Oregon State UniversitySpecial Collections & Archives Research Center

Herman T. Bohlman Photograph Collection, ca. 1890-1925

Scope and Content Note

The collection includes images of Bohlman's river trips on the Lewis River (Washington) and the Willamette River (Oregon) around the turn of the century. Many of the trips were taken with fellow ornithologist and conservationist William L. Finley, who appears in several photos. A number of the bird photos appear in or are similar to those in Birds of Oregon (Gabrielson and Jewett, 1940) and William L. Finley: Pioneer Wildlife Photographer (Mathewson, OSU Press, 1986).

Also included in the collection are images of the Portland waterfront wharves; Crater Lake; Metakahtla, Alaska; Mazamas in the Mt. Jefferson region in 1917; and Bohlman Family and friends. Sixteen lantern slides are copies of Weister & Co. views of the Columbia River Gorge from 1914 and 1915. Several of the film negatives are copies of bird photos and illustrations from other sources.

The collection consists primarily of lantern slides (mounted and unmounted), glass negatives ranging in size from 3.25x4.25 to 6.5x8.5, and nitrate base film negatives. A small number of contact prints have been made of selected glass negatives. These are indicated in the inventory.

An addition to the Bohlman Photographic Collection (Accession 2011:055) is made up of 21 photographic images on glass plate negatives and glass lantern slides that depict excursions by Bohlman with William Finley and others to various locations throughout Oregon, Washington, and California to document birds. Taken by both Bohlman and Finley, these images illustrate the pair traveling to marshlands, rivers, and the ocean photographing birds as well as themselves in the process. The birds pictured in these shots include pelicans (Klamath Lake, Or.), a condor (California), common murres (Three Arch Rocks, Or.), and caspian terns (Klamath Lake). Some of the images in this transfer show Bohlman and Finley on a camping trip along the Lewis River. Others portrayed in these photos with Bohlman include Dallas Lore Sharp, A.W. Anthony, and Irene Finley. There is also one portrait shot of Bohlman as a young man. Some of these photographs were featured in Worth Mathewson's book "William L. Finley: Pioneer Wildlife Photographer."

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