Luxembourg | The Grund & Bock | Alzette River

Luxembourg | The Grund & Bock | Alzette River

This view shows the picturesque Grund quarter in central Luxembourg City on the banks of the Alzette river. On rocky cliffs above is the Bock, a promontory and natural fortification surrounding the river on three sides. Here, in 963, Count Siegfried built his Castle of Lucilinburhuc which formed the basis for the development of the town that eventually became Luxembourg.

Born in Luxembourg in 1884, professional musician and amateur photographer Jacques Tillmany (1884-1966) became interested in photography next to fellow musician Sigismund Blumann in the San Francisco Bay area in the early 20th century. In 1907, the two went into business on a part-time basis offering in-home photographic portraiture. (1.) Similar photographs by Tillmany of his native Luxembourg appeared in the August, 1913 issue of Camera Craft written by his friend Blumann for the article titled Luxembourg, A Photographic Paradise. An Excerpt:

Mr. Tillmany, whose pictures of Luxembourg are worthy of a master’s brush, modestly insists that the camera, not he, deserves all credit for the results. Over a dozen films were exposed each time he went out, each one resulting in a picture well worth a print except as an occasional one was spoiled through error in exposure or failing to wind the key. He found his greatest difficulty in keeping the expenditure for films down to a reasonable. figure, the subjects being so plentiful and inviting. To say that one can take pictures two hundred days in a year, and take several dozens a day, working within a radius of a few miles, will perhaps give some adequate idea of the possibilities of this photographic gold-mine, beautiful Luxembourg. p. 368

1. Sigismund Blumann, California Editor and Photographer: in: History of Photography: Vol. 26, No. 1 Spring, 2002: “About the time he moved to Oakland, in 1907, Blumann became a part-time portrait photographer, as a sideline to his musical career. He joined with Jacques Tillmany, a fellow musician, to offer home portraiture, a line of portrait photography popularized by such advanced East-Coast workers as Clarence H. White.” p. 54. From the editor: Census and newspaper accounts show Tillmany lived in the Bay area in the early 20th Century but waited until 1952 when petitioning for US Immigration in listing his arrival in New York on the SS Lapland on Feb. 20, 1911. (Family Search, May, 2024)

Luxembourg | The Grund & Bock | Alzette River

Image Dimensions8.0 x 6.0 cm tipped done

Support Dimensions10.0 x 6.9 | 10.7 x 7.7 | 12.3 x 8.8 cm done

Print Notes

Recto: titled in (very faded) gold ink along margin of primary mount: LUXEMBOURG.

Verso: titled in graphite in hand of artist on tertiary cardstock mount: Jacques Tillmany


Purchased for this archive in December, 2019 from the photographer and editor Sigismund Blumann’s grandson Thomas High.