Charlotte Brooks

Charlotte Brooks

Charlotte Brooks was born in New York City in 1918. After graduating from the University of Minnesota (1941) she worked in a settlement house in New York.

In 1942 Brooks worked for the photographer, Barbara Morgan before Roy Stryker invited her to join the the federally sponsored Farm Security Administration. This small group of photographers, including Esther Bubley, Marjory Collins, Mary Post Wolcott, Jack Delano, Arthur Rothstein, Walker Evans, Russell Lee, Gordon Parks, John Vachon, Carl Mydans, Dorothea Lange and Ben Shahn, were employed to publicize the conditions of the rural poor in America.

After the Second World War Brooks worked for a variety of journals before becoming the first woman staff photographer at Look Magazine in 1951.

Besides my work on Picture Post, I had also since 1941 been responsible for Lilliput, the pocket magazine started by Stefan Lorant to which some six years earlier I had vainly tried to contribute in the hope of earning three guineas. Lilliput was a delightful little publication, well printed, with an attractive coloured cover always drawn by the same artist, Walter Trier. One of its best-known features was the 'doubles' - two look-alike photographs on facing pages, a pouter pigeon

opposite a cadet on parade with his chest thrown out; Hitler giving the Nazi salute to a small dog with its paw raised; a bear opposite a publican with a pear-shaped face.

Bill Brandt, today a venerated father-figure in photography, took many picture series for Lilliput, photographing young

poets, taking pictures on film sets, in pubs, in Soho, in the London parks. One day in the summer of 1942 we suggested to him that these wartime nights offered a unique opportunity to photograph London entirely by moonlight. Because of the blackout there was no street lighting, no car headlamps, no light of any kind; never in history had there been such a chance, and once the war ended it would never come again. He returned to us weeks later with a beautiful set of mysterious photographs out of which we made ten pages. He had been obliged to give exposures of up to half an hour, and had once found himself suddenly surrounded by police. An old lady had seen him standing beside his camera mounted on its tripod, and dialled 999 to say there was a man in the road with a dangerous machine.

From an early age she was attracted to books. While the rest of her family was sleeping, Brooke would go down to the study where she would spend hours reading. [1]

Charlotte Brooke was educated by her father Henry Brooke, and she immersed herself in reading history and literature at an early age. She was part of the first generation of the Protestant Anglo-Irish settler class who took a strong interest in the Irish language and Gaelic history her primary interest in Irish language and literature was generated by her hearing it being spoken and recited by the laborers in County Cavan and on the County Kildare estates where her family had moved around 1758. [2] She was led to the study of the Irish language, and in less than two years she found herself in love with it. From reading Irish poetry and admiring its beauties, she proceeded to translate it into English, one of her earliest efforts being a song and monody by Carolan, which appeared in Joseph Cooper Walker's [2] 'Historical Memoirs of Irish Bards.' [3]

Brooke, who was frail herself, took care of her father after her mother died in 1773. Meanwhile, the family had moved back to county Cavan, where they began living in a house they named Longfield which had been built near the Rantavan estate. A few years after Henry Brooke died in 1783, Charlotte Brooke ran into money troubles, after a model industrial village set up in County Kildare by her cousin Captain Robert Brooke went bankrupt (1787). Walker and other members of the recently created Royal Irish Academy sought to make an income for her, but Charlotte realized she had to rely on her writings and translations. [2]

In 1792, Brooke had taken up a life with friends in Longford, sharing a cottage due to her lack of income. On 29 March 1793, Charlotte Brooke passed of a malignant fever. [2]

  • Reliques of Irish Poetry (1788)
  • Dialogue between a Lady and her Pupils (1791)
  • The School for Christians (1791)
  • Natural History, etc.
  • Emma, or the Foundling of the Wood, and Belisarius (1803).

She sought to preserve the work of Irish poets, which she believed would be lost if not translated. An example of Brooke's is taken from a poem in Reliques of Irish Poetry.

Carolan’s Monody on the Death of Mary Mac Guire

Were mine the choice of intellectual fame,
Of spelful song, and eloquence divine,
Painting’s sweet power, philosophy’s pure flame,
And Homer’s lyre, and Ossian’s Harp were mine
The splendid arts of Erin, Greece, and Rome,
In Mary lost, would lose their wonted grace,
All would I give to snatch her from the tomb,
Again to fold her in my fond embrace. [4]

About Our Family

Twins David & Scott Brooks have been running their hamburger & hot dog joint since 1973! And, the third generation has joined in, to continue the family tradition of great burgers, hot dogs and chili!

Everyone is welcome at BROOKS. Come enjoy the best southern burger with homemade chili recipe created over 46 years ago. Purchase BROOKS Chili so you can enjoy the same homemade southern taste at home. Hope to see YOU soon!

    “…Ranked Charlotte’s Brooks Sandwich Shop as having the #8 best burger in the entire country.” .
  • Named Charlotte’s Best Burger in 2011 by the Charlotte Observer!

We accept FOUR (4) individualized orders and separate receipts, payments per customer order.

More than FOUR (4) individualized orders will be in one bag with sandwiches marked (per request) with ONE itemized receipt and ONE PAYMENT REQUIRED FOR THE TOTAL group ORDER.

