“At the turn of the 20th century, Elmer and Bert Underwood were the Diane Sawyers of their day.
Through stereoscopic photographs, the brothers from Ottawa brought the world to almost every living room in America.
The brothers were photographers and founded a news service that soon became one of the world's largest suppliers of stereoscopic photographs.
Stereoscopes were hand-held photograph viewers. Rectangular cards with two identical photos were clipped to the scopes, allowing viewers to see photos in 3-D.
Their photos showed cities, buildings, landscapes and people from around the world.
Elmer was born in 1859, Bert in 1862.
Both were born in Illinois and spent much of their childhood in Iowa and Ohio.
The Underwood family moved to Ottawa in 1877, while the boys were still in their teens.
For jobs, Elmer operated a printing office and Bert sold encyclopedias.
Those skills served the brothers well when, in 1880, they started their own business, Underwood and Underwood. The company specialized in selling stereoscopes and photos.
Question: As the popularity of stereoscopes increased, the brothers soon developed an educational series that allowed viewers to learn about different parts of the world they might not otherwise get to see. They developed boxed sets of themed views and became the largest publishers in the stereoscope business. Where were the brothers’ offices located?
— Beccy Tanner
Answer to Tuesday’s question: Most of the proceeds from the Al Jarvis estate auctions went to the E.A. Jarvis Scholarship Fund for the Kansas University Endowment Association and to the Wichita Center for the Arts.
Check back on Kansas.com Thursday for the answer to today’s question.