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David V. Tinder Collection of Michigan Photography, ca. 1845-1980

Approximately 113,000 photographs and 96 volumes

The David V. Tinder Collection of Michigan Photography consists of over 100,000 images in a variety of formats including daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, tintypes, cartes de visite, cabinet photographs, real photo postcards, stereographs, and mounted and unmounted paper prints. The collection is primarily made up of vernacular photographs of everyday life in Michigan taken by both professional and amateur photographers from the 1840s into the mid-twentieth century. In addition to supporting local history research, the collection has resources for the study of specific events and subjects. Included are images related to lumbering, mining, suburbanization; the industrialization of cities; travel and transportation; the impact of the automobile; the rise of middle-class leisure society; fashion and dress; ethnicity and race; the role of fraternal organizations in society; and the participation of photographers in business, domestic, and social life. The collection is only partially open for research.

The subject contents of different photographic format series within the Tinder collection vary, depending in part upon how each format was historically used, and the date range of that format's popularity. For example, cartes de visite and cased images are most often formal studio portraits, while stereographs are likely to be outdoor views. Cabinet photographs are frequently portraits, but often composed with less formality than the cartes de visite and cased images. The postcards and the mounted prints contain very diverse subjects. The photographers' file contains many important and rare images of photographers, their galleries, promotional images, and the activities of photographers in the field. See individual series descriptions in the Contents List below for more specific details.

Included throughout are images by both professional and amateur photographers, although those by professionals are extant in far greater numbers.


Samuel Huntington papers, 1768-1828

0.25 linear feet

The Samuel Huntington papers contain letters and documents of a prominent Ohio settler and political leader. Included are items on his business, political, and military activities.

The Samuel Huntington papers (60 items) contain letters and documents of a prominent Ohio settler and political leader. The Correspondence and Documents series contains 23 letters and 27 documents and financial records. Many of the early items are records and receipts for sales of land and legal services. Other documents include an agreement for Elija Gunn to build a fence around Huntington's home (November 10, 1804), a transfer of land in Cleveland Township from Huntington to Augustus Gilbert (May 4, 1808), Huntington's payment receipt for his services to the Ohio Militia (May 24, 1813), and numerous other land transactions.

Notable letters include:
  • A letter from fellow Ohio settler David Bryant asking for investments to buy a still for whiskey making (August 28, 1801)
  • A letter from Turhand Kirtland, Connecticut Land Company agent, inquiring about the companies' interests in settling new towns (March 27, 1802)
  • A second letter from Kirtland discussing politics and congratulating Huntington on his election as Trumbull County delegate to the constitutional convention (March 3, 1803)
  • A congratulatory letter from William Law on Huntington's election as state governor accompanied by a number of state policy requests (December 18, 1808)
  • A personal letter from Samuel Huntington to his eldest son, Francis, that describes his travels through Cincinnati, including an Indian attack, and provides instructions to his son for handling the tax collector (July 3, 1813)

Items related to the military include four Quartermaster documents from Detroit and Washington (August 11, 1813-July 16, 1814), and Samuel Huntington's letter to Simon Huntington of Grand River, Ohio, in which he discussed his opinions on the War of 1812 (December 14, 1814). The collection concludes with a farewell letter and religious diatribe from the dying 86-year-old Moses Lyman, a prominent citizen of Goshen, Connecticut.

The Account Book series consists of a 23-page booklet of "Copies of Notes and other Obligations due to me with their Indorsments" (1795-1814). These notes record large transactions (most between $70 and $1,000 with one as high as $4,716.96), and provide details on reasons for the deals and the parties involved.

The Photographs and Newspaper Clippings series holds one of each item. The clipping is undated and likely from a local Cleveland newspaper. The clipped article is "Colonel Samuel Huntington Surveys his Property" by S.J. Kelly, about Huntington's early property holding in Cleveland. The photograph is unlabeled but is possibly a painted portrait of Huntington.