Photographer takes Spokane readers back in time - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Photographer takes Spokane readers back in time

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

Spokesman-Review Photographer Jesse Tinsley says he wanted to get to know Spokane when he moved from the Spokesman-Review’s Coeur d’Alene bureau to work in the downtown Spokane newsroom. Tinsley’s interest in learning about his new city and the need for content in the Monday paper sparked his Then & Now photo series.

It’s been a staple in the Northwest section of the paper for about 7 years now. Tinsley is given 350 words to explain the history behind the old photo he decides to recreate. He works to find out where the photo was taken and then stands in the same spot to take a current day picture. Both are posted on the same page each Monday.

The Spokesman-Review has decades worth of history within the daily papers it’s printed for the last 100 years. Tinsley chooses which photograph he wants to recreate based on the additional history he’s unable to uncover. He does that by going into the clip library in the basement of the Spokesman-Review building. The paper used to employ librarians who archived the paper’s information onto note cards by typewriter. Tinsley also visits the old archive basement below the Spokesman’s print building. He uses old city directories to learn about old buildings downtown and the businesses that once filled them.

The day KHQ went with Jesse to recreate a photo, he chose a photograph taken in 1972 along Main Street. He says the clothes people are wearing and the cars they are driving in the photo will spark nostalgia among readers. He chose that photo for this reason. From the clip archives and the print building basement, he discovered the old photo was taken from the skywalk of the Crescent building. A simple 3-block walk from the print building to the Crescent building skywalk lands Jesse in the same place he believes a photographer once stood. He snapped a series of photos and picked the best one to print beside the old 1972 picture.

The two photos are then printed in the paper the following Monday. This Then & Now was featured in the December 18th, 2017 edition of the Spokesman.  

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