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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Masha Arms photographed Nathan Tufts (b. 1930) in his Greenfield, Massachusetts, backyard. She then printed the photograph at the summer residence she and her husband, Billy, were renting in Chesterfield, New Hampshire, where there was no electricity or running water. Masha Arms had to wash the print with water pumped from a spring in back of the house and use an enlarger powered by a converter Billy Arms hooked up to the car battery. Masha describes this and the other prints she produced during this period as being truly handmade. Originally from Fitchburg, Massachusetts, Masha Arms arrived in Washington, DC, during the Great Depression. After buying a Model G Leica camera in 1934 and teaching herself about the technical aspects of photography, she landed a job teaching photography at the King-Smith Studio School in 1936. Masha Arms' work was published in a 1936 Washington Post review of the Junior League Gallery exhibition alongside photographs by Ansel Adams and Margaret Bourke-White. In 1941, when the United States entered World War II, Masha left Washington, married William Tyler Arms of Deerfield, Massachusetts, and moved back to New England.


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Nathan Tufts

photographer   Masha Arms (1908-2005)
date   c. 1941
location   Greenfield, Massachusetts
width   8.87"
height   12.37"
process/materials   gelatin silver print
item type   Photograph/Photograph
accession #   #1997.16.49

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