Museum Blog

Photographer Royal Hubbell

According to an article in the Cañon City Record on September 25, 1895, Royal Hubbell was the only baby photographer in Cañon City. An ad printed in the Cañon City Times in 1901 furthered his claim that he was the perfect photographer for mothers to bring their babies to for a photo.

Cañon City Times, 1901

The ads Hubbell posted claimed he also excelled at views, portraits, enlarging, copying, and color work and the only successful flash photographer in Colorado. He was good at creating sensational ads with titles such as “Murder! Murder!!” when promoting cheap prices on photos.

Hubell was born in Indiana in 1860. He opened a studio in Cañon City in 1896 which is listed in the city directory at 714 Main Street until 1901. He died in 1932 and is buried Volusia County, Florida.

Unidentified baby, photographed by Royal Hubbell, ca. 1898. Object ID: 1991.050.014; Copyright Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center
Len Leroy Williams, photographed by Royal Hubbell, ca. 1898. Object ID: 2013.071.027; Copyright Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center
Lloyd L. Williams, Len Leroy Williams, Jim Williams, and Essie Estella Williams, photographed by Royal Hubbell, ca. 1898. Object ID: 2013.071.029; Copyright Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center

May is National Photography Month! The museum will be highlighting early local photographers in upcoming blogs. Follow the links for more blogs.

George Fricke

Misses Mills

William Babberger

Charles Emery

J. Melvin Affleck

The information presented in this article is compiled using research conducted by the Royal Gorge Regional Museum and History Center.

2 thoughts on “Photographer Royal Hubbell

  1. I have a family photo with Royal Hubbell printed on the bottom, the location is Alamosa Colorado. Did he have a studio there? Did he travel abs take pictures. We are hoping to gain a time frame to help us identify the old family photo.

    1. Hi Stephanie,

      Royal Hubbell was active in Cañon City from about 1895-1901. During that time, he also traveled around the state to take scenic photos. His name appears in newspaper articles and ads in different cities during that time, staying places for a short time to take and sell photos. While we don’t have anything placing him in Alamosa, we do have articles from the San Juan Prospector in Del Norte from August, September, and October of 1899. This places him at least somewhat nearby, meaning it is possible he was in Alamosa around that same time. He moved to Florida in the early 1900s so I would imagine the photo dates between 1895 and 1901. Clothing will also be a big help in identifying an estimated time period. Women’s clothing is easier to date than men’s but ties, cravats, and bow ties can be helpful for dating. If there are women in the photo that have large leg-o-mutton sleeves, then the photo is likely between 1890-1896 as this style had a resurgence in popularity for that brief time. I hope this helps and please feel free to reach out to us with any more questions!

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