Ca. 1903. Folio album (ca. 31,5x24 cm). 77 paper album leaves (10 blank). With 238 mounted gelatin silver photographs of various size, including nineteen large photos from ca. 18x24 cm (7 x 9 ¼ in) to ca. 11,5x17 cm (4 ½ x 6 ¾ in), and 219 smaller snapshot photos from ca. 9x12 cm (3 ½ x 4 ¾ in) to ca. 5,5x8 cm (2 ¼ x 3 ¼ in). With over ninety mounted pieces of various ephemera (newspaper- and magazine clippings, steamship menu, the route map, etc.). One photo with the photographer’s copyright in negative, over 100 photos and pieces of ephemera with period pencil captions on the mounts (many captions relate to several images); several photos with additional pencil captions on verso. Period black gilt tooled half morocco with black cloth boards neatly rebacked in style. A couple of photos mildly faded or with mild silvering, a couple of photos with minor creases on the corners or margins, several leaves with small tears on the lower blank margins not affecting photos, one photo apparently removed, but overall a very good album of interesting strong photos.
Historically interesting album with unique snapshots and large studio photos taken and collected by New York salesman S.K. Goldstone during his Caribbean cruise in January-February 1903. Steamship “Moltke” of the Hamburg-American Line departed from New York and went across the north-eastern Caribbean, visiting St. Thomas (then still Dutch, a part of the US Virgin Islands since 1917), “Porto Rico” (Puerto Rico, a US colony since 1898), Martinique, Saint Vincent, Grenada, Jamaica, Cuba, and the Bahamas.
Goldstone’s album is very interesting because of thirteen photos of the ill-fated St. Pierre community (Martinique), which perished during Mt. Pelee’s eruption in May 1902. According to a newspaper clipping from the album, which describes SS “Moltke” tourists’ visit to St. Pierre, “our company was said to be the only large party that had visited the place since the awful catastrophe of May 1902.” Nine photos are the original snapshots showing St. Pierre from a distance with Mt. Pelee in the background, the ruined streets and houses, St. Pierre Cathedral, “cathedral bell taken from ruins of St. Pierre,” and Goldstone and other party members posing amid the “desolation.” Two large studio photos show St. Pierre and Mount Pelee before and after the 1902 eruption. Two more studio photos depict Mount Pelee during the eruption.
There are also over sixty lively snapshots of Cuba - mostly taken in Santiago de Cuba and Havana. The views of Santiago de Cuba show Morro Castle (Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca), Santiago skyline and churches, “one of the main business streets,” “interior of a prison,” the monument to Christopher Columbus, “entrance to club building, USA officer about to mount his horse,” “some of our tourists and natives waiting for a boat to go about.” Several photos portray the American tourists posing next to the “Sucursal de la New York Life Insurance Co.,” in front of the Santiago Surrender Tree and the San Huan Hill monument (marking the significant events of the Spanish-American War of 1898), etc. The views of Havana show the Morro Castle, the harbour with French and German warships, “what remains of the Maine” (USS “Maine, sank in Havana Harbour in 1898, contributing to the outbreak of the Spanish-American War later that year), Havana waterfront, Hotel “Pasaje,” “the principal hotel in Havana – Gran Hotel Inglaterra,” monument to eight medical students executed on 27 November 1871, “front of a very old cathedral in Havana” (Catedral de San Cristobal), passers-by, carts of banana and oranges sellers, etc.
The photos of Jamaica include eighteen snapshots and ten large studio photos. The snapshots mostly show Kingston (the wharf and landing pavilion, “native negro band of musicians taken from inside of a trolley can,” a “rest for public use,” “negro policemen and station house,” a typical country house, etc.); one snapshot photo shows Port Royal from the sea. Ten large studio photos portray native “fruit sellers,” cocoa harvesters, a woman and her son “going to market,” “sugar cane and cane cutters;” there are also views of cocoa and banana plantations, a “pineapple grove,” a mango tree, and “typical hut showing how the poor natives are housed.”
The other photos show Nassau, Bahamas (“on the veranda of the Colonial House,” “golf links,” views of Nassau views taken from the sea, “six scenes in an orange grove just out of Nassau in the Bahamas”); Kingstown, St. Vincent (“our landing place,” waterfront, botanical gardens, wooden buildings, black inhabitants); St. George, Grenada (harbour, Government House, travellers posing at waterfalls, Grand Etang Lake), and Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. Several photos portray SK. Goldstone and his travel companions (“my room mate Mr. Montell, N.Y.,” “Miss Kafer, Trenton, N.J.,” “Dr. Robinson, Camden, N.J.,” “notice - Gentleman has a slight attack of mal-de-mer”), posing on board the SS “Moltke,” “being towed to the landing place,” etc.
Eighty snapshot photos at rear illustrate Goldstone’s travel in the United States - across Florida and the Great Lakes area. The “Florida” photos show St. Augustine (Castillo de San Marcos, the “old slave market”), Palatka (wharf with the office of “Hart’s Oklawaha River steamers,” a bull-driven cart in front of a “Hub Shoes” store), Oklawaha River, St. John’s River, Silver Springs, Hart’s “Hiawatha” and “Okeehumkee” river steamers, an “old boat on Miami River,” a horse-driven streetcar in Palm Beach, Henry B. Plant Memorial Landmark in Tampa, a street in Bradenton, “pier at St. Petersburg,” caught alligators and manta rays, etc. The “Great Lakes’” photos show John Jacob Astor House (Mackinac Island, Mich.), “Tashmoo” sidewheeler, Stag Island wharf, “Northland” steamer of the “Northern Steamship Co.,” a railway bridge, a building under construction, etc.
The photographs are accompanied by numerous ephemera – a printed map of the route, SS “Moltke’s” menu, a hand-coloured lithograph showing the flag of the Hamburg-American Line (with the abbreviation HAPAG which stands for “Hamburg-Amerikanische Packetfahrt-Aktien-Gesellschaft”), and newspaper and magazine clippings with the “Caribbean” views and scenes. The newspaper clippings comprise the text of three articles describing the cruise (Holmes, William B. A Hamburg-American Cruise to the West Indies// Montclair Times, New Jersey. 21, 28 February and 07 March 1903, all – on front pages).
Overall a historically significant visual source on the history of American tourism to the Caribbean in the early 20th century.
A son of German immigrants, Sigismund K. Goldstone, was born in New York and worked in the clothing industry, at first as a salesman for the New York company of his brothers, Julius & Frederick Goldstone, and later for the office of “Boessneck, Broesel & Co.” in Chicago. In 1906 he married Effie D. Goodman (1872-1958) and had two kids. In the 1930s Goldstone moved to Los Angeles where he was self-employed as a “manufacturer” of “women’s apparel,” and lived there till his death.
Price: $3,500.00 USD