History of Photo Archive Collections

Historic Print Collection (H-Board Series)

New guinea- men with shields

Young men with maiva shields, New Guinea, n.d., Photo on cardboard mount with notations. PM 2004.29.22822 

A collection of Historic Prints is a reference source of images arranged by geographical area and culture. Most of the prints predate 1930, and the majority are ethnographic in subject matter. Some of the images are duplicates of other parts of the photographic collection.

Lantern Slides

rural kitchen Tibet

Rural Tibetan Kitchen, c. 1923. Hand-colored lantern slide. Photo by Frederick Wulsin. PM 56-55-60/15669.1.

  • Lantern slides, positive images on glass, were popular from the 1860s through the 1930s to illustrate lectures. Later, similar slides were made on plastic. The media are represented by such collections as:
  • 50 black-and-white glass slides of an Ojibway settlement in Minnesota and the Cahokia Mound in Illinois taken between 1892 and 1901 (Inventory No. 10-45);
  • 200 plastic slides from published monographs of Pueblo Bonito, Mesa Verde, Swarts Ruin, Canyon de Chelly, Canyon del Muertos, Mimbres pottery, sites in California, Oregon, and British Columbia, and Alaskan artifacts (Inventory No. 10-3);
  • J. O. Brew's extensive study collection of glass slides, including examples of John K. Hillers's work, images from Museum expeditions to Awatovi and Alkali Ridge, and views of some of the exhibits at the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago drawn from the Museum's holdings (uncatalogued).

Link to Museum History

early Peabody gallery

Peabody Museum North American Gallery, c. 1890s. PM 2004.24.7023.

A number of collections from the 1860s through the late 1970s contain prints related to the history of the Peabody Museum (Inventory Nos. 10-20, 10-29, 10-31:1-4, 10-36, 10-37, and 10-66). Interior and exterior views of the museum show renovations of the building structure and exhibit spaces and the construction of Tozzer Library. Among the prints of people and events at the museum are portraits of the founder, George Peabody, and former directors, trustees, anthropology faculty members, and benefactors including Ernest Hooton, Roland P. Dixon, Augustus Hemenway, Asa Gray, Samuel K. Lothrop, and Donald C. Scott.

Many informal images taken during Stephen Williams's tenure as director from 1964 to 1977 are also held. The photographic archives maintains a portrait file of faculty, staff, students, collectors, and other individuals associated with the museum to further develop the historic material and reflect contemporary museum activities.

Related Collections

Artifacts: 09-44, 43-25, 967-23, 970-22.
Paper Archives: 09-44, 43-25, 967-23, 970-22.

World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago


Kwakiutl dancers at the World's Columbian Exposition, 1893. PM 2004.24.29642.

Inventory No. 10-79
Accession Nos. 47-41, 59-50
Date: 1893
Photographers: John H. Grabill, Edward H. Thompson, and many unknown
Collector: Frederic W. Putnam (1839-1915)

Related Collections

Photographs: Historic Print Collections: 59-50, 93-1.
Paper Archives: 47-41, 59-50.

Also note the Peabody Museum collections located at the Library of Congress: 40-16 contains Benjamin Ives Gilman's wax cylinders, and 994-30 is an audio tape copy of a portion thereof. For more information or to request permissions, please contact folklife@loc.gov.

At Frederic W. Putnam's request, photographs were made of exhibits at the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago. A few prints by John H. Grabill depict Kwakiutl dancers of British Columbia in a contextual display and two by Edward H. Thompson are of workers constructing the Labna Portal and Yucatan ruins exhibit.