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William W DuBois photographic collection on SPAS 100th anniversary

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: RITArc-0191

Scope and Contents

The William W DuBois photographic collection on the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences(SPAS) 100th anniversary contains multiple size prints and negatives donated by faculty and alumni from the school for the 100th anniversary celebration in 2003, and collected by Bill DuBois. Photos document faculty members, school events, and guest photographers who visited the school over the years. CD's contain powerpoint presentations of digital photographs assembled for the occasion. Other discs contain photographs, most from their years at RIT, taken by SPAS faculty and students such as Andrew Davidhazy, Neil Croom, Les Stroebel, Richard Zakia and David Spindel.


  • Creation: 2003


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Biographical / Historical

The School of Photographic Arts and Sciences is nationally recognized for excellence in career-oriented photographic educational programs. The first documented photography class at RIT occurred in 1903. A formal photography program began in 1930, formed at the request of industrial photographic interests in the Rochester area. The first faculty member, Frederick F. Brehm, an Eastman Kodak scientist was quickly followed by C.B. Neblette, also from Kodak. They both taught part-time in the Photography Technology Program. In response to the students interest in pursuing professional photography careers, two more faculty with were added in 1936:Wallis Dobbs and Charles Savage. Both brought years of experience running their own professional photography studios. Howard Colton and Silas Thronson joined the faculty in 1939, bringing expertise in color photography and photographic chemistry. In the 1950s, faculty Ralph Hattersley, Neil Croom, Charlie Arnold and Minor White brought a fine arts focus to the curriculum. The school started to award a BFA degree and an MFA degree in the late 1950s in three programs: Professional Photography, Photographic Illustration and Photographic Science and Instrumentation. In 1960 the school was renamed the School of Photography and in 1966 underwent a final name change to the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences to reflect the turn towards art photography. In 1960 there were 400 students and 20 faculty. The expansion of programs has continued unabated.

Bill DuBois joined the faculty of SPAS in 1974. Professor DuBois held a variety of positions in the school during his career including program chair for five different degree programs. In 2003 he was Administrative Chair of the school. As a professor at the school, he taught architectural photography. He retired in 2011. He is the co-owner and operator of Images & Ideas, a business that was started in 1986.


2.6 Linear Feet (2 cartons)




Photographic materials documenting 100 years of the School of Photographic Arts (SPAS) and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Photo professor William DuBois collected donations from other SPAS faculty and staff for the anniversary celebration in 2003. The collection includes photographic prints of all sizes dating from the 1940's to 2003, documentation of the anniversary celebration in print and on disc and CDs. Other formats included are Sony DVCAM, mini DV, audiocassette tapes, and slides.


The collection is arranged by material type.

Other Finding Aids

In addition to this finding aid, an inventory is available below. For more information, please contact the RIT Archive Collections.

William DuBois photographic collection on SPAS’s 100th anniversary

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was donated to RIT Archive Collections by Bill DuBois in 2011. Accession number(s): 2011:057


  • "History of the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences," prepared in honor of the 50th Anniversary of the founding of that school (1930-1980) by Professor William Soule Shoemaker. Typescript, 1980?
  • Stuart, Nancy M. The History of Photographic Education in Rochester, New York, 1960-1980. Thesis (Ph.D.), State University of New York at Buffalo, 2005.

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Jody Sidlauskas in August 2011.

William W DuBois photographic collection on SPAS 100th anniversary
RIT Archives
Jody Sidlauskas
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • 5/30/2023: Moved Deed of Gift forms from 1/2 document box in stacks to the control files for PII privacy. jmr

Repository Details

Part of the RIT Archives Repository

Rochester NY 14623 USA