AAC Sends Bradford Washburn's Camera to Space



An early Ziess 4x5 similar to the camera Bradford Washburn would have used in 1937. Photo courtesy of PacificRimCamera.com

John Grunsfeld, a life-long member of the AAC and lead astronaut on the Hubble Telescope mission will blast off this fall, 2008. In January Grunsfeld contacted the AAC about taking something on the flight in remembrance of Brad Washburn whom he knew personally and had a friendship with. We suggested that he take one of Brad’s oldest and most important cameras with him on a mission to repair the world’s coolest cameras – the Hubble Telescope.

The Zeiss Maximar B 4x5 camera was with Brad on his very historic first ascent of Mount Lucania in 1937 with Robert Bates. This was a very important climb in the history of American Mountaineering. During this climb essentially many things went wrong and Brad and Bob were forced to abandon all of their gear and walk out 100+ miles to civilization. The only thing Brad didn’t leave behind was this camera. Many consider Brad to not only be one of the most important climbers but also one of the most important landscape photographers of the 20th century. That, in addition to his climbing achievements (and personality) made him a very important figure in American Climbing. Brad used this camera to document some of his most important mountain images.

The AAC’s library is home to a 100 of Bradford’s personal favorite photographs and thousands of climbing related books, DVDs and other climbing resource media.

For more information visit the Bradford Washburn American Mountaineering Museum and the American Alpine Club

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