Dr. Darrell Clayton Crain Jr. Photograph Collection

Dr. Darrell Clayton Crain Jr. Photograph Collection

Finding Aid

Collection No. P35
D.C. Community Archives


The Dr. Darrell C. Crain Jr. Photograph Collection was donated to the Library by Barbara Crain Rollinson and Alice R. Makl, daughter and granddaughter of the late Dr. Crain on June 2, 2015.     


Native Washingtonian and lifelong resident of Washington, D.C., Dr. Darrell Clayton Crain Jr. (1910-1995) dedicated 50 years of his life to the practice of medicine. After graduating from the George Washington University School of Medicine and completing residency at Emergency Hospital, Dr. Crain served as Medical Officer at Walter Reed General Hospital before entering private practice in 1937. Notable achievements in his field include co-founding the Arthritis Rehabilitation Center in Washington, founding of the Rheumatology Clinic at Georgetown University Hospital, serving in professional and civic societies, and writing several books.  Dr. Crain was a rheumatologist by profession and photographer by hobby. While in his home of Washington, D.C. and traveling the country and abroad, he documented his experiences on film, leaving behind vibrant, color photographs that give a vivid glimpse of the past. From family vacations to the aftermath of the 1968 riots in Washington, D.C. to professional travel in Monaco, Dr. Crain captured candid and intimate historical moments over the span of four decades.


The slides were removed from their original boxes. Each box of slides was assigned a title, then corresponding slides were placed into individual acid-free compartments and stored in an archival box. The box was then placed in the DC Community Archives for long-term storage. Digital scans of the slides were created by Alice R. Makl and transferred to DC Public Library on a flash drive.  The high resolution jpegs were ingested into the archival repository and cataloged for publication in the public digital collections website, Dig DC.


The collection consists of 270 Kodachrome and Ektachrome slides, 3 empty Ektachrome boxes, and one original 8x10 black and white photograph, as well as 275 digital surrogates of all of the analog images donated and several family photographs of Crain and his homes which the library only received digitally. The photographs document daily life in the Washington, DC area, Dr. Crain’s travels around the U.S. and abroad, and important events.  Events depicted include the March on Washington, the Resurrection City protests, the 1776 United States bicentennial celebration, 1965 and 1977 presidential inauguration parades, and the aftermath of the 1968 riots.  Sites photographed around the Washington area include Glen Echo Park, Georgetown University and Georgetown University Hospital, the Tidal Basin during Cherry Blossom season, the National Mall, 14th Street, Northminster Presbyterian Church, and other sites and statues around D.C.  Locations of photography outside of Washington include Duke University, Nevada, Hershey, Pennsylvania, Chatham, Massachusetts, Maine, Upstate New York, Vermont, Death Valley, the western United States, Bermuda and Monaco.


Box 1

  • 1949 April, Tidal Basin Cherry Blossoms
  • 1950, Children's Day at Northminster Presbyterian Church
  • 1950 June, Glen Echo Park Crystal Pool
  • 1954, Christmas, Georgetown University Hospital
  • 1955-1958, Georgetown University Construction of St. Mary's Hall
  • 1956, October Duke University Homecoming, Durham, North Carolina
  • 1958, Cherry Blossoms and Easter Monday, Tidal Basin and White House
  • 1958, Nevada, Las Vegas and Hoover Dam
  • 1960, Bermuda, Hamilton and various other locations
  • 1963, August 28, Civil Rights March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom
  • 1965, Inauguration Parade for President Lyndon Johnson
  • 1965, June, Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania
  • 1965, Razing Stoneleigh Court Apartments, Connecticut Ave. NW
  • 1966, Big Snow
  • 1966 April, Tents in Lafayette Square
  • 1966, Western USA, Utah and Colorado
  • 1968, aftermath of DC Riots following assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • 1968, Resurrection City and Solidarity Day
  • 1973, Monaco
  • 1975, New Orleans (Jackson Square and French Quarter)
  • 1976, Bicentennial Fireworks on the National Mall
  • 1976 August, Chatham, Massachusetts
  • 1977, Inauguration Parade for President Jimmy Carter
  • 1977, Maine and Upstate NY (Bar Harbor, Maine, Ausable Chasm, NY, Mirror Lake, NY)
  • 1978 March, Death Valley National Park, California
  • 1988 October, Vermont (Plymouth and Woodstock, Vermont)
  • 1989 January, Statuary in Washington, DC
  • Residences of Dr. Darrell C. Crain Jr. (digital only for 1919, 1926, and 1941 images)
Other Material:
  • A selection of original slide boxes labeled in Crain's hand for exhibition purposes

Box 2            

  • One original 8x10 black and white photograph taken in the living room of Dr. Crain’s home at 1619 Roxanna Road NW, Washington, D.C. during an organizational meeting of the DC Rheumatism Society on June 4, 1946. 

Compiled by Ayana Reed, Library Associate, August 2015

DC Public Library, Special Collections
D.C. Community Archives

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