Knox photo exhibit in Owls Head
Owls Head — The Mussel Ridge Historical Society is hosting an exhibit of historic Knox County photographs from the Penobscot Marine Museum’s collection in the upstairs room of the Owls Head Community Building, 224 Ash Point Drive.
The exhibit may be viewed during town office hours — Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. — and Sundays from 2 to 4 p.m. during the month of September.
The touring Knox County exhibit follows a highly successful Waldo County exhibit. Depicting old town and country scenes throughout Knox County, it shows a fraction of the Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company collection owned by Penobscot Marine Museum of Searsport. Eastern was a “real photo” postcard publisher — that is, each postcard was an actual photograph — founded in Belfast in 1909 and active through the mid 1950s. Research for the exhibit was conducted by individuals and historical societies from virtually every Knox County community.
The Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company photos, taken a century ago, are aesthetically beautiful to view and are fascinating on many levels for the history and sense of place that they convey. The founder of the company sent his crews with their box cameras into tiny towns all over Maine and instructed them to ask local citizens what was important about their town. This is a unique feature of the Eastern collection, giving it great breadth and authenticity. The collection is a survey of what nearly every New England town looked like in the first of half the 20th century.
The Eastern collection is the largest single photographic collection in Maine, consisting of nearly 50,000 images of Maine and the rest of New England and upstate New York. Most of the photos are on glass-plate negatives, producing sharp, finely detailed prints. The museum is raising funds to acquire more of Eastern's negatives and recently added a searchable database of the images online on its website, penobscotmarinemuseum.org. Fine art prints are available from the museum, with proceeds from their sale going to expand the collection.
Courier Publications' A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or email@example.com.