John R. Putnam and Carlton Valentine documented the growth and development of Southern California over a fifty year period
with John R. Putnam primarily handling the photography and C. O. Valentine the business end of the company. (Putnam's son,
Arion Putnam, was also one of this collection's photographers.)
John R. Putnam and Carlton Valentine were commercial photographers in Los Angeles from about 1895 into the early 20th century.
There were two Putnams, John R. and Arion. Arion was the son.
Arion Putnam was the (a?) official photographer for the Southern Pacific Railway. (Source: Correspondence in the workroom
file cites California photography scholar Peter Palmquist.)
Photographers of Nineteenth Century Los Angeles County, by Barbara Dye Callarman (Hacienda Gateway Press, Los Angeles: 1993)
culled information from city directories for John R. and A. Putnam from 1895-1902. The guidebook lists Putnam and Valentine
Biographies of Western Photographers, by Carl Mautz (Carl Mautz Publishing, Nevada City, California: 1997) list the partnership
of J.R. Putnam and W.S. [sic] Valentine, stereo photographers active in Los Angeles, c. 1898-1912.
Touring Topics (Automobile Club of Southern California, various issues from 1909- 1914) published Putnam-Valentine photographs.
Several articles chronicled C.O. Valentine’s automobile trips to Lake Tahoe and other places.
Touring Topics (May, 1914, Volume 6, Number 4, p. 26) contains an article beginning with “Putnam and Valentine, commercial
and manufacturing photographers of Los Angeles, who were located in the Temple Block in Los Angeles for many years, have recently
moved into enlarged and specially built quarters in the new Aristo Building at 757 South Los Angeles Street.”
Touring Topics (June, 1914, p. 26) has a photograph of their commercial building.
Workroom file notes indicate a possible obituary published for Carlton O. Valentine in a Costa Mesa/Newport Beach area newspaper
between October 23, 1970 – November 1, 1970. The file does not contain the obituary.
68.5 linear feet (Boxes: letter, ½ letter, 3-ring binders). Photographs, negatives.