Truman L. Hack (ca.1820-1874)
Hack & Dolson
Johnston & Hack
Hack & Co.
1867 Oregon City
T. L. Hack appears to have come from Canandaigus, N. Y., West Bloomfield and Chicago prior to arriving in Portland.
By late 1863, Hack was a photographer at 107 1/2 Front street. Hendee, who owned the gallery most of that year, relocated in the fall. Over the course of 1864, Hack attempted a partnership with another former Hendee employee, Charles Dolson, who had worked there at least two years. Next he attempted a partnership with J. W. Johnston, a California studio and photographic chemistry manufacturer attempting a satellite operation in Portland. From July to August 1865 the business at 107 Front was advertised as Johnston & Hack. By October 1865, Johnston was advertising the 107 Front street address as his sole proprietorship, which he continued through summer of 1866.
Hack photographed Oregon City in 1866, and if we did not have the note of an eyewitness we would have no record of him at all for that year. By fall of 1866, the 107 Front street studio became A. B. Woodard’s. In 1867, Woodard married and moved to Olympia WA, and Hack established his own gallery at the 107 Front Street address. His portrait of his wife is dated 1867. He operated the studio continuously from then until at least the fall of 1870. By June, 1871 Oliver Dennie was in control of 107 1/2 Front street. By fall of 1871, Hack had become a carpenter. T. L. Hack died 22 November 1874, in Portland, at age 54.
The Oregon Historical Society has a CDV with vintage ms annotation on back “Oregon City 1866 from upper window of Pope’s Tin Shop. Taken by T L Hack. Given to OHS by H. J. Wallace, who was there at the time.” The CDV is a view of the business district from a high vantage point. (OHS)
The author has two CDV portraits of T. L. Hack and his wife, with contemporary annotation “Truman Hack, artist”, and “Mrs. Truman Hack, 1867”. The portrait of Mrs. Hack gives a clear view of the studio, props, and back curtain.
Hack used a template to scribe a pencil force line around CDV portrait heads in 1867. The author has found several examples which used the same template, probably a brass mask from a contact printing frame.
1864 PD pg. 47 “Hack, T. photographer 107 1/2 Front”
1865 PD pg. 51 “Hack & Dolson, photographers, 107 1/2 Front”, “Hack, T. L. (Hack & Dolson) 107 1/2 Front”
1866 PD not listed
1867 PD not listed (A. B. Woodard advertises a gallery at 107 Front)
1868 PD “Hack, T. L., photographer, 107 1/2 Front”
1869 PCD pg. 59 “Hack, T. L., photographer, 107 1/2 Front”
1871 PD pg. 57 “Haack (sic), T. L., photographer, 107 1/2 Front”
1872 PD pg. 77 “Hack,–, carpenter, res cor Fourth and Stark”
1873 PD pg. 131 “Hack, T. L. carpenter, res Alder bet Fifth and Sixth”
1873 SD East Portland pg. 178 “Hack, T. L., carpenter, res Alder bet Fifth and Sixth”
1874 PD pg. 115 “Hack, T. L., carpenter, res s s Alder bet Fifth and Sixth”
1874 SD pg. 191 “Hack, T. L., res s s Alder bet Fifth and Sixth”
“Johnston & Hack’s Photographic Gallery, No. 107 Front Street, Opposite the Post Office, Portland., Additional copies can always be obtained.” CDV with printed back and tax stamp affixed (OHS, 1007 Stevenson)
News Items and Advertisements
1865: “Photograph Gallery, Hack & Co. No. 107 Front Street, Opposite Post Office, Persons wishing good Photographs taken at Reduced Prices, will please not fail to give us a call.” 1865 PD pg. 90
1865: “JOHNSTON & HACK’S PHOTOGRAPH GALLERY, No. 107 Front street, opposite the Post Office, Portland, Oregon. Pictures Made in Every Style of the Art, from the smallest Miniature to Life size. Perfect satisfaction guaranteed or no charge. Surpassed by none and Equaled by but few. This is our Motto, and Our Work Will Prove It True. J. W. Johnson, Pioneer Artist of California, T. L. Hack.” Oregonian, 25 July – 11 August 1865
1866: “Fourth of July Accidents. Our exchanges this morning give the following: In Oregon City, Truman Hack sustained a severe injury of an arm by a falling rocket stick. …” The State rights democrat (Albany), July 07, 1866, pg. 3, col. 3.
1867: “Held Sacred. — The people of Silverton have an aged oak in their Main street, which is held as sacred as was the old “charter oak.” Recently a property holder thought to cut away some of its branches which shaded his premises too much, but the people objected and put in their protection for the Mammoth tree. The street is six rods wide, and the branches of this famous oak spread beyond, on either side, fifteen and twenty feet respectively. Mr. T. L. Hack, artist of this city, has presented us with a photograph of the noble oak.” Oregon City enterprise, January 05, 1867, pg. 3. col. 1.
