The Paint Factory, Gloucester

 The Paint Factory, Gloucester ©Fredrik D. Bodin
The Tarr and Wonson Paint Manufactory, or Paint Factory, was built in 1874. It’s purpose was to make copper based paint to prevent barnacles from growing on the bottoms of boats. Bottom growth slows a vessel down, which costs money, especially if the cargo is perishable fish. In addition, the fishing schooner reaching port first got best price. This was Tarr and Wonson’s new technology.
Looking at this photograph you may think it’s old, until you look closer. In October of 1984 I looked out my window and saw a large schooner entering the harbor with her sails up. I ran outside and fired off half a dozen shots.. The size of the Bluenose II behind the Paint Factory gives the photo its impact. She’s  161 feet long and the mainmast is 125 feet tall. I learned later that this was the Bluenose II of Nova Scotia making a quick sail  in and out of Gloucester Harbor. It was a courtesy visit by the captain to a good friend, Gloucester shipwright Verne Smith and his wife Ruth.
Printed in my darkroom from the original 35mm Tri-X negative. Negative #FDB841016-05#08A
Fred Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

About Sharon

My passions include photography, music, people, teaching, learning, taking risks and asking "I wonder what would happen if I..."
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9 Responses to The Paint Factory, Gloucester

  1. Kevin says:

    That is magnificent and once in a lifetime !

  2. Jenn Cullen says:

    Awesome shot! I’ll have to come down to check this one (and others!) out.


  3. H. A. says:

    Fabulous perspective, Fred! May have to try & do a sketch or painting from it & hope that would not be plagerism.

  4. Bill Hubbard says:

    Certainly an unusual perspective, Fred and a nice shot. The paint factory has certainly aged in the since 1974 but, I guess all of us have. Paint it, Helen, I may have to do that myself.

  5. E.J. says:

    That is amazing. I certainly would have believed it was another of your great antique photos – the sepia creates the effect, as well as the schooner, but the paint factory building looks so much older now (you did take the shot almost 30 years ago, so I guess it is). It was nice to see you yesterday.

  6. lobsterlady says:

    Awesome. A lot of history in that building. As if I have to tell ya.

  7. H.A. Hi- long time no see! Go ahead and sketch or paint it.

  8. Terry Weber says:

    Fredik, love that photo. I might have some old wartime negatives for developing. Do you only concentrate on Cape Ann?

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