Issue #206  9/5/2014
Daguerreian Expert Michele Krainik Dies at Her Home
Michele Krainik
Michele Krainik

Photo researcher and historian Michele Ann Krainik passed away at her home on July 27th. She was 67 years old.

Michele Ann Krainik was born in Elgin, IL, on the last day of November 1946. She shared her birth with her identical twin, Marsha Ruth McCanless.

After marrying her life-long husband Cliff Krainik in 1968, the pair would go on to launch their first photo auction catalogue in early 1972, and then to open their own photography gallery in Georgetown, Washington, D.C. in mid-1980.

In the spring of 1971 Michele became a founding member of the Chicago Photographic Collector's Society and served as its first secretary. Krainik later co-authored with her husband "Union Cases: A Collector's Guide to the Art of America's First Plastics". As an expert in the field, Michele was asked in 2008 to contribute the entry for Union Cases in the "Encyclopedia of Nineteenth-Century Photography".

In 1988 she became a founding member of the Daguerreian Society. In 1997 she was partner to the exhibition, "National Vision, Local Enterprise: John Plumbe, Jr." in Washington, D.C.--the premier showing of the daguerreian work of Plumbe at the Historical Society of Washington, D.C. Plumbe was a particular fascination for Krainik.

Michele leaves behind her husband Cliff, two sons, a grandson, a granddaughter, and, as her husband noted in a memorial, "a host of friends who will never forget her many kindnesses, her steadfast loyalty, enthusiasm, and incomparable style."

As Cliff Krainik noted accurately, "Michele was admired and cherished for her beauty--both physical and spiritual--for her grace, inner strength, intelligence, and her devotion to God and her family. She will be remembered by her family and legion of friends, and although her worldly journey has come to an end, her indomitable Spirit remains to give comfort and inspiration to all those whom she has met."