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Guide to the Greenwich House Photographs Collection PHOTOS.066

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
10th Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2630

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Miriamne DeMarrais and Rachel Randolph, 1995, Cara McCormick, 1996, Erika Gottfried, 2008.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on September 19, 2018
Description is in English.

Scope and Content Note

The Greenwich House Photographs Collection consists of ca. 4,750 black and white photographs; ca. 1,950 black and white negatives and 119 slides. It contains a unique group of images pertaining to social welfare and the settlement movement over a period of more than seventy years. The dates covered are 1902 - 1986; the bulk of the photographs were taken prior to 1970. They are strongest in documenting the programs of Greenwich House (particularly those involving children and fine and applied arts instruction, such as its Pottery School, and its Music School, and its summer camps, Camps Herbert Parsons and Wanamaker), as well as its administrative and institutional activities. They are also valuable in documenting many aspects of the lives of immigrants and working people in New York City: Greenwich House social events, for example, detail the complex interactions between different ethnic groups, and images of street vistas in New York City offer information on community life in Greenwich Village. The numerous images of children also yield information on dress and demeanor of working class children in New York City through time. The Collection may also be of interest to students of the history of photography, as it contains numerous images by noted photographers Jessie Tarbox Beals and Alfred Tennyson Beals. Images of famous Greenwich House alumni and celebrity visitors to Greenwich House are scattered throughout the collection, but are concentrated in the "Events" folders, as well as in the "Simkovich" and "Portraits, A-Z" folders. Because reproduction is restricted for a small number of the images in the Collection (due to privacy or copyright concerns), researchers should who want to publish an image (or images) from the Collection should consult archives staff to determine its copyright status.


Materials are arranged first by format (e.g., photographic prints, negatives, etc.); within format they are stored in individual folders that are arranged alphabetically by folder title. Folder titles include subjects, events, and names of persons and organizations; they also indicate the total number of images and dates of material contained within a folder. Where dates of images have definitely been identified, they are rendered on folders as individual years and/or as year or decade ranges, while images for which dates are completely unknown are designated as "undated." Where an image or images cannot be definitely dated, but enough information is available to make an educated guess, this is indicated on the folder and on the finding aid container list by enclosing the guessed date or dates within square brackets (e.g., [1910s-1950s] or [1954, 1960s]). Definitely dated materials are followed by guessed dates or the undated designation (e.g., 1964, [1940s-1970s] or 1928-1952, undated) on all folders. Within folders, images are physically arranged in date order, with undated material (including guessed dates) following dated material. Negatives that have matching prints are cross-referenced.

Organized into 4 series:

Missing Title

  1. I: Photographic Prints, 8 x 10" and smaller, 1902-1991.
  2. II: Slides, 1978, undated.
  3. III: Negatives, undated.
  4. IV: Oversized and Mounted Photographic Prints, circa 1890s-1960, undated.