There are thousands of photographs at the Dorset History Centre, including studio portraits, postcards and aerial photographs.

Searching for a place or person

Many of our collections contain photographs, if you are looking for a particular place or person please search our online catalogue.

Dorset Photographic Archive

Our main photographic collection is the Dorset Photographic Archive (reference: D-DPA). It is arranged alphabetically by town or village. Volunteers have been working to list and package this collection, and the catalogue is available to search online.

The Herbert collection

The Herbert collection (reference: D-HBT) is a vast collection of tens of thousands of photographic negatives, mostly of the Weymouth area in the mid twentieth century. Part of this collection has been digitised and indexed, and work is ongoing. Please contact us if you are interested in using this collection as some of the negatives are not available to view in the search room.

Copyright restrictions

Please be aware that photographs are considered artistic works for copyright purposes, and can remain in copyright for many years after they were produced (typically for 70 years after the death of the photographer). This means that there are restrictions on copying some of the photographs in our collections, or using them in publications.