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Nam and the '60s : A Personal American View : Exhibit photographs, 1962-1982 (Bulk, 1962-1975)


269 photographs


The Southern Arizona Photographic Workshop sent the "Nam and the '60s" exhibit photographs to the University of Massachusetts at Boston's William Joiner Center on the Study of War and Social Consequence in April 1989. The collection was transferred to the University Archives and Special Collections in 1991.


The University of Massachusetts at Boston does not own copyright of any of these photographs. The university cannot make copies or lend these images to exhibits off-campus. To do so, individuals must contact the show's curators, Boyd Nicholl and Dick Amerault of the Southern Arizona Photographic Workshop, or the photographer.


In March 1987, Boyd Nicholl and Dick Amerault's exhibit of photographs, entitled "Nam and the '60s: A Personal American View," debuted at St. Lawrence College in Canton, N.Y. Nicholl, an "old hippie," and Amerault, a retired Army sergeant, wanted to bring together people of their generation through photographs by amateur photographers taken of scenes in Vietnam and at home between 1962 and 1975. In 1987-89, the exhibit traveled across the United States, usually in 150, 190, and 250-60 photograph versions. Along with the photographs the exhibit included statements by the photographers about their images. Ninety-three of the photographs were displayed at U.Mass./Boston in the spring of 1988.
The photographers' remarks appear before the inventories of this collection in the notebook in the department. For additional information about the exhibit's creation, effect, contributors, and curators, see the photocopied clippings, which follow the printed version of this introduction. Publicity generated by the curators (including a list of sponsors), a poster, and other material is filed in the archivist's cabinet.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of 269 matted prints used in the "Nam and the '60s" exhibit. The prints are in color and black and white and their mats vary in size from 12x16 to 12x24 inches. Most date from 1962-1975 but there are some taken later (e.g. of the Vietnam Memorial). The images were taken by men and women amateur photographers (soldiers and others) and document the war in Vietnam and, as the publicity stated, the war at home. There are photographs of: U.S. soldier's and U.S. and Vietnamese civilian's daily life (and some death) in Vietnam; Agent Orange effects; peace and other demonstrations, Nixon's inauguration, and the Vietnam Memorial in the United States; and there are some images about race relations.
Six photos taken by Dennis B. McCoy that travelled with the exhibit were returned to the photographer at his request.
There are three finding aids to the photographs, each of which provides similar information but in a different arrangement. The Collection List is the most comprehensive and includes, in print number order, the photographer's name, photograph title, place where and date when the photograph was taken, size, type (black and white or color), and the box where the photograph is stored. Researchers interested in particular photographers should consult the Photographer List, which is in alphabetical order by photographer's last name. There is also a Box List (an inventory of which prints are in each of the 12 boxes), which ends with a list of the missing photographs.
All of this information about these photographs and about the other Joiner Center photograph collections is contained in a Paradox database, which may be searched on-line in the department with staff assistance. The title and place fields may serve as a quasi-subject index.