Pam’s Pictorama Photo Post: I purchased this photograph in Seattle a number of years ago. Kim was doing a reading out there and I tagged along and made my one and only foray, to date, to the Pacific Northwest. I killed a day or two in junk stores there and came home with surprisingly little under the circumstances. I have already pointed out on numerous occasions how splendid Portland, Oregon is for early photographs – by rights Seattle should be its kissin’ cousin, but that was not readily apparent on that trip.
This is a good size photo, 8×10 – I should know how it was made, but am not sure. My best guess is that it was made from some sort of dry plate process and it is a contact print of some kind. It is utterly unmarked – no maker, no date, absolutely no information whatsoever. It is a serious looking group – hunting I assume with all those rifles. No leisure trip this however – these men (and single boy – is that ammo on his chest?) mean business. The two guys with ties and suit jackets mystify me and some of the hats look a bit out of place for hunting as well. I am not sure why, but I believe I thought more about mining than hunting when I first acquired it although there’s really nothing to tie it to mining. It is an odd photo for me to own, no cats, not even a dog! Yet for some reason I could not resist it.
Strangely, it has remained in a place of pride on a table by our front door. I can’t say it is one of my favorite photos, but there is something compelling about it and I do stop to look at it occasionally and wonder. There’s something great about it – a window to something in the past.