Justice for Scott
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History of Aunt Charlotte’s

Aunt Charlotte's has been making delicious candies for 4 generations.

Aunt Charlotte's founder Charles Brooks Oakford Sr.

It was a perfect match. Charles Brooks Oakford, Sr. adored his Aunt Charlotte and he loved candy. And as they say…the rest is history.

In 1920, Charles, with the help of his wife, Ruth, began their candy-making business on the family stove in beautiful Merchantville, New Jersey. When he found the perfect formula, Charles sold those candies – delicious hand-wrapped caramels – direct from the front seat of his Model T Ford truck. Quickly, Mr. Oakford Sr.’s reputation as a chocolatier grew, and so did his business.

Charles Brooks Oakford Jr and his mother Ruth Oakford, making Bon Bons at Aunt Charlotte's Candy Cottage.

Charles soon graduated from the family stove in the Oakford kitchen, to Aunt Charlotte’s Candy Cottage – first at 16 S. Centre Street and then at 16 N. Centre Street. Everyone for miles around flocked to the lovely little stores.

In 1945, upon the passing of his father, Charles Brooks Oakford Jr. entered the business. Brooks and his wife, Bunny, had even bigger dreams for Aunt Charlotte’s Candy Cottage, and the vision and passion to make those dreams a reality.

Charles Oakford Jr. & his wife Virginia "Bunny Oakford.

In 1971, the business expanded once again, now under the name of Aunt Charlotte’s Candies, and relocated to its present location in a charming, historic 19th century building, at 5 W. Maple Avenue. Brooks’ eye for detail and love of bricks and mortar turned Beideman’s Feed and Grain Store from a rustic mercantile into an enchanting confectionery and one-of-a-kind gift store.

Beideman’s Feed and Grain Store before becoming the current home of Aunt Charlotte's Candies.

In 1984, a forty-foot, two story addition facilitated productivity, while being stylized to maintain the building’s original architecture. To this day Aunt Charlotte’s delicious chocolates are manufactured right there on that second floor addition, and customers are invited to visit the factory to see the magic, art, and talent it takes to create their signature chocolates and assorted treats.

Today, Charles Brooks Oakford, Sr.’s slogan of long ago still stands, and there is indeed – “Delight in Every Bite.” Proudly following the family tradition are third generation Oakfords – Randy Susan Oakford and Penny Oakford Trost, joined by fourth generation Ryan Trost, all with that same vision and dedication as it was a century ago.

Randy Susan Oakford, Penny Oakford Trost,& 4th generation chocolatier Ryan Trost.

Hard work, a joy of the business, and the love and devotion from four generations of chocolatiers have made Aunt Charlotte’s Candies one of the finest candy stores in America. Charles Sr. and his Aunt Charlotte would be proud.

About Us

The nearly 90 physicians of Tryon Medical Partners joined forces because we share a core belief: the patient-doctor connection is the foundation for better health. This is the reason we are an independent practice. It allows us to remain true to our principles, while delivering better care rooted in stronger relationships.

What are the benefits of choosing an independent practice?

  • Value – We are able to practice medicine and conduct business nimbly and efficiently, with fewer layers of bureaucracy in our way – or our patients’.
  • Transparency – As a leaner organization, we are in direct contact with our patients and partners. Keeping it personal means serving with integrity and accountability.
  • Choice – In the changing world of healthcare, consolidation has become the new normal, and options are shrinking. We created an independent practice because we believe more choices should be available to everyone. Better health comes from having more than a healthcare provider. It takes a healthcare partner.

Independent thinking. It’s in our DNA.

Tryon Medical Partners continues the tradition of one of our region’s great medical pioneers, who saw a better way to practice medicine back in 1936. Dr. James Moses Alexander first opened his practice on the north end of Tryon Street in Uptown Charlotte, North Carolina. He was joined by a group of like-minded physicians over the decades, and together they established Mecklenburg Medical Group in 1972. The practice was remarkable not only for its longevity, but for its reputation. Dr. Alexander and his colleagues were so respected and beloved, it was not uncommon for them to care for three generations of families.

As the Charlotte region continues its steady growth, those of us inspired by Dr. Alexander’s model of dedicated care are committed to his legacy. Our name, Tryon Medical Partners, honors the original location of Dr. Alexander’s office. But as proud as we are of our heritage, we are even more excited about our future and the opportunity to grow. In 2021, Tryon Medical Partners added Gaston Medical Partners to expand its reach beyond Mecklenburg County and support independent physicians aligned with the mission of ‘Stronger Relationships. Better Health.’

We look forward to the opportunity to continue existing relationships and create new ones. We will continue to embrace innovation in our specialty areas of internal and family medicine, cardiology, dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, pulmonology, rheumatology, and sleep medicine. And above all, we will focus on the intersection of art and science in medicine – combining the empirical knowledge and the personal touch that are essential to giving each patient the best experience possible.

This is what a true partnership is all about.

Our Mission

To promote health and well-being through comprehensive medical care and strong relationships.

Tryon Medical Partners aspires to be a preeminent medical practice that will partner with the community to provide excellent healthcare that is focused on prevention, innovation, and professionalism with a culture of collaboration and caring. We strive to demonstrate quality, reduce the cost of care, and continually improve the patient experience.

