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Studio portraits of members of the American Colony (Jerusalem), friends, and associates

Studio portraits of members of the American Colony (Jerusalem), friends, and associates



Photographs show members of the American Colony, a Christian community in Jerusalem founded by immigrants from the United States and Sweden. Included are Anna Spafford with daughters Grace (Spafford) Whiting and Bertha (Spafford) Vester, Grace (Spafford) Whiting with Esrohee Krikorian, John D. Whiting and his sister Ruth with Flora (Naseef) Page, Grace (Spafford) Whiting, and Bertha (Spafford) Vester; David Whiting, Spafford Whiting, Jacob Spafford, adopted son of Horatio and Anna Spafford; Nellie (Nannie) with Horatio, Tanetta, and Anna Grace Vester; and portraits of the Spafford children who died in the shipwreck of the S.S. Ville de Havre in 1873. Also included are Faidi al-Alami (mayor of Jerusalem, 1906-1909) with his two children Na'amite and Musa Bey, Juad Husseini, Mary Hornstein, and two unidentified men wearing fezes.
Some of the photographs were created by the photographers of the American Colony Photo Department, located in Jerusalem. Founded in the late 1890s by Elijah Meyers, the photo agency was headed during its heyday (ca. 1903-1933) by Lewis Larsson, whose staff photographers included Erik Lind, Lars Lind, Furman Baldwin, and G. Eric Matson. It transitioned into the Matson Photo Service around 1940, with photography by Matson, Hanna Safieh, Joseph H. Giries, and others. John D. Whiting contributed periodically to the work of both agencies. For more information see: and
Other photographers include Garabed Krikorian, Jerusalem; Harold Climo, St. John, New Brunswick; and Wilson, Chicago.
Album unpaginated, album page numbers supplied by Library staff. Pages 4-6, 13, and 24 are blank.
Album has brown leather cover with embossed leaf pattern.
Photographs include gelatin silver and albumen prints. Some are on cabinet card mounts.
LOT title devised by Library staff.
John D. Whiting's diaries, correspondence, and other materials are located in the Library of Congress Manuscript Division (Papers of John D. Whiting).
Forms part of: Visual materials from the papers of John D. Whiting (Library of Congress).
Transfer; Manuscript Division; 2006; (DLC/PP-2006:051:18)

American Colony, a non-denominational utopian Christian community was founded by a small group of American expatriates in Ottoman Palestine in 1881. The collection is a gift to the Library of Congress from the board of directors of the American Colony of Jerusalem, Ltd., which is made up of American, British, and Swedish descendants of the early colonists. The materials in the collection were initially retained by Bertha Vester in connection with her writing of the memoir Our Jerusalem (1950), and later by her daughter-in-law Valentine Vester and others at the American Colony Hotel. The collection focuses on the personal and business life of the colony from the waning years of the Ottoman Empire, through World War I and the British Mandate, and into the formation of the state of Israel. The bulk of the materials dates from 1870 to 1968 and relates to the leadership of the colony by members of the Spafford, Vester, and Whiting families.





American Colony (Jerusalem). Photo Department, photographer


Firʻim (Palestine)32.59000, 33.17867
Google Map of 32.59, 33.17866666666667


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