Kinsey Brothers Photographs, 1907-1945

Overview of the Collection

Kinsey, Clark.
Kinsey Brothers Photographs
1907-1945 (inclusive)
1907-1930 (bulk)
2.50 cubic feet, including 35 black and white prints, 4 sepia toned prints, and 1 color print, (4 oversize boxes)
Collection Number
P 309
The Kinsey Brothers Photographs collection consists of both mounted and unmounted photographic prints reflecting the logging industry. Gerald W. Williams collected the images in the course of his work as a Forest Service sociologist and historian, largely due to his deep interest in the history of forestry in the United States, especially that of the Pacific Northwest region.
The two photographers, Clark and Darius Kinsey, began working as photographers in the late 19th century, finishing their respective careers in the mid-1940s. Both Clark and Darius made significant contributions to photographing the Pacific Northwest, especially Spruce Production Division and Civilian Conservation Corps life. Darius was the more widely-known of the two. This particular collection contains more of Clark’s work, which chiefly features logging crews and companies.
Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Research Center
Special Collections and Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
Telephone: 5417372075
Fax: 5417378674
Access Restrictions

Materials are open for research.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Darius and Clark Kinsey were brothers who worked as photographers in the Pacific Northwest in the late 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. Both were noted for their prolific work photographing the timber industry.

Darius Kinsey (1869-1945) was born in Missouri and relocated to Snoqualmie, Washington, with an older brother, Alfred, in late 1889. As early as 1890 he was introduced to photography, and by 1894 was working as an itinerant photographer in Washington. In 1895 he formed a partnership with his younger brother, Clark, and by 1896 they had established a studio at Sedro-Woolley, north of Seattle. Between 1897 and 1906 Darius made seven photographic expeditions, including a 1904 trip to Yellowstone National Park. In late 1906 Darius opened a new studio in Seattle. During World War I he took photographs of the U.S. Spruce Production Division. Darius continued working as a photographer until 1940, when an accident in the field ended his career.

Clark Kinsey (1877-1956) was also born in Missouri and moved with his family to Snoqualmie, Washington, sometime after his two older brothers had moved there. After opening the Sedro-Woolley studio with Darius in 1896, he and another brother, Clarence, moved to Grand Forks in the Yukon Territory in 1897 and operated a photography studio there. Clark was not active as a photographer between 1906 and about 1913. He returned to the photography business just before World War I, taking photographs of logging operations and lumber mills in the Pacific Northwest. Much of this work was done for the West Coast Lumbermen’s Association. During World War I he documented the Spruce Production Division in Oregon and Washington, and during the 1930s he extensively photographed Civilian Conservation Corps camps in both states. Clark retired from photography in 1945.

Both Kinsey brothers used large format cameras in the field – they ranged from 6 ½ x 8 ½” to a mammoth camera that could take a 20”x24” image. The 11”x14” camera was a favorite of both brothers. One account indicated that in order to not compete with one another for photos of logging operations, Darius focused on the area north of Seattle and Clark worked south of Seattle.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Kinsey Brothers Photographs collection largely is made up of black and white prints, with a few sepia toned images and a single color print. Gerald W. Williams collected the mounted and unmounted images in the course of his work as a Forest Service sociologist and historian. This was largely due to his deep interest in the history of forestry and the history of the United States, especially that of the Pacific Northwest region.  The subjects of the Kinsey Brothers prints aptly matched William’s interest as they were largely concentrated on documenting the logging process from start to finish.  Both men were able to capture the innovations in machinery of the time, with donkey engines being a popular background item. In this collection, Clark’s prints showcase the various logging companies, Spruce Production Division and Civilian Conservation Corps camps, primarily those south of Seattle, whereas Darius’s feature scenic backgrounds of the camps and logging areas. chiefly to the north of Seattle.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Restrictions may exist for reproduction or publication of post-1922 images.

Preferred Citation

Kinsey Brothers Photographs (P 309), Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


The collection is arranged into two series, each designated by the photographer of the prints. As Clark’s body of work is larger in this collection, his images make up the first series followed by Darius’s contributions in the second series. The two series are: 1. Clark Kinsey 1907-1945; 2. Darius Kinsey 1907-1940.

The prints in the collection are arranged by subject and then chronologically when possible. The Spruce Division photographs are arranged by item number.

Acquisition Information

These materials were received from Gerald W. Williams in 2007.

