This collection consists of 612 gelatin silver prints, 8 x 10 inch and smaller, by Milton Rogovin. The prints in this collection are predominantly from the photographer’s Appalachia, Family of Miners, Working People, and Lower West Side series. Included are some diptychs and triptychs, but also single prints from incomplete diptychs and triptychs. The prints are organized by series, therein organized by geographic region (Family of Miners) or company name (Working People). Related collections: 2008_017 contains 35 prints from Rogovin’s Appalachia series and 2016_016 contains related Rogovin exhibition and book materials.
Milton Rogovin (1909-2011) was a social documentary photographer who focused his camera on the poor, impoverished, working people of the world. Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Rogovin attended Columbia University and received a degree in optometry. Rogovin worked as an optometrist in Buffalo, New York until his interest in communism to improve the life of the working class led to a call before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1957. With his business ruined as a result of the accusations, Rogovin turned to photography and strove to use his camera as a tool for social change.
Along with his wife Anne, Milton Rogovin photographed in and around impoverished neighborhoods and factories of Buffalo, New York. The couple also travelled extensively, first to Appalachia to photograph workers and the unemployed, and then around the world photographing miners both at work and at home. Rogovin earned a Master of Arts in American Studies from the University of Buffalo where he also taught documentary photography, and received the W. Eugene Smith Award for Documentary Photography in 1983.
The Library of Congress holds Rogovin’s original negatives and contact sheets as well as prints, correspondence, and photographs taken during World War II. The master collection of Rogovin’s original prints are held at the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, Arizona.
Milton Rogovin photographs, 2013_019-PA. University of Louisville Archives and Special Collections. https://archivescatalog.library.louisville.edu/repositories/2/resources/386 Accessed August 04, 2020.