Dennis O'Kain photographs

Dennis O'Kain photographs

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Hargrett Manuscripts
Creator: O'Kain, Dennis
Creator: Wilson, William E., d. 1905
Title: Dennis O'Kain photographs
Dates: 1978-circa 1981
Quantity: 5.5 Linear feet (2 oversized boxes, 1 oversized volume)
Abstract:The collection consists of photographs of the Bloomfield area of Athens, Ga. and photographs of Oglethorpe County, Ga. The collection also includes reproductions of photographs from the Wilson glass negatives in Special Collections.
Coll. Number: ms2040

Biographical/Historical Note

The Bloomfield Historic District is the area roughly bounded on the west by heavily-traveled South Milledge Avenue, on the north by Peabody Street one block south of the Baxter Street east-west traffic artery, on the east by the University of Georgia grounds, and on the south by Rutherford Street one block west of the Lumpkin Street thoroughfare. This densely developed thirty acre district is named for Bloomfield Street, its principal avenue, running parallel to South Milledge and intersected by several other streets. Houses with uniform setbacks stand on small and predominantly rectangular lots. As the principal building material, wood functions structurally and decoratively, although brick and stucco finishes or detailing appear among the more recent houses. The northern end of the district features Victorian Eclectic houses dating from the 1890s; these wood-framed structures exhibit modest period detailing including gable ends with decorative vents, bay windows, and wrap-around porches. Developed in the first two decades of the twentieth century, the southern portion of the district encompasses residences of the Craftsman style and Bungalow form along with a few buildings of the American Foursquare form and the Tudor Revival style. Typical features include low-pitched roofs, front dormers, wide eaves with exposed rafters, a variety of exterior wall treatments, and massive front porches. Only a few 1950s apartment buildings intrude on the intact portion of this historic urban neighborhood. In the late 1880s Robert L. Bloomfield, a prominent Athens industrialist and landowner, subdivided a portion of his land along the east side of Bloomfield Street into lots, where several houses were soon built. In 1912 his son-in-law, John E. Talmadge, Jr., divided the nearby Hall Street area into lots. The west side of Bloomfield Street, mostly back lots and cow pasture for the large homes on South Milledge Avenue, began to be sold off and subdivided in the 1920s. The southernmost portion of this district was surveyed and subdivided in 1890, but John Mell purchased all the lots and attached them to his adjoining residence on South Milledge Avenue, which delayed development of this area. The proximity of the Milledge Avenue streetcar line made the district increasingly attractive to middle-class Athenians, which stimulated its growth during the Twenties and Thirties into a modest middle-class neighborhood. Within the Bloomfield district, buildings judged worthy of individual recognition include the Parr House and three residences located at 145, 163, and 193 Mell Street, all of them interpretations of the Craftsman style designed by turn of the century Athens architect, Fred Orr. The Bloomfield Street Historic District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (April 18, 1985) and has been locally designated as a Historic District (November 1, 1988). Carl Vinson Institute of Government website. Retrieved 4/13/2009.

Oglethorpe County, in northeast Georgia, is the state's seventeenth county and comprises 441 square miles. Creek and Cherokee Indians lived there when the first white people arrived, but they lost their land through treaties signed in 1773. Fur trappers and traders traversed the area before the first non-Indians established permanent settlements. A few trappers established a temporary community known as Kennedy's Gate, but it was no longer extant by the time of the American Revolution (1775-83). The first permanent white settlers, led by Revolutionary War veteran Colonel George Mathews to Georgia after the war, were a group of wealthy tobacco planters from Virginia. At first the area was all part of Wilkes County, but Oglethorpe County, named for Georgia's founder James Oglethorpe, was carved from Wilkes in 1793 to accommodate population growth. Over the years Oglethorpe County has gained land from surrounding counties, sometimes in exchange for parts of itself. New Georgia Encyclopedia. Retrieved 4/13/2009.

Dennis O'Kain is an architectural photographer in Georgia and works in the Southern United States.

Index Terms

Bloomfield Historic District (Athens, Ga.)--Photographs.
Negatives (photographic)
Oglethorpe County (Ga.)--Photographs.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Dennis O'Kain photographs, MS 2040. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Related Material

Related collections in this repository: MS 2943 Dennis O'Kain photographs of NationsBank Plaza.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

1Repoductions of photographs from Wilson Glass Negatives in Special Collections
1Photographs of Oglethorpe County, GA
2Athens Clarke Heritage Foundation Photographic Survey Bloomfield Historic District