Processing Note

Originally described as part of the Gerald W. Williams Collection, these materials were separated in 2016 from the Williams Collection to form this new collection.

Related Materials

Other materials that relate to the Kinsey Brothers Photographs include Gerald W. Williams Collection on the Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933-2012 (MSS CCC); Gerald W. Williams Collection on the Army Spruce Production Division (MSS Sruce); Edward J. Reiger Civilian Conservation Corps Photograph Album (P 322); the Gerald W. Williams Regional Albums (P 303) and the Royal G. Jackson Papers (MSS JacksonR).

The University of Washington holds collections of Darius' Kinsey's photographs and Clark's photographs and stereoscopes produced at the Kinsey studios. The Whatcomb Museum owns the Darius and Tabitha Kinsey collection  that includes nearly 5000 of Darius' photographs.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series 1:  Clark Kinsey, 1907-1945Return to Top

Series 1 showcases Clark Kinsey's contribution to photography in the Pacific Northwest. The subjects of his photographs are largely group portraitures of logging and Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp crews. The CCC participated in public works, such as forestry, flood control, firefighting, and developing national parks. In this series, it is believed that the majority of the camps worked in logging. Clark numbered his prints, such as "No. 100". He seldom used letters. This differs from his brother's system of using a combination of numbers and letters.

Container(s) Description Dates
Cut-up Plant Under Construction
A log processing plant that is in the process of being assembled in Toledo, Oregon. Price of print is on the back at 35 dollars. Black and white print. No. 50a
circa 1907
Mt. Rainier
Print of Mt. Rainier, featuring a small forested area. Hand-colored print.
Polson's Railroad Camp
Large group of Polson's Logging Company employees posing in front of two small buildings in Hoquiam, Washington. Black and white print
Near Coos Head, Oregon
Rocks along the coastline near Charleston, Oregon. Coos Head is situated at the mouth of Coos Bay. Originally a tribal land, Coos Head had been used by the US Army, then the US Navy, and finally by the Oregon Air National Guard. In 2005 the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians regained control over the area. Black and white print. Item: No. 11x.
Coos Bay Lumber Company
Lumber crew posing on a railroad flat car in Powers, Oregon. Black and white print. Item: No. 100
Long-Bell Lumber Company
Lumber crew with the majority posing atop a donkey engine in Ryderwood, Washington. Black and white print. Item: No. 58
National Lumber Company
Large lumber crew sitting atop a flat car in front of two small buildings in Cedarville, Washington. Black and white print. Item: No.16
Woahink Lake Civilian Conservation Camp
Located in Lane County, Oregon this camp housed men who performed a variety of conservation work. Black and white print. Item: No. 5 KinseyPhoto
Camp 5 Polson Log Company
Large group of men and three women posing on a railroad track and what appears to be a railway station. Black and white print. Item: 133
Polson Logging Company
The third print featuring some part of the Polson Logging Co. crew. Written on the back of print: Ira Weber (Lee). Item: No. 18. Black and white print.
Kelso-Longview Area
Appears to be shot from a hillside. View of a large river, likely the Columbia, as well as a possible lumber camp. Black and white print. Item: No. 11 B
Camp Sitkum
A former Civilian Conservation Corps camp situated in Sitkum, Oregon. Black and white print. Item: No. 9 Kinsey Photo
Vista House and Columbia River.
Dirt road ileading to Vista House above the Columbia River. Black and white print. Item: No. 18-B
Yarders of Coos Bay Lumber Company
Three men posing on top of yarding equipment in Powers, Oregon. Black and white print. Item: No. 106.
Long-Bell Lumber Company G 114
Crew posing on a flat car attached to a locomotive. Some of the group are on the ground near the rails, holding canes. Black and white print. Item: No. 36
Big Creek Timber Company Camp 18
Logging crew posing outside of a barracks on Wauna Avenue. Black and white print. Item: No. 6
Long-Bell Lumber Company Fellers
Group of men posing with downed logs. Black and white print. Item: No. 56
Company 2945 Civilian Conservation Camp
Located in Skamania, Washington Camp Beacon Rock is another of the Washington legacy of Civilian Conservation Corps camps. A lieutenant A.M. Hayes is noted as the commander on the print. Black and white print. Item: No. 82
Winter Road
A winter landscape, with an unidentified mountain range. This could be a snowed in logging road. Black and white print. Item: No. 5X
Flosa Log Company Number 20
Located in Aberdeen, Washington a large group portraiture, many of the subjects are smiling. Black and white print.
No. 116th Squad
Squadron posing in front of camp that is in the middle of the woods. Black and white print. No. 152
Darnell Black and Gold Lotspeetel
Large group posing for a portraiture in front of two white tents. The title for this print came from a written inscription on the back of the print. Black and white print. No. 100a
Spruce Division, Raymond, Washington
Small group of men with shovels in the forest. Black and white print. No. 46x
circa 1918
Spruce Division, Raymond, Washington with a Donkey Engine
One of the many crews gathering spruce trees for airplane production. This particular group is posed next to a donkey engine. Black and white print. No. 51x
circa 1918
Spruce Division, Raymond, Washington, Signal Corps 142
A group posing on an automobile and a log that has been propped up on the auto. Black and white print. No. 62x
circa 1918
Camp A, Raymond, Washington, Signal Corps 196
Large squad posing atop felled logs that are secured on two rigs, with the rest of the squad on a platform. A chained baby bear is also pictured. Black and white print. No. 69x
circa 1918
Spruce Div. Raymond, Washington
Portraiture showing a large group atop felled logs. Black and white print. No. 71x
circa 1918
54th Spruce Sqdn. S.C.S.P. D
Once the 448th Aero Squadron, this group later was redesignated as the 54th Spruce Production Squadron. Black and white print. No 81x
circa 1918
Camp 1 F Palix River 57th Spruce Sqdn.
Spruce Division squadron posing in front of camp. Black and white print. No. 86x
circa 1918
Company 929 CCC
Camp New Benson SP-2, Bridal Veil, Oregon. Additional print on photo includes: Lt. Sidney Jenkins and Lt. W.A. Rutherford. Black and white print. No.75
The Eufaula Company
Located in the now unincorporated town of Eufaula, Washington, the business once one of many logging companies in the Pacific Northwest. Black and white print. No. 34
Detachment of 421 Aero Construction Squadron
Squad posing with an American flag.; U.S. Signal Corps. Black and white print on foam board. No.28
circa 1918

