The photographs collection is a key resource for the visual history of London during the second half of the 19th and 20th centuries.
It includes work by both professional and amateur photographers and covers most aspects of London life. It contains some topographical and architectural images but the main emphasis is on social documentary.
Notable bodies of work include:
- Early topographical views of London by Roger Fenton, c.1857
- Construction of the Metropolitan District Railway by Henry Flather, 1860s
- London street life by John Thomson, c.1876
- Historic London buildings by Alfred & John Bool and Henry Dixon, 1870s & 1880s
- Poverty in the East End by John Galt, early 1900s
- Impressionist views of London by Alvin Langdon Coburn, early 1900s
- Suffragettes by Christina Broom, early 1900s
- Street and river scenes by George Davison Reid, c.1930
- East End homes by Humphrey Spender, early 1930s
- London street life in the 1930s by Margaret Monck, Wolfgang Suschitzky and Cyril Arapoff
- Underground shelters during the Blitz by Bill Brandt, 1940
- Bomb damage to the City of London during the Blitz by Arthur Cross and Fred Tibbs, 1940-41
- London street life in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, including work by Nigel Henderson, Roger Mayne, Paul Styles, B J Green, Cory Bevington, Jerome Liebling, Lutz Dille, Jim Rice and Paul Trevor
- Topographical views of London by Edwin Smith, 1960s
- Contemporary work by many photographers including Yoke Matze, Anna Fox, Alan Delaney, Paul Barkshire, Tim Daly, Chris Dorley-Brown, Tom Evans, John R. J. Taylor, Ed Barber, Magda Segal, Paul Baldesare, Dave Trainer, Paulo Catrica, Ronen Numa, Angus Boulton, Janet Hall, Dave Young, Michael Donald, Jason Wilde, John Davies, David Turner Tom Hunter and Mike Seaborne
The collection also includes two very large groups of photographs:
The Henry Grant Collection
The entire photographic archive of this freelance photographer who worked for newspapers and magazines concerned with social or educational issues over the period c.1950-80. This includes the 6x6 cm negatives, contact sheets, prints, documentation and associated paperwork. Containing around 80,000 b&w (no colour) images, this collection covers a huge range of subjects and is worth investigating for almost any aspect of life in post-war London. The Museum also owns the copyright in these images.
The Bassano Collection
The Bassano Collection consists of over 3,000 half -plate glass negatives of fashion advertisements produced by the Bassano and Vandyk studio between 1913 and 1940. They include advertisements for men's, women's and children's clothing and accessories, including knitwear, sportswear, fur fashions and underwear, and for jewellery and hair styles. Many relate to high profile London shops such as Selfridges, Harrods, Burberrys, Swan & Edgar and Cartier.
Objects are available for individual study by appointment. Please apply to the Department of History Collections on 020 7814 5750.
Members of the public can search for, order and purchase prints online at: www.museumoflondonprints.com.