The Last Steam Railroad in America: From Tidewater to Whitetop

The Last Steam Railroad in America: From Tidewater to Whitetop

by O. Winston Link, Thomas H. Garver

Editorial Reviews

Ray Olson
From 1955 to 1960, commercial photographer Link devoted all the time he could to the Norfolk and Western Railway, which ran four lines in the upper South from its hub in Roanoke, Virginia. With the company's cooperation, he recorded what made it special—it was the last U.S. railway to operate with steam engines. Moreover, as Thomas H. Garver imparts in the generous accompanying text here, Link worked in ways then as rare as steam locomotives—with large, tripod-mounted view cameras and, because he preferred working at night when he could exert more control over lighting, he used scores of flashbulbs that were set off precisely at the time calculated to allow for a particular exposure. One album of those night images, Steam, Steel & Stars (1987), has appeared, and more of them are here, along with many daytime views and a little sampling of the few color pictures he made (including the only two color shots taken at night). Technical marvels, they are also aesthetic miracles, charged with human feeling because Link cared for the communities that lived along the NW and for the railroad's employees more than for its gigantic machinery and buildings and because he is a master of natural-looking dramatic lighting. His pictures are as lyrical as they are powerful, as numinous as they are romantically materialist: masterpieces.

Product Details

Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
11.75(w) x 11.04(h) x 0.87(d)

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