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Ansel Adams miscellaneous acquisitions collection

Identifier: AG 66

Scope and Contents

The Ansel Adams miscellaneous acquisition collection is made up of one hundred-twelve subgroups of various materials and sources. When available, provenance for each subgroup is included in the scope and content notes throughout the inventory.

Subgroup 1 contains clippings and other materials, 1984-85, 1990-97.

Subgroup 2 is one, black and white, 8 x 10 inch, copy print, portrait of a woman.

Subgroup 3 consists of an Adams quote from Portfolio Two reprinted by Jonathan Clark, Artichoke Press, 1984.

Subgroup 4 contains correspondence with Peter Wensberg, 1964-83.

Subgroup 5 comprises Jonathan Spaulding’s master thesis, UCLA, 1986.

Subgroup 6 is a letter to Arthur Griffin, 1962.

Subgroup 7 contains materials from Adams’ work at Chadwick School, Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA, circa 1941.

Subgroup 8 is made up of photocopies of "Notices Received by the Friends of Photography," 1984.

Subgroup 9 is a monograph containing Adams images by the Interdepartmental Committee on Scenic Highways, State of California, 1960s.

Subgroup 10 contains materials related to "Ansel Adams Day," Alaska, 1984.

Subgroup 11 is an exhibition catalog from Claremont Graduate School, 1986.

Subgroup 12 consists of an essay by Wallace Stegner, circa 1982.

Subgroup 13 is made up of photocopies of Stanley Mahurin photographs, circa 1936 or 1939.

Subgroup 14 is an auction catalog, Butterfield & Butterfield, 1984.

Subgroup 15 comprises the periodicals American West, 1984 and Empire Magazine, 1984.

Subgroup 16 is a snapshot of Peter Bunnell, circa 1985.

Subgroup 17 contains audio tapes of an Ansel Adams interview by Peter Wensberg, 1979.

Subgroup 18 is made up of album sleeves, [n. d.], 1968, 1983, 1985.

Subgroup 19 consists of reproductions by Adams in See Your West, Standard Oil Company, 1947.

Subgroup 20 contains promotional material from Ansel Adams: The American Wilderness, 1990.

Subgroup 21 comprises posters and tee shirts from Ansel Adams Gallery.

Subgroup 22 contains photocopies of a letter to Rosalie Gwathmey from Adams and an unpublished article by Adams, "What Is Photography", 1949.

Subgroup 23 is made up of two brochures titled, "The Benefits of Belonging: A Benefits Summary for Faculty and Staff of the University of California" containing reproductions of Adams photographs.

Subgroup 24 is a facsimile of a postcard from Ansel Adams to Fred Gurner, 24 September 1979.

Subgroup 25 contains miscellaneous clippings and periodicals, 1990-91.

Subgroup 26 is a videotape of an Ansel Adams interview with Beaumont Newhall and WIllard Van Dyke, circa 1983.

Subgroup 27 consists of The Mural Project 1990 calendar, 1989.

Subgroup 28 contains a thesis by Louise Stover for The University of Arizona, Department of Art, titled Collaboration Without Shadows: Ansel Adams’s and Nancy Newhall’s Collaborations On The Pageant of History in Northern California and Fiat Lux: The University of California, 1992. Also included is an audio cassette tape of William A. Turnage interview conducted by Louise Stover for her thesis research, 1992.

Subgroup 29 is a dissertation by Jonathan Spaulding, Ansel Adams and the American Landscape, 1992.

Subgroup 30 comprises audio tapes from Ansel Adams Scholars Conference, 1992.

Subgroup 31 contains seven menus from The Ahwahnee, Yosemite National Park, California, with reproductions of Adams photographs used on the covers, 1957, 1959-60, 1964; it also contains two menus from the Ahwahnee, Yosemite National Park, California, with reproductions of Adams photographs used on the covers, 1939.

Subgroup 32 is made up of eight Sierra Club Bulletins, 1926, 1929-1930, 1932, 1934, 1936-38, with images by Ansel Adams.

Subgroup 33 contains photocopies of 55 letters from Ansel Adams to Lee Witkin, 1969-75.

Subgroup 34 consists of photocopies of four letters to and from Ansel Adams that pertain to the Spanish Colonial Arts book project with Frank Applegate.

Subgroup 35 is made up of slides, reviews, press notices, and other texts relating to the Sierra Club traveling exhibition in 1992-93 of This Is The American Earth.

Subgroup 36 contains one book, 1983, and one pamphlet, circa 1994, about the Bracebridge dinners at the Ahwahnee, Yosemite National Park.

