Sepia Prints

Sepia is not really a color. It's a chemical process, developed in the 1800s, that softens and warms a black and white print, and usually helps the print last much longer.

Back in the day, each photographer had their own chemical formulas for sepia toning, and their resulting prints could range from a reddish chocolate to a light golden brown. We've chosen a shade on the golden end of the spectrum.

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  1. 1883 Astoria Fire - Crow

    1883 Astoria Fire

    This boudoir card image by Astoria photographer Samuel B. Crow shows downtown Astoria, looking up river, in the aftermath of the devastating 1883 fire. Learn More
  2. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, Chronicle Building - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, Chronicle Building

    Two gents in a rowboat make their way down Washington Street at Second in June of 1894, after the Columbia River flooded The Dalles at its highest recorded level. Learn More
  3. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, H. H. Campbell Groceries - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, H. H. Campbell Groceries

    Looking down Washington Street in The Dalles, during the record-setting June, 1894 flood, with the Columbia River in the distance. Learn More
  4. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking Downstream - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking Downstream

    This overview of The Dalles looks down Second Street, from the east end of downtown, during the 1894 Columbia River flood. Learn More
  5. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking towards the River - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking towards the River

    Looking towards the swollen Columbia River, from the residential district into the flooded commercial district, during the record-setting June, 1894 flood. Learn More
  6. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking Upstream - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, Looking Upstream

    When I first saw this photo, titled by the photographer, "Town View Looking Upstream", I took it as an idylic view of a successful town along the waterfront. Learn More
  7. 1894 Flood at The Dalles, Residential Area - Herrin

    1894 Flood at The Dalles, Residential Area

    In this view of The Dalles looking up Third Street at about Court Street, we can see the transition from business district to residential area. Learn More
  8. 1894 Portland Flood, Goodyear Rubber Co. - Towne

    1894 Portland Flood, Goodyear Rubber Co.

    This unusual photo shows the interior of the Goodyear Rubber Company retail store, located on First Street, about two blocks from the Willamette River. Learn More
  9. 1903 Heppner Flood, Portland Rescuers' Tent - Sigsbee

    1903 Heppner Flood, Portland Rescuers' Tent

    A large contingent of rescuers was sent from Portland to assist in the aftermath of the Heppner flash flood, Oregon's most severe natural disaster, resulting in the death of close to 250 people. Learn More
  10. 1912 and 1900 School Buildings in Sisters

    1912 and 1900 School Buildings in Sisters - c. 1919

    The two-room schoolhouse on the right was the second school building in the town of Sisters, and was replaced in 1912 by the six-room structure on the left. Learn More
  11. Logging - 1913 Holt Track-type Tractor Hauling Logs

    1913 Holt Track-type Tractor Hauling Logs - 1914

    This U. S.Reclamation Service tractor was used to haul logs to the lake at Kachess Dam, in Kittitas County, Washington. Learn More
  12. 1913 Packard Runabout on the Way to Mt. Hood

    1913 Packard Runabout on the Way to Mt. Hood

    The joys of a wintertime ride to Mount Hood, as well as the details of a classic 1913 Packard, are well conveyed by this well-made photo by an unknown photographer. Learn More
  13. 1936 Studebaker 2T2 Truck, Fulton Park Dairy

    1936 Studebaker 2T2 Truck, Fulton Park Dairy

    This shiny new milk truck sits for a portrait in front of the Studebaker dealership in Portland. A sign in the window announces "New 1936 Studebaker Trucks * money savers * space savers *" Learn More
  14. 20th Century Grocery, Oregon City

    20th Century Grocery, Oregon City - 1919

    This photo of the 20th Century Grocery store at 611 Main Street in Oregon City was taken in August, 1919, shortly after the end of World War I. Learn More
  15. 3 1/2 ton Kelly-Springfield Truck Hauling a Steam Donkey

    3 1/2 ton Kelly-Springfield Truck Hauling a Steam Donkey - c. 1917

    While steam donkeys for logging were equipped with skids to allow them to be moved about in the woods, sometimes it was necessary to move them longer distances to new camps. Learn More
  16. 32 Mules Pulling a Holt Bros. Side-hill Harvester - Raymond

