Encyclopedia Brunoniana

Photographic Laboratory

The Photographic Laboratory (Photo Lab) was established in 1939, primarily for the enlargement and dissemination of Brown’s mathematical library, already one of the best in the world. On June 9, 1939, the Rockefeller Foundation agreed “to appropriate up to $49,000 to Brown University for expenses of installing a Microfilm Photographic Laboratory, and of supplementing through filming the resources of the Library in the field of mathematics during the period ending June 30, 1944.” The old infirmary at 10 Manning Street was altered and equipped and began the filming of back numbers of mathematical journals. The next project to be undertaken was the filming of the resources of the University in early Latin American materials. When the Photo Lab first opened, it was pointed out that the laboratory would not be confined to developing the mathematical library, but would also serve the entire University, which it has continued to do. The Photo Lab was located at 70 Waterman Street from 1952 until 1975, when it moved next door to the Cabinet.