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William Brooks Collection
B76  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
This collection contains photographs by William C. Brooks and Julian “Spike” P. Graham, well-known photographers for the Pebble Beach Company, of famous figures including Robinson Jeffers, Salvador Dali, John F. Kennedy, Gerald Ford, Sinclair Lewis, Charles Lindberg, John Steinbeck, and General Joseph Stilwell, as well as scenes of the Moneterey Peninsula.
Background
William C. Brooks was a well-known commercial photographer for the Pebble Beach Company. He was born January 19, 1914 in Paducah, Kentucky. He studied biology and chemistry at Western Kentucky University and served as a captain in the U.S. Army during WWII. A resident of Carmel for 47 years, he decided to settle here after visiting while on leave from the Army. Brooks began his career in photography, working at the Beaux-Arts Camera Shop on Ocean Avenue. He then started his own business, with his wife Ilsey, called Brooks Photo Service. Brooks ended up working in Pebble Beach through assisting photographer Julian “Spike” Graham during a Concours. When “Spike,” the owner of the Pebble Beach Camera shop, asked him to help out when he was ill, Brooks did. The association became a partnership in 1953. Brooks then sold his business and concentrated on his work at Pebble Beach. Over the years he photographed many famous faces including: Bing Crosby, Eleanor Roosevelt, the Beatles, Adalai Stevenson, and Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy and Ford. He died in 1992. Julian “Spike” P. Graham was born on March 13, 1886 in Washington, D.C. Graham traveled the United States as an itinerant photographer and in the early 1920's arrived in Carmel, California. He met and worked for J.F. Devendorf, the town's founder, who introduced him to Johan Hagemeyer, a renowned portraitist. Graham and Hagemeyer grew to be close friends and with Hagemeyer's help, Graham was able to further develop and refine his photographic skills. Hagemeyer opened a photographic studio in Carmel in 1923 and the town's first art gallery in 1924. In February, 1924, Samuel F. B. Morse, the Chairman of the Board of Del Monte Properties Co., offered Graham a job at the famous old Hotel Del Monte, which is now the Naval Postgraduate School. Graham agreed to stay “a little while”, which lasted 39 years until his death at his home in Carmel Valley in October of 1963. Graham's original photography studio was located in the old Hotel Del Monte from 1924 to 1944. In the great fire of 1924 that razed the old Hotel Del Monte, many of Graham's negatives were lost. For a brief time, during World War II, Graham's moved his studio to Menlo Park. In 1944, when the shops opened at Pebble Beach across from the Del Monte Lodge, now The Lodge at Pebble Beach, he then moved his studio and Camera Shop into the end shop where he remained in business until his death. Graham's photographs appear in many books including Pebble Beach Golf Links by Neal Hotelling, Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club by Geoff Shackelford, The Life and Work of Dr. Alister MacKenzie by Tom Doak, Dr. James Scott and Raymond Haddock.
Extent
1 archival box
Restrictions
The Henry Meade Local History Room, Harrison Memorial Library does not hold copyright to these items. Permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder, Ray March, by the user. William Brooks inherited many photos from Julian P. “Spike” Graham, the official Del Monte (or Pebble Beach) photographer. For Ray March's contact information, please call or email the library.
Availability
Materials are open for research.