This guide describes photograph collections maintained in the University of Iowa Archives, Department of Special Collections. If you have questions about our holdings, please feel free to contact us. RG numbers refer to the described collection’s record group number. More detailed information about some of the collections is available from the links below.
Except where indicated, this guide describes but does not reproduce the actual images which make up the collections. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department. Reproduction and use policy and procedures.
Looking for photos of faculty, staff, alumni or former students? The Frederick W. Kent Collection of Photographs, described below, has images spanning about 1860 to 1970. The Hawkeye yearbook, published from 1892 to 1992, features images of many individual students and faculty. For more recent images (post-1970), contact the University’s Center for Media Production.
Though not a photograph collection, the University Serials and Journals Collection (RG 01.09.02) includes over 200 University-produced publications that often include published photos and images pertaining to University life: faculty, staff, students, campus scenes.
John R. Black Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). One album; about 90 images. Student life, campus, Iowa City, Chicago scenes; 1908. Acquired by Dept. of Special Collections, 2000. RG 30.01.31.
Thomas E. Brown Collection. One box (1.5 linear feet). About 300 images. Student life, campus, Iowa City scenes, including: Senior Frolic, 1912, Engineering College parade, 1913; May Day Fete, 1915; Commencement, 1916, 1922; Senior Hop, 1916. Also campus buildings and landmarks, 1855-1966; 1982 Rose Bowl events. RG 30.01.38.
Richard and Marjorie Brundage Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). About 100 images. Student life, campus, Iowa City scenes; 1908-1913. Includes images of Ethyl Pearl Sykes, a 1910 graduate, with one folder of correspondence, 1906-1912. Gift of Richard and Marjorie Brundage; Ethyl Sykes was a great aunt of Mr. Brundage. RG 30.01.23.
Samuel Calvin Photographic Collection. About 4,000 images, primarily of Iowa geological formations but also of Iowa City and points of interest across Iowa. RG 30.01.36. The collection is online at two sites: the Iowa Digital Library and the UI Department of Geoscience. See also: Moon, Steven Elliott. “The Photographic Work of Samuel Calvin: Geological Field Studies Reinterpreted as High Art and Assimilated in the Process of Continued Examination of the Iowa Landscape with a Camera in the 1980’s.” University of Iowa master’s thesis, 1987. T1987.M819.
Alice B. Chase Collection. One photo album; about 30 images. Campus and Iowa City scenes, 1897-1908. Note: Alice B. Chase was secretary to University presidents Schaeffer and MacLean. RG 30.01.11.
Class and Faculty Photograph Album Collection. Sixteen albums (6 lin. ft.); about 600 images. Mainly portraits of faculty and students; 1878-1895. Gifts of numerous donors. RG 30.01.20.
College of Dentistry Online Photograph Collection. Class and individual photographs; 1883-1967. Iowa Digital Library collection.
Elmer S. Gardner Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). 12 images. Campus views and Grinnell-S.U.I. baseball game; May, 1896. RG 30.01.08.
Department of Geology Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). About 100 images. Tour of geological sites in northeastern Iowa; June-July, 1895. Possibly created by Samuel Calvin. RG 30.01.07.
William J. Haddock Photograph Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). One album; about 50 images. Haddock family, campus and Iowa City scenes; 1890-1896. Haddock was secretary of the University at the time. RG 30.01.29.
Charles F. Haden Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). One album; about 60 images. President of the University, professors and Law class of 1886. Was property of Charles F. Haden, 1886 Law. Gift of Mrs. Alberta Haden Safford. RG 30.01.21.
Virgil Hancher Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). About 200 images in five folders. Portraits, public events, family, 1965 funeral; 1941-1965. Hancher was president of the University, 1940-1964. RG 30.01.04.
Frank Hatch Collection. One photo album; about 30 images. Campus scenes; 1920s[?]. Published by University Book Store, Iowa City. RG 30.01.13.
Julius Robert Hecker Postcard and Photograph Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). One album, 100 images; also 150 images individually-sleeved. Military Dept., College of Liberal Arts. Also campus, Iowa City scenes. Athletics: track and field, football, baseball, pushball, Museum of Natural History, College of Law in Old Capitol; 1910-1912. RG 30.01.34.
Elizabeth Bennett Ink Postcard Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). One album, 140 images. Campus, Iowa City scenes; including Museum of Natural History, College of Law in Old Capitol, Senior Frolic, athletics; 1908-1914. RG 30.01.35.
