Item #510 Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919
Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919

Photo Album, Compiled By Dutch Engineer Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk 1917 - 1919

Item #510

This compact (8 ¼” x 5 ½”) well-preserved photo album was compiled by Frederik Van Rossen Hoogendijk, a Dutch-born engineer who spent considerable time working in America, held an American patent for his design for internal combustion engine construction, and has a paper listed in the Bibliography of Aeronautics. The album has 24 pages, each made of two pieces of black construction paper which have been glued together. Each side of a page has four pre-cut 2 5/16” x 1 7/16” openings with a ⅛” dark-grey border printed around each opening, making for a standard-sized framed image. Two photos slip into slots from the top and two from the bottom. Of a total number of openings of 192, 185 are filled, so 7 photos seem to be missing. However, there are also 3 loose photographs of a smaller size, too small to stay in one of the openings, tucked in front of photos on one page, so the sum total of photos in the album is 188. Most of the photos have been printed at a size slightly larger than the opening; a few are smaller. and thus loose in their slots. All the pages are in excellent condition, though the first 16 (out of 24) are detached from the binding. The photos themselves are all in excellent condition. A few have faded a bit, but in general the tonality and focus are excellent.

Most of this album concerns Mr. Hoogendijk’s private life; only a few pages show his career as an engineer. A couple of pages depict some water-related project in California, probably a large irrigation system in the Central Valley. Another photograph shows a man, not Mr. Hoogendijk, standing in front of a large concave metal disk, inside some sort of fabrication plant, perhaps part of another irrigation project. There are other photos that show primarily outdoor scenes in California---views across valleys, redwood groves, a woman playing tennis, another woman sitting at the end of a couch, casually smoking a cigarette (an action rarely depicted in photos from this time period). Other photos show Mr. Hoogendijk in New York City, once on a ship or ferry, with the Empire State Building in the background.

However, the bulk of the album, perhaps half, deals with time Mr. Hoogendijk spent in rural Massachusetts, visiting his friend Eliot Norris Jones, who owned a summer home just outside of Sterling, a small town north of Worcester. Mr. Jones, a Harvard Law graduate (Class of 1898), practiced in Boston, but quite obviously he treasured his time at his Sterling retreat, and Mr. Hoogendijk, who seems to have been his good friend, obviously treasured the time he and his family spent there too.

To give a sense of Sterling, one can note that the town claims, to this day, to be the setting for the famous nursery rhyme: Mary Had A Little Lamb. Mary, the real Mary, lived there, and she was the model for the poem, the natives say, basing their claim on flimsy evidence. Still, bucolic Sterling could have been the setting for the poem. Sadly, there are no photographs of sheep in the album, though there are dogs and horses and mules, a couple of bison, and two sleeping lions in a zoo. Only one cat, alas.


Mr. Jones seems to have had a working farm, and several photos show muscular scenes of men doing the spring plowing with teams of horses, or teams of horses pulling enormous loads of hay. In the wintertime, horses are shown pulling heavy loads of wood, possibly to be used to fire the burners that reduced maple sap to maple syrup (one photo may depict such an activity)

A favorite photo in the album shows two women, stylishly dressed, cantering horses, side-by-side, the horses leaning into a turn, the women perfectly framed in the photograph. In other photographs, we see Mr Jones with his children, his wife with his children, Mr. Hoogendijk with Mr. Jones's children and his own children, the families going on outings in the mountains surrounding Sterling.

And then, from bucolic Sterling, the album turns to other subjects. Suddenly, we are in a large American city, and then, on the same page, we are in Paris, on a crowded street, an open-topped touring car the center of attention, with Marshall Foch, his back turned to the camera, waving to the crowd. Two other men stand beside him, one in all likelihood President Woodrow Wilson. And then there is a jump cut to The Netherlands, one photograph showing Mr. Hoogendijk’s grandmother and other relatives, others showing scenes in Scheveningen (the seaside resort that is part of The Hague) and Veere, and several scenes of the interior of a church, obviously again in The Netherlands, with two photographs of some lovely stained glass windows. The album closes with a photograph of three men, dressed in suits, recumbent and relaxing on the beach at Scheveningen.

The album presents a puzzle, perhaps an accidental puzzle, but a puzzle nevertheless. The first element is the order of the pages. Short of having a forensic scientist using an electron microscope, there is no way to determine if the order in which the pages are presented now was the original order. Some of the photos have writing on the back, perhaps offering a date, or a locale, but the photos are so difficult to remove from their slots that the possibility of damage to the pages is too great to remove the photos. At least one of the photos has a date written on its front-side white border: “Jan. 11, 1920.” So that photo resides outside the dates promised on the frontispiece.

And then there is another layer of annotation, carefully printed in a very small hand on the grey border that surrounds each opening. Oftentimes, an annotation under Mr. Hoogendijk’s picture gives his initials, FVRH. At least once, in what seems a humorous mood, Mr. Hoogendijk uses his full initials: F.J.M.P.V.R.H (Mr. Hoogendijk had a lot of names). This particular photo shows Mr. Hoogendijk at his most formal, wearing a striped suit and a bow tie with its matching handkerchief in his breast pocket, sporting his well-trimmed Van Dyke beard and staring intently at the camera. Perhaps all those initials were meant to be taken seriously.

Oh, there is still another layer of annotation: small pieces of yellow paper with notes written on them that seem to suggest who is in a photo, people not identified in any of the annotations written by FVRH (and who is “Val,” a woman Mr. Hoogendijk often identified in the margin?). Was “Val” perhaps Mr. Hoogendijk’s wife, whose given names were Helen Ruth? The notes on yellow paper appear to have been added later, and may identify members of the Jones family, not the Hoogendijk family.

All in all, this album overflows with scenes of family life, far-flung travels, a successful professional life, and lovingly collected memories of a friendship. And a few minor puzzles to be solved.

Price: $250.00

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