‘Everyday Dogs’ book depicts allure of man’s best friend

“A new book from the University of California, Berkeley’s Bancroft Library now hitting the holiday bookstore shelves gives fresh meaning to the term ‘dog days’ by celebrating the powerful connections between people and their canine companions.

The idea for ‘Everyday Dogs: A Perpetual Calendar for Birthdays and Other Notable Dates’ (Heyday Books) arose unexpectedly in 2005 when Mary Scott and Susan Snyder were sifting through the vast Pictorial Collection at The Bancroft for images for an exhibit on California women.

‘By chance we began finding some wonderful photos of dogs with their people,’ said Scott, graphic designer for the campus’s Doe and Moffitt libraries. And they found more, and more.

Among the hundreds of photos discovered by Scott and Snyder, public services director at The Bancroft, those chosen for the 152-page book had to relay ‘a still palpable connection between the people and their dogs,’ said Scott. ‘That’s what a photo needed to make the final cut – be it a crusty old prospector or a famous newspaperman,’ she said.

The cover is a professional photo by noted 19th-century California photographer Carleton E. Watkins, of a dog named Guardian peering alertly from a wicker carriage, but the book contains snapshots, too.  Altogether, the book contains 75 evocative black-and-white photos taken between roughly 1870 and the 1940s.” – Kathleen Maclay, Media Relations

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