The Lane Brothers Commercial Photographers Photographic Collection consists of about 258,100 (196,800 4x5 inch and 61,300 2 1/2 inch) acetate negatives which are housed in 43,486 envelopes. The collection spans the years 1920 to 1976 with the bulk of the negatives dating from 1939 to 1975. Some of the images are copy negatives of photographs which date as early as 1864.
The images are organized into six series (1) Corporate bodies, (2) Geographic places, (3) Events, (4) Portraits, (5) Things, and (6) Miscellaneous-sized negatives. The collection consists of photographic negatives and prints of the Lane Brothers Commercial Photographers (Atlanta, Ga.) and its predecessor the Lane Brothers Photo News Service from ca. 1920-1976. Early materials (1920's-1939) include glass plate negatives and photographs taken by Jack Lane and his brother W.C. Lane as freelance photographers for the Atlanta News, other newspapers, and wire services. The bulk of the collection consists of images of the Atlanta, Georgia area documenting its economic growth, social changes, and political activities over the years.
The collection contains images of AT&T, Atlanta Gas Light Company, Coca-Cola, Delta Air Lines, Eastern Air Lines, Rich's, Shriners Yaarab Temple, and the Southeastern Fair while other images illustrate the development of Atlanta's transportation system. During World War II, the studio produced photographic documentation of the Works Progress Administration, the Office of Price Administration, the Office of Civilian Defense, and the United Service Organization. The collection depicts Atlanta's social and political changes with images of preparation for World War II, African Americans registering to vote, Ku Klux Klan rallies at Stone Mountain, political campaigns, sports events, labor union activities, motion picture premiers (including Gone with the Wind), disasters, and individual portraits. Notable public figures include Ivan Allen, Ellis Arnall, William B. Hartsfield, Roy LeCraw, Lester Maddox, Margaret Mitchell, Franklin D. Roosevelt, E.D. Rivers, Carl Sanders, Eugene Talmadge, and Robert W. Woodruff.
This online collection also includes an inventory of unscanned negatives in the Lane Brothers photographic collection.