One great photographer who has captured brilliant and spectacular images of rural southern African-American life was Nadia
Strid. Marsha Allen, an editor at the Jonesboro Sun Newspaper, wrote the article "Photography: Retired Photographer Nadia
Strid Honored with Exhibit at ASU, Jonesboro." Allen’s article details Nadia Strid’s career. Nadia Strid was
one of Memphis, Tennessee most successful and professional photographers of all times. Nadia Strid entered into the profession
of photography in 1939, as a student of Avery N. Stratton of Memphis Tennessee, and retried in 1975.
Nadia Strid captured extraordinary images using of a Hasselbald camera. The Victor Hasselbald Company of Sweden manufactured
this camera in 1948. The Hasselbald camera was one of the most significant post-war cameras developed as a single lens reflex
camera. The Hasselbald Company made it feasible to interchange lenses and with a removable back. The interchangeable film
magazine was the Hasselbalds most important feature. The film was quicker to attach and remove due to the detachable roll
holder. Nadia Strids used either the Carl Zeiss Sonar 250mm lens or the Kodak Ektar 135mm lens. These two lenses were used
for good selections for photographing in either studio or outdoors.
Strid captured over 600 depictions of human-interest selections. The majority of her human-interest shots were taken in the
southern states including Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, and Mississippi. She truly placed great emphases on capturing the
experiences of African-Americans. Her photography chronicled the lives and events of the African- American community in the
surrounding Memphis area. Nadia Strid’s recognition for her work came years after her retirement.
The National Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) awarded Nadia Strid first place, in the multi-media category, for
her painting of sixteen American women who was successful in shaping American culture. Strid’s black and white collection,
which spans from 1930 to 1960 in currently housed in Jonesboro, Arkansas at Arkansas State University (ASU) Museum, after
waiting years for grant to display her work. Previous attempts have been made by Strid to have her work publish and displayed.
During the 1960s after the death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., her photos did not grasp the attention of anyone. Nadia Strid’s
attempted to get her photo publish in New York, was bad timing. The company had already selected similar photos, which had
gone to press for publication. She also tried to publish, exhibit the lives, and events occurring in the Deltas rich history
and her African-Americans chronicle photos; however never had the right timing. Some of Nadia Strid’s work was sent
to Mississippi State University for possible display and publication. For over 12 years up into the 1980s, the photos were
awaiting grant funding. Arkansas State University received two grants in November 2000 to put Strid’s photographs on
display. Along with the display, Strid photos were published on January 21, 2001 in A Delta Era Gone By, authored by Nadia
Price Bates Strid. Strid’s photos were shown in the main gallery of the ASU museum. The exhibit was Nadia Strid’s
human-interest perspective photographs taken during the 1930s to 1960s. Thanks to the Arkansas Humanities Council, ASU has
comprised Nadia Strid exhibit into a traveling display.
This website will briefly display a glimpse of Nadia Strid black and white collection of human-interest photos, focusing on
children. These photos are currently being housed in Strids collection at ASU Museum.
Special thanks to Dr. William Allen, Brenda Keech, James "Kimo" Tichgelaar and the ASU Museum for the use of Nadia Strids
photos, articles, and interviews.