For the next few posts, I'm going to share a safari adventure that George Eastman, the pioneer of modern photography, took in his retirement. But I'll begin by giving a little of the back story of how I came to own a relatively rare book that George Eastman self-published.
My Grandfather Ruffner was an early employee of George Eastman's, starting as a salesman with Kodak in 1901. Because he started in the early days of the company, he had a large territory to cover. How large was it?
In those days, he traveled through the West mostly by railroad, calling on professional photographers, giving demonstrations, selling Kodaks, putting metal signs in windows, and distributing advertising from a trunk that weighed 250 pounds. However did he manage that trunk?
Eventually my grandfather returned to Rochester, New York — the headquarters of the Eastman Kodak Company — and like my great-grandfather, became an editor. For years he published company magazines, and he eventually was responsible for introducing Kodak's Ektachrome color film to professional photographers.
And so, when George Eastman returned from a 8-month safari trip and wanted to publish a book of his experiences for his friends, he turned to my grandfather to edit and print the project. Of course my grandfather retained one of those books, which I've been enjoying rereading lately. So, let's go on a safari with George Eastman!
In 1926, George Eastman (1854-1932), planned an extended safari to East Africa. He was joined by two younger friends, Daniel E. Pomeroy and Dr. Audley D. Stewart. Pomeroy was a New York banker and sportsman who helped found a couple of New York golf courses, and Stewart was Eastman's personal physician.
|Douglas Fairbanks and Billie Dove in The Black Pirate | dvdbeaver.com|
On March 13, 1926, the party departed from New York for Southampton on the Majestic.
|Tea with the ship's captain, aboard the Majestic|
|left to right: Dr. Audley D. Stewart, George Eastman, Daniel E. Pomeroy|
- 6 baskets of fruit
- 6 bouquets of flowers
- 3 boxes of cigars
- 1 basket of mushrooms
- 20 French artichokes
- 1 bunch of rhubarb
- 2 baskets of peas
- 1 basket of radishes
- 5 baskets of string beans
- 6 baskets of Lima beans
- 16 heads of cauliflower
- 3 baskets of Bermuda potatoes
- 2 baskets of tomatoes
- 8 bunches of asparagus
- ½ barrel of oysters
- 4 lbs. of caviar
More of the Eastman trip in the next post . . .