November 2013

TPHSMeetingNewsNov2013 PDF


The Photographic Historical

18, 2013
Meeting Announcement and
        by Sharon Bloemendaal

November 2013 Meeting

Thursday, November 21 at Barnes and Noble Booksellers, Pittsford Plaza, 3349 Monroe Ave

Time: 7:30 p.m.


Identify Your Old Photo (the process, not the people)

Alice Carver-Kubik will speak on historic photographic processes.  She is a photographic research scientist at the Image Permanence Institute, RIT.  She specializes in photographic materials, identification and preservation.  She is a graduate of the Photographic Preservation and Collections Management program at Ryerson University, coordinating with George Eastman House.

Bring a vintage photo to the meeting; she can identify the process for you. For an additional resource check out 


January 16, 2014

Andy Davidhazy will speak on a connection to the Kennedy assassination report.  Part of the talk, he notes, is “a video of a lecture/presentation by [fellow] RIT Professor Leslie Stroebel on work that he and I did for the House Select Committee on assassinations.  Specifically the part that considered the veracity of the Lee Harvey Oswald photographs with him holding a rifle.

“Both Dr. Stroebel and Dr. Francis (who was the person who headed the work but who actually did none of it) have passed on so I am the only remaining member of the team that did that work. 

“I would be happy to discuss what we did after showing of the video of the lecture that Dr. Stroebel presented to some of RIT students and which I luckily videotaped.”

February 20, 2014

Mike Champlin and Brian Steblen will speak about and show their documentary of the North Organ, recently
installed in George Eastman House.  This organ can be played independently–or the South Organ can utilize its pipes as well. They showed their film at the grand opening of the installation and recorded additional film to finish the documentary.

March 20, 2014

Tom Hope, photographer extraordinaire, will tell us more about his life in photography.

April 17, 2014

James Reilly, head of the Image Permanence Institute
at Rochester Institute of Technology, will be our speaker


Tom Hope

Tom Hope was a true raconteur. Photo by Sharon Bloemendaal

Tom Hope
spoke on “My Life Around Photography.” He took about half of the photos for his high school yearbook, using a Speed Graphic.

Assisted by John Schroth, Hope projected an
abbreviated version of the 5th International Boy Scout Jamboree in Holland in 1937, where he took 16 mm Kodachrome coverage, including that of Lord Baden Powell, the founder of the Boy Scouts.  He noted that Germany was not represented at the Jamboree, but Japan was.

As president of the Texas Intercollegiate Press
Association, Hope ran the annual meeting, hiring Kay Kayser to play for their dance.  Hope relates, “As he came in on American Airlines, no one had a camera, so I rushed back to the campus to get the college Speed Graphic.  About 40 years later when I met Mr. Kayser at the Christian Science headquarters in Boston, he remembered his plane circling the El Paso Airport.  At last he learned why.

“In January 1942 I applied for Navy Air but was turned down because of color blindness.  The Army inducted me on May 6, 1942.”   He went to Camp Crowder in Missouri for Signal Corp basic training; then to New York City (Astoria, Long Island) for movie cameraman training; next to Helena, Montana, as movie cameraman for new First Special Service Force (half American, half Canadian troops).  “My high-speed film showed how parachute jumpers broke a leg in a landing; with feet together, injuries stopped.”

After officer Candidate School he became a 2nd lieutenant on July 12, 1943.  In New York City he worked in the Signal Corps Photographic Center (in the old Paramount Studio in Astoria) to teach in the Army Motion Picture School.  In December, at age 23, he became head of the school.

October meeting

Tom Hope drew a good crowd. Photo by Sharon Bloemendaal

On June 22, 1944 he sailed to England on the Queen Elizabeth.  He says,”Cameras were ordered to be in the hold, but the QE Captain allowed us to keep ours with us to photograph the crossing.”The Glen Miller orchestra was on the ship—but not Glen.

Tom Hope
Photo by N.M. Graver
  • He wrote a training manual for bazookas.General Patton had a squeaky voice.
  • He had lunch at Mont St. Michael with Ernie Pyle.
  • His photos of the mass incineration of 1,000 Polish factory workers were heartbreaking.
  •  “After the war,” related Hope, :” I headed the General Mills Film Department. On April 30, 1948 I made a short ad film, like today’s TV commercials, using a VP’s secretary, Mabeth Stewart, as the lead. Exactly one year later I married her.”
  • He attended the first National Television Academy Emmy awards.

Hope stopped speaking too soon; we didn’t have time to hear about The Lone Ranger, his work for Eastman Kodak or the Hope Reports. We have asked him to come back in March to tell us more. His motto? “Try to leave the world a little better than you found it.”

Hope’s son, Vince, was in the audience. Also attending were many veterans of the Battle of the Bulge and those involved with Honor Flights for veterans to visit Washington, D.C.

ThanksMember News:

Bob Shanebrook will be lecturing at noon on Friday, Dec. 13, at the Laser Energetics Lab at the U of R. His subject is “Making Kodak Film.”

Frank Mehlenbacher has returned to his home.

Ken Bertrand is much better, and is living with his daughter in Greece.

A little blast from the past: sent to us by Frank Calandra

Next time you’re in George Eastman House International Museum of Photography & Film, take a good look at this world-class institution, and imagine 30 years ago when the entire facility consisted of the mansion and the Dryden. The museum was in such dire financial straits; the directors were offering to move everything to the Smithsonian in DC, which would have ended the GEH as anything more than a big old house in need of serious repairs.  But a small group of activists were having none of it, and soon the bumper sticker pictured below was circulated and seen on vehicles all around Rochester. They came up with a workable plan, and today we can all be proud of their work.

Photo archives banner

My personal thanks to all of our members who participated in this endeavor, without them; I would not have had the opportunity to work at GEH! – Marian Early




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