Peter E. Palmquist photographs
Scope and Contents
Photographic material that chiefly documents Peter Palmquist's professional life as a photographer. This includes images from his service in the United States Army, mainly with the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Paris, France, 1955-1959; his personal travels through Europe during his military service including Belgium, England, Gibraltar, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, and Switzerland; his career as a staff photographer for Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, 1961-1989 including significant documentation of the Theater Arts Department and its productions; images that document significant events in Humboldt County, California from 1961 to circa 1990 including the Christmas flood of 1964; and thousands of black and white and color negatives that document weddings in Humboldt County from 1960 to roughly 1990. Other photographs and negatives document his freelance and fine art photography. Large groups of copy photographs document his research interests on a range of subjects with a focus on photography, especially its role in the history of the American West, particularly in California.
- circa 1950-2003
Conditions Governing Access
The materials are open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
The Peter E. Palmquist Photographs is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Purchased from Peter Palmquist and the Estate of Peter Palmquist on the Frederick W. and Carrie S. Beinecke Fund for Western Americana and Walter McClintock Memorial Fund, 2003-2004.
Organized into eleven series: I. United States Army Photographs, 1952-1959. II. Personal Photographs During Military Service, 1955-1959. III. General Photographs, 1960-2002. IV. Wedding Photographs, 1960-circa 1990. V. Humboldt State University, 1962-1972. VI. Christmas Flood of 1964, 1964. VII. Logging Road in the Jackson Demonstration State Forest, 1967. VIII. Nudes, circa 1973. IX. Copy Photographs, undated. X. Peter Palmquist Retrospective, circa 1950-2002. XI. Oversize Photographs, 1957-1995.
44.3 Linear Feet ((109 boxes) + 7 broadsides.)
Language of Materials
Photographic material that chiefly documents Peter Palmquist's professional life as a photographer. This includes images from his service in the United States Army, mainly with the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Paris, France, 1955-1959, as well as his career as a staff photographer for Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, 1961-1989. The latter photographs include significant documentation of the Theater Arts Department and its productions. Other photographs and negatives document his freelance, fine art, and wedding photography. A large group of copy photographs in the collection document Palmquist's research interests on a range of subjects with a focus on photography, especially its role in the history of the American West, particularly in California.
Peter E. Palmquist (1936-2003)
A photographer, collector, and historian of photography, Peter Eric Palmquist was born in Oakland, California on September 23, 1936. In 1944, he moved with his family to Ferndale, California, and he spent most of his life in Humboldt County. During adolescence, Palmquist trained himself in photography. He served in the United States Army as a photographer from 1955 to 1959, mainly with the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Paris, France. Palmquist worked briefly as a photographer for the state government of California from 1959 to 1961. From 1961 until his retirement in 1989, Palmquist worked as a staff photographer for Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, where he also graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art in 1965.
From 1971 until his death, Palmquist collected textual materials and hundreds of thousands of photographic items documenting the practice and occupation of photography from its beginning through the turn of the twenty-first century. He had particular interest in early California photographers, photographers of the American West, and women photographers.
A self-trained researcher and historian of photography, Palmquist organized more than one hundred exhibitions and wrote more than three hundred articles and a hundred monographs. He was a founding editor of The Daguerreian Annual, and a president of the National Stereoscopic Association.
Palmquist died January 13, 2003, in Oakland.
Collections are processed to a variety of levels, depending on the work necessary to make them usable, their perceived research value, the availability of staff, competing priorities, and whether or not further accruals are expected. The library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.
As a rule, descriptive information found in the Collection Contents section is drawn in large part from information supplied with the collection and from an initial survey of the contents. Folder titles appearing in the contents list below are often based on those provided by the creator or previous custodian. Titles have not been verified against the contents of the folders in all cases. Otherwise, folder titles are supplied by staff during initial processing.
This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.
Much of the collection remains in Palmquist's orginal housing and represent his original order for the material.
Former call number: Uncat Mss 509
- Belgium -- Pictorial works
- California -- Pictorial works
- California State University, Humboldt -- Pictorial works
- Cities and towns -- California -- Pictorial works
- England -- Pictorial works
- Floods -- California -- Humboldt County -- Pictorial works
- Gibraltar -- Pictorial works
- Humboldt County (Calif.)
- Humboldt County (Calif.) -- Pictorial works
- Humboldt County (Calif.) -- Social life and customs -- 1961-2003
- Humboldt State College -- Pictorial works
- Italy -- Pictorial works
- Malta -- Pictorial works
- Negatives (photographs)
- Netherlands -- Pictorial works
- Palmquist, Peter E.
- Paris (France) -- Pictorial works
- Photographers -- California
- Photographers -- History
- Photographers -- West (U.S.)
- Photographic prints
- Photography -- California
- Photography -- History
- Photography -- West (U.S.)
- Photography, Artistic
- Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe -- Pictorial works
- Switzerland -- Pictorial works
- Tourism -- Europe
- United States. Army (Photographers)
- Wedding photography -- California -- Humboldt County
- Weddings -- Pictorial works
- West (U.S.) -- Pictorial works
- Guide to the Peter E. Palmquist Photographs
- by Matthew Daniel Mason
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description note
- Finding aid written in English.
Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository
P. O. Box 208330
New Haven CT 06520-8330 US
121 Wall Street
New Haven, CT 06511
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