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The Philadelphia Historical Digital Image Library (PHDIL), is a collaborative effort between the Scott Memorial Library of Thomas Jefferson University and The Historical Society of Pennsylvania. PHDIL includes a variety of photographs, art work and portraits among its over 3,000 images.

Founded in 1824, Thomas Jefferson University is Philadelphia’s second oldest medical institution and the nation's largest private medical school. Jefferson's Scott Memorial Library houses the University Archives and Special Collections Department which acquires and preserves manuscripts, photographs, memorabilia, rare books, and university records to document the development of Jefferson and the history of medicine. Jefferson photographs within PHDIL include approximately 750 pre-1945 portraits of alumni, faculty, and trustees; scenes from Blockley and Children’s Rehabilitation Hospitals and military hospitals; views of 19th and early 20th century anatomy/dissection labs; nurses in practice; as well as medical society and class portraits.

Also founded in 1824, The Historical Society of Pennsylvania focuses on colonial, early national, and continuing regional, state, and family history for the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. As an Independent Research Libraries Association (IRLA) member, its collections are a valuable resource for any individual studying the history of the area. PHDIL images from collections at The Historical Society include selections of photoprints documenting Philadelphia hospitals in the early 20th century from the photograph morgue of the Philadelphia Record, photographs of 19th and 20th century hospitals from the Penrose and Society collections, views of everyday life in Philadelphia at the turn of the century from the Gilliams & Stratton collection, and a number of Benjamin Ridgeway Evans watercolor drawings of Philadelphia buildings and streetscapes during the mid 19th century.

Use and Reproduction

Materials located within this website have been made available to the public for use in research and private study. Please provide proper citation of the source on all copies. (Database ID can be found on the results screen of the PHDIL database.)

For other use of these images, such as commercial products, print publication, broadcast, mirroring, reuse on a website or anything else that does not fall under "fair use", we require that you contact us in writing and in advance for permission to reproduce our materials.

TJU Archives Send requests for materials held by Thomas Jefferson University to the University Archivist.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania Send requests for materials held by The Historical Society of Pennsylvania to the Society’s Coordinator for Rights and Reproductions.

Thomas Jefferson University and The Historical Society of Pennsylvania claim only physical ownership of all PHDIL images. Individuals wishing to broadcast or publish this material must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyrights.

PHDIL has been partially funded with federal Library Services and Construction Act (LSCA) funds administered by Commonwealth Libraries.