Series 2:  Darius Kinsey, 1907-1940Return to Top

Series 2 displays the work of Darius Kinsey, the more recognized photographer of the pair. Darius photographed a number of subjects but he is best known for large format prints of logging activities and scenic landscapes. Largely working in Washington State and the surrounding Pacific Northwest, Darius captured many of the early years of the region's lumber activities. However, Darius could be artistic at times, which is evident in the print titled "Waterfall in Western Washington". Unlike his brother, Darius's numbering system used a combination of numbers and letters. Clark seldom used letters in his system.

Container(s) Description Dates
Index Mountains from above Sunset Falls
Picturesque mountain view with a rushing river in the forefront. Black and white print. No. X44
circa 1907
Men Outside of a Building.
Group of men posing in front of a forest camp building. They are all standing on objects such as a wooden food box, a swooden bench and the steps of the building. One man wears an apron. A dog stands with his paws on one of the men. Black and white print.
December 14, 1914
4,000,000 feet of Logs Piled Around Two Spar Trees in a Waterless Mill Pond
The title describes the subject of the photograph well. A 1920s automobile appears in the background. Black and white print.
circa 1920
Columbia R. Drive and River East of Hood River Ore.
Aerial view of highway, crisp and picturesque. Black and white print. 321
circa 1923
Logging Camp in Washington
Logging camp with a crew posing in front of the barracks. Written on the back of the print: Stemarten. Black and white print. 3462
Waterfall in Western Washington
Unidentified waterfall surrounded by trees and rocks. Black and white print. XE6
Yarding Crew and Logs in Seattle, Washington
Small group of eight men standing on and/or near a donkey engine next to three felled logs. Black and white print. 7864
Donkey Engine in Western Washington
Lumber crew standing near a donkey engine, which is steam-powered winch that was often used for logging. Written on the print in pen these words: Ed. Stemarten. On the back of print: Ida B. Greer Black and white print. 3464

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Logging--Northwest, Pacific.

Corporate Names

  • Civilian Conservation Corps (U.S.)
  • Eufaula Company.
  • Long-Bell Lumber Co.
  • Polson Logging Company.
  • United States. War Department. Spruce Production Division.

Form or Genre Terms

  • Photographic prints.

Other Creators

  • Personal Names
    • Kinsey, Darius, 1869-1945. (creator)
    • Williams, Gerald W. (creator)