"In this startling new study Charlotte Brooks upends the standard narrative of eager immigrants clamoring to enter America by focusing on US-born Chinese American citizens. Facing racism and closed doors at home, a strikingly large number&mdashespecially college educated&mdashchose instead to leave America and seek their fortune in Republican-era China."&mdashParks M. Coble, author of China&rsquos War Reporters: The Legacy of Resistance against Japan

"The stories of numerous forgotten Chinese Americans, skillfully woven together, shed new light on US-China relations and reveal neglected aspects of modern Chinese history. Highlighting the long-term consequences of continual migration beyond the first generation, Brooks makes a crucial contribution to migration studies."&mdashElizabeth Sinn, author of Pacific Crossing: California Gold, Chinese Migration, and the Making of Hong Kong

ASMP: How did you first come to the ASMP?

Brooks: I don’t know how I knew about it, maybe through Arthur Rothstein (bio), maybe not. I knew that, for some time before I joined it, I was very ambivalent about joining it. I don’t know whether it was because I didn’t feel professional enough early on. I’m not much of a joiner anyhow, and I didn’t get around to joining until, as I remember, after I joined the Look magazine staff. That was in 1951.

I think I joined at that point because I felt that, the way the magazine was set up, photographers didn’t really have any rights to speak of. And there was something in the back of my head that made me feel that maybe through ASMP, the staff photographer’s lot could be improved. That’s sort of my recollection, because I know I toyed with it and rejected it for several years, until finally I decided to join.

ASMP: I noticed that in the Bulletins they talk about you in 1956.

Brooks: I was asked to run for president along around that time. But I felt it wouldn’t be right because I think there were three women in all of the Society, and it didn’t seem right to me for a woman to be heading up an organization which consisted largely of men. It’s interesting to contemplate that thought at this moment in our history.

Among other things, we worked up the first handbook of pay scale. And I think I have my old booklet that we issued. We were going to research and then continue recording information and send it out to members. I remember we put it into a loose-leaf cover so that we could do that. But that must have been maybe ’53 or ’54, somewhere in there.

ASMP: What was the organization like when you joined?

Brooks: There were some loudmouths.

ASMP: Did you feel any negative attitudes toward women photographers? Did you have any sense of that?

Brooks: I know that there was discrimination, and I know that I was getting less money at Look than the men were.

ASMP: And also within the ASMP?

Brooks: I wouldn’t say so. I have no recollection of anything of that kind, possibly because I was so involved with it.

ASMP: You really were getting less money than the men photographers?

Brooks: Sure. And there were limits as to what women photographers were considered to be capable of covering. There were actual legal limits, like a woman couldn’t get on a submarine, couldn’t photograph on a U.S. Navy vessel. I know that because I was turned down for some coverage there. And generally, the attitude was, “They can do children, education, medicine” — which is what I did a lot of. Once I did a para-rescue story, but that was only because the man who was supposed to do it couldn’t do it. But I wouldn’t say that at ASMP there was any discrimination.

“It put a little spine into photographers”

ASMP: Were you involved in negotiations of any kind?

Brooks: Yes. It would have been in 1955 I had a broken leg, and negotiations were in progress with Life. The picture editor at Life came to my house (I was living at 12th St. in the City at that point) to discuss the negotiations with Life. I don’t think we got very far.

ASMP: What happened?

Brooks: I don’t remember — probably nothing. It took a long time before anything was cracked.

ASMP: But you were involved in other negotiations too at that time, especially if you were vice-president. Did you work on standards? Evidently there was a list of working standards and you must have worked on that.

Brooks: Yes, I remember it was like really butting heads up a stone wall.

ASMP: What were you asking for?

Brooks: A $100-a-day minimum, to start with.

ASMP: Anything with rights?

Brooks: I don’t know that rights came up at that time. It was expenses.

ASMP: Do you think the Society had an impact on the lives of the photographers?

Brooks: I do. For one thing, I think, it did give some confidence. Just the feeling that you weren’t alone helped. And I think it put a little spine into photographers when dealing with editors, so that you would even ask for what you thought was due you.

And it was fun. We used to get together. To get to know photographers, to be talking about the photographic world, to be exchanging technical information, and just to get to know people was very satisfying. I enjoyed that a lot. And in that respect, I was sorry I was missing it when I moved to the country. Also, I was traveling a lot for Look, so the combination of circumstances made my life at ASMP much less active.

ASMP: How did you become a photographer?

Brooks: I started off being a dancer, and then I wanted to photograph dance. Then I decided that I didn’t really want to be a dancer, and the question was, what was I going to do with my life?

ASMP: When was this?

Brooks: This was when I got back from Minnesota. I studied a year at the University of Minnesota doing graduate work and came back not really knowing what I wanted to do with my life. I had been doing some vocational guidance work out at Minnesota, and I was asked, “What would you say to anybody who came to you with your problem?”

I said, “Explore your avocational interests.” So that’s what I did.

ASMP: Where did you learn photography?

Brooks: I started when I was about 12 years old. I met a young man — who was related, incidentally, to Edwin Land, the Polaroid inventor — and we set up a darkroom in my cellar. It was an interest that was maintained continually after that. And when I got interested in dance, I bought a really good camera and went on.

