Gainesville’s ‘fade-free photographer’ steps out of the shadows, studio collection on display

Started by White’s father, Nathan Carrel White Sr., the NC White studio was initially located at 40 Main Street. Much of the Elder White’s work was likely lost in the 1936 tornado, which also demolished the studio, according to Jones.

Self-proclaimed a “flawless photographer,” White Jr. rebuilt the studio at 221 Main Street, where he remained until his retirement in 1958.

In addition to weddings, christenings, portraits, bereaved loved ones, businesses and landscapes, the studio took photos for the city of Gainesville, Standard Oil, New Holland Mill, Gainesville Northwest Railroad, The Atlanta Constitution and Brenau College.

As his work spans a time when racial tensions were high in the South, White has kept racism out of his studio. His records include black and Native American men, women, and children, to whom White provided the same attire as his Caucasian subjects.

“It’s so important – he was one of the only photographers in northeast Georgia to photograph people of color,” Jones said. “Not only did he photograph people of color, he also let them wear the same clothes. He had clothes in the studio that people could wear, and he didn’t have “colored clothes” and “white clothes” – they could all wear the same thing.

The Georgians from the northeast weren’t the only ones posing for White’s camera; people have traveled across Georgia, the Carolinas and even Washington DC to be shot by photographer Fadeless, Jones said.

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