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The following items are drawn from the Visual Collections archives at the Special Collections Library, University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi (
All images here are © University of Mississippi Libraries. Click on any image to see an enlargement.

Photo Gallery: Martin J. Dain Photographs

These 50 photographs of Oxford, Lafayette County and the Mississippi Delta were all made by Martin J. Dain between 1961 and 1962. Born in Boston, Dain was a thirty-seven year old professional photographer living in New York City - and a passionate admirer of William Faulkner's work - when he decided to travel south to explore "Faulkner's County" with his cameras and his imagination. Between August 1961 and the end of 1962 he made a total of four or five trips, the last two after Faulkner had died. His photos of Faulkner at Rowan Oak - none of which are included here - made the project commercially publishable, but for Dain it was essentially a labor of love. There are almost 9,000 35 mm black and white images in the Martin J. Dain Collection that his estate donated to the University of Mississippi Library. His goal, as he said in the book he published in 1964, was "to evoke some of [the] world" he'd found in the fictions. In other comments about his work he insisted on that distinction: the photographs are not illustrations of the novels and stories, but evocations of the place Faulkner lived in and used as the setting for his art.

Courthouse and monument       Street vendor on the Square       Courthouse Square       Square at night

Law office on Square       Pharmacist       Newspaper editor       Court in session

Shopping in department store       Customers in bank       Patrons in Square diner       Black diner off Square

Thompson-Chandler house       House in Oxford       Antebellum house       Outside Oxford church

Service in black church       Nanny with white children       Rolling a cigarette       Blacksmith and helper

Revival service       Sewing circle       Auctioning a horse       Lumber on train

Horse outside town       Country house       Picking cotton       Country family

Inside country house       Family in cabin       Dogtrot cabin       Family at meal

Corn farmers       Country barn       Country store       Country village

Vocational school       Outside country store       Country store       Salesman and customers

Negro school       Road scene       Cotton gin       Rural creek

Car and wagon       Harnessing mules       Hunting camp, Mississippi Delta       Hunter at tree stand, Mississippi Delta

Parchman work gang       Erosion pattern

SOURCES: Martin J. Dain, Faulkner's Country: Yoknapatawpha (New York: Random House, 1964); Martin J. Dain and Tom Rankin, Faulkner's World: the Photographs of Martin J. Dain (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 1997).

      Citing this source:
Stephen Railton, John Padgett and Laura Wilson, "Photographic Re-presentations of Faulkner's World," Digital Yoknapatawpha, University of Virginia, (Date added to project: 2019)