ASMP: How did you find out what was a really good camera?

Brooks: You talk around. I never took a course. I have given courses, but I never took one.

“I schlepped all of his monumentally heavy strobe gear”

ASMP: How did you go about getting work?

Brooks: At first, I did portraits of friends. Then I did a photograph of the lighthouse at Montauk, among the pictures I did for myself. And we were very close friends of a woman who at that time was Gjon Mili’s girlfriend. (Mili bio) Ethel said, “Let me show Gjon these pictures.” He was scathing about one of the portraits, but very encouraging about the Montauk lighthouse.

Even earlier than that, Arthur Rothstein and his wife were friends and they came to dinner when we lived on Morton St. Just as he and Diana were leaving, he said, “I’m going to have lunch with Barbara Morgan (bio) tomorrow.” I said, “Ask her if she needs an assistant.” So he did, and she did, and I became an apprentice to Barbara Morgan.

At the same time, I was working in a letterpress print shop learning to set type. I didn’t really know where I was going, but in high school and college I had been interested in journalism. I had some vague idea of combining journalism and photography, but it wasn’t a very ripe idea.

I worked in the print shop at minimum wage three days a week and I went up to Scarsdale and worked with Barbara two days a week as an apprentice. That was a fabulous experience because she was so articulate. She was a wonderful teacher and it was a great experience for me. And all the time I was photographing on the side, so gradually it happened.

After the experience with Barbara, I went to work for Mili as his assistant for something like $18 a week. We were at war and Mili’s assistant had gone off to fight, and Mili hired me as his Girl Friday. So I schlepped all of his monumentally heavy strobe gear, two enormous boxes for each light, and that was a wonderful experience too.

ASMP: My memory is he was quite a big guy, so to think of a little person …

Brooks: I was pretty sturdy. I had a body that worked for me.

ASMP: It must have looked funny.

“He turned up at different times in my life”

Brooks: Later, when I was working for Standard Oil, I put all the gear I was carrying on a scale it came to 72 pounds. This was 4࡫ equipment, and all of that. But I really was very lucky every step along the way. The time was right, and I was there to take advantage of it.

After I worked for Mili, I decided I’d had enough of that. I was itching to do my own thing, whatever that was. So I got a job photographing for three weekly newspapers in New Jersey: the Maplewood News, the Summit Herald and the South Orange Record. They were all run by one proprietor.

At one point, the owner wanted me to set up a commercial photography operation, because he figured that was a way to make some bucks. However, I wasn’t interested in that.

It was a wonderful experience, because I photographed a lot of different things for the papers. And then, I don’t know how it happened, but Art Rothstein was involved again — he turned up at different times in my life, playing interesting roles — Popular Photography did a story on me. Julie Arden wrote it and Arthur photographed me.

When it appeared, Arthur brought it to the attention of Ed Rosskam, who brought it to the attention of Roy Stryker (bio). And I had an invitation to get a portfolio together and go see Roy, which I did. [Rosskam, a photographer, writer and layout specialist, worked for Stryker at the FSA and then on the Standard Oil Project. —ed.]

ASMP: He just called you up and said, “Come on up?”

Brooks: Yes. I went up, and it was on the day Franklin Roosevelt died — what was it, April 30th?

Brooks: I was so excited by this interview that I didn’t know till I got home that Roosevelt had died. It was all around me, but I didn’t hear a thing, I was so full of myself, so full of the excitement of what was happening. Anyhow, that started a great adventure working for Stryker, traveling mostly into New England and up into New York State. Met wonderful people and had a great time.

“You have to have a very special personality”

Then that program started to peter out. I freelanced and got an agent, Hilda Monkmeyer, Monkmeyer Press Photo, and she got me some jobs. That went on for a few years, but I was really kind of conflicted. I wasn’t getting an awful lot of work, and I was sort of depressed about it, and I was thinking about whether I should be doing something else. Then I got another telephone call, and it was from Arthur, again.

He was a technical director at Look. And he asked me if I would be interested in a staff job. I never thought I’d be interested in a staff job, but at that time the freelance life was hairy.

ASMP: It’s always been, because you have to have a very special personality to deal with freelancing.

Brooks: I realized as I went on, you had to know that in August you weren’t going to get any work because everyone was on vacation.

ASMP: Right. Or maybe you’d hit a fallow period in which nothing would come in.

Brooks: Or else they wouldn’t pay you for two months. I can remember having the last couple of bucks in my wallet. One time when we lived on Morton St. in the Village, there was a restaurant-supply place on Bleaker St and in the window, there was an orange-juice presser. I had no money, but I absolutely had to have it. So I went in and bought it, and the next day a job came in. But, you know, that’s the way it was — and probably still is.

“Somebody realized I might be useful”

So, although I had mixed feelings about taking a staff job, it seemed to be the route to go at that point. But the job wasn’t really a regular staff photographer. They needed a photographer to do work for the advertising departments upstairs. The first assignment I had was to go to Washington, where there was a trade convention for food stores. Look had rented a room at the Mayflower Hotel, and there were two cutouts of a man and a woman, actor and actress. The gimmick was, you put your head into the hole and I would take a Polaroid picture. So I had to learn to operate a Polaroid camera.

