Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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Mellon grant funds cataloging of 2 million photos


Sweet Daddy Grace with reporters. Journal-American collectionWith the help of a grant of $312,000 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Harry Ransom Center will enhance the preservation and cataloging of one of the most complete journalistic photograph collections outside of a working newspaper, the photograph morgue of the New York Journal-American newspaper.  Published from 1895 to 1966 and owned for much of its run by newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, the paper was a rival and complement to the better-known New York Times.  The morgue contains a rich visual history of the people, places, and events of New York and the country, with the sensational perspective for which Hearst papers were known. 

Approximately 2 million photographic prints from the archive will be cataloged and rehoused to facilitate access to the images and ensure they remain a lasting resource for scholars and patrons. Consistent with the mission of the Center, the three-year project will result in an online database to open this vast visual resource to the public.  Clipping files from the Journal-American are available at the University’s Center for American History. 

Image: Sweet Daddy Grace with reporters on March 3, 1938. New York Journal-American collection.