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Sydney Hunt collection

Identifier: HC.MC-1235

Scope and Contents

These 101 glass slides were probably brought back from Sydney Hunt's trip to Ramallah, Palestine in the 1930s, where he was on assignment for the American Friends Service Committee. Many of the slides have 'C. Raad, professional photographer' on them, as do some boxes, which are titled 'Palestine and Syria.' 13 negatives in the collection were likely created after the trip.


  • Creation: 1930-2004


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical / Historical

C. [Khalil] Raad, the photographer of many of these works, is known as "Palestine's first Arab photographer." He lived from ca. 1854 to 1957, and was active in photography starting in ca. 1890. When his studio, on Jerusalem's Jaffa Road, was threatened by fighting in 1948, an Italian friend sneaked across no-man's-land several times to retrieve Raad's photographic archive. The archive is now preserved in the library of the Institute for Palestine Studies in Beirut.

"The photography of Khalil Raad, which this author has viewed, combines an aesthetic value with an historical importance. In his work, there is nothing "folkloric" as was sometimes the fashion in the work of some photographers who were successful in Europe. On the contrary, his was a vision that showed a considerable sensitivity in its portrayal of daily life. One sees farmers and villages, town scenes all mixed in with portraits of Palestinian fighters, involved since the turn of the century, in the struggle against Zionist colonialism and the British Mandate. It is Raad who conserved for posterity, the features of the patriotic leader, 'Izz al-Din al-Qassam and of Said al-'As and all the men who fought for their native soil. It is Raad who caught the mood of the times with his photographs of villagers and farmers laboring in their fields and orchards, dispelling the myth perpetrated by colonialists in Palestine that it was an empty land peopled only by a few savages."

Source: El-Hage, Badr, "Khalil Raad-Jerusalem Photographer." Jerusalem Quarterly, Winter 2001. Available at: (Accessed October 10, 2011).

Sydney Hunt (1900-?) graduated from Haverford College in 1932, where majored in German, was president of his class in his junior year, and was on the board of the Haverfordian. After graduation, Hunt received a scholarship/grant from the American Friends Service Committee to teach English at the Friends' School for Boys in Ramallah, Palestine. Based on the granting agency, it is believed that Hunt was a Quaker.

Hunt wrote his book, The Joyful Traveler, in the early 1930s about his time traveling the world, including both the Middle East and Germany. By the time it was ready for publication in 1936, the world situation had changed, and publishers didn't believe that the public would be receptive to happy reminiscences about Germany. Hunt held on to the manuscript until 2001, when he began to work on publishing it again. It was finally published in 2003, with his wife the copyright holder (presumably, he had died in the interim). He used some of the slides in this collection to illustrate the book.

Source: Internal evidence, Haverford College yearbook for 1932, and the introduction from Hunt's book, The Joyful Traveler.


2 linear ft. (5 boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection consists of 101 glass lantern slides, taken by Sydney Hunt and C. (Khalil) Raad in the 1930s in Palestine. Sydney Hunt traveled through Palestine and Germany in the 1920s. He purchased some of the slides from Raad, a professional photographer, and took others himself. Also included in this collection is a draft of Hunt's book The Joyful Traveler: Wanderings of Sydney Hunt, 1932-1934, with hand corrections. Hunt had written this manuscript in the 1930s, but by the time he had finished, publishers were not interested in happy recollections about Germany. It was not published, therefore, until 2003. Hunt used a number of the slides and other images in this collection to illustrate the book once it was published.


The Sydney Hunt collection was donated to Special Collections, Haverford College in 2007 by Patricia Hunt.

Related Materials

Haverford College's copy of The Joyful Traveler is in Special Collections. It has exact identifications of many of the slides in this collection.

Processing Information

Processed by Jon Sweitzer-Lamme; completed July, 2011.

Sydney Hunt collection, 1930-2004
Jon Sweitzer-Lamme
July, 2011
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting or requesting repoductions from Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections Library

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Haverford PA 19041 USA US