“Hale Photo Supply, Gone”


Hale Photo Supply2005

Hale Photo Supply

Empty Lot

The Hale Photo Supply building was bulldozed a few weeks ago. Hale Photo Supply was my first job in photography. It was always busy with printing, deliveries and photography. No two days were a like and it was always an adventure. George Hale was “Hale Photo Supply” and it reflected his personable management style.

How I met George Hale

I was taking an advanced photography class taught by Roy Norman. Roy worked at Hale Photo Supply during the day. When the class was completed, I ask Roy (my mentor) if I could drop by and he said yes. I was introduced to George Hale the owner and photographer of the photo supply. George made me feel at home so I kept coming back (day in and day out) to help Roy in the dark room and learn more about photography. George must have realized I wanted to stay, so he hired me as the darkroom assistant and gopher. Each day George had a new project for me and I was never bored.

Hale Photo Supply was a land mark

The Hale family was in photography of two generations. George’s customers were more than patron’s, they were friends. Many drop by daily, sometimes weekly to say “Hi” or just to talk. If the phone rang it was probably for George, so that’s one chore we didn’t have to worry about back in the darkroom, unless he was out. It was the greatest adventure a young aspiring photographer could want. But life changes and I moved on to other things.

A visit with Dolores

I left Hale Photo Supply and Oklahoma as well and lost contact with all of them, until I moved back in the late 90’s. One afternoon I visited with Dolores Hale at the shop and was told that George had past a way. That afternoon we caught up on things that had happened in years past. Before leaving I took a few photographs of the outside and that was the last time I entered Hale Photo Supply.

What ‘s missing

I visited the shop to update my archive photos this winter, but planned to do a few more shots when the light was better. I did not return until a few days ago. All I found was a Caterpillar, an empty bottle of water and red dirt. It was shocking, no business, no building and no Hale Photo Supply!

I am grateful for George Hale and Roy Norman giving me a chance to learn photography. I am not sure I ever told them. I think they knew, but I will never know. You should say “thank you” in a way that’s redeemable.

I found a story about Hale Photo Supply written by Steve Lackmeyer. The header states:

Hale Photography Building in downtown Oklahoma City is sold, set for demolition
The new owner of downtown Oklahoma City’s Hale Photography Building says structure is too damaged to save and reveals development plans for property.
Read more: http://newsok.com/hale-photography-building-in-downtown-oklahoma-city-is-sold-set-for-demolition/article/3681783#ixzz1z6rWEMuu

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~ by Jim Norwood on June 29, 2012.

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