Art & Literature

GIS & Mapping


Base Camp


From the first invention and production of the portable camera in 1883 by the George Eastman Kodak company, California and its Channel Islands became a setting sought after by professional photographers. As early as 1900 photographers were capturing the landscape and people of the Channel on film and in prints. The UC Berkeley campus holds the California Heritage digital library, and contains a collection of 29 early photographs dated from 1900-1909 contained in a single historic album.

The California Heritage Catalog states : This album contains 29 black and white photographs likely taken in the first decade of the 20th century by the photographers Schattman, Swenson and other unidentified photographers. One photograph is dated 1900. The views are of Santa Catalina Island located 27 miles offshore southwest of Wilmington, near Los Angeles, California.

The photographs include bay views showing the shore of Avalon with its sailing vessels, housing, and mountains. Various recreational and tourist attractions are depicted, such as the Santa Catalina Island Marine Band, people bathing on the shores, a stage coach, tent camping at the isthmus, people posing with a giant fish they caught, people sitting on the beach, men on the golfing range, the steamer Hermosa, and people posing in front of the old government barracks. Also shown are animals such as a goat and a flying fish; various scenes of the islands, roads and shores; and birds-eye views of the land.