Subgroup 37 includes photocopies of eleven letters to and from Ansel Adams and employees at Hasselblad, 1966-1973.

Subgroup 38 is Eye on the Wild: A story About Ansel Adams, a children’s biography of Adams by Julie Dunlap, 1995.

Subgroup 39 consists of research Polaroid prints made by CCP staff of Taos Pueblo, 1930.

Subgroup 40 is an audio cassette tape of Ansel Adams typing, circa 1983.

Subgroup 41 is a VHS videotape made in 1997 at an event at the Ansel Adams Center for Photography, San Francisco.

Subgroup 42 is a VHS videotape of a documentary program made for Japanese television about Born Free and Equal.

Subgroup 43 contains photocopies of articles by Ansel Adams from Camera Craft Magazine and Zeiss Magazine, 1933-1940.

Subgroup 44 includes photocopies of two letters to Nile Root, 1958, 1983.

Subgroup 45 consists of periodicals with Adams images and includes Game and Gossip, 1966 and U.S. Camera, 1939-40.

Subgroup 46 is a list of books and periodicals in Ansel and Virginia Adams’ library, March 2001.

Subgroup 47 is Ansel Adams at 100, a multimedia presentation on a compact disk, 2001.

Subgroup 48 contains The Roots of California Photography: The Monterey Legacy, VHS videotape, 2002.

Subgroup 49 includes Ansel Adams, original soundtrack recording on compact disk from the film by Ric Burns, 2002.

Subgroup 50 is an interview with William Turnage and John Szarkowski on the CBS Sunday morning program, March 2002.

Subgroup 51 is made up of a monograph by Ansel Adams, Making A Photograph, London: The Studio Limited, 1935, and a postcard from Adams to Boris Bittker, 1975.

Subgroup 52 contains Virginia Adams’ files, 1971-1996.

Subgroup 53 includes commercial prints, some by Ansel Adams, for Yosemite Park and Curry Company, circa 1930s.

Subgroup 54 comprises twelve digital scans of Ansel Adams photographs taken for Felix and Ruth Kahn, 1940.

Subgroup 55 is made up of clippings about the Allied Arts Guild and photocopies of Adams’ photographs at the Guild.

Subgroup 56 consists of photocopies of Ansel Adams letters to Wilder Bentley.

Subgroup 57 contains correspondence from Harry H. Lunn, Jr., Lunn Gallery to Osten P. Wejerfelt, Hasselblad regarding Ansel Adams’ Museum Set, 1981 (letter + 7 pages).

Subgroup 58 consists of Fiat Lux reproductions from University of California, Merced, 2002.

Subgroup 59 is a manuscript and CD titled “A Morning in the Dunes with Ansel Adams,” by Alan Ross, 2003.

Subgroup 60 is an audiocassette tape of Matt Cook discussing Ansel Adams photography equipment, 1992.

Subgroup 61 contains postage stamps from “Masters of American Photography,” 2002.

Subgroup 62 is a dedication program for the Ansel Adams Elementary School, Stockton, CA, 2004.

Subgroup 63 is the DVD: "Speaking of Art: John Szarkowski on the Photography of Ansel Adams,” by Checkerboard Foundation, Inc., 2004.

Subgroup 64 consists of Ansel Adams’ FBI file obtained by the Freedom of Information Act.

Subgroup 65 includes Ansel Adams, A Legacy: Masterworks from the Friends of Photography Collection: Curriculum Resource for Teachers, by Julia Brashares, Stephanie Comer, Chelsea Favrhow, San Francisco: Friends of Photography, 2000.

Subgroup 66 comprises three Ansel Adams photographs taken of soldiers in Yosemite during WWII.

Subgroup 67 is a photocopy of a two-page letter from Adams to Jack Hewitt, 1954.

Subgroup 68 contains photocopies of letters related to Yosemite and the Range of Light, 1977-1981.

Subgroup 69 is made up of photocopies from Camera Craft magazine about “Hands” and “California Trees” group exhibitions, 1932.

Subgroup 70 is a chronology of Adams’s life with images used in an exhibition at Bowers Museum, Santa Ana, CA, 2007.

Subgroup 71 includes photocopies of letters from Adams to Kay Graham (1965) and to W. Eugene Smith (1977).

Subgroup 72 consists of photocopies of letters from Adams to Albert Bender, 1940s to 1950s.

Subgroup 73 contains portraits of Adams, Lange, Cunningham, and Weston by William R. Heick, 1947.

Subgroup 74 is a partial transcript of an interview with Wallace Stegner, n.d.

Subgroup 75 is a sheet of US postage stamps – “Masters of American Photography.”

