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  • Seller image for [NOTES AND PHOTOGRAPHS OF A TRIP TO THE JACKSON LAKE COUNTRY IN NORTHWEST WYOMING FOR BIG GAME SHOOTING] [title adapted from first leaf of text] for sale by William Reese Company - Americana

    [15]pp. plus forty-two photographs on [22] leaves, each 7 x 9 1/4 inches. Oblong tall octavo. Contemporary dark green morocco, gilt, spine with raised bands, a.e.g., gilt inner dentelles, by Neumann Bros. Spine sun-faded, extremities lightly worn. Half of one of the front fly leaves torn away. Internally clean and fresh, with clear, sharp images. Very good. In a cloth slipcase and half morocco and cloth slipcase, spine gilt. A rare and handsome photographic album documenting a lavish trip to northwestern Wyoming in 1896 to shoot big game. The photographs were taken by the outstanding early photographer of Yellowstone and Wyoming, F. Jay Haynes, and feature the natural beauty of Yellowstone and the region, as well as railroad magnate W.S. Webb's hunting party and its endeavors. Among the excursion party were some two dozen enlisted men of the 9th Cavalry, a troop of African- American "Buffalo Soldiers." It is likely that this album was created as a souvenir for the members of the excursion only, and was thus created in a very limited number (perhaps five or six copies). The hunting expedition lasted from September 12 to October 11, 1896, and was organized and funded by William Seward Webb (1851-1926), who is featured in many of the photographs. Webb was a financier and railroad tycoon who married into the Vanderbilt family and was prominent in New York society. He was also the Inspector General of the Vermont state militia and a founder of the Sons of the American Revolution. J.H. Purdy (with Webb, identified in the expedition roster as a "tenderfoot") is the author of the text portion describing the expedition, his initials appearing at the end of the journal portion as "J.H. Purdy, Historian." Significantly, the trip was further documented by F. Jay Haynes, the official photographer of Yellowstone and the Northern Pacific Railroad. F. Jay Haynes (1853-1921) would become one of the most famous and prolific of western photographers, setting up an office at Yellowstone and building a studio in a converted Pullman car, called the "Haynes Palace Studio Car," that allowed him to travel throughout the Northwest taking portraits and landscape photographs. As early as the fall of 1876 he was photographing the trains and stations of the Northern Pacific, and soon thereafter the line had hired him to take pictures. By 1881 he was the railroad's official photographer. His publisher's label appears on the verso of the penultimate photograph, and the final photograph is a self-portrait of him at repose in his tent. Haynes' biographer, Freeman Tilden, explains the origins of this album, and the allure that hunting in the untamed West had for visitors from Europe, Britain, and the East Coast: "From the Eastern seaboard of the United States came many a trainload of sportsmen, the wealthier ones traveling in especially constructed hunting railroad cars.Haynes the photographer, himself a hunter and fisherman and able to subsist off the land as well as any Sioux, was in demand whenever a large or important group came into this hunter's paradise. It was no wonder that when W. Seward Webb, railroad magnate in his own right and son-in-law of William H. Vanderbilt of the New York Central, decided to stage the most spectacular sporting expedition that ever crossed the nation, he asked Haynes to join the party with his cameras and make a pictorial record for the future to admire." This 1896 expedition was the first of two such hunting excursions that Webb hired Haynes to document. Issued without a titlepage, the text is comprised of eight leaves, including a Preface dated 1896. The bulk of the text is given in journal format, with dated entries detailing the day's events. Many of the approximately fifty members of the expedition are identified, including W.S. Webb, J.H. Purdy, and two other "tenderfeet"; Haynes; Brig. Gen. John J. Coppinger (commander of the Department of the Platte); three Army lieutenants; a scout, interpreter, and "mighty hunter" named Baptiste (nicknamed "Bat" and featured in a few photographs); guides from Yellowstone and the Adirondacks; packmasters; and cooks. Also included in the group was Short Bull, an Oglala Sioux guide. He is pictured in native dress in a group portrait of the entire party at Snake River, which also includes more than a dozen African American enlisted men of the 9th Cavalry, who joined the excursion but who are not individually identified in the roster. Short Bull is also shown on horseback in a photograph where he follows behind former 9th Cavalry Lieut. R.T. Emmet. The itinerary for the trip is given on the final text leaf, followed by the photographs. Each image is captioned by hand in ink. The photographs depict the hunters with successful kills, life around camp, and the striking scenery of the region. One of the last images shows members of the party on the caboose of Webb's ten-car train, "Ellsmere," which made the trip from Vermont to Yellowstone in the fastest time in rail history in the period, aided by the fact that railroad switches were "spiked" and other trains sidetracked to allow Webb's train to pass unimpeded (Tilden, p.228). The images are captioned in manuscript as follows: 1) "Train at Cinnabar, Mont." 2) "Gardiner Canyon, Entrance to Park" 3) "Minerva Terrace, Hotel Valley" 4) "Golden Gate, East Entrance" 5) "Electric Peak" 6) "Obsidian Cliff" 7) "Great Falls of the Yellowstone" 8) "Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone" 9) "Hayden Valley" 10) "Fishing Cone, Yellowstone Lake" 11) "Camp Lewis Lake" 12) "Snake River Camp" 13) "Group of Party, Snake River" 14) "Outfit Leaving Snake River Camp" 15) "Outfit Leaving Snake River Camp" [a different view] 16) "Jackson Lake & Tetons from Hamilton Ranch" 17) "Jackson Lake & Tetons" 18) "Jackson Lake & Tetons" [a different view] 19) "Camp Foot Jackson Lake" 20) "Pack Mules in Camp" 21) "Dr. Webb" 22) "Dr. Webb - Assistant & 'Bat'" 23) "Purdy - Louis Webb & Assistant" 24) "Lt. Ladd - Byrd & Guide" 25) "Emmet & Shor.