ALBION — Kevin Johnson, photo archivist for the Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport, will present “Albion, Maine: The Postcard View: Selections from the Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, at the Besse Building on Main Street.

The free slide show and talk will consist of a short film about the postcard company as well as historical views of Albion and surrounding towns.

The Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Company was founded in 1909 in Belfast by Rudolph Herman Cassens. Cassens’ goal was to photograph small towns and rural areas from Maine to California, producing “real photo” postcards that would be valued for promoting tourism.

Cassens did not fulfill his dream of photographing the entire country, but his company did produce more than 50,000 glass plate negatives of New England and Upstate New York between 1909 and 1947. The collection is full of historic businesses, family homes and local landmarks.

The images take viewers back in time to when the roads were still dirt, horse-drawn carriages outnumbered cars, coastlines were undeveloped, and elms lined the streets. The collection is now part of the archives of the Penobscot Marine Museum and continues to grow as more negatives that “escaped” from the collection are located and acquired.

Last year Johnson, along with Maine State Historian Earle Shettleworth and Maine Historian William H. Bunting, published “Maine on Glass” which examines the Maine portion of the Eastern Collection. Copies will be available the night of the event.

More than 90,000 images from the Eastern Collection as well as the museum’s other collections can be viewed on the museum’s website www.PenobscotMarineMuseum.

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