Lewis Reed: Enters 1936 Amateur Photo Contest

The Star published a series of pictures reproduced from photographs taken by local amateurs. The pictures were selected and judged each week and the best one chosen on its merits and published the following Sunday. Lewis Reed submitted his photo, “Sunset Over the River”, in the Washington Star Best Snapshots of the Week in The Star’s Amateur Contest. There was no indication where the photo was taken, but I’m guessing it was probably on the Potomac River, Maryland. At the time, Lewis Reed would have been 49 years old. There was no mention of whether or not he won a prize for his photograph, but I’m not surprised he entered this contest. He was a passionate photographer and always had his camera with him.

The full page image below is from the Sunday Gravure Section of The Washington Star newspaper. When looking at the top of the page, I wondered what the term “Gravure” meant, so I “googled” it. Turns out gravure refers to the special newspaper sections of photographs which were printed with this process starting around the late 1800s. In the 1930s, newspapers published relatively few photographs and instead published separate gravure sections in their Sunday editions. These sections were devoted to photographs and identifying captions, not news stories.

Star Amateur Photo Contest 1936

Full page image from The Sunday Star, Washington, D.C. – Gravure Section – June 28, 1936.


“Sunset Over the River” taken by Lewis Reed in 1936

Lewis Reed was a well-known photographer in Montgomery County and many of his photographs are now part of the Montgomery County (Maryland) Historical Society photo archives. His photography has appeared in highly regarded history books such as, “Montgomery County: Two Centuries of Change” by Jane C. Sween, “Montgomery County (Then & Now)” by Mark Walston, “Montgomery County (MD) Images of America”, by Michael Dwyer, “Rockville: Portrait of a City” by Eileen S. McGuckian, and “Gaithersburg: History of a City”. His photographs have been featured in the Norris-Banonis Automotive Wall Calendar, on the national television show, American Pickers, and on television’s most watched history series, American Experience on PBS.

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About Reed Brothers

I am a co-owner of the former Reed Brothers Dodge in Rockville, Maryland. Lewis Reed, the founder of Reed Brothers Dodge was my grandfather. We were a family-owned and operated car dealership in Rockville for almost a century. I served in the United States Air Force for 30 years before retiring in the top enlisted grade of Chief Master Sergeant in July 2006. In 2016, I received the Arthur M. Wagman Award for Historic Preservation Communication from Peerless Rockville for documenting the history of Reed Brothers Dodge in both blog and book format. This distinguished honor recognizes outstanding achievement by writers, educators, and historians whose work has heightened public awareness of Rockville’s architectural and cultural heritage, growth and development.

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