This exhibition offers a glimpse into the remarkable history and work of the American Colony, a Christian utopian society that formed in Jerusalem in 1881. The photographs, documents, and artifacts exhibited are drawn from a generous gift to the Library of Congress from Valentine Vester and descendants of the founders and leaders of the American Colony community. This archival treasure, which has been preserved for decades, provides a unique record of the history of Jerusalem and the Middle East from the last years of the Ottoman Empire into the present century.
The Library of Congress is grateful to Mrs. Vester and the Board of Directors of the American Colony for donating this collection. In addition, the Library wishes to acknowledge Ruth Victor Hummel for curating this exhibition, George Hintlian for his support and work done with this collection, and photographer Garo Nalbandian for his help in securing some of the images on display.