    32 Mules Pulling a Holt Bros. Side-hill Harvester - c. 1900

    Another of Benjamin Holt's innovations was the side-hill harvester shown here. Because of the need for two drive wheels, larger teams were needed to pull this more advanced model. Learn More
  17. A Brickyard in East Portland

    A Brickyard in East Portland - c. 1905

    Thousands of bricks are carefully arranged in rows to dry in the sun at this traditional brickyard located somewhere in East Portland. Two scove kilns, or field kilns, are located to the left. Learn More
  18. A Coach Stops Across from the Old Weinhard Brewery - Indahl

    A Coach Stops Across from the Old Weinhard Brewery - c. 1905

    A four-wheeled enclosed carriage rests on a muddy Burnside Street. It appears to be a "coupe", with only forward facing seats and glass windows on the front corners. Learn More
  19. Publicity Photo of a Dancer in Portland - Fink Studio

    A Dancer in a Classic Art Deco Pose - c. 1929

    An unknown performer strikes an Art Deco pose for this publicity photo by Fink Studio in Portland, probably in 1929. Learn More
  20. A Detroit Electric at Mount Rainier - Cress

    A Detroit Electric at Mount Rainier - 1919

    The Detroit Electric was manufactured from 1907 to 1936, though most of its sales were in the teens. Advertised with an 80 mile range, its record (with special batteries and driving very slowly) was 241 miles! Learn More
  21. A Donkey Nuzzles its Mother - Meiser

    A Donkey Nuzzles its Mother - c. 1910

    Who can resist a mother-and-child photo when both are soft and furry? This farm scene from a century ago shows that some things do not change. Learn More
  22. A Downtown Sheridan Street Scene

    A Downtown Sheridan Street Scene - 1887

    This view of Sheridan illustrates the rough "frontier town" look of many Oregon towns in the 1880s, before the coming of electricity - or paved streets. Learn More
  23. A Drink of Water - Lange

    A Drink of Water - 1939

    Mrs. Soper draws some water for her youngest child, in this depression era photo taken in the Willow Creek area of Malheur County. Learn More
  24. A Family Visits Their Mine

    A Family Visits Their Mine - c. 1905

    Visiting Dad at his workplace is not a new idea, as shown by this hundred-year-old photo of a wife and children visiting these two men at their mine. Learn More
  25. A Farm Scene near Medford - Kunselman

    A Farm Scene near Medford - c. 1913

    This classic view shows a small grouping of farm buildings, including several houses. Probably an extended family lived here. Learn More
  26. A Frosty Morning in Paisley, Oregon - Mendenhall

    A Frosty Morning in Paisley, Oregon - 1904

    Photographer W. C. Mendenhall was a federal geologist with a long career in California and Oregon. Learn More
  27. A Gathering at Schnoeer Park

    A Gathering at Schnoerr Park - circa 1920

    A well-dressed group poses for a portrait at Schnoerr Park, located across the Tualatin River from the town of Willamette. Learn More
  28. A Girl and her Dolls

    A Girl and her Dolls - c. 1905

    In this charming portrait recreated from the original glass negative, a young girl proudly poses with her two Victorian dolls. Learn More
  29. A Glimpse of Depoe Bay - Albert L Thomas
  30. A Gymnast from Monmouth - Harnish

    A Gymnast from Monmouth - c. 1895

    A student gymnast from Oregon State Normal School in Monmouth (now Western Oregon University) poses for a studio portrait taken by Scio photographer Clinton Harnish. Learn More
  31. A Homesteader and his Oxen - Adolph Aschoff
  32. A Klamath Chief at Crater Lake - Curtis

    A Klamath Chief at Crater Lake - c. 1923

    This view by Edward Curtis shows a Klamath chief in a ceremonial headdress looking out across Crater Lake, probably the most important site in the Klamath territory. Learn More
  33. A Logging Camp Cook Shack - Ford

    A Logging Camp Cook Shack - c. 1898

    The pies are on the table in this unusual indoor photo of an early cook shack, created entirely from natural light. Learn More
  34. A Logging Foreman Admires his Crew's Output - Ford