They wanted me to use that room to sleep in. I put my foot down right away — on my first job — I was not going to do that. This place was going to be filled with smoke, and I said, “No, I won’t do the job if that’s the way you’re going to do it.” They agreed and I stayed someplace else.

It didn’t take very long before I got into editorial assignments after that. I guess somebody realized I might be useful.

ASMP: You were the only woman?

Brooks: I was the only woman on the staff for all the 20 years I was there. They used freelance people.

“You represented a powerful organization”

ASMP: They did pay you less than the men.

Brooks: Oh, yes.

ASMP: Did you feel like you were part of the organization, or did you always feel like the left hand?

Brooks: There was always a little something. I think it had to do in part with the nature of the assignments. Although I enjoyed everything, the other people used to hate “All-American Cities” and “What is a Teacher?” But I had a marvelous time I loved all of it. The people involved were interesting people, and it was always so wonderful to be able to go out as Miss Look. I think I got a little bit of a head about that. You were not yourself at all, nobody would know your name, but you represented a powerful organization and it had some meaning.

ASMP: Did you keep some of your own negatives?

Brooks: Part of my problem as a photographer is I own very little. I own the material that I shot as a freelancer, but all the stuff I did for Standard Oil is now at the University of Louisville archives.

You can’t get hold of it?

Brooks: I can get prints. I can pay for prints.

“That was a battle with those people”

ASMP: But you can’t borrow the negatives?

Brooks: No. I can pay for prints. I’ve been buying them directly from the archives when I want them. All of the Look work is now in the Library of Congress. At one point, when the files were being cleared out at Look, the photographers were offered negatives and contacts, mostly of outtakes. I accepted the offer, so they were shipped up here — and they sat and sat here. I sold a few over time, but I never really did anything very much with them.

I finally decided there was just no sense in holding onto them they should be married to the rest of the Look material which Gardner Cowles gave to the Library of Congress. I made an offer and they accepted it. So I shipped everything I had down there within the last six months. I have access to that if I want it, but it’s cumbersome and I haven’t used that access.

So, when you consider all the years I was working, I don’t have very much. After Look folded, I did a fair amount of work in the educational A/V slide film field. I don’t even have all of that, because they kept the selects and I kept the rejects.

That was a battle with those people: I could not get them to return the material to me it was simply impossible. Again, I was able to borrow, if I wanted some prints. (That was all color, as a matter of fact.) God knows what has happened to it since they folded. They went down and out when all the school-budget cutbacks happened.

Then I went back to freelance work. I did illustrations for an exercise book that was done by Manya Kahn that kept me busy for a while. And I did a bunch of stuff, none of it very sensational it all sort of just petered out. Also, one of my knees gave out, so it became difficult to think about carrying equipment. I lucked out financially and made an investment that paid off, so it wasn’t absolutely necessary for me to get out and beat the bushes. I just sort-of let it all slither away.

“I had to rewash several hundred negatives when I got home”

Also in the freelance period, I went first to Sibiu, Romania, and then to Tbilisi, Georgia, with a Photography USA show that traveled through the Iron Curtain countries. I made two trips behind the Iron Curtain, both for the State Department. The show was exhibited in all the Iron Curtain countries — I believe there were seven of them.

In Sibiu, in February 1975, I ran a darkroom for about a month. There was a huge sheet of red plastic that made it possible for visitors to see what was going on inside.

Then they set up a studio arrangement with Polaroid we were supposed to select people from among the thousands who came through every day. I say “we” because there was a different photographer in each of the cities — Kiev, Alma-Ata, Moscow (David Attie did that one) — and I had Tbilisi. The show was in Tbilisi from December ’76 to January ’77. I chose the sitters from the crowd in front of the open studio. I used Polaroid positive-negative film, gave the sitters the prints and retained the negatives. There have been several shows of the portraits I made from those negatives.

I had to rewash all of the several hundred negatives when I got home, because the water supply in Tbilisi was not very reliable. It would just shut down several times a day. Temperature was a pipe-dream.

I tried to get a book out of it. We did a layout, but it hit just about the time that the Cold War really got active, and Soviet was out. So I filed it away and forgot about it.

“You should double the price each time.”

About a year and a half ago, I had a telephone call. A man introduced himself as George Rinhart. I had never heard of him. He said he was a collector and he wanted to see my work. Now, you’ve got to understand, I have never sold very many photographs. I have sold, over the years, an occasional on from a little show here and there I would get maybe $100 for a photograph out of an art show here at the art center which Julie [Arden] and I founded. But I never thought of my work as being very salable I never considered “art photography” as being my metier.

I said that he could come, and he arrived with an assistant. He’s almost blind he wears eyeglasses like the proverbial milk-bottle bottoms. He went through the material so fast, and he put aside what he thought he was interested in. It included Standard Oil material, early freelance it included a lot of stuff.

I did a story in Cleveland on what life was like for blacks in 1943 it ran in Our World magazine. I got the job through Stryker’s office. Now, this was before there were any black photographers Moneta Sweet was just beginning to come up a bit. So they hired some of us whites to do work for the magazines. Ebony was just coming up at that time. I did a story which ran to, I don’t know how many pages, and one of those pictures was in U.S. Camera Annual.

