In the 19th century there were many competing methods of producing photographs. The cyanotype (named for its blue cast) was an easy and inexpensive process. It is essentially the same as the process which was used to make blueprints. Since the photosensitive solution soaks into the paper instead of sitting on the surface, as with albumen or more modern resin coated papers, cyanotypes do not produce very sharp detail. They were sometimes used for proofs, with more expensive coated papers reserved for final images.
This is an early image of downtown Hood River on a snowy winter day. The camera was at the residence on the SE corner of Second and Oak, looking NNE. You can see the residence in this other image (note the fence line). The Wm. Rand livery on First Street is mid-field. It's the same building we saw decades later in the very first Historic Hood River photo. On the right side of the image, at the corner of Oak and First, is the post office. To the left is an early incarnation of the Mount Hood Hotel. We're looking at the rear of the hotel, across an empty lot which now houses the Hood River Hotel (Mt. Hood Hotel annex).
The size and shape of the hotel date this image to the first half of the 1880's, before any of its three major renovations. In the mid 1880s a two story west wing was added along with verandas. In 1904 a third story was added with the cupola that we admired in an earlier image. Finally in 1911 the brick annex was added to the south.
Category: [Downtown Hood River]
Tags: 1880s cyanotype hotel LaFrance livery Mt_Hood_Hotel Oak_Street post_office snow
It is so remarkably clear!
If downtown Hood River traffic wasn't so miserable I would suggest that some ambitious entrepreneur start a "historic tour" business.
I would love to stand, in this spot, with this photo and Arthur's description.
l.e. on 14th July 2011 @ 8:30am
That is a cool idea. Maybe the museum can put this on our "to do" project list for next summer. Maybe you'd like to be a guide:)
Connie on 14th July 2011 @ 10:50am
Connie...did you read my opinion of your downtown traffic?
I prefer the street in the above cyanotype.
However, HR, does have a remarkable number of buildings on the Historical register and an interesting history.
l.e. on 14th July 2011 @ 12:53pm
There may be more traffic than we can see. This was a long exposure, so any moving carriages are invisible. There is a horse tied to the oak tree and a parked carriage next to the post office building. You should be able to just make them out. I can see them a little more clearly in the hi-res scan we did last week.
Arthur on 14th July 2011 @ 8:56pm
I think with this "bluish" color this would be a wonderful Christmas card.
A walking tour would be nice, but with the traffic maybe a brochure for a "self guided" tour would be the way to go. I know other towns of historic interest do this.
Charlott on 15th July 2011 @ 7:12am