Time to Find and Save Historic Judicial Photographs
June 30, 2009 by Editor
The Indiana Supreme Court is encouraging judges, citizens, courthouse employees, lawyers, and others related to the legal profession to take stock of their photographic memorabilia. The Court is interested in gathering and preserving historic photographs to tell the story of the Indiana judicial branch.
Several years ago, the Court began collecting historic photographs of county courthouses. The project to document the history of the Indiana judicial branch continues, with the focus shifting to the history of Indiana attorneys and their training. The Court is looking for local bar association composite photos, law school class pictures, and depictions of courthouses and law-related scenes. The Court will create an inventory documenting the existence of significant photographs and will reproduce certain photographs for permanent preservation.
Indiana’s judicial branch has a colorful history that has not always been well documented. A one volume history of the bench and bar appeared in 1896. Justice Leader J. Monks edited a three volume history in 1917. Other works include details and photographs of the judicial branch and prominent members. However, it is clear that a more complete catalog of information needs to be created.
John J. Newman, former Indiana State Archivist and longtime Supreme Court Director of Information Management, is coordinating the program. He is seeking any photographs or related items. Newman uncovered a black and white photograph from about 1900 that includes a who’s who of the Vincennes legal world. Judge Jim Osborne of Knox Superior 2 brought the photograph to Newman’s attention when he learned of the project. Newman explained the importance of the photograph, “This is a significant addition to our collection because group photographs of local bar associations are unusual and from this period quite rare. This photograph illustrates members of the oldest law firm still practicing in Indiana.”
Mr. Newman can be reached via email at email@example.com, by fax at 317-233-6586 or through voicemail at 317-233-3017.