Rinhart found that and was interested in the set. I thought I had the negatives, because there was an entry in my log book with a number. But when I went to look for the negatives, there were none. I was very conflicted, because he wanted the whole set and I only had one print. He was picking out an awful lot of pictures, and he wanted them. I had to make a decision: Was I going to sell him the set or not? I think now it was a foolish thing to do, but I did it. I sold him not only that set, but an awful lot of pictures.

ASMP: Did he pay you a decent price?

Brooks: He quoted a price, and I asked him if he could go any higher. He went 20 percent higher, which was more money than I had seen for quite a while. And it was like, what am I going to do with this stuff? Well, the University of Missouri has a Women in Journalism project, and they’re interested in getting my material. So I was saying to myself, “Should I just wait until I die and then all of this will go into an archive someplace? Why not.”

So I sold him that set and a whole bunch of other stuff. Too much, but these things you learn later. He marched off with a lot of pictures, for what was a fair price to me.

Then, some time later, I had another call it was Keith DeLellis. And what was he interested in? That same set from Our World, for the same reason: He had seen it in the U.S. Camera Annual. I didn’t have it to show him. But he came over anyhow and he bought some pictures.

A young friend of mine, when I raised the subject of price, said, “You should double the price each time.” So I did that. I sold fewer, but I doubled the price.

“However messy or disorganized it is, it’s there.”

ASMP: Thinking about your estate, what are you going to do with the pictures? The Center for Creative Photography in Tucson has the most wonderful archives. The University of Maryland has an archive in Baltimore.

Brooks: One reason why I sent the Look material down to the Library of Congress is, at least it’s out of the house nobody has to worry about it anymore. But it’s very hard to face your own demise. And also, the emptiness of losing your children … I go into the studio and there’s a lot of stuff there, but my work is there. There’s a kind of comfort however messy or disorganized it is, it’s there.

We spoke to a lawyer, and he said, “Throw away anything that’s really no good get rid of it. Mark stuff that you think is good, and prepare it in a way that the transfer is easy.” But spending your time doing that is another story.

ASMP: Given the option, would you rather freelance or be on staff?

Brooks: If I had it to do again, I would have quit at Look after 10 years and gone back to freelancing. That would have been good timing, because by the time Look folded, I was already 53 and there was no place for me to go. And looking back on it, it would have given me that much more experience at a time when I was really at my peak.

But they were so wonderful at Look. It was fabulous, and it was very rewarding. It kept on being that even though, from a point of work, I had the better part of it during the first 10 years. There were interesting assignments after that. I just loved what I did, so it was always interesting.

History of Photojournalism

On March 15, 2014 95 year old Charlotte Brooks, a beloved and influential, feminist, sociological philosopher and beloved photojournalist passed away at her home in Holmes, New York.

Brooks enjoyed a full life, a life to which she dedicated forging a path for career and goal oriented women as well as advocating for human rights through her work as a photojournalist.

Charlotte Finklestein (Charlotte Brooks) Was born in 1918 in New York. She eventually changed her name from Finklestein to Brooks to avoid being the subject of antisemitism, which would later become a philosophy that she tackled in her career.
Brooks developed a love of photography that began as a young child and continued into her adult years. Although, she dreamed of becoming a certified social worker, it was photography and eventually photojournalism that captured her and, developed into an illustrious, career.

Often providing a voice for the working woman and other often, disregarded demographics of her era, her most notable work derives from her time spent at Look Magazine (1951-1971). As one of the first and only female photojournalists for that magazine during it's entire print, it has been noted that " Brooks broke ground and changed the workplace for future women photojournalists. When she joined the American Society for Magazine Photographers she was only one of three female members. In 1953 she served as its secretary and vice-president in 1955 and negotiated hard to change the gender differential in pay".

Following this, she spent her remaining years, participating in local community work and resided with her partner Julie Arden until her death in 2003.

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Charlotte Brooke: 'a glow of cultivated genius'

Charlotte Brooke is a woman without a face, at least in history. No portrait of this pioneering 18th-century scholar and literary translator is known. Nor is her exact date of birth, which is now believed to have been between 1750 and 1760, about a decade later than previously assumed. Much of her fame rests on being the youngest child of poet, playwright and political pamphleteer Henry Brooke, whose influence shaped her or perhaps, in fairness to both, inspired her.

As we celebrate Ireland’s literary women, hers will not be among the more obvious names. An even earlier 18th-century literary figure, the colourful Laetitia Pilkington, who died on July 29th, 1750, possibly before Brooke was born, may come to mind far more readily.

Pilkington is remembered as a popular poet, wit and indefatigable gossip. Born Laetitia van Lewen, she had a flair for lively soundbites such as “But I have been a Lady of Adventure, and almost every day of my life produces some new one”. Her memoirs, which include a personal account of the final days of her friend Jonathan Swift, are her legacy. She was a character in an age when women were expected to be subdued. Despite or possibly because of the situations in which her antics, including a notorious divorce, placed her, she was also a witness.

