Charles Waldack's 1866 photos of Mammoth Cave

Techniques and equipment.

Moderator: Moderators

Charles Waldack's 1866 photos of Mammoth Cave

Postby Magee » Dec 14, 2011 10:08 am

I just wanted to introduce myself. I am Gross Magee and I teach photography and graphic communications at Murray State University.

Over a year ago I started a research project. The project involves studying early photography in Mammoth Cave in general and specifically the first underground photographs in America by Charles Waldack in 1866.

The goal is to compare and contrast changes in the cave and in photographic technology over the last 150 years. To do this I have started duplicating Waldack’s stereoviews in the cave using digital stereo photography. So far I have photographed 19 of Waldack’s 42 published views (a few of which I am happy with.)

My goal is to photograph all 42 views and publish the results by the magical date of 2016. That date will be the 200th anniversary of Mammoth Cave tours, 150th anniversary of Waldack’s photographs, 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service, the 75th anniversary of Mammoth Cave being a national park and the 35th anniversary of Mammoth Cave being designated a World Heritage Site. I am also hoping by that date that 3D HDTV will have advanced enough to allow easy viewing of the stereo images.

I am very new to cave and stereo photography. There has been a very steep and ongoing learning curve to this type of photography and historical research. It has given me a great appreciation of true cave photographers and this genre of photography.

Without the assistance of some very knowledgeable and talented people this project would not have progressed this far. I am looking for any type of advice, comments and assistance people care to share. You can see Waldack’s images and a few of my recreations at

Thank you for your time and consideration and in advance for any help.

Occasional Poster
Posts: 25
Joined: Dec 10, 2011 3:51 pm

Return to Photography and Videography Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users