Iowa City Town and Campus Scenes. An online collection of images that form part of the Iowa Digital Library. The Iowa City scenes are drawn from the Samuel Calvin and Frederick W. Kent photograph collections in the University Archives and feature local landmarks and activity spanning 1890 to about 1950.
Iowa Memorial Union Photograph Collection. Two boxes (1.0 lin. ft.). About 310 images. Construction of IMU Units I and II; 1924-1926 (200 images). Exterior and interior views of the IMU at various stages of its development; 1924-1980 (110 images). Includes dances, bowling, billiards, Triangle Club faculty lounge, Silver Shadow social club, dining services, information desk, reading rooms, early and later construction. RG 30.01.14.
Erin Irish Collection of Negatives. One box (2.5 lin. in.). About 50 images; UI power plant and its personnel; 1947-1948. RG 30.01.12.
Frederick W. Kent Collection of Photographs. About 50,000 images depicting many aspects of the University; 1868- . Categories include buildings, colleges and departments, events and activities, organizations, campus and Iowa City scenes, athletics, faculty and staff (incomplete; to about 1980), former students (incomplete; to about 1970), and theatre productions. Includes postcards and albums. RG 30.01.01. More recent photographs of faculty, staff and former students may be available at the University’s Center for Media Production.
Horace Korns Family Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). Two photo albums; about 100 images. Korns family and College of Medicine; 1888-1946. RG 30.01.18.
E.P. Kuhl Photographs. One box (2.5 lin. in.). About 30 images. The Kuhl family at their Iowa City home in garden, study; 1930-1972. RG 30.01.02.
J. Leavitt Lambert Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). About 150 images; campus scenes and building construction; 1930-1939. RG 30.01.17.
John M. Lindsey Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). One album; about 50 images. Campus and Iowa City scenes; 1899. RG 30.01.30.
Thomas H. Macbride Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). 35 images. Portraits, family members; 1882-1911. Macbride was president of the University, 1914-1916. RG 30.01.05.
Nellie A. Moore Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). Two photo albums; about 200 images. Normal Department faculty and students; family; all portraits. 1865-1866. RG 30.01.19.
Old Capitol Restoration Photograph Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). Photo album; about 50 images. Includes 1924 reconstruction report by A.A. Smith, Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds; also images of bell and dome light installation. 1922-1924. RG 30.01.10.
College of Pharmacy Collection. Three records cartons (4.5 lin. ft.). About 5,000 images, b/w and color. Faculty, classes and individuals; 1881-2000. RG 30.01.09.
Quick Reference Collection: University Presidents and Campus Buildings. Two boxes (1 lin. ft.). Box 1: One spiral notebook; 14 images. University presidential portraits in chronological order (Amos Dean to Howard Bowen); 1855-1964. Box 2: Two spiral notebooks; each about 70 images. Campus buildings, partial listing; 1855-1970. Includes Old Mechanics Academy, first building used by the University, 1855. Also barracks, temporary buildings. RG 30.01.32.
Leon Anthony Sanders Collection. Three photograph albums and about 120 individual photographs; about 420 images total (3 lin. ft.) Images of various aspects of campus life during the 1939-40 academic year: athletics (football, basketball), campus scenes (Pentacrest, Old Capitol, Electrical Engineering, East Hall, Close Hall), activities (Beaux Arts ball, stage bands, WSUI). Gift of Margaret Sanders. RG 30.01.24.
Myrtle Sellman Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). About 20 images and other items. Iowa City; includes Englert Theatre vaudeville programs, women’s athletics (baseball, track and field, basketball); 1922. RG 30.01.03.
Arthur A. Smith Collection. One box (5 lin. in.) containing three photo albums: “Iowa River Improvement,” “Early Campus Scenes,” and “Terrell Dam – Union – Early Plat Maps.” About 100 images; 1875-1938. RG 30.01.16.
University News Service Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). About 500 images. Campus buildings and departments, events; 1957-1971. RG 30.01.06.
University Schools (North Hall) Construction Photo Collection. One box (5 lin. in.). About 100 images; 1924-1925. RG 30.01.15.
William Larrabee, Jr., Collection of 1893 Expedition Photographs. Three boxes (1.25 ft.). About 266 images; 1893. RG 30.01.22.
Elsie Zook Collection. One box (2.5 lin. in.). Scrapbook, about 20 images. Construction of Kate Daum Hall, adjacent to Burge Hall dormitory. Includes children from nearby Preschool Laboratories, Institute of Child Behavior and Development. Elsie Zook was a teaching associate in the Laboratories and prepared the scrapbook for her class. 1963-64. RG 30.01.39.
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