Charlotte Brooke’s achievement is very different in translating the work of the Gaelic poets into English, she was to influence Thomas Moore and later William Butler Yeats. Brooke’s Reliques of Irish Poetry (1789), published in the year of the French Revolution, was and remains revolutionary in the context of scholarship. The anthology, divided into several genres ranging from heroic verse to popular folk songs, published with the help of various sponsors, many of whom were associated with the then recently established Royal Irish Academy – an institution of which Brooke, as a woman, was not eligible for membership – is comparable to Bishop Thomas Percy’s three-volume Reliques of Ancient English Poetry (1765). Another of her cultural equivalents is Scots poet Allan Ramsay, who popularised medieval to 18th-century Scots songs, ballads and vernacular poems.

Brooke lived at a time when the Protestant upper classes in Ireland were becoming increasingly interested in Gaelic culture. Not only were gentlemen antiquarians examining field monuments and other archaeological artefacts, they were looking to the by then somewhat underground native literature which was largely an oral tradition.

Brooke, always something of a marginal specialist figure in Irish literary history, features in Volume I of the first edition of The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (1991) in the section The Shifting Perspective: 1690-1830, the period spanning the Battle of the Boyne to Catholic Emancipation, during which, as the co-editors, Andrew Carpenter and Seamus Deane, state: “two civilisations, one Gaelic and one English, existed side by side in Ireland.” Reliques of Irish Poetry was a major development in trans-cultural co-operation between Protestant antiquarians and Catholic Gaelic scholars and scribes.

In an extract from her preface to Reliques of Irish Poetry which is quoted in the anthology, Brooke wrote: “…it is really astonishing of what various and comprehensive powers this neglected language [Irish] is possessed. In the pathetic, it breathes the most beautiful and affecting simplicity in the bolder species of composition, it is distinguished by a force of expression, a sublime dignity, and rapid energy, which is scarcely possible for any translator fully to convey as it sometimes fills the mind with ideas altogether new, and which, perhaps, no modern language is entirely prepared to express. One compound epithet must often be translated by two lines of English verse, and, on such occasions, much of the beauty is necessarily lost the force and effect of thought being weakened by too slow an introduction on the mind just as that light which dazzles, when flashing swiftly on the eye, will be gazed at with indifference, if let in by degrees.

“But, though I am conscious of having, in many instances, failed in my attempts to do all the justice I wished to my originals, yet still, some of their beauties are, I hope, preserved and I trust I am doing an acceptable service to my country, while I endeavour to rescue from oblivion a few of the invaluable reliques of her ancient genius and while I put it in the power of the public to form some idea of them, by clothing the thoughts of our Irish muse in a language with which they are familiar, at the same time that I give the originals, as vouchers for the fidelity of my translation, as far as two idioms so widely different would allow… The productions of our Irish Bards exhibit a glow of cultivated genius – a spirit of elevated heroism, – sentiments of pure honor, [sic] – instances of disinterested patriotism, – and manners of a degree of refinement, totally astonishing, at a period when the rest of Europe was nearly sunk in barbarism: And is not all this very honourable [sic] to our countrymen.

“As yet, we are too little known to our noble neighbour of Britain: were we better acquainted, we should be better friends. The British muse is not yet informed that she has an elder sister in this isle…”

From about 1750 onwards the educated and, in most classes, privileged classes began investigating Gaelic culture, possibly because it was no longer a threat to their own. An increasing number of this social elite began to consider themselves as Irish. The collecting, and more importantly, the copying and translation of Gaelic manuscripts began in earnest. Scholars hoped that the study of antiquarianism, native literature and history would help unite the various ethnic groupings in Ireland.

Brooke was the product of a remarkable and obviously male education, which placed an emphasis on the classics and languages, as well as maths, science, astronomy and geography. In common with novelist Maria Edgeworth (1767-1849), Brooke was a literary daughter. Just as Richard Lovell Edgeworth (1744-1817) had believed in stimulating a child’s curiosity Henry Brooke (c.1703-1783) also subscribed to Rousseau’s methods and opened the world of books to Charlotte. Hardly surprisingly, both women came to regard themselves as extensions of their fathers.

In a letter written in 1792, the year before her death on March 29th, 1793 from a fever while living in a friend’s cottage in Longford, Charlotte Brooke wrote: “I have ever lived for my father, and shall not now divide my little rivulet from the parent stream. In life, my soul is his – in death I trust it shall join him!” About a decade earlier, about the time of his death, she had written: “While my father survived, I lived but for his comfort, & now he is dead, I live but for his fame. Born in his later years, I considered myself as born for him alone, - a purpose of which I am prouder than any other for which I could been sent into the world.”

Her remarks there support suggestions that her birth date is now believed to have been between c.1750 and 1760, rather than the previously accepted dates of c.1740 and 1750, as Henry Brooke is believed to have been born c.1703.

This “child of his old age” as she described herself was born in Rantavan House, in the parish of Mullagh, near Virginia in Co Cavan. It is accepted that she was the youngest of possibly 22 children fathered by Brooke, although this figure (admittedly also matched by Bach) may also be including the children born to Brooke’s brother as their respective families shared the one house. Charlotte’s mother was Catherine Meares, a Methodist from Westmeath, and although it is known than she nursed her mother through a long final illness which ended in 1772, Charlotte Brooke was obsessively devoted to her father who had developed her intellect and influenced what was to become her life’s work.

