Bethel Woods Launches Online Woodstock Archive

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Two young women relax on the hood of a Sheriff’s Patrol car at the corner of Hwy. 17B and Hurd Road as people begin to flock into the Woodstock festival. Photo by Elizabeth Alexander. Bethel Woods Collection (Used with permission)

The Museum at Bethel Woods, located at the site of the 1969 Woodstock Music & Art Fair in Bethel, N.Y., has launched an online archive of Woodstock photography and video from its collection, making rare archival images available to the public for the first time on the eve of the festival’s 49th anniversary.

The archive features photos and video from almost 30 contributors, including aerial photography of the crowd of 500,000 gathered on Max Yasgur’s farm, the field and festival stage, the traffic and festival attendees. According to a press release, “It serves as a lens to explore the historic festival and is available for license and download for commercial, media, tourism, educational and personal use providing a never-before available resource for the press, students, historians, documentarians, designers and advertisers in advance of the festival’s 50th anniversary in 2019.”

Related: Woodstock myth vs. reality

The Museum is inviting the public to contribute to its permanent collection sharing their photos, videos, and artifacts. To learn more or view the collection visit BethelWoodsCenter.org/PhotoArchive.

A view from the Woodstock audience looking up the hill toward the Food for Love stands on Friday afternoon, before the rain began. Photo by Richard Gordon. Bethel Woods Collection (Used with permission)

The Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, a 501c3 nonprofit cultural center, is located 90 miles from New York City. According to is promotional literature, “The Museum immerses visitors of all ages in the story of the societal evolution of the 1960s. Through engaging exhibits, artifacts, and programs guests are connected to the roots of today’s freedom of expression and resurgent human spirit that defined the politics, music, art and societal issues of that remarkable and challenging decade which culminated in the Woodstock festival. The 800-acre campus also includes an outdoor amphitheater with a capacity of 15,000, an indoor performance space, festivals and creative learning programs for all ages.”

Related: The story behind Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” anthem

In 2017, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in the town of Bethel—adjacent to the field where such giants of the music as The Who, Santana, Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker and Sly and the Family Stone performed from Aug. 15-18, 1969—had been placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Watch the Doobie Brothers perform “Long Train Runnin'” at Bethel Woods

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