Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Fish, Anyone?

We gain a sense of place regarding this series of photographs from the collection of Agnes Tully Stevens when we see this postcard today. Once again, the card is marked on the reverse, indicating the studio. Again, the credits go to Abananza Studio, with offices in both Atlanta, Georgia, and Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.

My vote goes to the North Carolina location.

While I’m tempted to say the bald guy on the far right in the top row is the same as the one we’ve seen in several photographs at the beach, I can’t be sure. This may be wishful thinking on my part, hoping to find some connections and put names to unidentified faces.

The aspect of this picture that fascinates me, though, is the building that serves as backdrop for this scene. Could this be a resort at which the family is staying? The tower seems to serve as lookout point, affording a better view of the water’s expanse. And what a view that must have been. The building seems like quite a recognizable landmark for that time one hundred years ago. Though it likely is no longer standing, it would be helpful to identify it in historic records to confirm the location for our purposes here. Was it a resort at Wrightsville Beach?

The geography of the area between Wrightsville Beach and Wilmington, North Carolina, may provide clues as to why some pictures look like bay or lake water, while others include waves more like those featured on oceanfront beaches. Affording vacationers such a variety of venues for summertime outings, this must have been a popular place at the turn of the last century.


  1. Even the name of the boat is the same...


    "The Fishermen's Dock in front of Oceanic Hotel, Wrightsville Beach, near Wilmington, N.C."

    1. That is an amazing find, Iggy! I thought, in my copy of the picture, that I could see a faint outline of some of the letters of "Oceanic." Thanks for verifying the identity of the building. What a splendid specimen of a bygone era's architecture.

  2. Love this photo! That's a magnificent building in the background. And look at that row of fish they caught! They were certainly well-dressed fishermen with their bowties on too. And what's up with the guy on the far right putting his hand on the head of the guy next to him?

    1. Jana, yes! I am quite fascinated with that building, myself. Did you check out the link that "Intense Guy" provided in the comment above? It is an even clearer picture of the resort.


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