Historically Interesting Early Photos of the CPR Extensions in Saskatchewan

[Album with Fifty-five Original Gelatin Silver Photos of Construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway’s Extension in Saskatchewan, Showing Wolseley, Grenfell, Construction Camp and Party Members, Railway Tracks, Bridges under Construction, etc.].

Ca. 1906-1907. Oblong Octavo album (ca. 16x20 cm). 24 card stock leaves. With 55 gelatin silver photographs, including 48 mounted, ca. 7,5x10 cm (3x4 in), and seven loosely inserted, including one printed as a real photo postcard ca. 8,5x13,5 cm (3 ¼ x 5 ¼ in) and six photos from ca. 8x10,5 cm (3 ¼ x 4 ¼ in) to ca. 5,5x8 cm (2 ¼ x 3 in). Over thirty photos with period pencil captions on verso or recto. Period maroon half patterned sheep album with cloth boards; moire endpapers, all edges gilt. Period ink presentation inscription “A.M.M.C. from W.M.W., June 1906” on the front free endpaper. a few images mildly faded, binding mildly rubbed on extremities and loosened on hinges, cloth a covers with some fading, but overall a very good album with interesting photos.

Historically interesting collection of original photographs taken by a builder of a CPR extension in Saskatchewan, apparently near Wolseley and Grenfell, in 1906-1907. The compiler of the album, whose initials were “W.M.W.,” is present on several group portraits of the construction team, with the names of most men carefully captioned. The photos include several views of the construction camp in summer and winter, railway tracks and bridges under construction, “rock cut in snow,” team members with surveying equipment, in the site office, posing at camp, next to a “washingman’s cart,” “sawing trees for stakes,” “sawing firewood at camp,” etc. Other photos show railway stations and streets in Wolseley and other towns, “Dominion Elevator Co’s” elevator No. 70, a street in Grenfell with one of the party members (“Loutet”) “talking to old Indian,” etc. An interesting photo portrays the party members with Catholic nuns who visited the camp; the sign on the tent behind them reads “CPR, Engineer’s Office, Private.” There is also a view of Quebec City with the CPR’s Chateau de Frontenac Hotel, photos of a paddle steamer and a passenger car of the Gatineau Railway. Overall an interesting original source on the history of CPR extensions in Saskatchewan in the early 20th century.
Captions to the mounted photos: “Our shack on left;” “No. 2 Trestle;” “Camp 7 (contractor’s);” “Bridge abutments, 2nd x-ing Sawga R. C.P.R. <…?> Ext.;” “Sawga Lake (behind camp);” “Boese & Hills in canoe;” “Bridge abutments, 1st crossing Sawga R. C.P.R. <…?> Ext.”; “Bert & I in cut;” “Washingman’s cart” (caption on recto); “Group taken the day we left before Xmas. Loudon not in this” (one of the men is captioned “Pat” on recto); “Loutet talking to old Indian in Grenfell”; “sawing trees for stakes (bad picture!)”; “trestle mile 7 ¾ (the one we had the trouble with)”; “Logs on lake near camp”; “wagon starting for Wolseley with McGregor & Dickie; Puzzle, find W.M.W.”; “trestle mile 6 ½ ”; “rock cut in snow”; “Indian, Grenfell”; “sawing firewood at camp”; “isn’t Bert weird looking?”; “Pat at trestle mile 6 ½ ”; “Loudon & McDonald (contractor)”; “Camp in snow; I am in foreground”; “The smiling man under the signboard is Mr. Kemper. This was taken the day the “Sisters” were here. The “boys” look a ragged lot. Kennedy is in centre playing with the dog. He’s gone back to college”; “Loutet”; “Gatineau R. at Wakefield.”
Captions to the loose photos: “Cars left on Chelsea grade (Maniwaki Br.) while engine took rest of train to Chelsea & came back, Aug. 1907;” “The dogs “Noggie” (Black) & “Topsy””; [a group portrait of] “W.M.W., Alb. Nicholas, Chas. Cook, Bert, [on verso]: Nicholas & Chas. Cook are contractor men;” [a group portrait of] “Boese, Percival Hills, Jim McDonald, Max Guyer, W.M.W., “Noggie,” “Jack” (contractor) (cook), & Topsy,” [a group portrait of] “H. Jackson, W.M.W., A. Hills, M. Guyer, G. Boese;” [a group portrait of] “Max Guyer (Am), Pert Percival (Can), Loudon (Can), visitor, Steve Balmev (Scotch), Midgley (Scotch), “Pat,” Boese (Eng), Arthur Hills (Eng), “Cook” (Eng), Topsy, Noggie.”.

Item #427

Price: $1,750.00 USD