From 1931 until 1982, Gainsborough Photographers did business at 223 West Washington Street, on the street level of the Odd Fellows Temple in downtown Sandusky.
Though this close up view is not very clear, you can see that at Gainsborough’s you could have portraits taken, or purchase a camera.
Samuel Barkan opened the Gainsborough photographic studio in Sandusky in October of 1931. There was a studio in Lorain as well. An opening day special included twelve 4 x 6 inch pictures in a folder, and a 7 x 9 inch color picture in an easel frame, all for $7.50.
In the 1940s, Sam Barkan resided on Fifth Street in Sandusky with his wife Ann, and their two daughters. During World War II, there was a patriotic display at the Gainsborough Studio during Sandusky’s fifth war loan drive. Every customer who purchased a $25 war bond received a picture of one of the panels of the Honor Board that was on display in Washington Park.
This undated advertisement shows the services available at Gainsborough’s, which included family and commercial photography, sales of photographic equipment and supplies, camera repair, and one day film finishing, as well as reprints and enlargements.
When customers picked up their developed film, the prints were inside a paper album that stated “Send a snapshot with every letter.”
In the 1950s, Sam Barkan wrote a newspaper column entitled “The Camera Column.” This column appeared in the May 12, 1954 issue of the Sandusky Register Star News.
This artistic picture of a championship bowling team was created by Gainsborough Photographers.
Sam Barkan’s name was associated with the Gainsborough Photography studio through the 1960s. In the 1969 Sandusky City Directory, he was listed as the president of Gainsborough, Inc. and Mrs. Ann Barkan was the secretary-treasurer. From 1970 through 1977, George A. Hassenplug was the proprietor of Gainsborough Photographers. Rick Abbott operated Gainsborough Photographers from 1978 until the studio closed in October of 1982. By 1970 Sam and Ann Barkan had moved to Columbus, Ohio. Mr. Sam Barkan passed away at the age of 67 on September 6, 1972. Ann Barkan died in 2006. Both Mr. and Mrs. Barkan were buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus. During their years in Sandusky, Mr. and Mrs. Barkan were active members of the Oheb Shalom Temple.