Four HBCUs Gets Photo Archival Grant From Getty Images

Denny’s joins Getty Images and nonprofit Stand Together in a project to digitize the archive photo collections of HBCUs

Archival photograph of the main building of Claflin University, Orangeburg, South Carolina available in the Library of Congress, taken in 1899.

Four historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) have received a grant from a project by Getty Images and Stand Together to digitize their archival photos. Denny’s, the popular restaurant chain, has also joined the project and pledged to provide stipends to students who will be chosen to work in the program. Claflin University, Jackson State University, North Carolina Central University and Prairie View A&M University will receive half-million dollars for the project, on top of the stipend that Denny’s will provide.

Students, historians, and archivist from these HBCUs will be working with a team from Getty Images on this project. They will focus on researching, restoring, and digitizing photographs in each HBCU. “This new grant series offers HBCUs the opportunity to digitize their valuable visual history for the benefit of students, professors and the public— increasing access to unique imagery and bringing awareness to untold stories,” the “Getty Images Photo Archive Grants for HBCUs” project website states. HBCUs will retain full copyright of the original, and digitized photos, according to a press statement. The digital images will also be made available for licensing through Getty’s extensive library and will provide an additional revenue stream for the HBCUs.

Statue of North Carolina Central University’s founder, James E. Shepard. Photo courtesy of RDUpedia.
Archival descriptive sketch of the Jackson College, today Jackson State University, in 1899.
Archival photo of Prairie View A&M University’s campus, circa 1876. Photo courtesy of Prairie View A&M University.

Denny’s and Getty will be formally announcing their partnership during a panel on August 8, 2022 at the currently on going Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival. “This project is very much aligned with Denny’s long-standing commitment to HBCUs,” Brenda Lauderback, Denny’s board chairperson, said in a press statement. “We know preserving these images and supporting students is one of the ways we are investing in our nation’s future leaders.” Cassandra Illidge, vice president of content and brand partnerships at Getty Images, said that they are looking forward to working with Denny’s. “This grant was created to support the work that all HBCUs have been doing to preserve their photo archives. Denny’s has supported HBCUs for several years, it is a pleasure to have Denny’s join the HBCU Grants Program as a partner in support of students and their opportunity to see a new potential career path,” she said. 

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