Photos of Steam Locomotives on Display at Concord Through Oct. 31
Athens, W.Va. – Today we have the power of the Internet to stay connected and make purchases, but yesterday, powerful trains pulled by steam engines delivered goods and kept people and communities in touch with each other. Photographer O. Winston Link captured the strength, power and beauty of the steam engine in photographs taken in West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina, and 30 of these dramatic photographs will be on display at Concord University now through October 31.
This collection of original photographs provides a view of the final years of steam railroading on the Norfolk & Western lines. The N&W was the last major railroad to operate exclusively on steam power and Winston Link’s photography project to capture these locomotives and communities is regarded as one of the best documentary records of the now-vanished, commercial steam engine. The pictures were taken from 1955 to 1960.
The power of steam locomotives is apparent throughout this body of work but more than the machines serving the lines, Link sought to emphasize the life along the line—the people and communities brought together and served by the N&W Railway. Most known for his night images of the railroad, Link in fact photographed at all hours of the day, capturing the trains in their natural environment, as people existed alongside the lines and alongside the trains.
Link’s technical skill at lighting the environment and creating the picture that he imagined makes this collection of photographs a study in railroading, history, art and photography.
The photographs are on loan from the O. Winston Link Museum in Roanoke, Virginia, which also maintains a web site with additional information about the artist (www.linkmuseum.org).
The public is invited to attend a reception on Saturday, September 17 at 2 p.m. in the J. Arthur Butcher Gallery. Kim Parker, director of the O. Winston Link Museum will present a lecture at 2:30 p.m. The exhibition is sponsored by Vic Foti.
Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, noon to 4 p.m., or by appointment. For more information, contact Gallery Director James Biggs at 1-304-384-5351.
PHOTO #1: N&W eastbound train no. 10 arriving at Max Meadows, Va., in 1957
PHOTO #2: Gooseneck Dam on the Maury River with N&W train no. 2 near Buffalo Forge, Va., 1956
PHOTO #3: Interior of the station at Waynesboro, Va., in 1955
CONCORD UNIVERSITY NOTES: Persons with disabilities should contact Nancy Ellison, 1-304-384-6086 or 1-800-344-6679, extension 6086 if special assistance or help is required for access to an event scheduled by the University on campus.