Cornelius Root was a photographer, University of Washington journalism professor, and owner of the Anacortes American from 1939 to 1950. Where Root was educated and learned photography remains to be discovered.
Root’s wife Daris died in 1944 in Anacortes. Perhaps ready for a new start, in 1947 he married June Herb and joined the UW faculty. Before long, he put the newspaper up for sale. After more than a year on the market, it was purchased by two of his Printing Processes students, Wallie Funk and John Webber. About 260 of Root’s images, preserved by Funk, are in the Anacortes Museum’s collection.
As well as teaching, in his final years he supervised the photography production for the UW annual, Tyee. In 1956, Root was piloting his private plane near Puyallup, when it crashed, killing him, his wife and her son.
Anacortes Americana - Photos by Cornelius Root
Cornelius Root's images of Anacortes during the mid-century conjure up a striking sense of nostalgia.
Anacortes Lumber and Box Fire -- Cornelius Root, 1941
Causland Park Cannon - Cornelius Root, 1940
Dybbro's Meats and Grocery -- Cornelius Root, c. 1941
Tabernacle Church - Cornelius Root c. 1940
Dick and Mildred Everest make a wish - Cornelius Root