Signed by photographer on front; edition 71/100.

8.5 x 9 7/8" gelatin silver print, 11x14" mat
Box 2
Ralph Steiner: Untitled, circa 1930 [Row of seven 19th century houses in urban setting, cars parked out front.]
Gelatin silver print, 11x14" mat
Box 2
Aaron Siskind: North Carolina 30, 1951 (printed later), gelatin silver [Close-up of outdoor advertisements, tattered on side of unidentified building.]
Gelatin silver print 11x14" mat
Box 2
Alfred Stieglitz: Ploughing, 1904

Image appeared in Stieglitz's journal Camera Work in Oct. 1905, the first issue devoted to Stieglitz's own photographs since its inception in 1903.

7.5 x 9.5" photogravure, 11x14" mat
Box 3
Eugène Atget: Flower Man, circa 1900-1910, printed by Berenice Abbot circa 1928

Stamped on retro: "photo E. Atget collection Berenice Abbot 1 W. 67th St."

6.5 x 9" gelatin silver print, 11x14" mat
Box 3
Manuel Alvarez Bravo: Mayan child with Tulum, Mexico, 1942
Gelatin silver print, 11x14" mat
Box 3
F. Holland Day: [Bust-length portrait of Cora Folsom, a Hampton College teacher], circa 1905

Print is accompanied by photocopies of several letters from Folsom to Day regarding his visit to the campus, as well as photocopies of images of Folsom and pages from the Hampton yearbook. When acquired, print had small tear on right side.

7.75 x 9.75" photogravure, 11x14" mat
Box 3

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], International History of Photography Collection, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The prints in the International History of Photography collection were purchased by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library from 2002-2008.

Processing Information

Processed by Karen Glynn, Paula Jeannet Mangiafico, January 2010

Encoded by Paula Jeannet Mangiafico, March 2013

Accession(s) described in this finding aid: 2002-0253; 2003-0077; 2003-0084; 2005-0059; 2008-0293

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.