John Hopf was a man of his time. He was much more than just the photographs of the America’s Cup. It is important to put him in the context of time. He was working with the available materials and technology. There was no Go-pro, or digital cameras. He was a neighbor and I could walk by and see the retractable roof where he had his telescope that he had built.
John T. HopfNEWPORT – John Timothy Hopf,
91, of Newport, RI, died Tuesday, September 27, 2011 at home surrounded by his family. He was the husband of Audrey R. (Linehan) Hopf. Born in Newport, RI, on September 26, 1920 he was the son of the late John M. and Margaret (Murphy) Hopf.John was the most visible name in Newport. It’s on millions of reprints of his sixty postcards, five Newport photo books and numerous aerial photo-posters. He was responsible for the Newport Then and Now. A Newport native, John has served as president of the Newport Taxpayers Association and is its oldest board member. He received the 1965 Stellafane Award for a telescope that he built. But his most prized award is the Gold Medal Award from the Preservation Society of Newport County in 1977, for his publishing of the 1st mansions of Newport book. John has also received the award for the best postcard from the Postcard Association of America, for his aerial of the Cliff Walk and the Breakers. Many of these large picture’s are still on display in local restaurants, like Christies, the Viking Hotel, Coddington Brewing Co. and the Atlantic Beach Club. John was the first to take an aerial of the Island at 10,000 feet, and other unsurpassed aerial photographs including Providence. He was a commercial and aerial photographer. He and his family ran a business publishing post cards and guidebooks of Rhode Island. He was an avid Studebaker collector, he filmed many historic movies of Newport dating back to the 30’s, and was an avid astronomer belonging to the Skyscraper Association. He is also an accomplished pianist. He produced piano arrangements for silent movies for many years at the former Casino Theater and at the Newport Art Museum. He was also a member of St. Mary’s Church.Besides his wife of 58 years, he is survived by his children, Adele E. Hopf of Newport, RI, Linda M. Davignon and her husband Patrick of Cranston, RI, Catherine Drescher of Warwick, RI, John J. Hopf of Middletown, RI and Susan M. Hopf of Newport, RI, his grandchildren, Melissa Payne and her husband Christopher of York, PA, his great-grandchildren Ryan and Matthew Payne, and his sister Estelle O’Connell of Newport, RI and nieces and nephews. He was the grandfather of the late Ryan P. Davignon.Calling hours are omitted. His funeral will be held on Thursday, September 29, 2011, at 9 a.m. from the Hambly Funeral Home, 30 Red Cross Avenue, Newport, with a Mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. in St. Mary’s Church, Spring Street, Newport. Burial will be in St. Columba Cemetery, Brown’s Lane, Middletown.Donations in his memory, may be made to the Robert Potter League for Animals, P.O. Box 412, Newport, RI 02840, Visiting Nurse Services of Newport and Bristol Counties, 1184 East Main Road, Portsmouth, RI 02871 or to the Covenant House, 460 West 41st, New York, NY, 10036-6801.