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The McDonald Collection

Welcome! The Plains Indians & Pioneers Museum is proud to offer the first installment of digital images from the McDonald Collection. These images represent an important view of the history of people, places, and events of this region during the 20th century.

This effort would not have been possible without funding and support from the Oklahoma Historical Records Advisory Board and the Oklahoma Department of Libraries, through funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission of the National Archives and Records Administration.

The McDonald Studio offered photographic services to the people of Northwest Oklahoma and beyond for nearly 70 years. When the studio closed, the entire inventory of prints, slides, and negatives…some 45,000 in number…were turned over to PIPM.

The first 1,000 images include Woodward High School senior photos from the classes of 1967 and 1968; a number of post-World War II family and individual portraits; a handful of weddings; and a few folks who just wanted a portrait made for whatever reason.

Subsequent additions to the archive will be added as we’re able to do them. If you’re interested in providing funding for adding images to the archive, please contact the Museum.

Important Notes on Searching the Archive

The link below will open a PDF Finding Guide on your computer. Using that Finding Guide you will be able to search by name the record you seek. To activate the search feature in the Finding Guide, press Ctrl F (Windows) or Command F (Mac). There is an individual hyperlink to take you to the database where the image is located.

It is important to remember that the McDonald Collection is comprised of very few finished portraits. The vast majority of prints were proofs for the purchaser to view prior to the finished product. Consequently, you may find that the light and exposure of each varies. Following a Museum protocol, we are required to scan prints and negatives just as we find them without altering anything.

The images in the database are low resolution. This keeps the Museum’s costs low. If you desire a high resolution image without the watermark, please contact the Museum with the accession number and we’ll accommodate the request.

If you have trouble with the Finding Guide or have questions regarding the McDonald Collection, feel free to contact the Museum at 580-256-6136.

Enjoy your search!