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Guide to the Blanche Potter Photograph Albums & Travel Journals
1904-1939
 MS 3100

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
(212) 873-3400


New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Larry Weimer

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on June 24, 2022
Finding aid written in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Scope and Contents

The collection holds 26 photograph albums and 4 journals compiled and written by Blanche Potter. All relate to Potter's travels in the United States and abroad from 1904-1939, taken with her life companion, Louise Christie, and/or other women. The photograph albums hold about 3,400 sepia-toned snapshots of historic sites, local peoples, travel accommodations, landscapes, and various points of interest in Europe, northern Africa, India, the Caribbean, Central and South America, Canada, and the United States. Potter, Christie and their traveling companions are in many of the photos.

The photographs are captioned. Though most of the photos were likely taken by Potter, not all were, as indicated by many caption's reference to "taken by" and crediting another person by name or initial. The albums are dated with at least an opening date on the inside cover. They were all numbered by Potter, though the collection seems not to have all the albums she ever compiled as those in the collection start with number 20 and end with number 65, with gaps.

Some of the photograph albums include local New York State travel and scenes from visits to Potter and her sibling's country homes in Ossining. Visits to her father's roots in Charlemont, Massachusetts, are also pictured.

Providing rich context to some of the photo albums are the 4 travel journals in the collection, which take the form of either letters written to friends or of diary entries. These journals relate to Potter and her companions' travels in Europe (1904; albums 20-22); in, primarily, Italy and Egypt (1911; albums 31-35); eastern Canada, especially Nova Scotia (1923; album 52); and Central and South America (1924; albums 53-55). The journals also include many additional photographs for illustration.

The container list includes reference to each of the volumes in the collection, with a fuller description of each volume. That description was taken primarily from the description provided by the dealer from which N-YHS acquired the volumes.

Arrangement

The photograph albums are arranged in Blanche Potter's original sequence number order, which runs chronologically, from number 20 to number 65, with gaps. The 4 travel journals are integrated into that chronological order.