From the Smithsonian Institution
Description: William Jennings Bryan (seated at left) being interrogated by Clarence Seward Darrow, during the trial of the State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes, July 20, 1925. That Monday afternoon, because of the extreme heat, Judge Raulston moved court proceedings outdoors. The session was held on a platform that had been erected at the front of the Rhea County Courthouse to accommodate ministers who wanted to preach during the time of the trial. Defense lawyers for Scopes (John R. Neal, Arthur Garfield Hays, and Dudley Field Malone) are visible seated to the extreme right. One of the men at left, with his back to the photographer, appears to be Scopes. The court reporters are seated at the table.
The "Scopes Trial" (Scopes v. State, 152 Tenn. 424, 278 S.W. 57 (Tenn. 1925), often called the "Scopes Monkey Trial") was an American legal case that tested the Butler Act, which made it unlawful, in any state-funded educational establishment in Tennessee, "to teach any theory that denies the story of the Divine Creation of man as taught in the Bible, and to teach instead that man has descended from a lower order of animals." The case was a critical turning point in the United States' creation-evolution controversy.
It really is amazing to see such treasures being added to The Commons on Flickr. A thrill. Here's the whole set, from the Smithsonian Institution.
I also love the surprisingly common story that "discoveries" are made from within an institution's own archives...
Almost eighty years later, the nitrate negatives, including portraits of trial participants, and images from the trial itself and significant places in Dayton, were discovered in archival material donated to the Smithsonian by Science Service in 1971. Marcel C. LaFollette, an independent scholar, historian and Smithsonian volunteer uncovered these rare, previously unpublished photographs of the 1925 Tennessee vs. John Scopes "Monkey Trial" in the Smithsonian Institution Archives (SIA).