Biblical Archaeology Review 43:2, March/April 2017

Strata: Million-Dollar Jerusalem Photos

A collection of photographs that gives a snapshot of the Holy Land at the turn of the 20th century recently sold at Sotheby’s for nearly $1.4 million. The collection consists of more than 1,700 images—panoramas, photobooks and individual prints—taken by prominent photographers of the time. These images represent some of the earliest paper photographs of religious and historic sites, not only in Jerusalem, but throughout the Holy Land, including Lebanon, Syria and Egypt.

Amassed over 25 years, this collection is the largest assemblage of photographs of the Holy Land ever auctioned. It was estimated to be worth about $500,000, but it sold for £965,000, which is roughly $1,392,000—more than double its predicted value!

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