    A Logging Foreman Admires his Crew's Output - c. 1898

    Almost lost in the center of this giant pile of toothpicks is the foreman of the logging operation, posing on top of one of many large logs awaiting transport to a mill. Learn More
  35. A Music Hall Fiddler - Joseph Buchtel
  36. A Nez Perce Canoe - Curtis

    A Nez Perce Canoe - 1910

    Each region created their own canoe designs based on tradition and available materials. This view shows a Nez Perce version, carved out of a single cedar log. Learn More
  37. A Proud Father with his Daughter - Cummings

    A Proud Father with his Daughter - c. 1890

    Taken by photographer E. G. Cummings of Lewiston, Idaho, this cabinet card view shows a Native American father, likely Nez Perce, proudly holding his daughter. Learn More
  38. A Raging Sea, Newport - Thomas

    A Raging Sea, Newport - c. 1910

    This photo by Newport photographer Albert Thomas demonstrates his skill at capturing movement at a time when most photographs required long exposure times. Learn More
  39. A Seed Store in Washington State

    A Seed Store in Washington State - c. 1900

    They're ready for business at the seed store, as long as you have cash, though I'm not too sure about that fellow in the middle. Learn More
  40. Logging - A Small Steam Donkey Near Sandy - Douglass

    A Small Steam Donkey Near Sandy - c. 1910

    Two loggers take it easy while reclining on the cable spools of a steam donkey in this postcard view of logging in the Sandy area. Learn More
  41. A Storm on the Summit

    A Storm on the Summit - c. 1910

    Beautiful clouds arch over the summit of Mt. Hood in an early photo of climbers approaching the summit. One climber towards the right appears to be sitting down, just taking it all in. Learn More
  42. Very Small Boy with Prosthetic Hand - Bowman

    A Very Small Boy, with a Prosthetic Hand - 1890s

    This early Bowman portrait features a very small Native American boy with a prosthetic hand, standing on a wicker chair. Learn More
  43. A Very Small Girl in a Plaid Dress - Buchtel

    A Very Small Girl in a Plaid Dress - c. 1874

    We don't know the name of this young girl, but we do know the original small-format CDV photo was taken by Buchtel and Stolte, at 91 First Street in Portland. Learn More
  44. A Young Logger in a Log Chute - Ford

    A Young Logger in a Log Chute - c. 1905

    While not signed by Ford, the original for this photo was acquired with other similarly formatted photos that were signed by him. Learn More
  45. A. M. Williams Dry Goods, The Dalles - Benjamin Gifford

    A. M. Williams Dry Goods, The Dalles - c. 1895

    Built in 1870, this building still stands at 306 2nd Street, though the facade has been extensively modernized for both it and the building to the right. Learn More
  46. Above the Clouds, Summit of Mt. Hood - Weister

    Above the Clouds, Summit of Mt. Hood - c. 1915

    Clouds can be seen below the climbers in this scene captured by photographer Weister with his bulky glass plate camera. Learn More
  47. Adagio Dancers in Portland - Fink Studio

    Adagio Dancers in Portland - c. 1930

    In the 1920s, acrobatic dance routines became extremely fashionable and the dances were either described as ‘whirlwind’ or ‘adagio’. Adagio dances were slower, and often involved the partners holding a pose for some period of time. Learn More
  48. Adams Department Store Throws a Sale

    Adams Department Store Throws a Sale - c. 1910

    Adams Department Store in Oregon City did a lot of business with local mill workers. Their sign states this is the second shipment of 300 "mill shoes" they'd received in a month. Learn More
  49. After A Storm - Thomas

    After A Storm - c. 1910

    Another view from Albert Thomas of Newport, where he demonstrates his ability at fast exposure, capturing the splash of the waves and the seagull in flight just above them. Learn More
  50. Agnes Dolph, daughter of Sen. Joseph Dolph - Buchtel

    Agnes Dolph, Daughter of Sen. Joseph Dolph - c. 1875

    A well-to-do girl in a wonderful fringed dress, posed next to perhaps a family heirloom? Learn More

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