On a cold San Francisco day in December of 1931, Jules Eichorn wrote to his friend Glen Dawson requesting that he send him his negatives from the previous summer’s adventures. Glen had made good use of his Kodak Vest Pocket camera recording a gathering of characters that combined ability, experience, and technique in a mix that would change Sierra mountaineering forever.
Jules wanted copies of Glen’s photos for his own scrapbook so he took the negatives to another of their climbing companions who had a crude darkroom in his Alameda basement. Lewis Clark made copies for the both of them but somehow no one remembered to return Glen’s originals and they were soon forgotten.
Until Lewis’s death more than sixty years later, Glen’s work remained in a large oak file cabinet in the Bay Street basement. Shortly before the old brown shingle was to be restored, it was decided to clear out what ever was left in the damp space below the main floor. For the price of a good pint of beer, a huge box of old photos was purchased and made its way across town to a different basement to be puzzled over for another fifteen years.
Occasional applications of curiosity and investigation eventually revealed an incredible discovery. Here was the photographic record of the pioneers of modern mountaineering in California’s High Sierra; somewhat the worse for wear but still a treasure.
We hope this simple book will help to celebrate Glen’s 100th year and commemorate the wonderful events of the summer of 1931.