Hutchison Studio (Porchlight Pizza)
Backstory and Context
Brothers J.R. and L.H. Stephenson opened Artopho Studios in Pullman in ca. 1906. Early ads for the business declared it was “established to stay" and that they specialized in "Everything Modern in the Photographic Art." J.R. Stephenson became the sole proprietor of the studio in 1907 when his brother, L.H., moved to Portland.1 In 1910 the studio was located at 1001 Grand and advertised the studio as "Pullman’s Best Photographer."2
The building at 1001 Grand (now 205 N Grand Avenue with the city’s updated addresses) was sold in 1920, requiring Artopho to move. By 1926, they had moved into the building on Kamiaken and Olsen. James Carson, a farmer, built the Mission Revival building, which features blonde-colored brick veneer on its main elevation and prominent shed roof extensions clad in clay tiles.
Ralph Raymond (R.R.) Hutchison, a photographer with Artopho, took over the business in 1927. Eventually, J.R. Stephenson relocated to Seattle and established Artopho Studio in the Queen Anne neighborhood.3
Hutchison grew up on a farm near Endicott, Washington, northwest of Pullman. He began his career as a professional photographer in the area, eventually operating studios in Endicott, LaCrosse, Pullman, and Moscow, Idaho. He also worked as the photographer for the Washington State University yearbook, the Chinook, attending many campus events and extensively documenting the WSU campus and its activities.4
A collection in the WSU Special Collections houses 690 photographs taken by Hutchison, which illustrate changes to the WSU campus and the towns and farms of the Palouse region of southeastern Washington and northern Idaho.
The building was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2010.
2. Ad, The Pullman Herald, August 19, 1910: 1.
3. R.L. Polk & Co., “Seattle City Directory” (Seattle: Polk’s Seattle Directory Co.,1926), 241.
4. “Hutchison Studio Photographs,” WSU Libraries: Digital Collections, http://content.libraries.wsu.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/hutchison (accessed February 16, 2018).