Título: 63. DUTCH FLAT, PLACER COUNTY. 67 MILES FROM...
Condición del libro: Very good
Edición: 1st Edition
Sacramento: Alfred A. Hart, [ca. 1866]. Stereoview on a 3 1/4 x 6 3/4 inch stiff yellow mount. Image lightly soiled. Corners of mount rounded. Very good. An early stereoview from Alfred A. Hart, the official photographer of the Central Pacific Railroad, whose images are primary visual sources documenting the construction of the western half of the Transcontinental Railroad. The image shows the town of Dutch Flat in Placer County, located about sixty-seven miles northeast of Sacramento. Settled in the early years of the Gold Rush by two German brothers, Dutch Flat grew in importance over the years as a hub for hydraulic mining activity. By 1865 the population exceeded 2000, and the previous year the Dutch Flat Wagon Road, a predecessor route into the Sierras for the Central Pacific Railroad, was built. The stereo image shows Dutch Flat from a perspective south of the town (looking north) and shows a large grouping of modest wooden buildings, with a few two and three-story buildings visible as well. A long, partially built railroad trestle can be seen in the far background. It was railroad engineer Theodore Judah, one of the founders of the Central Pacific, who proposed the route along the Dutch Flat Road into and across the Sierra Nevada. The decision to build the railroad along the road became a scandal, as critics of the Central Pacific's leaders accused the "Big Four" of perpetrating a "Dutch Flat Swindle," with no intent to actually build the railroad beyond the town (utilizing only the wagon road for transport across the mountains) despite collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars from the government for the project. This is in an unusual image for Alfred Hart, in that most of his Central Pacific photographs focus either on the railroad under construction or the difficult terrain to be traversed. The backstamp on the verso of the mount advertises Hart's "Scenes in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, for the Stereoscope and Album" series, with his address listed at 135 J Street, believed to be his earliest business address in Sacramento. Though the image is undated, scholar Glenn Willumson proposes the years 1865-1866 as the period when Hart photographed the scenes that became the first 133 numbers in his Central Pacific Railroad series (see Kibbey, p.63), and it is believed that stereoviews mounted on cards with the 135 J Street address were issued by Hart before early 1869. This image of Dutch Flat is number 63 in Hart's series. Such early printings of Alfred Hart stereoviews of the Central Pacific Railroad are quite scarce in the market, in our experience; they are more often found with the backstamp of Carleton Watkins, who began publishing Hart's images around 1870. Of this view of Dutch Flat, issued by Hart himself, Mead Kibbey locates copies at the Crocker Art Museum, California State Library, Huntington Library, Library of Congress, and in two private collections. Mead Kibbey, THE RAILROAD PHOTOGRAPHS OF ALFRED A. HART, ARTIST, pp.121, 155, & 180. N° de ref. de la librería 1613
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