Henry W. Kendall Photography

Henry W. Kendall Photography Nepal 1986

Henry W. Kendall developed his lifelong interest in photography at an early age, setting up a home darkroom before he entered his teens. In preparatory school he documented his schoolmates’ various activities — for fun and profit — and thereafter carried a camera wherever he went. Over the years he honed both his technical and artistic skills — in the field and in the darkroom — and adapted them to the specific needs of his chosen avocations. Working in various formats — 35 mm to 4×5 sheet film — both in black and white and color, and often doing his own processing, printing, and mounting he accumulated the Henry W. Kendall photography collection.  It contains about 30,000 first-generation images and several thousand prints, including hundreds of matted, captioned and signed black and white images.

Henry W. Kendall photography, Nepal 1990
Nepal 1990

Peru 1960
Cordillera Blanca Peru 1960

Henry W. Kendall Photography Queen Angelfish Florida 1950s
Queen Angelfish Florida 1950s

Coral Reef Virgin Islands 1972
Coral Reef Virgin Islands 1972

Tom Frost Peru 1964
Tom Frost Peru 1964

All first-generation images have been catalogued and archived; each image has been assigned a unique collection identification number and scanned into a database.

The collection of Henry W. Kendall photography has been subdivided into three main categories, each associated with one of Henry’s particular interests: MountaineeringMaritime and Underwater, and People, Places, and Environment.


Peru 1960
Peru 1960

An expert skier and world-class mountaineer, Henry Kendall documented all his climbs , first with simple 35mm equipment, then with medium and large format cameras, and at times with 16mm movie cameras. This category includes approximately 8000 images of Henry W. Kendall photography, detailing expeditions in British Columbia, the Sierras (particularly Yosemite); Peru, Nepal, the French, Italian, and Swiss Alps; and New England; also included are 6 short 16mm films documenting team climbs in Yosemite and Peru.

Maritime and Underwater

Underwater Stroboscope TestingMartha's Vineyard 1950s
Underwater Stroboscope Testing Martha’s Vineyard 1950s

An early fan of scuba diving before commercial equipment became easily available and affordable, Henry Kendall, while still in his teens, used WWII surplus materials, ordinary lumber, plumbing supplies, and other easily procured items to fabricate his own equipment, including waterproof camera housings. Much of his testing was conducted in the MIT swimming pool , and then in the field. The photographic collection includes images of his early experiments, and of underwater life in various parts of the world—New England, the Caribbean, the Pacific,  and Australia.

Also included in this section of the Henry W. Kendall photography collection are images taken on various travels and scientific expeditions to Alaska, Greenland, the Falklands, and Antarctica. This category contains approximately 7000 individual images and several 16 mm films.

People, Places, and the Environment

Targhee Wyoming 1998
Targhee Wyoming 1998

This category includes many aerial photographs illustrating smog patterns in Boston and other US cities—Henry Kendall’s contributions to the Union of Concerned Scientists’ studies of urban pollution in the 1970’s; other aerial photographs document landscape changes in the Sharon, Ma. area over a twenty year period and flights over the Rockies, the Sierras , the California Coast, and many parts of New England. In his later years Henry Kendall participated in hiking expeditions in the Tetons, the Rockies, and Canada ( Baffin Island, Auyuittuq National Park).

Photographs of experimental setups and personnel at Stanford, MIT, Fermilab and CERN; of various astronomical phenomena; of travels to scientific conferences in Japan, the Soviet Union, and the Far East are included in this category.

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