The SOHS Sawyer Collection

The images presented here are part of a donation we are calling the Sawyer Collection. The images have come from multiple photography studios, some of them unidentified. Most were taken by the Kiser Studio of Portland, Oregon in the 'Teens and early 'Twenties, especially of rugged scenes in Crater Lake and Glacier National Parks and along the Columbia River. A small collection was taken 1905-07 by photographer H. G. Peabody of Massachusetts and Maine urban and coastal scenes. An anonymous collection portrays architectural and rural views taken in Central Mexico in the same era.

The collection was saved and cared for by William Gruber, who had a long working relationship with the Portland photography studio Sawyer Service Inc. Gruber was the inventor of the popular View-Master, which he produced in collaboration with Sawyer’s. According to the donor, in 1939 Sawyer’s was poised to dispose of these glass plate negatives in order to focus on the View-Master, when Gruber offered to take the plates. Over the past eight decades, the Gruber family has meticulously maintained the collection of approximately 3,000 plates, weighing roughly half a ton. Southern Oregon Historical Society received the plates as a donation in 2019, and has made them publicly available with additional grant funding from Oregon Parks and Recreation and the Oregon Cultural Trust.

 SAWYER COLLECTION INDEX        WILLIAM GRUBER       WHEN THE COLLECTION ARRIVED AT SOHS     

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SWY0156

Wheeler Creek pinnacles, looking west, circa 1915.

SWY0157

Wheeler Creek pinnacles, looking north toward the rim of Crater Lake, circa 1915.

SWY0158

Crater Lake National Park, Wheeler Creek pinnacles looking south, circa 1915.

SWY0159

Crater Lake National Park, looking west from the Wheeler Creek pinnacles, circa 1915. Crater Peak is in the background.

SWY0160

Looking north from the Wheeler Creek pinnacles, circa 1915. Mount Scott is in the background.

SWY0161

Crater Lake National Park circa 1915, most likely the Wheeler or Sand Creek pinnacles.

SWY0162

Godfrey Glen, Crater Lake area circa 1915. Has Garfield (Castle Crest), Dyar Rock, and Applegate Peak in the background. Foreground was called the Garden of the Gods; the name change to \"Godfrey Glen\" occurred in 1931.

SWY0163

Godfrey Glen, Crater Lake area circa 1915. View taken from what was called the Garden of the Gods overlook on the Fort Klamath Road.

SWY0164

Godfrey Glen, Crater Lake area circa 1915 (broken). Similar view to 163.

SWY0165

Crater Lake circa 1915, Cliffs, stream, likely on Munson Creek near Duwee Falls.

SWY0166

Crater Lake National Park Vista circa 1915. The view could be any one of several creeks flowing away from the caldera.

SWY0167

Crater Lake National Park Vista circa 1915. Either Sand Creek or Wheeler Creek.

SWY0168

Crater Lake National Park Vista circa 1915. Shows a section of old Rim Road located just south of Crater Lake Lodge. Upper Klamath Basin in the distance (Fort Klamath vicinity).

SWY0169

Crater Lake National Park Vista circa 1915, Snow (similar view to 168).

SWY0170

Crater Lake circa 1915, Wizard Island, snow, as viewed from Rim Village.  

SWY0172

Crater Lake Trees circa 1915, early season snowfall in subalpine forest.

SWY0173

Crater Lake Trees circa 1915, Snow. Could be anyone of a number of places within the park.

SWY0174

Crater Lake Trees circa 1915, Snow--could be near the rim.

SWY0175

Crater Lake Trees circa 1915, snow. It is likely that image is intended to depict an autumn snowfall. There are tracks along what is likely to be a stretch of the old Rim Road.

SWY0176

Crater Lake Trees circa 1915, snow; this could be intended as proof of an autumn snowfall.

SWY0177

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow, Trees with more evidence of an autumn snowfall.

SWY0178

Crater Lake circa 1915, an autumn snowfall. View taken from Rim Village.

SWY0179

Crater Lake circa 1915, another view of an autumn snowfall from the rim.

SWY0180

Crater Lake circa 1915, another view of an autumn snowfall. View taken from Rim Village.

SWY0181

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow, Wizard Island

SWY0182

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow, Wizard Island

SWY0183

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow, Wizard Island

SWY0184

Crater Lake circa 1915, early season snow with Wizard Island.

SWY0185

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow

SWY0186

Crater Lake circa 1915, Old Car, Tour Bus in Snow

SWY0187

Crater Lake circa 1915, Snow, Wizard Island

SWY0188

Crater Lake circa 1915, wide angle view from Garfield Peak showing the lake and the site of Rim Village to the west.

SWY0189

Crater Lake Lodge circa 1915. View shows the Great Hall and kitchen wing, looking west.

SWY0190

Crater Lake circa 1915, man in concession rowboat just below Rim Village.

SWY0191

Crater Lake circa 1915 after early-season snowfall, with the area of Rim Village above the lake.

SWY0192

Crater Lake circa 1915, Man in concession row boat below Rim Village.

SWY0193

Rock Spire, Crater Lake Lodge (site of Rim Village) circa 1915, looking west from Garfield Peak. The spire is composed of welded tuff from the climactic eruption of Mount Mazama.

SWY0194

Crater Lake Lodge circa 1915. View from a spot on the old Lake Trail leading to the shoreline.

SWY0195

Crater Lake circa 1915, early-season snow in Rim Village area. Looking north at a point east of Crater Lake Lodge.

SWY0196

Crater Lake circa 1915 with snow. This site is part of Rim Village, near where many winter visitors stand.

SWY0197

Crater Lake circa 1915 with snow, the trees are where the Kiser Studio is today, just above Victor Rock (where the Sinnott Memorial is).

SWY0198

Crater Lake circa 1915, on the east rim looking SW. Most probably the site now called Reflection Point.

SWY0199

Crater Lake circa 1915

SWY0200

Crater Lake circa 1915 from Sentinel Point. Llao Rock, Mount Thielsen, and the edge of Skell Head (at right) can also be seen.

SWY0201

Crater Lake circa 1915, from Sentinel Point, with Skell Head and Mt. Thielsen in the far distance.

SWY0202

Crater Lake from Rim circa 1915, snow; view taken from Garfield Peak or thereabouts. Shows the site of Rim Village in the distance.

SWY0203

Crater Lake circa 1915, Wizard Island from Rim

SWY0204

Crater Lake circa 1915 from Rim, spire in foreground; view north--possibly from Applegate Peak.

SWY0205

Crater Lake circa 1915, Phantom Ship from rim. Possibly taken from Dyar Rock.

SWY0206

Mouth of creek, Table Rock circa 1915