Collections Vice President
✉ John Andrew Hughes, APSA, PPSA·
|Every PSA member, as the Photographic Society of America (PSA), owns an extremely valuable asset – an extensive collection of images! The charter for this International asset was established in 1945 and the Collection now numbers almost 7000 images. This is PSA’s largest asset. In 2019 it was renamed the ‘PSA Historical Image Collection’, to more accurately reflect its increasing value as a historical record and to also acknowledge the collection’s monetary and educational value.
An easy way to enjoy some photographs from the collection is by purchasing a PSA Calendar. Each month has a featured image from the collection painstakingly chosen by PSA volunteers for your enjoyment. As you glance through your copy of the PSA Calendar, take a moment to think about the history, the maker, and the wonderful asset we have that is the PSA Historical Image Collection. Treasure your Calendar as we as an organization treasure our wonderfully unique, one-of-a-kind collection.
NEW: Support the PSA Print Collection and get a 2020 calendar! details
In 2013 PSA entered into an agreement with the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) to house the Historical Print Collection (part of the overall collection) in UCO’s Max Chambers Library, Archives & Special Collections. This arrangement benefits both PSA and UCO since the collection can be accessed as a research and educational tool and is now conveniently housed close to PSA Headquarters. As a separate agreement with UCO, but equally advantageous to us both, is the arrangement to have the PSA Greenhood Scholarships awarded to students at UCO. Each year four hard-working and enthusiastic photography students majoring in the Photographic Arts are awarded a PSA Greenhood Scholarship.
Although the current PSA Collection consists of images in many formats (digital, slides, negatives, etc.) print preservation is of utmost importance; as the value of the prints is increasing with the passage of time. Archive professionals at PSA Headquarters have been cataloguing and preserving the image collection in Museum Archival quality boxes and sleeves. This also includes making high quality scans, inputting detailed information regarding the image maker, and including as much historical information that can be found about each image. On occasion this means tracking down the maker or researching data in some cases of a photographer who has passed.
Into the future, you will see your asset (the PSA Historical Image Collection, in all formats) being loaned to museums, educational facilities, and photographic researchers. We are indeed moving forward into a new era with our collections and hope you have an opportunity to visit one or two of the exhibitions. They will be posted in the PSA Journal, on the PSA Website and in e-blasts to members, in plenty of time for you to attend.
We are the custodian of a legacy left by photographers such as Ansel Adams, Aubrey Bodine, Yousuf Karsh, William Mortenson, Joseph Rosenthal, Arthur Rothstein, Edward Steichen and Edward Weston. All were PSA members and donated prints to the PSA Historical Image Collection. They trusted PSA and its members to look after their most treasured work. Think about that for a moment. What an honor!
Historic Prints of the PSA Print Collection describes the history behind some of the prints in the collection.
PSA Collections Committee Master Operating Manuals:
» Greenhood Scholarship - pdf
» Historical Book Collections Committee - pdf (September 2019)
» Historical Print Collections Chair and Committee - pdf (September 2019)
» Historical Projected Image Collections Committee - pdf (September 2019)
» Image Collections Vice President (ICVP) - pdf (updated September 2019)