• Heibel Collection

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    Heibel Family Photos, Platte County, NE.

    Carl "Charlie" Heibel was born July 29, 1889, in Nebraska, to Siebert and Louisa Heibel. He grew up, married and raised his family on a farm located in Bismark Township, Platte County, Nebraska. The Heibel Collection consists of 216 glass plate negatives of various sizes taken by Carl Heibel.

    It is not known how, when or why he became interested in photography but amateur photographers were not common in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The fact that he used glass plates and Carl’s age both indicate that the photos were taken in the early 1900s. One negative is dated 1914, which helps confirm the time period. After 1920, glass plate negatives were seldom used by photographers, amateur or professional. The invention of plastic film and light-weight, affordable cameras produced a new generation of amateur photographers. After 1920, Carl Heibel undoubtedly joined the ranks of most home photographers and began using plastic or “safety” film that was not developed at home. There are only a few plastic negatives included in the surviving negative collection.
    Following Carl Heibel’s death in 1979, some of Carl’s negatives were stored in a garage in rural Platte County. In 2008, the negatives were given to Boston Studio Project volunteers to scan and then returned to Carl Heibel’s family. The images are mostly candid family portraits but there are also photos of homes, schools, rural scenes and other historic Platte County sites. Most of Heibel’s subjects were not identified, however a database of people and places listed on the negative boxes were used to produce a database of information that can be searched.

    All 216 negatives in the Heibel Collection have been scanned.