Traveling photography exhibit "Knox County Through Eastern's Eye" to be displayed at the Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland

By Dorothy Black | Sep 09, 2013
Courtesy of: Penobscot Marine Museum

Rockland, Maine

September 9, 2013

Press Release for Immediate Release

The traveling photography exhibit “Knox County Through Eastern’s Eye” has arrived back on the mainland after spending the summer in North Haven. The Maine Lighthouse Museum is the next stop for the exhibit produced by the Penobscot Marine Museum. The exhibit is drawn from the Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company collection, based on glass plate negatives shot from 1909 through the 1950s for use as photo postcards. The museum has more than 50,000 glass plate negatives of one-of-a-kind images of farms, industries, small businesses, stores, bridges, schools, and other “ordinary scenes.” The Knox County exhibit follows the highly successful Waldo County exhibit, and will be on display in Rockland now through the end of October.

The exhibit features 30 framed prints with captions, and a companion “virtual exhibit” on the museum's website features dozens more photos and captions. Research for the exhibit was conducted by individuals and historical societies from virtually every Knox County community and coordinated by Liz Fitzsimmons, a historian who volunteers at the museum. The exhibit was funded by a grant from the Maine Community Foundation and generous sponsorship from Camden National Bank.

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. The museum is raising funds to acquire more of Eastern’s negatives, and have recently added a searchable database of the images online on their website. Photo prints are available from the museum, with proceeds from their sale going to expand the collection.

The exhibit is located in the long hallway connecting the Lighthouse Museum with the Rockland Chamber of Commerce and will be unveiled to the public on Saturday, September 14th from 5 – 7 pm and will be on display for the rest of the month of September. The Maine Lighthouse Museum is located at One Park Drive in Rockland.  You may call the museum at 594-3301 or visit the website at for more information.

The Maine Lighthouse Museum will also be placing on display for the first time a new donated collection of Harbour Lights lighted Lighthouse replicas in a beautiful display cabinet in the museum for everyone to see.

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