Bentley Library Visual Materials

Soda Fountain in Chelsea, Michigan, 1927

The Michigan Historical Collections and the University Archives and Records Program have more than a million and a half images relating in some way to the places, people, and events of Michigan's past and to the history of the University of Michigan.

The MHC image collection is strongest in terms of variety and interest for the period of 1880 to 1930. Photographs from the modern period, though more numerous, focus on the careers of specific individuals or relate to narrow aspects of contemporary life. Visual images are found in many personal and family papers and in the records of organizations and businesses.

Michigan Historical Collections Highlights

Collection strengths

Collections of photographic studios and individual professional photographers:

University Collections Highlights

Images in University Archives record groups were created or collected by or for various university departments and offices. These images cover all aspects of university life.

Record groups with significant visual materials include: