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View Full Version : Wet plate Photographers at R-Day '07?



cwrematchr
11-07-2007, 11:51 PM
I was curious if anyone knew of or where to find a wet plate photographer in Gettysburg this year for Remembrance Day? I trying to have a plate done while I'm up there of me and a friend who has been diagnosed with "Stage Two" Osteosarcoma cancer.

We have been typically going up and visiting the battlefield for four years now. And I want him to have something to remember it by.

Help!

blueYankee
11-09-2007, 03:20 PM
Jason.... Go to the Arbor House Victorian Photography in G'burg. Phone at bottom of page description....
Fred Ewers has done many photographs for my reenacting family and guys from our unit and we have never been disappointed.........Make Reservations now ASAP!!!

Early photography, from the first daguerreotype onward, has long fascinated the populace, continuing into the digital age. While the Crimean War in Europe was the first to use photography in modern times, the Civil War is the period that brought photography on a mass scale to Americans. From the 1860s to the 1880s, the daguerreotype evolved into the clearer ambrotype – photographs created on glass – and the tintype – photographs produced on tin plates, for those willing to pay a professional photographer for the process. All photography in those days was created by a wet plate process. Today, at Arbor House, located at 76 Steinwehr Avenue, customers can relive the experience of their ancestors using this historic process. For those who would like the experience, but need a less time consuming and less expensive alternative, digital photography is also offered.

Owner George Lomas has been in the Civil War field for many years as a sutler, businessman and now gallery owner. “I got interested during the centennial, in 1961,” he explains. He and proprietor Susan Saum-Wicklein have owned Arbor House, named for the Victorian arbor on the property, for two years. The photographic studio is located on the second floor of the building – necessary for the abundance of natural light that filters in from the windows above. The first floor houses a unique gallery of wet plate photography by nationally renowned photographers. Some of the pictures offered for sale include creations by artists Claude LeVet, Robert Szabo, and Will Dunniway.

At Arbor House, talented photographer Fred Ewers is the man in charge of the wet plate portraits. Joe Kerrigan and Terry Whittington are photographers who are also capably involved in this historic process that, thanks to these men and others, has not been lost forever with the advent of modern photography. The process from start to finish takes about 90 minutes. “It’s a lot safer these days than it was then,” Fred explains. The chemical compounds used to create the ambrotypes and tintypes are volatile, and in the 19th century could explode if exposed to an open flame. Collodium, a compound that contained nitrated cotton combined with ether, was discovered in the 19th century to have certain adherent properties. By adding iodides and bromides to the mixture, with the ideal combination of light and temperature, perfect likenesses could form. When sitting for portraits at Arbor House, customers get far more than their picture – they become apprentices who are taught an historic process. Students from schools and educational programs come in regularly for a tour through this unique studio.

“It’s really an art form,” says proprietor Susan Saum-Wicklein.

Call 717-338-1515 to schedule an appointment. Arbor House is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. – with special later hours for Remembrance Day. “We can continue into the night,” Fred says, “with artificial light. But we use the natural light as long as possible.”

For the experience your ancestors enjoyed, with a photograph that is sure to become an heirloom, stop in at Arbor House in historic Gettysburg.

7thNJcoA
11-09-2007, 03:43 PM
you are going to pay $$$$$$$$$$$$$ bigtime since its R-day just be carefull where you go not to get ripped off there are sometimes other photographers around who are set up at the living histories that weekend

westcoastcampaigner
11-09-2007, 04:41 PM
Jason,

Rumor has it Rob Gibson has set up shop in Gettysburg again. I'm not sure where he is located but I know Brian Merrick (Speedy) is working for him. Again your purse strings will be pulled to the max to have your picture taken there. Sorry I can't help more.

Best Regards,

Josh Sawyer
Liberty Rifles

cwrematchr
11-09-2007, 05:28 PM
Hey guys, thanks for the help! I'm going to call and see how much people are asking for, then decide from there. We all know how crazy it gets up there..

Best,

Jason.

PS: Josh, I don't have any purse strings for them to pull. I carry a wallet! haha

zouavecampaigner
11-11-2007, 05:10 PM
Jason,

Rumor has it Rob Gibson has set up shop in Gettysburg again. I'm not sure where he is located but I know Brian Merrick (Speedy) is working for him. Again your purse strings will be pulled to the max to have your picture taken there. Sorry I can't help more.

Best Regards,

Josh Sawyer
Liberty Rifles


Josh,

hey man, I hope to see you over the weekend! Anywho, Rob is indeed set up in his old digs above the Great Tshirt Shop on steinwehr! 717-334-9393

Regards,
Shaun

Julio C. Zangroniz
11-11-2007, 06:50 PM
According to an ad in the November issue of The Civil War News (p. 3), the R.J. Gibson Studio is now open for business... in Fredericksburg, VA.
Julio