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The Royal Photographic Society's Historical Group was founded in 1972 to promote knowledge of the history of photography in all its aspects, and to encourage the preservation of photographs, photographic equipment and documents relating to the history of photography. Members are able to use their expertise on the care of the RPS collections.
The Group acts as a forum for all members and non-members world-wide with an interest in photographic history from the early nineteenth to the twenty-first century. Members include historians, academics, museum professionals, auction specialists, collectors, dealers, and general enthusiasts. Their interests range from particular photographers, aesthetic movements, cameras, processes and photographic technology.
Members of the group also sit on the Research, Education and Application of Photography distinctions panel.
The principal activities of the group are:
- The PhotoHistorian. The Group has continuously produced a quarterly publication since 1972. It is now called The PhotoHistorian and contains articles by members, original research, resumes of lectures given to the Group, correspondence and queries from members. Regular Supplements are also produced, containing themed information of great assistance to researchers, social historians and for archivists in dating images, people and events.
- Meetings. These are held in London and elsewhere in the United Kingdom. They generally consist of lectures given by speakers from academia or museums, or by researchers. Details of meetings can be found under the 'Events' section.
- Conferences. The Group has held occasional weekend conferences since 1989 at various locations around the UK. They have been themed on a particular aspect of photographic history and have generally been held in conjunction with other organisations.
- Visits. These are made to places of interest throughout the country and within continental Europe. The Group is able to arrange privileged access to public and private collections.
The Historical Group provides, along with the Society's collection and library, a body of expert knowledge on historical matters. It welcomes enquiries on all aspects of photographic history.
More information is provided at the links on the sidebar, left.