Melanie Zwang Davis photograph collection, circa 1860-1950  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Davis, M lanie Zwang
Melanie Zwang Davis photograph collection
circa 1860-1950 (inclusive)
18 photographic prints (1 box) ; various sizes
Collection Number
Photographs of several Jewish families, including the Oppenheimer and Zwang families, who immigrated from Germany to the United States and settled in Marcus, Washington
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 206-543-1929
Fax: 206-543-1931
Access Restrictions

The collection is open to the public.

Funding for encoding this finding aid was partially provided through a grant awarded by King County 4Culture

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

In 1871, Herman Zwang (1854-1931), emigrated from Germany to the town of Marcus in the Washington Territory. He lived with his uncle Marcus Oppenheimer in a log cabin. Zwang returned to Germany in 1888, where he and his wife had three children: Clara, Saul, and Melanie, who was born in Sennfeld in 1891. Zwang returned to Washington with his family in 1897, settling in Marcus in 1900. The Zwangs were one of only two Jewish families in the town of 300 (the Wurzburg family was the other one). Melanie attended the Marcus Public School, and later worked in the Zwang general store. Melanie Zwang married Sol Davis in 1923, and later moved to Seattle.

Historical BackgroundReturn to Top

The town of Marcus, Washington, was named for Marcus Oppenheimer, who settled there in 1862. The town provided supplies to miners heading north to the Canadian gold fields. With the arrival of rail service in the 1880s, Marcus became a shipping and logging center. The town was incorporated in 1910, but was relocated in the 1930s when the original townsite was submerged under the waters of Lake Roosevelt during the construction of the Grand Coulee Dam.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Photographs of Melanie Zwang Davis and members of her family, taken in Germany and in Marcus, Washington. Includes studio and informal portraits, photos of groups of children and adults, and the Zwang family home and store in Marcus.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Alternative Forms Available

View selections from the collection in digital format.

Restrictions on Use

Restrictions may exist on reproduction, quotation, or publication. Contact Special Collections, University of Washington Libraries for details.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top


Family photographs from GermanyReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Folder item
1 1
 Melanie, Clara, and Saul Zwang as children in Germany
Curt Kubica, Heilbronn, Germany (photographer)
circa 1896
1 2
 Possibly Mr. and Mrs. Herman Zwang, or relatives of the Zwang family
Curt Kubica, Heilbronn, Germany (photographer)
circa 1880-1890
2 3
 G. Oppenheimer and woman (probably his wife)
F. Berrer, Heilbronn, Germany (photographer)
"Onkel" (uncle) written on verso. Oppenheimer was probably Melanie Davis's great uncle.
circa 1860s-1870s
2 4
G. Oppenheimer and woman (probably his wife)
C. Kohler, Heilbronn, Germany (photographer)
circa 1880-1890
3 5
Woman (possibly a Zwang family member) wearing white dress and boa
J. Kleiber, Ludwigsburg or Cannstatt, Germany (photographer)
circa 1880-1890
3 6
Woman (possibly a Zwang family member) standing next to a chair,
J.W. Hornung, Tuebingen, Germany (photographer)
circa 1900-1910
3 7
Woman (possibly a Zwang family member) seated in a chair
Arthur Hoffschild, Frankfurt am Main, Germany (photographer)
circa 1900-1910
4 8 circa 1890-1900
4 9
Group of adults and two children posed in front of a stone building in Germany
Christoph Brandt, Heilbronn, Germany (photographer)
circa 1920-1930s

Photographs of Zwang family and friends in Washington StateReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Folder item
5 10
 Group in front of school in Marcus, Washington
Saul Zwang is in the front row, fourth from the left.
circa 1900
5 11
 Melanie Zwang Davis
Walters, Seattle, Washington (photographer)
circa 1923-1930s
5 12 circa 1920-1930
6 13 circa 1910s
6 14
 Zwang family and friends in Marcus
Identified on back, left to right: Melanie Zwang Davis, Sol Davis, Marcus Oppenheimer, [unknown], Saul Zwang, Jeanette Wurzburg (wife of Sid Wurzburg), and Bill Grove (Melanie Zwang Davis' brother-in-law).Note on verso is incorrect as to one identification, per son of Sidney Wurzburg: Jeannette Wurzburg was the sister of Sidney Wurzburg, not his wife.Writtten on back: "Taken in Marcus Wa. before flooded by dam."
circa 1923-1930s
6 15
  Zwang family home in Marcus with Clara and Melanie Zwang on the front porch
Written on back: "Home in Marcus, Wa--shortly after construction began on dam which flooded area."
circa 1930s
7 16 circa 1940-1950
7 17
Two people outside a house
7 18
 Portrait of a seated woman (possibly Melanie Zwang Davis) with a corsage
H.C. Capwell Co, Oakland, CA (photographer)
: hand-colored

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • General stores--Washington (State)--Marcus--Photographs
  • Jewish families--United States--Photographs
  • Jewish families--Washington (State)--Marcus--Photographs
  • Visual Materials Collections (University of Washington)
  • Personal Names :
  • Davis, Melanie Zwang--Photographs (photographer)
  • Zwang family--Photographs
  • Geographical Names :
  • Marcus (Wash.)--Photographs
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Group portraits
  • Photographs
  • Portrait photographs