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Beverly B. Dobbs Alaska photograph album, circa 1903-1907
- Dobbs, B. B. (Beverly Bennett)
- Beverly B. Dobbs Alaska photograph album
- circa 1903-1907 (inclusive)19001907
- 82 photographs in 1 album (1 box) ; 11" x 15"
- Collection Number
- Photographs of Alaska natives, mining operations in Alaska and other Alaska subjects
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
- Access Restrictions
Entire collection can be viewed on the Libraries’ Digital Collections website. Permission of Visual Materials Curator is required to view originals. Contact Special Collections for more information.
Biographical NoteReturn to Top
The son of a farmer, Beverly Bennett Dobbs was born in 1868 near Marshall, Missouri. At age 8, he moved with his parents to Lincoln, Neb., where he learned photography. In 1888, Dobbs moved to Bellingham, Wash., and operated a photography studio for 12 years, including a partnership in 1890-1891 with F.F. Fleming under the name Dobbs & Fleming. He married Dorothy Sturgeon of Bellingham in 1896, then moved to Nome, Alaska, in search of gold in 1900. Dobbs continued to earn his living as a photographer, and by 1903, he had formed a partnership with the photographer A.B. Kinne from San Francisco. The Dobbs & Kinne studio in Nome offered photography services and photo supplies. Dobbs photographed scenes in Nome and the Seward Peninsula and made portraits of Eskimo people (Eskimos). He was awarded a gold medal at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (St. Louis World’s Fair) in 1904 for his Eskimo photographs.
By about 1909, Dobbs had started Dobbs Alaska Moving Picture Co., making him one of the first to use motion picture film north of the Arctic Circle. He made a name for himself as a filmmaker with Atop of the World in Motion (also called Top of the World in Motion ), a collection of his motion picture travelogues detailing the Alaska gold rush. By 1911, it is probable that Dobbs was focusing only on his moving picture business; he no longer had his photography supply store, and had sold his photography negatives to the Lomen Brothers, who later issued some of his work under their name. By 1914, Dobbs had returned to Seattle and was managing the Dobbs Totem Film Company. He is listed as the cinematographer for A Romance of Seattle , a film shot in and around Seattle in 1919. In his later years he specialized in developing motion picture films in his studio at his home. During the 1930s, Dobbs photographed the fish processing operations at Pacific American Fisheries (PAF) in the Fairhaven area of Bellingham. He died at age 69 in 1937.
Content DescriptionReturn to Top
The collection consists of one photograph album with red leather cover containing photographs taken in Alaska by B.B. Dobbs. The album includes images of Alaska Natives, both studio portraits and images of Eskimos in their daily lives, showing men fishing, with dog and reindeer sleds, and with reindeer carcasses; images of mining, showing mining operations at various locations, mining camps and landscapes, and gold bars in a bank; and views of Nome and other Alaska locations.
Use of the CollectionReturn to Top
Restrictions may exist on reproduction, quotation, or publication. Contact Special Collections, University of Washington Libraries for details.
Administrative InformationReturn to Top
Source: Old Butte Antiques, 2006.
Processed by Jody Hendrickson and Marion Brown, 2008
See also B. B. Dobbs Alaska-Yukon Pacific Exposition photographs (Photograph collection 755) and Beverly B. Dobbs photographs (Photograph collection 323) in the Special Collections Division, University of Washington Libraries.
Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top
Names and SubjectsReturn to Top
- Eskimo children--Alaska--Photographs
- Eskimo women--Alaska--Photographs
- Gold mines and mining--Alaska--Photographs
- Sled dogs--Alaska--Photographs
- Visual Materials Collections (University of Washington)
- Dobbs, B. B. (Beverly Bennett) (photographer)
- Alaska--Gold discoveries
- Nome (Alaska)--Gold discoveries
- Nome (Alaska)--Photographs