Shacklett to Display Photographer’s Works

Nancy DeGennaro, The Daily News Journal, September 1, 2017

Dick Shacklett began his photography career in 1937.

Much of Murfreesboro and Rutherford County history since since 1937 has been documented by the legendary photographer, Dick Shacklett.

Shacklett’s Photography, 105 South Church Street on the Murfreesboro Public Square, will celebrate its 80th birthday this weekend with an exhibit of the late photographer’s renowned images.

“Folks have no concept what it was like for these early pioneer photographers when with the ability to take a photo with in seconds with our phones,” said Gloria Christy, the late photographer’s daughter.

The show will be held during Friday Night Live from 5-9:30 p.m. Friday and again from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.

Music by Frank and Nancy List, “Music through the Decades,” will be performed on the balcony at Uptown Talk for the birthday celebration on Saturday.

“It’s hard to realize what extremes that a professional had to go to get these one-of-a-kind images. The black-and- white image would be a posture that he would have had to do to get the iconic images,” Christy said.

“He used his mechanical genius to capture the natural world.  His unique ability together with his favorite camera, the Speed Graphic, coupled with many hours of patience and fortitude, created some of the most breathtaking images in wildlife of the 1950’s.”

Some of the noted images include “Mallard Ducks in Flight,” “The Buck” and “Strike,” which was a rainbow trout hitting a fly.  In 1952, “Strike” received national recognition by taking first place in Lucerne, Switzerland, at the World Exposition of Photography.  Later that year, the photo was published in the National Geographic and U.S. Camera.

“Although this unique photograph brought him national and international recognition, it was not his talent as a photographer that set him apart. His artistic ability with a camera and other creative initiatives mirrored his life’s purpose — his absolute reverence for the nature, humanity, and God,” Christy said, remembering her father’s nature.

Shacklett began his career as a teen.

In July 1935 Shacklett walked into Leo Farrell’s Photography shop and asked if there was anything he could do. Farrell offered him a job processing roll film.

Around 1937, at the age of 16, Shacklett became a local photographer creating and documenting some of the most memorable images of Rutherford County of the 1930s and 1940s, Christy said.

By 1938, he was an independent businessman operating out of the old James K. Polk Hotel building, which is now the location for SunTrust Bank on East Main Street.

He is also noted as the creator of the official seal of Rutherford County, which is affixed to every county vehicle, Christy said.

“His spirit for recording the history for future generations has become the mission of Shacklett’s Photography 80 years later … and his zeal for recording and documeting the history for the future lives has long outlived him,” Christy said.

For more information about Shack-lett’s Photography go to shacklettsphotography. com or a Facebook/shacklettsphotography, or call 615-893-2369.

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