Reed Photo Collection

I am excited to announce that my second book, “Lewis Reed Photograph Collection (1898-1960)” is now available through print-on-demand bookstore. The book contains 374 pages and 2500+ photographs, the majority of them more than 100 years old, taken by Lewis Reed, founder of Reed Brothers Dodge. It has informative captions throughout that provide small snippets of history on the people and places pictured.

Some of the historic locations in this collection includes the Smithsonian Institution, Montgomery County Maryland Almshouse, United States Capitol, Key Bridge, Union Station, Gettysburg, and other important sites in and around the Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. area. There are also photographs of many non-Maryland locations including Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Georgia, New York, Boston, Georgia, North Carolina, and Canada. Especially stunning are images of the aftermath of the 1936 Gainesville Georgia tornado, one of the deadliest tornadoes in American history. As this collection reveals, Lewis Reed was on the scene for some of the most important events in the history of the twentieth-century, and he always had his camera with him.

Of particular interest is Lewis Reed’s collection of digitally manipulated photographs. He was 100 years ahead of his time by creating special effects to images long before the convenience and efficiency of digital photography and Photoshop were ever imaginable. Lewis Reed used a wide variety of effects, including hand-tinting, double exposure, applied handwork, and surrealistic, ghost-like effects in his image-making processes. Lewis Reed developed all of his own photographs. He had a darkroom in his house — in the kitchen, to be exact — and worked at night to develop the negatives. As only black and white film was available, his daughter, Mary Jane, learned and perfected the art of tinting the photographs by hand.

Lewis Reed was a well-known photographer in the county and many of his early photographs are now part of Montgomery History’s photo archives. His photography has appeared as a resource in highly regarded historical publications including, “Rockville Images of America” by Peerless Rockville Historic Preservation (with Ralph Buglass), “Montgomery County Mills, A Field Guide” by Michael Dwyer,  “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, Montgomery Magazine, historic landmarks “Then & Now”, and “Gaithersburg: History of a City”, and by the media, including on the national television show, American Pickers, Science Channel ‘Impossible Engineering’, Maryland Public Television, and on TV’s most watched history series, American Experience on PBS.

Like my first book, I self-published this book using the Blurb book-making software. Self publishing opens up possibilities for books that simply don’t fit into the traditional publishing mold.

The book, “Lewis Reed Photograph Collection (1898-1960)” is available through print-on-demand bookstore. If you would like to check out the hard copy book or purchase a copy, please visit:

A preview of the entire book can be viewed in the Blurb public bookstore. To see the book full screen (highly recommended), simply click on the “PREVIEW” button below the book. (The pages turn by clicking the bottom corners on the left and right of the book). The preview works best in either IE or Chrome; it is not optimized for Firefox.

Note: It’s worth noting that Print-On-Demand (POD) books, are usually more expensive per copy than a book printed via offset printing. That’s because offset printing (the method used for most mass-produced books found in bookstores) requires a minimum order of 500-1,000 copies. Print on demand, on the other hand, needs only a minimum order of one copy. The smaller scale and different workflow results in a higher cost per book, since the books are only printed when they are ordered. This book is not marked up for profit; but sold at base price.

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