Portrait Studios

Metro Detroit Portrait Studios

Thanks to the dedicated efforts of volunteer, Richard Luszczyk, we can present to you the names and addresses of portrait studios that may have served your family in years gone by as they were presented in the Detroit City Directories from 1875-1941. The project was broken down into 2 sections covering the years 1875-1918 and 1920-1941, not inclusive as some directory years were inaccessible. So, should you have professional photos on hand that have the name and address of the portrait studio, you may now gain a better idea of the era in which the photo was taken; and, perhaps more easily identify the subject(s).

Directory of Early Michigan Photographers — David V. Tinder
Edited by Clayton A. Lewis
Copyright © 2013 David V. Tinder; William L. Clements Library,
University of Michigan

The Directory of Early Michigan Photographers, compiled over several decades, identifies virtually every known commercial and significant amateur photographer that worked in the state of Michigan from the first known appearances in the 1840s into the early twentieth century. The author, David V. Tinder, is recognized as the top authority on early Michigan photography. Tinder’s work sets a new standard for inclusiveness, scope, and detail for directories of this type. While a dearth of information has kept some entries brief, the lives of many have been traced “from the cradle to the grave,” as Dave likes to say. With over 8,000 records, the Directory stands as an unsurpassed resource for historians, collectors, curators, archivists, genealogists, and anyone interested in the early history of photography in the United States.

Early Photography — Library of Michigan Online Collection

Vintage Photos
Former volunteers from the Polonica Americana Research Institute (PARI) helped to gather and digitize vintage photos brought in by patrons or collected from the campus of Orchard Lake Schools in order to share works created by various metro Detroit studios.