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You and Arthur C. Pillsbury
Arthur C. Pillsbury loved nature and people. Nothing delighted him more than sharing the miracles of the natural world with people, who sensed this, listening to this short and unassuming man with a quick sense of humor, speak. He wanted everyone to love the world and appreciate its glories.
Very spiritually aware, he was trusting and kind to everyone.
Many people collect his work still today and many send us jpegs so we can rebuild the collection which was so tragically lost to him in 1927.
Our catalogs are slowly returning and soon we will begin putting up the images along with the listings. If you have images, we hope you share them with us so we can make them available to everyone. Below we share the stories of people who sent along their images. Thanks to all who can do so! You are appreciated.
The Stories of Images
Jeanette Hyden sent, us an email with a link to an AC Photo she has owned for over 30 years. The image is a vertical panorama, produced as a d'orotone, taken in 1906, titled, "The Road Winds out into the Sun Shine."
Kathy Stewart sent a photo album-book filled with images from the Student Co-Operative Society, University of California at Berkeley. A. C. printed the book, which contains his photos. Her Great-Great Aunt Florence Erwine, a school teacher, owned it and most likely knew Grandfather.
Aunt Florance taught at Garfield Elementary School in Alhambra. See the Book
The Restoration Project
The multiple 'catalogs' which recorded the work of Arthur C. Pillsbury included still photographs on glass negatives, on nitrate film, an enormous and historic collection of panoramas on a long list of subjects, places and events. Also included were movies. These included aerial photography, wild life, both animals, birds and insects.
Pillsbury's lapse-time photography included at least 500 of the 1500 varieties of wildflowers in Yosemite.
Films made using the microscopic motion picture camera AC developed himself, at his own expense, in 1926 – 1927, recorded such subjects as cells dividing and other vivid processes of life which then shaped human understanding of what had previously remained subject to speculation.
The first showing of a microscopic motion picture, of a cell dividing, took place at UC Berkeley, attended only by a small group of scientists, instructors at UC Berkeley. The development of the camera and the first showing is described in AC's book, “Picturing Miracles of Plant and Animal Life,” published by Lippincott in 1937.
“All of the instructors who could crowd into the little makeshift basement laboratory were there to see the results and I was very anxious to get their reactions. After the short showing was over, Dr. Setchel turned to turned to Dr. Holman and said, “What have we just seen, Doctor?” It rather startled him and he began talking about Brownic Movements in protoplasm. They all had seen something for the first time and they wanted to think about it before expressing an opinion, but were very sure there were unlimited possibilities for future work.”
Brownian motion is pseudo-random as opposed to showing purpose.
1927 marked a sharp reduction in the resources Pillsbury had at his disposal to pursue his studies and extend our understanding of the world of nature.
In Miracles, Pillsbury comments soon after reporting the reaction of Dr. William Setchell, that the very best equipment was necessary for the work. He placed an order for what was needed and then started out on a lecture tour to pay for them, “and for a new camera suitable for the work.” The first unit cost $5,000, an enormous sum in 1926.
He goes on to describe what he has seen and includes this on his studies of the Spyder Lily (Hymenocallis) pollen in its process of germination. “The tubes as they grew from the grains crossed the field and and entered the stigma. No matter what the obstruction, they grew over and under it or pushed it to one side. Then to watch for the first time it had been seen in active life, the nucleus, the germ of life, as it came out of the grain, traveled down the tube and entered the stigma. To ponder the reason, the why and wherefore, of nature's struggles to carry on, the difficulties to overcome, make one realize that the Guiding Hand must control all life, that one cannot well be a student of life and an atheist.”
By early in 1927 Pillsbury had decided to take steps to ensure his invention of the microscopic motion picture camera remained in the public domain. Sunset Article
Although he continued to develop new tools for seeing further into the world around us, these including the X-Ray Motion Pictures and Underwater Motion Pictures, the loss of the collection in Yosemite was a devastating blow. Despite the devastating effect of his loss he refused to patent any of his inventions which expanded human understanding through photography.
The Restoration Project is intended to restore the Pillsbury Collections and a public understanding of the work which remained the focus of his life until his death on March 5, 1946. Go to IMAGE to sign up for updates and receive our newsletter.
More on Restoration and how you can participate will be up soon!
Read - Reviews of books
During his life time Arthur C. Pillsbury did everything in his power to awaken the public on the need to preserve the world of nature. His contributions have been overlooked and glossed over but this was the core and focus of his life's work.
This site is working to carry his work forward into a new century as well as to preserve his legacy.
To this end we have partnered with individuals working to stop the abuse of the environment and the deceptive practices now common in business.
These practices have a long history and are also part of the story which Pillsbury found himself confronting during his lifetime. Articles on these topics will be included in IMAGE.
Below is a list of websites which we believe will advance this work and links to documents which contain invaluable information on the history of how these predatory acts took place.
Some documents are hosted on this site and be accessed through the Library as well.
Visit ACP Vision to find articles following what is happening in our world.
Contact us if you discover alternative materials or technologies which can move us to sustainability. We understand the problems these face for rapid adoption. We can help move the best alternatives into use. This is part of our mission.
Healing the Earth is a special work requiring materials completely free of petroleum products of any kind. Providing these has been the work of a determined few for generations.
Healing the Earth - Joseph Davidovits
Joseph Davidovits is one of the individuals who has made it possible for us to see this work completed. Dr. Davidovits is the inventor of geopolymer science which is now catching fire around the world. The doctor has made a gift of these technologies to the world by making them open source. Read more about Dr. Davidovits at his website and also visit the Geopolymer Institute site to learn more about the gifts the Earth has provided for us.
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