William Fortune’s Traders Point home would later become the residence of significant photographer Noble Bretzman. Noble Bretzman is buried in Old Pleasant Hill Cemetery, a short walk across Moore Road from his Traders Point home. The following biographical depiction of Noble and his father Charles, was written by Kathleen Donnelly and was published in the Encyclopedia of Indianapolis, 1999. The photographs depicted were taken by Bretzman for Home by The River by Archibald Rutledge, South Carolina’s poet laureate, published in 1941 by Indianapolis publisher Bobbs Merrill Co.
“C. Noble Bretzman, born in Indianapolis in 1909, began his career sweeping the floors of his father’s photography studio, though he soon became a journeyman retoucher and staff photographer. After graduation from Shortridge High School, he attended a school for professional photographers at Winona Lake, Indiana. He worked for a time in New York City where he was Radio City Music Hall’s first public relations photographer and took pictures of the Rockettes. Noble also set up his own studio specializing in illustrative photography. His business flourished as advertisers began to request photography instead of artwork to illustrate their products. He returned to Indianapolis in 1934 after the death of his father, took over the family business and introduced his distinctive style to local advertisers. Before signing an exclusive contract with L.S. Ayres, Bretzman took fashion photographs for a number of Indianapolis department stores. His photography was credited with inspiring the slogan, “That Ayres Look”. He also was a noted portrait photographer. In his later years Bretzman became passionately interested in ballet. He was a co-founding board member of Indianapolis’ first professional ballet company. He later served as Vice President and General Manager of the Indianapolis Ballet Theatre. Just before his death he founded Bravo Project, Inc., a not for profit corporation to interest school age children in the performing arts. Noble Bretzman donated his negative files and his father’s business records to the Indiana Historical Society in 1980.” (blog ed. note: Noble Bretzman’s sister, Julia, enjoyed some notoriety too. Before being married to the country’s top spy, CIA leader Richard Helms, she interviewed Adolf Hitler in 1936 while covering the Olympics in Nurenberg for UPI.)