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BEALS, Jessie Tarbox

Born
Hamilton, Ontario, 1870
Died
New York, United States, 1942
Biography synopsis
Beals lived in Canada until she was 17, when she moved to Williamsburg, Massachusetts to work as a teacher. In 1888 she won her first camera in a contest, and a few years later Beals supplemented her income by taking photographs. In 1897 she married Alfred Beals with whom she worked as an itinerant photographer in New England. Beals was one of the first woman staff photographers for the Buffalo Courier of Buffalo, New York in 1902. Two years later she was the first woman to gain press credentials to the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis, Missouri. The following year the Beals moved to New York where they opened a photography studio. Beals' portraits were unique in that she deployed the sharp focus of news photographers. In 1917, after divorcing her husband, she opened Village Art Gallery in Greenwich Village where she began to photograph the streets and people, as well as the poor of New York City, particularly their children. In 1928 she moved briefly to California to photograph the wealthy of Hollywood, but eventually moved back to Greenwich Village where she lived until her death. Her work was included in major exhibitions in Toronto in 1921, and in Buffalo in 1922, and since her death has been included in several New York exhibitions. Beals also wrote poetry and published a book of poems, entitled "Songs of a Wanderer".
Media used
Photography
File & Archive locations
New York Historical Society Museum and Library
Harvard University, MA - Schlesinger Library
Columbia University, NY - Butler Library
International Center of Photography, NY
Cornell University, NY - Kroch Library Rare & Manuscripts
University of Pennsylvania Library
Winterthur Library, DE
Canadian Women Artists History Initiative Documentation Centre, QC
BIBLIOGRAPHY

Writings about
"Ever Meet Jessie Tarbox Beals?" Saint Louis Republic 20 Feb. 1920: 2.
"First Behind the Camera: Photojournalist Jessie Tarbox Beals." Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Harvard University, 2011
http://www.radcliffe.edu/about/news/2011tarbox-beals.aspx.
"Jessie Beals Dies: Photographer, 71." New York Times 31 May 1942: 39.
"Miss Jessie Tarbox Beals' Adventures as a Traveling Photographer." Washington Post 21 Jan. 1906: 8.
"The Camera Has Opened a New Profession for Women - Some of Those Who have Made Good." New York Times 20 Apr. 1913: X12.
Alland, Alexander. "Cameras and Corsets: Jessie Tarbox Beals, the First Lady Journalist." Modern Photography 26.9 (Sept. 1968): 68-69.
Alland, Alexander. "Jessie Tarbox Beals: Pioneering Woman Press Photographer." American Photographer 1 (Aug. 1978): 52-59.
Alland, Alexander, Sr. Jessie Tarbox Beals: First Woman News Photographer New York: Camera Graphic Press, 1978.
Bindman, Catherine. "Jessie Tarbox Beals: On Assignment." Art on Paper 5.1 (Sept. - Oct. 2000): 83-84.
Brannan, Beverly W. "Jessie Tarbox Beals (1870-1942): Biographical Essay." The Library of Congress January 2011
http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/coll/womphotoj/bealsessay.html.
Browne, Turner, and Elaine Partnow. Macmillan Biographical Encyclopedia of Photographic Artists and Innovators. New York: Macmillan, 1983.
Fox, Timothy J. From the Palaces to the Pike: Visions of the 1904 World's Fair. Saint Louis, Missouri: Missouri Historical Society Press, 1997.
Glueck, Grace. "Women who Focused Lenses on Old New York." New York Times 4 Apr. 2003: E 38.
Goldberg, Vicki. "A Pioneer in a Man's World, She was Tough Enough." New York Times 23 Jun. 2000.
Hannavy, John, ed.. Encyclopedia of Nineteenth-Century Photography. New York: Routledge, 2008.
Heller, Jules and Nancy. North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century. New York: Garland, 1995.
Mann, Margery. Women of Photography. San Francisco: San Francisco Museum of Art, 1975.
Matthews, George R. America's First Olympics: The St. Louis Games of 1904 Columbia, Missouri: University of Missouri Press, 2005.
Moenster, Kathleen. "Jessie Beals: Official Photographer of the 1904 World's Fair." Gateway Heritage 3.2 (1982): 22-29.
Ramirez, Jan Seidler. "Beals' Bohemians": Greenwich Village Through the Lens of Jessie Tarbox Beals New York: Museum of the City of New York, 1994.
Rosenblum, Naomi. A History of Women Photographers. New York: Abbeville, 2000.
Sullivan, Constance, ed.. Women Photographers New York: Abrams, 1990.
Thomas, Margaret Frances. Through the Lens of Experience: American Women Newspaper Photographers Austin: The University of Texas at Austin, 2007.
Wexler, Laura. Tender Violence: Domestic Visions in an Age of U.S. Imperialism Chapel Hill, North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 2000.

Writings by
Beals, Jessie Tarbox. Songs of a Wanderer. New York: 1928.
Beals, Jessie Tarbox. "Summer Salads." Harper's Bazaar 46.7 (Jul. 1912): 358.

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