Penobscot Marine Museum’s historic photography exhibit Hancock County Through Eastern’s Eye will be at the Sedgwick Town Meeting House, 574 North Sedgwick Rd., Sedgwick, from Monday, July 1st through Thursday, July 31st. There will be an opening reception on Monday, July 1st from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. This exhibit is hosted by the Sedgwick-Brooklin Historical Society and admission is free.
Hancock County Through Eastern’s Eye is part of the Blue Hill peninsula’s Touring Through Time: Keeping Our Past Present series of events and exhibits featured at area historical societies and museums this summer. “This exhibit definitely helps to keep our past present,” says Kevin Johnson, Penobscot Marine Museum’s Photography Archivist. “People love to see what has changed, or not, over time. And seeing photographs of their town in a travelling exhibit sparks a pride of place and an interest in local history.”
An online exhibit on the museum’s website includes many additional Hancock County images. This exhibit is also online on the Maine Memory Network.
The photographs in Hancock County Through Eastern’s Eye are of places people loved. A century ago the founder of Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company sent his crews with their box cameras into tiny towns telling them to ask local citizens what they should photograph, what was important to them about their town. This makes the Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company photos aesthetically beautiful and historically important.
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 Penobscot Marine Museum is raising funds to acquire more of Eastern’s negatives, and has recently added a searchable database online to their website which includes nearly 30,000 Eastern Illustrating photographs. Photo prints are available from the museum, with proceeds from their sale going to expand the collection. The exhibit was funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment of the Arts and is part of four county exhibits the Penobscot Marine Museum will produce.
Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport, Maine has seven new exhibits and over fifty programs and events during the 2014 season. Its three acre, ten building campus is on Route One in Searsport, and is open Monday through Saturday, 10am to 5pm, and Sunday noon to 5:00 pm through Sunday, October 19.