Subgroup 76 includes audiotapes from Yosemite Workshop, June 11, 1974.

Subgroup 77 is made up of the exhibition catalog Milestones: Ansel Adams by Mary Alinder, Sonoma State University Art Gallery, 2002.

Subgroup 78 contains photographs of Ansel Adams and others at the Aspen Conference, 1951.

Subgroup 79 is a letter from Ansel Adams to Greg Lewis, Department of Journalism, California State University Fresno, April 27, 1981, regarding Secretary of the Interior James Watt.

Subgroup 80 is made up of photocopies of 24 letters from Ansel Adams to Mildred Johnson, 1926-1930.

Subgroup 81 comprises photographs of Polaroid lab and portrait of Edwin Land, circa 1964.

Subgroup 82 contains two off prints of articles by Anne Hammond published in the History of Photography journal, 2006 and 2008.

Subgroup 83 includes condolence letters to Anne Adams Helms, 1984.

Subgroup 84 is a dissertation by Rebecca A Senf, titled Ansel Adams’s “Practical Modernism”: the development of a commercial photographer, 1916-1936, Boston University, 2008.

Subgroup 85 contains three digital contact sheets by Mike Spinelli from Friends of Photography Workshop, Carmel, April 1976.

Subgroup 86 consists of Ansel Adams Piano Recordings from 1945 and 1957; it also includes a DVD of Hike to the Diving Board, Monolith, 1927.

Subgroup 87 is made up of Ansel Adams Piano Recordings from 1945 and 1957.

Subgroup 88 contains “Reproduction of painting by Anne Bremer. Made for Albert M. Bender by Ansel Easton Adams, Christmas, 1930." Poem by Wittner Bynner.

Subgroup 89 comprises study prints from “The Story of a Winery” by Ansel Adams and Pirkle Jones, 1959-1960.

Subgroup 90 is an Apple computer poster, “Think Different” with Ansel Adams and camera, 1997.

Subgroup 91 contains a disc with Ansel Adams ephemera and a powerpoint presentation by Andrew Smith, 2011.

Subgroup 92 is made up of photocopies of letters between Lee Benedict and Ansel Adams, 1945-1946.

Subgroup 93 consists of e-mails from Marion Patterson and Mark Citret to Anne Adams Helms, 2012.

Subgroup 94 contains a notebook with exhibition images, Ansel Adams In Focus by Alan Ross, 2012.

Subgroup 95 is an exhibition pamphlet: Ansel Adams: A San Francisco Heritage, James and Mary Street Alinder, The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, 1987.

Subgroup 96 includes buttons and books in the Ansel and Virginia Adams collection.

Subgroup 97 is an intake form, University of California Medical Center, for Ansel Adams, circa 1982-1983.

Subgroup 98 contains photographs of the 1938 Bracebridge dinner.

Subgroup 99 is a color photograph of Ansel Adam’s piano.

Subgroup 100 contains a thank you card and signed copy of Dave Brubeck’s composition of “Ansel Adams: America” inscribed with “Thank You” to Center for Creative Photography staff from Tish and Chris Brubeck.

Subgroup 101 consists of letters from Adams to Leonard Flory about development of a color process, 1964-1975.

Subgroup 102 is a CD with a song about Ansel Adams.

Subgroup 103 is made up of Yosemite Workshop materials, 1966 and Polaroid memos.

Subgroup 104 comprises exhibition materials from “Ansel Adams: Photographs,” Modern Art Oxford, United Kingdom, April 2 – June 1, 2009.

Subgroup 105 contains two flyers for: “A Friends of Photography Lecture by Ansel Adams, “Personal Perspectives,” 1976.

Subgroup 106 includes materials from Elizabeth Wilcox, a photographer who attended the “Twelve Days at Santa Cruz” workshop, 1967.

Subgroup 107 is a portrait of Ansel and Virginia Adams by Christopher Dant, 1983.

Subgroup 108 comprises Ansel Adams Yosemite Workshop materials, 1982-1983.

Subgroup 109 contains "Photography: The Incisive Art: #2 Points of View," 16mm film, 1959.

Subgroup 110 is a 5x7 inch, black-and-white print of Manzanar Jive Bombers.

Subgroup 111 includes Michael and Anne in the Yosemite Valley, revised edition, published for AA family, 2018.

Subgroup 112 contains two Moonrise “Joke” prints and one Polaroid.


  • 1926-1941, 1940s-1960s, 1962-1998, 2000-2004, 2006-2012, 2018


Language of Materials

Material in English

Conditions Governing Access

To access materials from this collection, please contact

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission from the copyright owner (which could be the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates or literary executors) prior to any copyright-protected uses of the collection.

