Political photographs have been in high demand since the creation of photography. This desire is most likely rooted in the practice of producing renderings of political leaders throughout history. Ancient Greeks had busts carved from stone, early Roman emperors each introduced their own currency with their face etched into the coins, medieval kings had large lavish portraits of themselves wearing royal regalia produced, etc. All in the aim to put a powerful and undeniable face to the name who ruled over the people. In the early days of photography, the new medium was no different and was mainly used for portraits, especially due to the slow shutter speed of early cameras. Pictures of politicians, military commanders, and even American-Indian chiefs were especially coveted, as early photographers aimed to immortalize the leaders and most important individuals in our society for the generations to come. Underwood and Underwood was heavily involved in political photography, especially due to their Washington D.C. office, which was heavily involved in portraits. The company was also notably involved in photographing U.S. presidents and foreign diplomats. In this section you will find photographs of such politicians and diplomats, including multiple photographs of President Hoover.
This page is part of the Underwood and Underwood News Photography digital exhibit produced by Jordan M. Ritchie for the UMBC Special Collections Archives. To enlarge individual photographs and access further information about each of them, please click directly of the photograph itself. To return to the home page, press the yellow UNDERWOOD AND UNDERWOOD selection in the black and yellow toolbar above the title of this page. You may also browse the different types of photographs within this exhibit by selecting the other yellow options within said toolbar.