Not only was she emotionally devastated by his death, she also became destitute because of an ill-advised investment in a cousin’s model village project. The publication of Reliques of Irish Poetry in 1789 restored her finances, and three years later she published School for Christians, a volume of dialogues for children. Written in the form of a series of moralistic conversations between a father and child, it was most probably based on Brooke’s memories of her father. Somewhat more economically successful was her re-issuing, in 1792, an edition of her father’s works in a bid to correct an earlier, poorly-edited version.

She never married, had no children, remained true to her father’s Church of Ireland beliefs and tended towards the role of observer in company. John Wesley, the Methodist preacher, once remarked of her: “I admired Miss Brooke for her silence her look spake, though not her tongue. If we should live to meet again, I should be glad to hear, as well as see her.” Brooke was an opinionated individual, not quite the fragile, helpless woman she tended to present. When she applied to the Royal Irish Academy for the position of housekeeper, she pointed out in her application that she was a daughter of a great man, and a man valued as a friend by many of the members, and when she was turned down in favour of a man who had no claim to her intellectual prowess, she wrote a spirited letter of complaint to Bishop Percy in his capacity as an academy member.

Their shared interests caused Brooke to form a close friendship with Joseph Cooper Walker (1761-1810), acknowledged in The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing – indeed his entry is the one before Brooke’s – as one of the outstanding Irish scholars of the late 18th century. He wrote important works on Irish bards and music while his pioneering study, Historical Memoirs of the Irish Bards (1786) includes in an appendix, a life of Turlough Carolan which contained the first translations of the blind harper’s poems – two of the translations were credited to “A Lady”, known to be Charlotte Brooke. Cooper Walker had been intending to write a biography of Brooke and had gathered her correspondence but died before completing the project. The main sources on Brooke’s life are Charles Henry Wilson’s Brookiana (1804) and Aaron Crossly Seymour’s Memoirs of Miss Brooke, written as an appendix to the second edition of Reliques of Irish Poetry in 1816.

As a translator Brooke was known to fashion politely sanitised versions of often earthy material and certainly was not opposed to poetic licence. According to Seymour, Charlotte Brooke taught herself Irish over the course of about two years by consulting books. This seems most impressive but she was a committed scholar, and it does appear likely that she may have known some Irish by living in area of Cavan that was still strongly Irish-speaking.

Brooke set out to offer a broad selection of odes, elegies, songs and heroic poems demonstrating the range of the Gaelic literary tradition. She also wanted to counter to the Ossian controversy begun by the Scot James Macpherson who claimed that many of the Irish myths and legends featuring Cuchulain, Fionn Mac Cool and Oisin, were in fact Scottish. As the daughter of a political pamphleteer, Brooke often inserted implied political comments such as alluding to Ireland’s superior cultural relevance within the British Empire, as evident from her “elder sister” remarks made in the passage from the preface quoted above.

Reliques of Irish Poetry is a crucial landmark in the recognition of Gaelic culture. Brooke was intent on proving that the Irish poets were sophisticated and educated. English reviewers tended to regard Gaelic poets as primitive and disputed their familiarity with the classics. Irish poets, they felt, would not have read Ovid. Charlotte Brooke thought otherwise.

If ever a scholar was to find a champion more than 200 years after her death, Brooke found it in Lesa Ní Mhunghaile, whose annotated edition of Reliques of Irish Poetry is meticulously sensitive to Brooke’s material. It is an extraordinary representation, not only as a collection of stylistically and thematically diverse poems but also for its stories within stories, the defining subplot. Carolan’s Elegy, is a lament written by harper Charles MacCabe in honour of his departed friend Carolan. MacCabe was considered the finer musician of the two and although he came from the same part of Cavan as Brooke she made no reference to this nor did she praise the poem.

If she often softened or eliminated the sexual content of a work, Brooke was also capable of changing it completely and injecting political opinion. Charlotte Brooke was far more concerned with content and meaning than replicating literary style. As a scholar she certainly believed in her judgement. The two praise poems by Carolan are typical of his eulogies and stand on their own. The first is dedicated to Gracey Nugent, whose husband and brother were patrons of Carolan’s patrons. Rather more subtle is Mabel Kelley, dedicated to an heiress who never married. A popular song in its time, it was one of the airs played at the assembly of Irish harpers in Belfast in 1792 and was collected by Edward Bunting.

Brooke the woman remains a mystery yet her contribution, literary legacy and enduring influence helped shape Anglo-Irish literary cultural awareness in an intellectual climate that flourished in the 19th century and was to be championed and nurtured by Yeats, Lady Gregory and their Gaelic Revival circle. As we celebrate Irish literary women we should also praise Charlotte Brooke, scholar and translator, who proved herself a tenacious custodian of the Gaelic bards.

A definitive edition of Charlotte Brooke’s Reliques of Irish Poetry edited by Lesa Ní Mhunghaile was published by The Irish Manuscripts Commission in 2009. As a feat of scholarship, this book is a tremendous achievement. Ní Mhunghaile has also contributed 17 translations of her own. There is a further dimension: it is a superb example of the high-quality academic publishing being produced by Irish publishers.