The Harvard-Yenching Library holds some 5,000 photographs and 10,000 negatives taken by Hedda Hammer Morrison (1908–1991) while resident in Beijing from 1933 to 1946. The photographs, mounted in thematic albums prepared by Mrs. Morrison, and the negatives, were bequeathed to the Harvard-Yenching Library.
Hedda Morrison studied photography in her native Germany, and from 1933 to 1938 managed Hartung’s Photo Shop in Beijing. From 1938 until she and her husband left China in 1946, Morrison worked as a freelance photographer, selling individual prints or thematic albums of her work and creating photographs for other people’s books on China. Her photographs document lifestyles, trades, handicrafts, landscapes, religious practices, and architectural structures that in many cases have changed or have been destroyed.