New Year, New to See

The following is a guest post by Hanna Soltys, Reference Librarian, with contributions by Sara W. Duke, Curator of Popular and Applied Graphic Arts, and Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, all of the Prints and Photographs Division. To kick off the New Year, the Prints & Photographs Virtual Orientations for January 2022 look at newly […]

“A step out of and beyond nature”: Picturing the Moon

The following is a guest post by Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division. This week’s anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing provides a perfect opportunity to explore our holdings of lunar photography in the Prints & Photographs Division. From the medium’s beginnings, the moon fascinated photographers as both a subject of […]

Landscape Photographs: Shaping Our Impressions of the Earth

The following is a guest post by Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division (and a photographer himself). In honor of Earth Day, we wanted to take a deeper look at some of the Library’s historic collections of landscape photographs. When many people think of landscape photographs they think of wide-open spaces, empty […]

Music City, 1970s: JD Sloan’s Nashville Photographs Recently Acquired

The following is a guest post by Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division. Who is the woman in this photograph? JD Sloan’s portrait offers an aura of mystery while commenting on both the glamour and the tedium of celebrity culture. Country singer Tammy Wynette stands on a dark Opryland stage facing away […]

Exploration and Discovery: Ernest Benecke Photographs in the Richard Morris Hunt Collection

The following is a guest post by Mari Nakahara, Curator of Architecture, Design & Engineering, with Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division, talking with researcher David R. Hanlon. I am always grateful when researchers discover treasures in unprocessed collections, the contents of which have often not been fully explored. Professor David R. […]

Frances Benjamin Johnston’s Hampton Album: A Researcher’s Exploration

The following is a guest post by Micah Messenheimer, Curator of Photography, Prints & Photographs Division. Conversations with visiting researchers that lead to new appreciation for the many interconnections among Library of Congress collections are one of the pleasures of my job as a photography curator. The following interview was done with Jane Pierce, Carl […]

Behind the Scenes: The Many Roles of a Photo Curator

Below is an interview with Micah Messenheimer, Associate Curator of Photography in the Prints & Photographs Division at the Library of Congress. Melissa: Thanks for speaking with us. Can you start out by telling us about your background prior to working here at the Library? Micah: Yes. I actually started out as a photographer, and […]

Camera and Locomotive: Two Tracks across the Continent: Seeing the Railroad in 3D

The following is the fifth in a series of guest posts by Micah Messenheimer, Associate Curator of Photography, Prints and Photographs Division, that discuss the parallel development of two technologies in the 19th century: railroads and photography. Capturing the entirety of the Central Pacific Railroad from 1864–69, photographer Alfred Hart (1816–1908) traveled east from Sacramento, […]

Camera and Locomotive: Two Tracks across the Continent: Stereographs as Souvenirs

The following is the fourth in a series of guest posts by Micah Messenheimer, Assistant Curator of Photography, Prints and Photographs Division, that discuss the parallel development of two technologies in the 19th century: railroads and photography. A previous blog post examined Andrew J. Russell’s background as a photographer during the Civil War and his […]

Camera and Locomotive: Two Tracks across the Continent: Andrew J. Russell’s Eye for the Land

The following is the third in a series of guest posts by Micah Messenheimer, Assistant Curator of Photography, Prints and Photographs Division, that discuss the parallel development of two technologies in the 19th century: railroads and photography. The catalysts for a transcontinental railroad lie in the increasing industrialization of the country and the rapid expansion […]