Then there were those department store portraits like Sears, J.C.Penny's, K-Mart, and many others. They had even nicer backdrops and even involve props like, armrests, fuzzy rugs, ladders, steps, chairs, toys and so on. Oh they were nice, but as a kid I really didn't like getting my picture made. This involved getting all dressed up on a Saturday and going down to Sears, then being told where to sit, tilt my head, move over here, don't squirm, don't close your eyes. Ugh, it was awful. The only thing good that would come out of that was a trip to the candy counter, which was on the 2nd floor of the building. I'm from Birmingham, so our Sears had a candy counter. They also sold Coke Icees and popcorn too. This made it worth having to endure the portrait sessions.
I recently learned that The Josephine Hotel in Union Springs, Alabama was the primary place to get photographs made even as late as the 1980's. So let me share what I do know.
The picture below was actually made at The Josephine on the 2nd floor porch by a photographer from the window on the other side of the railings you see in the bottom left.
I know that even in the early years of The Josephine, it was "the" place to get your picture made. Who wouldn't want their picture made at the most beautiful hotel in Union Springs?
Portraits like these would have been typical at The Josephine
This is the camera Olan Mills used when they were getting started.
This is what the street scene would have looked like around that time...
The owner of The Josephine, has been told countless times by locals, that they remember having their picture made there. I would love to see some of those photos. I bet Joyce would love to have some to display at The Josephine to remember all those who have had the Josephine be apart of their lives at some point.
Also made in the 30's, perhaps a Mother / daughter photo?
Everyone one needs a photo of a rooster wearing overalls while his feet are tied to rollerskates.
If you had your picture made at The Josephine as a child or adult, Joyce would love to have a copy just to display in a special section of the building, maybe on a wall, just to pay tribute to all those folks who's lives may have crossed paths with The Josephine Hotel.