The user agrees to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless the Arizona Board of Regents, the University of Arizona, Center of Creative Photography, including its officers, employees, and agents, from and against all claims made relating to copyright or other intellectual property infringement

Biographical Note

Famed American photographer Ansel Adams co-founded the Center for Creative Photography in 1975. His was one of five inaugural archives, and it remains a cornerstone of the Center’s fine art and archival collections. Adams’s career spans seven decades and a wide range of subject matter, including portraits, still lifes, architecture, and the landscapes for which he is most famous. Viewers often associate his lifelong environmentalism and advocacy for America’s wilderness places with his dramatic, panoramic photographs that celebrate the redemptive potential of the natural world. Many of his best-known images were made in the American West, including a large group of works made in Yosemite Valley.

Adams first learned about photography and the Sierra Nevada Mountains as a child, on family vacation. His love for the medium and the place grew in tandem, and after his initial 1916 visit, Adams visited Yosemite annually. Originally working in the Pictorialist style, widely popular in the 1910s and 1920s, Adams encountered Paul Strand’s photography in 1930, and rejected his earlier painterly, soft focus style for a new “pure” and sharp focus approach.

In 1932, Adams, Edward and Brett Weston, Imogen Cunningham, Willard Van Dyke, and a handful of other Bay Area photographers came together as Group f/64. They displayed their sharp-focus, modernist style of photography at San Francisco’s DeYoung Museum in an exhibition that stands as a landmark in the history of the medium.

In 1941 Adams was invited by Secretary of the Interior Harold Ickes to photograph the National Parks and to create large-scale mural prints for the new Washington D.C. Interior building. Adams was delighted at the opportunity, but funding for the project was withdrawn following the attack on Pearl Harbor in December of that year, and the large prints were not made. Adams was so invested in the idea of photographing America’s parklands that he applied for the Guggenheim Fellowship to allow further work. He received the grant funding, and expanded the project, creating a book, a portfolio, and many photographs, a body of work that has remained central to his career.


3 Linear Feet

Metadata Rights Declarations

  • License: This record is made available under an Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International Creative Commons license.


Memorabilia, papers, audio tapes, compact disks, and photographic materials, 1947 to the present, relating to the career of Ansel Adams (1902 - 1984), photographer. The collection includes correspondence between Adams and the Polaroid Corporation regarding his books on Polaroid processes; a bound compilation of notices, tributes, and editorials relating to his death; a promotional package by Standard Oil Company entitled Scenic Views containing photographs by Adams and others; proof sheets documenting an early commercial project of 51 prints, circa 1930, done by Adams for Yosemite Park and Curry Company; audio tapes and transcripts of a 1979 interview with Adams; and other materials received from a variety of sources. The collection is active.


The Collection is arranged into the following series:

  1. Box 1 Subgroups 1-10
  2. Box 2 Subgroups 11-16, 22-25, 28, 31, 33-38
  3. Box 3 Subgroups 17, 26, 39-42
  4. Box 4 Subgroups 18 - 21, 27
  5. Box 5 Subgroup 29
  6. Box 6 Subgroup 30
  7. Box 7 Subgroup 32, 45
  8. Box 8 Subgroup 43-44, 46-51, 56
  9. Box 9 Subgroup 52
  10. Box 10 Subgroup 53, 66
  11. Box 11 Subgroup 54-55, 90, 107
  12. Box 12 Subgroups 57-65, 67-69, 71-79
  13. Box 13 Subgroup 70 (tube)
  14. Box 14 Subgroups 80-87, 91-96
  15. Box 15, 16, 17 Subgroup 89
  16. Box 18 Subgroups 97, 101-106
  17. Box 19 Subgroups 98-100
  18. Box 20 Subgroup 109
  19. Box 21 Subgroup 112

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection consists of gifts from a wide variety of different sources. Some restrictions apply.

Related Materials

AG 31, Ansel Adams archive

AG 203, Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust

There are over 2,500 Ansel Adams fine prints in the CCP Fine Prints Collection.

Processing Information

Finding aid was updated by Tai Huesgen in 2021.

Ansel Adams miscellaneous acquisitions collection 1926-1941, 1940s-1960s, 1962-1998, 2000-2004, 2006-2012, 2018
Finding aid created by CCP Archives Staff
© 2020
Description rules
Finding Aid Based On Dacs (Describing Archives: A Content Standard)
Language of description
Script of description
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Finding aid encoded in English

Repository Details

Part of the Center for Creative Photography Archives Repository

1030 N. Olive RD
Tucson Arizona 85721 United States