Skip navigation


Have questions?

Special Collections & Archives

Historical Photographs in the University of Idaho Library

Historical photographs are an extraordinary form of primary source documentation. Accordingly, the Department of Special Collections at the University of Idaho Library has amassed a major collection of historical photographs, approximately 100,000 prints and negatives, documenting all facets of Idaho's past and present. A small sample of images selected from the many different photograph collections in the library is available. Card indexes, databases, and inventories provide access to the images in the library where professional staff will assist you in finding the images desired.

The Barnard-Stockbridge Collection is one of the major resources for the study of over ninety years of activities in the famed Silver Valley of northern Idaho's panhandle. Gold mines gave way to silver mines as T.N. Barnard, pupil of plains photographer L .A. Huffman, set up his studio in Wallace in the 1880's. Later, his assistant, one-eyed Nellie Stockbridge, and successor owner of the Barnard Studio, continued to take photographs until the 1960's.

Albert B. Curtis, Chief Fire Warden of the Clearwater and Potlatch Timber Protective Associations and Mayor of Orofino, Idaho, was an avid photographer of Central Idaho's vast forests. His collection of early images and snapshots he took provide a major source of information on the human impact of wilderness areas. He was a strong proponent of the building of Dworshak Dam on Bruces Eddy outside Orofino and took many pictures while the dam was being constructed.

The University of Idaho is also a major source of photographs as different departments document their students, their research, and their service activities.

Other, smaller, collections contain innumerable memorable photographs touching all aspects of life in Idaho. In addition, many manuscript and archival groups preserved by the library contain photographs which are important components of the documentary record.

For duplication requests please contact Special Collections at libspec@uidaho.edu or 208-885-7951.