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Digital Collections : Caufield & Shook Collection

Caufield & Shook Collection

About the Collection

In 1903 James Caufield and Frank W. Shook founded the eponymous photography studio in Louisville, Kentucky. Will Bowers later joined the firm as a partner and chief photographer. Few aspects of life in Louisville escaped the lens of Caufield & Shook, whose company motto was "We photograph ANYTHING, day or night." The collection includes work for Louisville architects, builders, banks and financial houses, wholesale and retail merchants, advertisers, government agencies, public utilities, and private individuals. In 1924 Caufield and Shook became the official photographer of the Kentucky Derby.

The firm was sold to Richard N. Duncan and Ned Tanselle in 1960 and went out of business in 1978. The studio's negatives were donated to the University of Louisville Photographic Archives beginning in 1968.The Caufield & Shook Collection contains over half a million negatives and 2,000 vintage prints.

Thousands of books, newspapers, magazines, and television programs have used Caufield and Shook photographs as illustrations. The images appearing in the digital collection had already been scanned due to their demand for publications or exhibits. The digital collection will be updated in phases as groups of scans are cataloged and completed. Eventually, it is our hope that digital versions will be available for all unique original negatives and prints, excluding duplicates, copy negatives, and images of particularly poor quality.

About the Cataloging

Information about the images was gleaned in many cases from the invoice records of the Caufield & Shook firm (held by the University of Louisville Photographic Archives). When the invoice number is known, that information, along with the person or company who placed the order, has been included in the Invoice Information field of the digital image record. Original dates were supplied by the invoices; additional original dates are based on the sequence of identifying numbers assigned to the negatives, which are recorded in the Item Number field of the digital image record.

Conditions of Use

The University of Louisville welcomes fair use of this website and its contents. To link to the digital version, use its Reference URL (found by following the link in the header above the digital file). If you wish to publish, broadcast, or publicly display a higher resolution of these materials, please notify Archives and Special Collections. In addition, it is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions, which may include paying fees for commercial use. For further information about permissions, use, and ordering reproductions, see Order Reproductions, or contact Archives and Special Collections, University of Louisville.

To cite an image from this collection, please use the format:

[Image Number], Caufield & Shook Collection, Photographic Archives, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky.

To cite the digital version, add its Reference URL (found by following the link in the header above the digital file).


The Caufield & Shook Collection was scanned on Epson Expression and Microtek flatbed scanners under the supervision of Bill Carner and Marcy Werner for orders made through University of Louisville's Photographic Archives starting in 2000, and more systematically by Hao Nguyen, Beverly Granger, Elijah Eisert, and others. Some cropping and rotating was done using Photoshop. Rachel I. Howard, Heather Fox, and Rebecca Pattillo converted the TIFFs into JPEGs of 600 pixels on the long side, using IrfanView, and uploaded the JPEGS into CONTENTdm.

Rebecca Pattillo, Terri Holtze, Heather Fox, Kyna Herzinger, Jennifer Oberhausen, Amy Hanaford Purcell, Marcy Werner, and Pam Yeager researched and created metadata for the Caufield & Shook Collection in accordance with the University of Louisville Digital Initiatives data dictionary (PDF) and based in part on information gathered by Andy Anderson, Delinda Stephens Buie, Bill Carner, Amy Hanaford Purcell, Hugh Foshee, Megan Stivers, Carrie Daniels, Rachel Howard, Elizabeth Reilly, and others over the years in the Photographic Archives, Archives & Special Collections, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky. Terri Holtze also designed the HTML pages. The curtain image used on the homepage was photographed by faria! and used in accordance with its Creative Commons license.


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