18 January 2017

Allen Stross passes away

Photo: Daniella Thompson, 2008

We are saddened to learn that Allen Stross, one of Berkeley’s iconic residents and a longtime friend of BAHA and the Berkeley Historical Society, passed away this afternoon. He was 93 years old.

For many years, Allen was a regular fixture at BAHA’s house tours, and until a decade ago he acted as our tour photographer.

According to an article published in the San Francisco Chronicle three years ago, “Allen Stross of Berkeley started working at age 13. He’s been a delivery boy, a sign painter, a Navy sailor and a photographer for the Detroit Free Press. Now, at age 90, he and his wife live on about $21,000 a year. After they pay for rent and medications, they're left with just $416 a month.”

While living in Detroit in the 1960s and ’70s, Allen taught photography courses and contributed photographs to the Historic American Buildings Survey, housed in the Library of Congress.

The photo above shows Allen on a BHS walking tour of the McGee-Spaulding-Hardy District.


Blogger Jeanine said...

Thank you so much for that, Daniella. Allen's determination to keep serving the City—at BAHA, the Berkeley Historical Society and Berkeley's Commission on Aging—despite his age and frailty, was inspiring. He was the Historical Society's photographer for many years, as well earlier serving in Detroit as photographer, winning many awards. By the way, I noticed that one of the plaques outside of the Palace of Fine Arts features a photo by Allen. Allen was one intrepid guy!

18 January, 2017 17:50  

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