[Album of Sixty-Seven Gelatin Silver Photographs of a Railroad Trip through California, Nevada, Utah and Colorado, Showing Monterey, San Francisco, Auburn, Ogden, Salt Lake City, Engines and Trains, a “Railroad Camp,” a Train Wreck, a Female “Fellow Passenger,” etc.]
Quarto (25.5x17.5 cm). 17 grey album leaves. With 67 mounted original gelatin silver photographs, with eight larger ones ca. 12 x 20 cm (5 x 8 in) and the rest ca. 8.5 x 8 cm (3.5 x 3 in). Most photographs with manuscript black ink captions. Period style brown gilt tooled half morocco with brown cloth boards. A few images mildly faded, but overall a very good album of interesting photographs.
Interesting collection of original snapshot and studio photos taken and during a railway trip from California to Colorado ca. 1900, by the Central Pacific and Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroads. The album opens with twenty-seven photos showing the grounds of the luxurious Hotel del Monte, which opened in Monterey in 1880. There are also views of Monterey’s Old Customs House (the oldest surviving government building in California, erected in 1827), “Catholic Mission Chapel” (the Cathedral of San Carlos Borromeo), and an unusual view of the Vizcaino-Serra Oak and commemorative cross on the Cathedral grounds. This is the “first place in W. America where mass was said, June 3, 1770.” The oak under which Father Junipero Serra said the first mass in 1770, was declared dead in 1904 and cut down in 1905. The photo shows the oak, the commemorative cross with the date of the mass, and a painted sign “Wizardo” which we didn’t find on the other photos of the site. There are also several snapshot photos of San Francisco (waterfront, harbour and Alcatraz Island).
Twenty-three photos taken during the railroad trip show the exterior and interior of steam engines (“American Train,” “Limited Express”), a female “fellow passenger,” railway tracks, stations and depots in Auburn, Ogden and Salt Lake City, a wrecked train laying on the side of a track, a “railroad camp,” railroad workers in “Salt Lake Desert,” “mountain homes” in Nevada, views taken in the Rocky Mountains “from rear of train travelling full speed” (Black Canyon, Arkansas River, etc.), and others. The album closes with two studio panoramic views of Salt Lake City and six snapshots of the city, showing the “Mormon Temple,” “Indians,” “the old city walls,” “old cottage,” etc. Overall an interesting collection of unique snapshot photos showing railway travel in the American West in the early 1900s.
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