Behind the scenes we are working hard on digitizing, archiving and researching the family archive. The aim of this is to safeguard and make public the unique cultural-historical archive of top photographer and filmmaker Hugo Wilmar.
The family archive of Hugo Wilmar consists of all works, documents and correspondence directly related to Hugo Wilmar, which moreover are (or have come into) the possession of the heirs of the Wilmar Family.
The provenance of these documents is broad. Some come from America. These pieces mainly comprise Hugo Wilmar's photographs, portfolio and (business) correspondence.
Part of the archive has also been found in the Netherlands. For example, a large number of letters that Hugo Wilmar wrote in the period 1939 until his death in 1957 have been preserved.
In 2014, Mark Wilmar, Hugo Wilmar's son, brought about a third of the collection from Amerkia to the Netherlands.
Mary Price, Hugo Wilmar's wife, died on April 13, 2019. Much of her family's records were stored in the basement of her home in Madison, Wisconsin. The photos, documents and albums are digitized step by step. Diana Wilmar and David Fox are busy with this.
Finally, contacts with researchers, other archives and online and offline searches have led to new special finds.
Most of the photos, which are located in America, are unsorted. Its condition varies from well-preserved prints to warped photographs. Some of these photos have sustained significant (water) damage. These images are sorted first. They are then scanned one by one at high resolution (professionally). If there are notes written on the back of the photo, that too will be scanned.
The photos are then uniquely numbered and archived in acid-free sleeves. This unique number is also reflected in the name of the digital file. This makes everything easy to find later.
Because the photo prints are often mixed up, a lot of time and research goes into finding out when and where they were made. We do this with desk research, and visual reference with other photos. This is how we examine photo by photo. The information found is added to the metadata of the digital file.
In addition to 1000's of photos, the family archive contains several photo albums and hundreds of documents. These documents contain the letters Hugo Wilmar wrote to his parents during his lifetime. We also have correspondence between Hugo and Mary and the Disney producers in Burbank, California. These documents provide a detailed picture of how the True Life Adventure movies “White Wilderness” and “Jungle Cat”.
In the meantime, the size of the digital family archive has increased to more than 1 terabite. The files are “stored redundantly. This happens in several places. Both offline and in the Cloud.
The original prints and documents are neatly stored in acid-free folders. Part of the physical family archive is located in the Netherlands. Another part of this is safely stored in America.