1867: “Mammoth Radish. — Mr. Jacob Rauch, of this county, on Saturday last brought to the city, and left at the Postoffice, as a sample of the products of his farm, a single plant of the genus Raphanus, the root of which weighed 24 1/2 lb when taken from the ground. It is about the size of a healthy child at the age of one year. Mr. Rauch informs us that he has taken up many large sized vegetables the past fall –of various kinds — some of his ruta bagas being so large that his youthful son, who is generally useful about the garden, could not lift them into the wagon without assistance from another of similar age. This illustrates the growth vegetables sometimes attain in Oregon, to see two youngsters tugging at one beet, or one turnip. Crops never failed here yet. but on the other hand yield over-bountifully. Mr. Hack has taken a photograph of the mammoth radish, and a copy is acknowledged.” Oregon City enterprise, January 12, 1867, pg. 2, col. 6.
1867: “New Photographic Rooms. — As will be seen by advertisement Mr. T. L. Hack is now prepared to give better satisfaction than ever to those wishing anything in the picture line. He has fired up the rooms lately occupied by M. C. Athey in good style. Mr. H . has the reputation of being an expert in the business of duplicating specimens of humanity, and our citizens should give him a call during this fine weather.” Oregon City enterprise, March 30, 1867, pg. 3, col. 2.
1867: “PHOTOGRAPH GALLERY! It is only necessary to let the public be informed that T. L. Hack, Artist, Has removed to the Photographic Rooms on Main street, lately occupied by Morrison C. Athey, where he is prepared to execute better work than ever. For Children’s Pictures the best hours are between 9 and 12 o’clock A. M.” Oregon City enterprise, March 30, 1867 repeating ad to May 4.
1867: “Artists in Town. — We have lately had in Oregon City nearly all the artists of the state. Messrs. Buchtel and Woodward of Portland, and Mr. Montgomery of Salem were all here on the same day. Several consultations and comparing of notes have followed, at the Gallery of Mr. T. L. Hack. The question in which they are interested is one of some considerable importance to this city, but as yet we are not prepared to fully state what it is. Mr. Hack continues to take excellent pictures when the wind is from the North.” Oregon City enterprise, April 27, 1867, pg. 3, col. 2.
1867: “Comfortable. — We are gratified to see that Mr. T. L. Hack, late of this city, very comfortably situated on Front street, Portland, at the gallery opposite the old post office. His rooms are pleasantly arranged, and as an artist, we think r. H. capable of pleasing the most fastidious. Give him a call.” Oregon City enterprise, June 22, 1867, pg. 3, col. 3.
1874: “A Correspondent of the Echo furnishes the following items of the early history of Little Skookum Valley, W. T.: “Probably the firs white man that ever troubled the clams which were wont to spout from the mud beds of Little Skookum Bay was William Krise, who is yet a settler of Little Skookum Valley. A party, consisting of six persons, came to this valley on the 15th of February, 1859. These persons were Stillman Robinson, John Campbell, Calvin Burkett, Merick Folsom, David Flood and Truman Hack. Mr. Campbell is the only one of the six who now lives in the valley. The first plow that was brought into Little Skookum Valley was by Truman Hack, in 1861. …” Morning Oregonian) – September 18, 1874, pg. 2, col. 2.
1874: “DIED: In this city, Sunday, Nov. 23d,(sic- probably the 22nd) at 4:10 p. m., T. L. Hack, in his 55th year of his age. Canandaigus, N. Y., West Bloomfield and Chicago papers please copy. The funeral service will take place on Tuesday at 1 p. m., from the Unitarian Church.” Oregonian, 23 November 1874, pg. 2, col. 2. (actual date 22 November)
1891: “Died. At St. Vincent hospital, Mrs. Julia A. Hack, age 61 years. The remains are at Dunning & Champion’s undertaking parlors, 66 B st.” Oregonian, 17 March 1891, pg. 6, col. 4. (courtesy Michael Cirelli)
1891: cemetery records of Lone Fir Cemetery, East Portland. March 18, 1891, buried Julia Hack in 4th grave from S. end of Lot 15 – B 25. (courtesy Michael Cirelli)
Brown, Robert O., Nineteenth Century Portland, Oregon Photographers: A Collector’s Handbook (author; Portland, 1991) pg. 42, 64
Oregon Journal index card file, in Multnomah County Library, T. L. Hack died 22 November 1874 in Portland at age 54.