Nevada news photographer on display |

Nevada news photographer on display

Staff reports

Award-winning Nevada news photographer Marilyn Newton’s photographs will be on display in a special exhibit at the Nevada Historical Society.

A reception for “Marilyn Newton: News Photographer” will open with a reception 5:30-7:30 p.m. tonight.

Newton got her start with the Nevada Appeal as one of the first paid paper girls in the country at age 12. She started carrying a camera two years earlier. When she was 13, she had her first photo published.

On Wednesday at 7 p.m., Newton will discuss her photographs and career during a free public program at the Historical Society.

Newton worked in the back shop and on the press while attending high school in Carson City. After graduating, she worked at the paper for another year before going to a summer session at the University of Nevada, Reno. She then applied for an opening at the Reno Evening Gazette and was hired by publisher Charlie Murphy.

Newton has now been with the Reno Gazette-Journal for 40 years. Originally hired as a “girl Friday,” she wrote her first front-page story within a week.

“The first pacemaker was put in a patient at Washoe Medical Center,” Newton said. “No one was around when the call came in, so I took notes and wrote the story. Within six months I was packing a camera and chasing the cops and firefighters all over town.”

Newton’s photos illustrate the spectrum of life in Nevada and include a Pulitzer Prize nominated photo of Reno police officers arresting a murder suspect following a high speed chase in 1977, a wild horse making a getaway from the BLM and a cowboy silhouetted by the setting sun.

“I love Reno and its people,” Newton said. “The police and fire departments took me under their wings when I was still a teenager and allowed me to get some of my best shots. I’ve also been lucky enough to go on three overseas deployments with the Nevada Air National Guard.

“I’ve had great success here and it’s the people with whom I come in contact that have made me the photographer I am. Their support, whether through phone calls or letters, motivates me to look for the best shot.”

The exhibit galleries and society store are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday. General admission is $3 for adults ages 18 and over; $2 for seniors; children and members are free. The Historical Society is at 1650 N. Virginia St., just north of UNR’s Lawlor Events Center. Call (775) 688-1190.