Victorian Winona: Through the Lens of Charles Tenney


Charles Tenney (1847-1917) and his partners left a large collection of their photographs behind when they retired from their Winona photography business in 1892. Many of these images are now in the collections of the Winona County Historical Society. These photographs include stereo­grams, which are double images used with a special viewer called a stereoscope to create a three-dimensional image, plus many cabinet prints, which are images mounted on card stock. These images date from the 1870s and 1880s and give viewers a detailed look around Winona and the region in Victorian times.

“Victorian Winona: Through the Lens of Charles Tenney” will open on Wednesday, August 14, at the Winona County History Center. A special Food For Thought series program will open the new exhibit. “Victorian VR: A History of Stereo Photography” with Bob Taunt will be held at the Winona County History Center on August 14 at 12:05 p.m. This program is free and open to the public. Regular museum admission applies to the exhibition after its opening.

Taunt is an author and historian, as well as former president of the La Crosse County Historical Society, who has been sharing history in the tri-state area for over 25 years. Taunt will explore the world of stereo photography — pictures in 3-D! The process was invented in the 1850s and was very popular through World War I, and continues today. Come see and hear about the history of stereoviews, and learn how to make your own stereo photographs using the digital camera and your computer. Taunt is also a photographer who has built his own cameras and taken many stereo photos over the years. He will talk about stereo photography’s history and how the process works.

Plan your visit at or call 507-454-2723. Also find the Winona County Historical Society on Facebook and Instagram.


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