Where Research is a Delight!
The growth of our collection depends on the generosity of donors like Gary Logan, who recently shared his extensive collection of family photographs. His great grandparents William Erwin Logan (1860-1916) and Rose Addie Deaver Logan (1865-1943), lived at 124 Logan Avenue in West Asheville, fondly called “The Big House” by the family.
In the photograph above, dated about 1902, the Logans and members of their extended family pause during a game of croquet. Studio portraits in the collection illustrate the work of all the major photographers active in Asheville at the turn of the century: J. W. Crawford, Nat Taylor, Ignatius Brock, Clarence Ray, Florence Branagan and the McCanless brothers.
The Logan Collection illustrates the possibilities opened up by digital photography. A scanned copy of a photograph is just as useful to us as a photographic print. High-resolution scans allow us to zoom in to see details of house and costume.
After we scan the images in this collection, we will return the originals to the donor. In the past potential donors have been reluctant to permanently give up treasured family photographs to the library, but now you can have your photographs and share them too!
The collection also includes color slides and black and white negatives taken in the 1940’s, ’50’s and ’60’s by John Lagustus Lawrence, a West Asheville grocer and realtor who married one of the Logan daughters. Lawrence’s photographs dramatically bring to life events such as floods, parades, the construction of Westgate shopping center, the construction of Pisgah View housing project, and many scenes from the life of Calvary Baptist Church. To view a short pdf of Lawrence photographs of parades, click on the parade picture below.
In the image above we see the parade float entry of Ivey’s Department Store. Ivey’s, with a Nursery Rhyme theme, was the grand prize winner in the 1939 Rhododendron Festival parade. Once we figured out the year of this parade, we looked at the Asheville Citizen and Asheville Times on microfilm. From newspaper accounts of the parade, we learned that the children on the float are: Bo-Peep, Sally Sumner; Peter Pumpkin Eater, Nancy Buran; and Miss Muffet, Patsy Buckner.
We discovered that newsreel footage of the 1939 parade can be viewed online. To see the Ivey’s float moving along in the parade, follow this link to the website “Critical Past” by clicking here.
Posted by: Betsy Murray