Icelandic and Faroese Photographs of Frederick W. W. Howell


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At the end of the nineteenth century, the British artist, photographer and traveler Frederick W.W. Howell, F.R.G.S., recorded Icelandic and Faroese landscapes, farmsteads, towns and people in a remarkable series of photographs that depicted Iceland and the Faeroe Islands on the edge of modernity. Daniel Willard Fiske, who bequeathed the Fiske Icelandic Collection to Cornell University, purchased over 400 prints from Howell around the turn of the century. Halldór Hermannsson, the collection’s first curator, mounted the prints around 1923 in six albums and supplied the prints with captions. (A small group of photographs includes the work of Henry A. Perkins, an American, and Magnús Ólafsson, an Icelander.) In late 2000, a researcher in Iceland requested digital scans of 95 of these photographs for a book on Howell. This rather large request stimulated interest in digitizing the photographs held in the Fiske Collection, thereby making the images available via the Internet and greatly facilitating provision of printed copies for research and publication.

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Fiske Icelandic Collection

Cornell University Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections Cornell University Library

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