Past Exhibitions

An Incomplete History of Photography: 1860s to 1960s

October 17, 2020 - February 21, 2021

​​With the purchase of a photograph by Margaret Bourke-White in 1934, the Addison became one of the first museums in the United States to actively collect photography. In the almost 90 years since, the museum has acquired over 9,000 photographs. The selections displayed in this exhibition highlight some key moments in the development of the​ medium and in American history from the 1860s to the 1960s. The imagery includes Civil War battlefields, the American West, turn-of-the-century and Depression-era living conditions, geometric abstractions, and Civil Rights protests. Though photographic technology evolved over the course of the century, photographs served throughout the period as powerful agents of social change and vehicles of self-expression.

Generous support for this exhibition has been provided by the Winton Family Exhibition Fund.

*Please note that the Museum Learning Center is also ​​a classroom space and may not be accessible at all times due to student visits.​​​​