Arthur C. Pillsbury Foundation

Protecting and Preserving All Life -- By Extending Human Vision

Arthur C. Pillsbury - The Wildflower Man of Yosemite

The Life of Arthur C. Pillsbury

1892 -  Stanford University

1895 -  First trip to Yosemite 

1897 -  Circuit Panorama Camera 

1898 - 1899  -  The Gold Rush  

                 Yukon Panoramas

                 The Yukon

1897 - 1899 -  Alaska's first people

1899 -  Meeting John Muir 

1903 - Tahoe in the Snow - Camera

​1906  -  A Trip Down Market Street  

              April 18 -  San Francisco
                                    Earthquake  and

              The Studio of the Three
              Arrows - in Yosemite

1908 - May 6 -  The Great White Fleet
                enters S.F. Bay

1909 -  The First Nature Movie  

               The Run-Away Balloon  

1910 -  America's First Air Show in
              Dominguez Hills

1911 - June - Reporter Cleve Shaffer
            reports Adolph Sutro and Mr.
            Kierulf are building a plane
            which would be flown at the
            Pacific Exposition in 1915.  A.
            Kneiling and ACP were 
            building an original biplane
            and motor.  (Guess who was
            building the motor.)

1911 - September 3 -  Arthur's
            brother, Dr. Ernest S.
             Pillsbury and his wife are

             November 13 - Arthur legally
             adopts his brother's children.  
              Adoption Papers  

1912 -  The First Lapse-Time
              Camera  - The Wildflowers
              October 14 - 16   -   
              Superintendents Conference, 
              Yosemite - First showing
              Lapse-Time flowers

              John Muir, Sierra Club and
              Preserving Nature

1913 - Photographing Hawaii - 
              Sunset Magazine

1915 -  David Curry and the Movie

              Ascent of Half Dome 

              Pillsbury is providing free
              publicity to the Sierra Club by
             videoing their activities,
             shown during his lectures

1918 -  Mass production real
              Photograph Post Cards  
             The invention is in use at the
             Studio in Old Village. 
             Pillsbury's son, Arthur Francis
             Pillsbury, is the operator.

1919 -  First aerial photos and movies
              of Yosemite  

1921 -  Color movies of flowers

1922 - Nov. 22 - Mass Production real
              Photo Post Card Machine
              Patent application is

1924 -  Pillsbury's Pictures  - New

             May 24 -  Article in the
            Mariposa Gazette

1926 -  Feb. 23 - Photo Postcard
               Machine - Patent granted.

              March 15 - Lectures to
               President Coolidge .   Willard
               Hotel, Washington D. C. 

               The Microscopic Motion
               Picture Camera

                 A Motion Picture Director
                for Microbes

1929 -   X-Ray Motion Pictures and

1930 -  Underwater Camera and

1932 -  

1942 -  Osmosis in Plants 

Protagonists and Antagonists
Names and faces from history; names and faces of those still living, their stories, long hidden, still to be told in this struggle for the future we are living today caught between freedom and despotism.  One man understood the choice being made, and took action.
        This is a narrative which changes history as we know it taking you through places of ethereal beauty and power.   

Yosemite Valley 1895 - 1927
​      Standing waist-high wildflowers , 1895
      Buys his first studio in Yosemite - 1897
      Muir and Teddy Roosevelt - 1903
      Buys Studio in Yosemite - 1906
      Showing the first nature movie - 1909
      Showing first lapse-time movie of flowers
        blooming to NPS Superintendents .  Ending
        the mowing of meadows in National Parks-
     Filming the Hetch-Hetchy - 1913   
     Leads women students from Stanford up the
        back of Half Dome - 1915   
     Filming Sierra Club for lecture tour - 1915
     Filming Indian Field Days - 1916
     Filming The Legend of the Lost Arrow - 1916
      Filming Sudebaker on Overhanging Rock  
        - 1916
      Designs and uses first mass-
       production postcard machine - 1917
      Filming Aerial photography - 1919

Stanford University
    Buys his first movie camera
      December 12, 1892
    Builds the first motorcycle in California - 1894
    Designs the first circuit Panorama Camera
    - 1897
    Senior Advisor tells him it will not work.
    It works; leaves Stanford - 1897

On to the Yukon
    Ship-wrecked at Dixon's  Entrance - 1898
    Saves  himself and his father.
    Rows 110 miles to secure transport
    Photographs the opening of the mining
       towns, the Inuit, the vastness of Alaska
      Films Alaska's First Nation - 1898 - 1899
      Meets and photographs John Muir during the 
      Harriman Expedition - 1899
    Solitary journey from the headwaters of the
          Yukon to the Pacific filming - 1899

San Francisco
   Susan B. Anthony, a friend of his mother's   
       recommends he visit Yosemite. May 1895
   Story told to a SF journalist with a straight
        face.  The Call 29 January 1899 
    Sets up the photographic department for
      Hearst - 1903
   Incorporates Pillsbury Picture Company
       - March 1906 
   Photoraphs the SF Earthquake & Fire ,
       panoramas, film and stills  - April 18 on.
  Purchased the Studio of the Three Arrows in
     Yosemite - 1906
  Photographed the White Fleet steaming into
     San Francisco through the Golden Gate \
        - May 6. 1908.
  Reported dead October 31, 1909 in runaway
  Building an airplane with A. Kneiling, another
         member of the  PAC, with photographic 
         and ACP were building an original biplane
            and motor - June 1911

Los Angeles - Hollywood 
​  Photographed the first Air Show at Dominguez
     Hills south of Los Angeles from a balloon at
     300 feet.- January 1910

    AC's mother calls.  His brother, Dr. E. S.
      Pillsbury and his wife have been killed
      in an auto accident.  September 3, 1911

  Washington D. C.
     Shows one of his films to the National Press
       Club - 1915
     Lectures for a select group to President Calvin
     Coolidge at the Willard Hotel - 1926