The Brady Stewart Collection of 20th Century Photographs – Portfolios 1900-1911


Family Photograph at the North East Pennsylvania Train Station near Lake Erie - 1904



Lake Chautauqua/Lakewood New York (1901)

Clark & Helen Stewart and schoolmates visited Lake Chautauqua/Lakewood New York on a school field trip in 1901.  Alice Brady Stewart was one of the chaperones and Brady Stewart came along to photograph the trip.  They traveled by train from Pittsburgh to North East PA train station. The group chartered carriages and traveled to Bemus Point Pier where they boarded the City of Cleveland Steamer to Lakewood.  The Stewart family and students stayed at this Lakewood Boarding Houses during their field trip.

Large Hotels like the Kent House were built to accommodate the hordes of people who flocked to western New York every summer. For the wealthy of every major city in the northeast, a summer at Chautauqua Lake became the epitome of the good life.  Telephone lines were installed in 1901 to accommodate businessmen vacationing at the Kent House.

North East Pennsylvania Vacations

From 1901 thru 1905, the Stewart family vacationed on Lake Erie near the town of North East Pennsylvania.  Due to the lack of nearby hotels or cabin rentals, they camped out near Lake Erie.  Similar to the Lakewood field trip, the Stewarts boarded a train in Pittsburgh for the North East Pennsylvania station.  It took a few wagons to transport all of the camping gear to the campsite.

Wabash and West Virginia Railroad

The Pittsburgh and West Virginia Railway was a railroad in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Wheeling, West Virginia areas. The railroad was originally built as a Pittsburgh extension of George J. Gould’s Wabash Railroad. The Pittsburgh, Toledo and Western Railroad Company, part of the Gould’s railroad system, hired Brady Stewart to provide railroad progress photographs. This progress photo assignment was Brady Stewart’s first commercial photography job.  From 1903 through the completion of the project in June 1904, Brady Stewart photographed the building of the Spellacy, Warren, Hanna and Wabash Tunnels along with the tracks and bridges between Hopedale Ohio and downtown Pittsburgh.

Southwestern Ohio

Brady Stewart was very affected by the untimely death of his brother, Clark Stewart, in 1905.  He purchased a car, a 1906 Buick Model F, and traveled to Southwestern Ohio to visit Brady family relatives.  He spent the spring visiting family and taking photographs of the area.

Homesteading in Idaho

Brady Stewart and three friends went to Idaho on a lark from 1909 thru early 1912. As part of the Carey Homestead Act of 1894, they received a land grant of 160 acres north of the Snake River.  The Carey Act set forth guidelines for the Federal Government, State, Development Companies, Operating Companies and the Homesteader.  A number of the Western Development Companies were funded by investors from Pittsburgh PA. To secure a final deed for the property, the Settler needed to link his or her land to the irrigation system, build a livable building (farmhouse), and cultivate 1/8 of the granted property.  For 2 ½ years, Brady Stewart photographed the adventures of farming along with the spectacular landscapes.

The amazing part of photographing while in Idaho was the lack of facilities to load and develop film along with making photographic prints.  Brady Stewart constructed a field studio near the Jerome farmhouse.  The darkroom consisted of a hole covered by a large tarp.  After his initial supplies ran out, he would mix a batch of emulsion from scratch and evenly coat the film and load film holders once the film dried.  After taking photographs, he would mix film developer, load the film into film holders, develop the film and fix the image with hypo.  The last part in the process is to make a print.  He would mix the paper developer and fixer, contact a negative with photographic paper, process the contact print and hang to dry.

Brady Stewart returned from Idaho in early 1912 due to another family tragedy, the death of his youngest brother, Homer Kuhn Stewart.

Photos can be viewed at


About bradystewartcollection
The Brady Stewart Collection of photographs, made by Brady Stewart, Brady Stewart Jr. and associates of Brady Stewart Studio Inc., consists of photographs taken in and around Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, Lake Erie, Lake Chautauqua, New York, Southwestern Ohio, Washington DC, Niagara Falls and Idaho. The historically significant collection spans most of the 20th century (1900-1990) and includes a wide array of Black &White, Sepia and Color photographs on Advertising & Products, Buildings and Churches, Children, Homesteading in Idaho, Manufacturing & Equipment, People & Lifestyle, Pittsburgh City Scenes, Sports and Transportation. The Brady Stewart Collection encompasses over 20,000 glass plates, prints and film negatives of all shapes and sizes. Today, Brady Stewart Studio is a fourth generation photography business. We are one of the longest operating family-owned commercial photography studios in the United States (1912-1991, 2008-). The Collection Images can be viewed at our hosted web site,

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