In photos: Guyana before independence

May 26, 2014 /Photography News/ Guyanese around the world celebrate the 48th Independence Day anniversary today, 26 May 2014.

Guyana has been a former colony of the Dutch, and for over 200 years of the British. It achieved independence from the United Kingdom on 26 May 1966 and became a Republic on 23 February 1970.

To understand this day's significance, we invite you to take a look back into Guyana's past through a set of photographs covering the 1922 Stanley Field Expedition to British Guiana led by Bror E. Dahlgren and John R. Millar.

Street with people, palm trees in background. 1922. Guyana, South America

Street with people, palm tree in background. Goats. 1922. Guyana, South America

Woman or girl standing outdoors, fence behind. She is holding a fruit specimen. Annona muricata. ANONACEAE. 1922. Guyana, South America

Street railway tracks. 1922. Georgetown, Guyana, South America

Two women carrying metal jugs of water or milk on their head, standing in street. 1922. Guyana, South America

Crowd of men, coconut oil at market. Georgetown. 1922. Georgetown, Guyana, South America

East Indians at their breakfast. 1922. Guyana, South America

Men, possibly barbers, and men getting haircuts and shave. 1922. Guyana, South America

Paramaribo market scene. Women and men. 1922. Paramaribo, Guyana, South America

Two young children, one crying. 1922. Guyana, South America

Market scene in Paramaribo. Fruit of Elaeis guineensis Palmae (oil palm) in baskets. Plant Industry. 1922. Paramaribo, Guyana, South America

Young girl. 1922. Guyana, South America

Two women with buckets seated at a stream of water or river. Bridge visible. 1922. Guyana, South America
 All photos courtesy of The Field Museum Library.

The Field Museum is an educational institution concerned with the diversity and relationships in nature and among cultures. It provides collection-based research and learning for greater public understanding and appreciation of the world in which we live. Its collections, public learning programs, and research are inseparably linked to serve a diverse public of varied ages, backgrounds and knowledge. The formation of The Field Museum Library’s collections began in 1894 with initial transfers of books from the libraries of various departments of the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. Currently, the Library serves the Museum’s staff, visiting scholars and the general public.

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  1. Anonymous says

    I see few pictures of stated Paramaribo....thatwas not in British Guyana, but is the Capital of Suriname (Dutch Guyana)

    Linda Sappington says

    Actually, Dutch Guiana ... I saw the same thing, but in 1922 maybe it was in Guyana (then British Guiana). Things change!

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