The Memphis and Shelby County Photograph Collection is located in the Memphis and Shelby County Room. The collection consists of 11,000 local and regional photographs. These photographs are indexed in a contact print index which arranges the photographs alphabetically by topic (example: Memphis – Streets – Main Street – 1888).
The works of two notable Memphis photographers are included in the collection. J. C. Coovert and Clifford H. Poland captured buildings, events and scenes of everyday life in Memphis from the 1880s to the 1950s. Major themes in the collection include bridges, buildings, the cotton and hardwood timber industries, fairs, floods, businesses, transportation, historic homes, portraits and street scenes.
For more photographs from other sources such as the Library of Congress, visit our Local History page.