7th Annual Pageant, Held at Hinckley, Ohio, Labor Day, September 7, 1925

C. Hart Studio (Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio)
Gelatin silver print
Mat: 13 x 38 3/4 inches
Purchased on the Photography Acquisition Fund.

This eventful panoramic portrait was created using a banquet camera. Driven by synchronized wind-up motors, the front and back of the camera panned in opposite directions. A vertical slit between the two admitted onto the negative, degree by degree, a view far wider than a stationary camera could capture. Though the citizens of Hinckley, Ohio, appear to face the camera in a straight line, in fact they stood in a large semicircle for an exposure that may have lasted as long as a minute. A banquet-camera operator needed the skills of a geometer, an event planner, and a wrangler of stray children--a tall order when combined with the photographic task at hand. The cast of the Labor Day festival includes sash-bearers for twenty-five states in the Union as well as characters of history, legend, and national iconography, among them Betsy Ross, Paul Bunyan, and Uncle Sam. An array of costumed and painted racial types--stock figures in Anglo-American pageantry of the period, grown appalling with time--would have figured in portrayals of the antebellum South, the western frontier, and modern immigration. -- Exhibition Label, from "Among Others: Photography and the Group"
Photograph includes figures in brown- and blackface.


Panoramic view of Labor Day pageant participants in costume outside in grassy area.