Library Catalog

Rue Darb el-Barabra / Robertson and Beato
Exceptionally strong holdings of this genre were established with the acquisition of the Ken and Jenny Jacobson Orientalist Photography Collection. It comprises approximately 4,500 images of the Middle East and North Africa, with the majority dating between 1843 and 1920. They record a period when the Orient held a special allure for western viewers and was increasingly open to travelers, commerce, and ideas. Single prints in various formats predominate, but the collection also includes photographically-illustrated books, photo-albums, stereo views, printed ephemera, and a variety of photo-reproductive technologies. Created by 164 different photographers and studios, the collection holds numerous architectural and topographical studies, while about a third of the collection chronicles customs and costumes, vendors and bazaars, and working-class life. Documentary, artistic, journalistic, expeditionary, and amateur photographs present the diverse cultures of Islam and the Holy Land, Western responses to them, and their impact on 19th-century European arts and society. The collection continues to be developed with single acquisitions and donations.