Plan your next event at this unique, "only one" of its kind Museum. This 1980 Company Store was designed with artistry in the architecture. Its a perfect place to hold your next party, wedding,reunion,anniversary,ball, card club, just to name a few. Any event would be a hit in this historical beauty.
"Life in the Coal Fields"
Experience the largest and most complete collection of panoramic photography on display.
Saturday August 27th 2016. 11am-6pm.
Music, light snacks, and beverages will be served throughout the event.
$ 10.00 per person.
George Bragg, historian and well known photographer introduces us to a history about the Ribble panoramic collection he now owns and shares throughout the country.
Photographer Rufus E. ‘‘Red’’ Ribble (May 14, 1878-December 27, 1967) was born in Blacksburg, Virginia, moved to West Virginia around 1919, and travelled through portions of West Virginia capturing large groups of coal miners, families and pictures of families in the coal mining camps until his retirement in the late 1950s. Not much is known about his life, but he left quite a legacy in his work.
Ribble’ camera of choice was a Cirkut camera, which revolves on a geared tripod while exposing the film through a small slit, allowing it to take a continuous photograph that can capture a full 360-degree view. The photos themselves were made by contact printing the full-size negative, so the image is sharp and clear, with none of the distortion you might get from enlarging a small negative.
George Bragg, explains Operating the camera can be pretty tough, there are so many different things you have to do to take a picture, the paper for contact prints comes in 500-foot rolls, meaning about 4 or 5 feet of it is printed at one time. It’s very expensive, a negative from the camera stretched out 45 inches. Some can extend to 6 feet. It is not an easy process.
It takes a lot of light for these cameras, you have to find a space that’s appropriate and big enough and you have to follow the light. The light is the most important thing in any photography. The tricky part is making sure the light is adequate on both ends of the group.
The tripod has a gear on it, and there’s a gear that comes out of the bottom. When you turn the camera on, those gears spin in opposite direction to pull the camera around. It pans across so people or objects have to be in a semi-circle. Making the sweep takes about 20 seconds. Anyone moving in that brief stretch likely will be blurred. The more daring know how to stand perfectly still when the lens zooms in on them, then shuffle back, scamper across the back row in time to appear twice, even three times in the same photograph.
If you don’t pay close attention, it’s easy to make a mistake and you won’t know it until you develop the film. The most difficult in this type of photography is learning how to line up the people and encourage all the people to cooperate at the same time
The exhibit presents a photographic essay of the early days of mining and life in the West Virginia Coal fields.