George Eastman's Bedroom

Audio Transcript

Clip of GE voice.


Mr. Eastman led a life of marvelous activity, but in his mid-seventies, he began to suffer from arteriosclerosis and arthritis of the spine. A rationalist who believed that “our hope for immortality is a child’s wish, a whistling in the dark,” he had spent his life accomplishing what he believed to be important in the here and now.

The man, who was comfortable around the world, was forced to spend more and more time in this room, his bedroom. It was here he would end his life.

On March 14, 1932, at the age of 77, dreading further physical debilitation and feeling he had completed his life’s work, Eastman shot himself. With his usual attention to detail, he left a note on his bedside table; “To my friends, my work is done, why wait?”

Popular photography was his legacy.

More on the principles of photography and further details of his life are available to you on this floor in the Discovery Room and the George Eastman Archive and Study Center.


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