Ansel Adams Landscapes

13 Historic Pictures

Ansel Adams is perhaps the most famous and recognizable photographer in American history. No person surpassed his technical mastery of film photography. Adam’s could take a picture of a white wall, and it would be the greatest picture of a white wall you’ve ever seen. He literally wrote the book on photography. His three tomes, The Camera, The Negative and The Print provide an encyclopedic explanation of film photography.

Adams started his photography career as a 14 year-old on a Yosemite vacation with his family in 1916. Adam’s father gave him a Kodak Brownie camera, and he made his first photographs on that vacation. The next year he returned with a better camera, and in the winter went to work for a photo finisher in San Francisco. By 1927 Ansel had produced his first portfolio of photography of scenes from the Sierra mountains. This first portfolio launched his career, and he would spend the next 60 years creating images of America’s iconic natural areas.

1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Pine trees, snow covered mountains in background, “Burned area, Glacier National Park,” Montana.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “View of valley from mountain, “Canyon de Chelly” National Monument, Arizona.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “The Giant Dome, largest stalagmite thus far discovered. It is 16 feet in diameter and estimated to be 60 million years old. ‘Hall of Giants, Big Room,’ Carlsbad Caverns National Park,” New Mexico.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Taken at dusk or dawn from various angles during eruption. “Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National Park,” Wyoming.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Front view of entrance, “Church, Taos Pueblo National Historic Landmark, New Mexico, 1942.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Full view of cactus with others surrounding, “Saguaros, Saguaro National Monument,” Arizona.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Sheep “Flock in Owens Valley, 1941.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde National Park,”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Roadway, low horizon, mountains, clouded sky, “Near (Grand) Teton National Park.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “”Grand Teton” National Park, Wyoming.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Close-up of leaves, from directly above, “In Glacier National Park,” Montana.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Close in View of Mountain Side, “From Going-to-the-Sun Chalet, Glacier National Park,” Montana.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Photograph from Side of Cliff with Boulder Dam Transmission Lines Above and Colorado River to the Left.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Photograph of Transmission Lines in Mojave Desert Leading from Boulder Dam.”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “Full side view of adobe house with water in foreground, “Acoma Pueblo”
1941-1942. Photograph by Ansel Adams. “”The Tetons – Snake River,” Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming.”

Internment at Manzanar

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1943. “Tom Kobayashi, landscape, south fields, Manzanar Relocation Center.” Photograph by Ansel Adams
16 Ansel Adams’ Photographs of the Shameful Internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII.

On February 19th, 1942, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066. This order led to forced internment of 110,000 Japenese-Americans and Americans of Japanese descent following the bombing of Pearl Harbor by the Empire of Japan on December 7th, 1942. 80,000 of those interned were born in the United States and held United States citizenship. A report by the Carter Administration in 1983 acknowledged that the internment was “race prejudice, war hysteria, and a failure of political leadership.” Fuelled by outrage at the Pearl Harbor attacks and media neurosis, public sentiment favored the internment. Henry McLemore, a columnist during the time wrote:

“I am for immediate removal of every Japanese on the West Coast to a point deep in the interior. I don’t mean a nice part of the interior either. Herd ’em up, pack ’em off and give ’em the inside room in the badlands. Let ’em be pinched, hurt, hungry and dead up against it …”

In 1943, the American photographer Ansel Adams traveled to the Manzanar Relocation Center. According the National Park Service, the Manzanar camp had a “peak [population] of 10,046 in September 1942. When gifting the photographs to the Library of Congress Adams wrote:

“All in all, I think this Manzanar Collection is an important historical document, and I trust it can be put to good use…The purpose of my work was to show how these people, suffering under a great injustice, and loss of property, businesses and professions, had overcome the sense of defeat and despair by building for themselves a vital community in an arid (but magnificent) environment.”

Vintage Photographs on Photistoric.

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1943. “C.T. Hibino, artist, Manzanar Relocation Center.” Photograph by Ansel Adams
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1943.”Manzanar street scene, winter, Manzanar Relocation Center.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Line crew at work in Manzanar.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Kay Kageyama.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “High school recess period, Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Mrs. Kay Kageyama.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Farm, farm workers, Mt. Williamson in background, Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Entrance, Catholic chapel (V), Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Loading bus, leaving Manzanar for relocation, Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Birds on wire, evening, Manzanar Relocation Center.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Benji Iguchi driving tractor, Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Miss Tetsuko Murakami.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Sam Bozono (Policeman).” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Cattle in south farm, Manzanar Relocation Center, California.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.
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1943. “Roy Takeno reading paper in front of office.” Photograph by Ansel Adams.

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