For over 40 years Joseph Cook (1880-1973) was the manager of Walker’s Sawmill in Inverness and owner of a fleet of ships that plied the oceans of the world in international commerce. He was a founding member of the Inverness Rotary Club and a philanthropist who involved himself deeply in the town’s concerns, the Highland Orphanage in particular.
He was also an accomplished artist, creating watercolours and etchings of Inverness scenes, ships and seascapes. But Cook is mostly remembered for the photographic collection that bears his name. He was an inveterate collector of vintage photographs of old Inverness who over the years built up a large collection of over 300 lantern slides which he would use over several decades to illustrate his popular talks on the history of the town; decades in which he was often called ‘the best-known citizen of Inverness.’
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