Monument Photography

Photographing monuments was soon to be adopted by the Department of Arts and Sciences, established in 1875 by the Ministry of the Interior, and the precursor of the Rijksdienst voor de Monumentenzorg.

In the period before 1900 many photographs were made for reports written in response to requests for advice. In many cases they were made by photographers resident in the area.

From 1900 onwards a start was made with the inventory and scientific description of the national monument heritage. Photography is now carried out under the control of the department, and the photo collection begins to grow steadily, also as a result of donations.

In 1920 the Rijksbureau voor de Monumentenzorg owns about 4500 negatives, in 1940 the number has grown to about 20.000. Until the end of the nineteenforties the negatives were almost without exception glass plates.

Until recently, the glass plates were stored away in the original black boxes with copper rings. For The Memory part of the glass plate negatives have been cleaned and repackaged in clean, safe boxes. Thus the preservation of these negatives has been better secured.