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Dow Chemical Company Historical Image Collection


Held at: Science History Institute Archives [Contact Us]315 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Science History Institute Archives. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

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Based in Midland, Michigan, the Dow Chemical Company was incorporated by Herbert H. Dow in 1897. In its early years, the Dow Chemical Company specialized in the commercial manufacture and sale of bleach based on Herbert Dow's new and more efficient "blowing out" process for extracting bromine from brine. Amidst the outbreak of World War I and shortage of German-manufactured chemicals, the company expanded into the production of calcium chloride, magnesium metal, acetyl salicylic acid, and other chemicals and established its first research laboratory in 1919. In the ensuing decades, Dow flourished as a manufacturer of magnesium and synthetic rubber during World War II, as well as innovative consumer products like Saran Wrap. Today, Dow is a multinational corporation manufacturing and selling a large variety of chemical, plastic, and agricultural products to industry and consumers alike.

For a more detailed inventory, please view this record in our library catalog:

This collection is Section 10 of the Dow Chemical Historical Collection formerly housed at the Post Street Archives in Midland, Michigan and consists of photographs and slides depicting the facilities, operations, and products of the Dow Chemical Company. The images primarily date from the second half of the twentieth century, with the bulk of materials created between 1963 and 1986. The majority of the collection consists of photographs of Dow personnel and products, both of which are arranged alphabetically by the subject of the photograph. Photographs from Dow{u2019}s Ludington Plant, including images of laboratories, plant facilities, and staff activities, also make up a significant portion of the collection. Glass and 35mm slides from various company events and presentations, along with corresponding scripts, form a small subset of materials within the larger collection.

Forms part of the Dow Chemical Historical Collection, 1897-2006 (bulk 1900-1990); Gift of the Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation, 2008.

A small portion of this collection has been digitized and is available online in our Digital Collections:

Source of acquisition--Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation. Method of acquisition--Gift; Date of acquisition--2008.

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