Denver. ca. 1885. 43 x 53 cm. Mounted on card 53.5 x 63.5 cm. Archivally matted. Light foxing to right side of image, primarily in the sky. Some minor toning and fading. Good. Item #6
A handsome view of the Church of Guadalupe in Mexico City, photographed by William Henry Jackson (1843-1942). Jackson, a native of New York, opened his first photography studio in Omaha, Nebraska in 1867. He created photographs for the Union Pacific Railroad, worked with the U.S. Geological Survey in Yellowstone, and spent substantial time photographing Colorado and the Rocky Mountains, establishing a studio in Denver in 1879. This image derives from a series he created in the mid-1880s, when he was hired by the Mexican Central Railway to document its inaugural journey and the completion of the line. The front facade of the cathedral dominates the left two-thirds of the image, looming large and majestic. The lower portion of the church sweeps off into the left third of the photo, where two figures can be seen lounging in adjacent doorways and a horse is tied to a tree in the foreground. Searches turn up several copies of the view of the church's altar (No. 1134), but this image is far less common, and does not appear in auction records. We locate one copy of this print, at Yale, and have not found one in other major institutional collections of Jackson photography. A later plate negative at the Library of Congress, made by the Detroit Photographic Company in the late 1890s, is damaged, perhaps a contributing factor to the scarcity of this image. An impressive and attractive photograph, despite a bit of foxing.