More than 2,000 images and several cameras, each with a unique story, were collected for the Smithsonian from 25 photographers
On September 10, 2001, I flew non-stop from Washington, D.C., to Los Angeles, to attend a photography seminar at the Getty Museum. It never happened. I woke early on September 11 to prepare for a full day's schedule. With the three-hour time difference, it was just after 9:00 a.m. on the East Coast. I turned on the television to see the news of the burning towers of the World Trade Center. Photography -- still and video, film and digital -- allowed us all to be witness to the tragic events of September 11.
Both professional and amateur photographers documented September 11 and its aftermath in the three sites -- New York, Washington, D.C., and Shanksville, Pennsylvania -- and the response to the terrorist attacks in communities around the nation and throughout the world. I worked for the next year and a half to collect examples of these professional and amateur photographs, cameras, and equipment, for the Photographic History Collection at the National Museum of American History. More than 2,000 images and several cameras were collected for the Smithsonian from 25 photographers. Each of the photographers had a unique story to convey with their donation to the collection.