Photographic treasures find permanent home at UC Santa Cruz

To: The Campus Community

From: Chancellor George Blumenthal

An extraordinary collection of photographs documenting California in the mid-20th century has found a permanent home at UC Santa Cruz, establishing the campus as a tremendous resource for scholars of history, photography, and social documentation.

In the largest single gift in campus history, valued at $32 million, the Marin Community Foundation has donated The Pirkle Jones and Ruth-Marion Baruch Collection to UC Santa Cruz. The collection consists of thousands of images by Jones and Baruch, as well as their contemporaries and collaborators Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, Edward Weston, and Minor White.

Jones and Baruch are well-known for their documentary-style work and portraiture, particularly a series of images of Haight Ashbury in 1967, the Black Panthers in 1968, and the Napa Valley community of Berryessa Valley in 1956, when dam construction displaced residents of the town.

Jones, who passed away in 2009, forged a deep connection with this campus when he and Ansel Adams taught a photography workshop here in 1969. This gift builds on his donation in 2003 of a smaller collection of photographs and his personal papers.

I had the pleasure of meeting Jones during a campus visit some years back. A spirited man, he appreciated the energy of this campus, its natural beauty, and its roots during a time of transformational social change. It is an honor to receive this collection and make it available to scholars and the public.

I want to thank and congratulate our colleagues in the University Library and University Relations who made this day possible. The full story is available on our News & Events site, and a slideshow of images is available online.