The recently released photography book showcases the images of Lora Webb Nichols, a Wyoming homesteader and prolific businesswoman.
ENCAMPMENT, WYOMING, USA, February 2, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ — A recently released photography book, “Encampment, Wyoming: Selections from the Lora Webb Nichols Archive 1899-1948”, features 115 photographs created and collected by a homesteader/photographer in the early 20th century. Lora Webb Nichols was an entrepreneur who used photography to provide financial stability for herself and her family for several decades in rural Wyoming before, during and after the Great Depression. Culled from over 24,000 photographs, the selected images in the book provide a dynamic visual window into the American West from a female perspective and highlight the social, domestic, and economic aspects of the Wyoming frontier.
Nichols received her first camera in 1899 at the age of 16, coinciding with the rise of the region’s copper mining boom. As early as 1906, Nichols was working for hire as a photographer for industrial documentation and family portraits, developing and printing from a darkroom she fashioned in the home she shared with her husband and their children. After the collapse of the copper industry, Nichols remained in Encampment and established the Rocky Mountain Studio, a photography and photofinishing service. Her commercial studio was a focal point of the town throughout the 1920s and 1930s.
In addition to their value as historical documents, the images reveal a captivating approach to photography that looks and feels surprisingly contemporary, capturing an elusive sense of place through the photographs of a community of friends, families, and strangers.
The book is edited by photographer Nicole Jean Hill, designed by award-winning book designer Hans Gremmen, and published by FW:Books, Amsterdam.
An accompanying exhibition of Lora Webb Nichols work will be on display at the Blue Sky Gallery in Portland, Oregon from April 1- May 1, 2021. The Lora Webb Nichols Archive is also searchable through the American Heritage Center website, made possible from financial support from the Wyoming Cultural Trust.
The book editor and archive co-curator Nicole Jean Hill (b. 1978, Toledo, Ohio) received a BFA in photography from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and an MFA in Studio Art from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She currently resides in Eureka, California and is a Professor of Art at Humboldt State University. Financial support for the book was provided by the Wyoming Community Foundation, the J.M. Kaplan Furthermore Grant, Beth & Bruce White, and with research support from Grand Encampment Museum, the Wyoming Historical Society and the Peter E. Palmquist Memorial Fund. More information on the archive and book are available at the Lora Webb Nichols Archive website: www.lorawebbnichols.org.
Nicole Jean Hill
Lora Webb Nichols Archive