This album of 15 Taber photographs shows railroad cuts through the deep snow of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Machinery for
cutting through the drifts and railroad workers are also shown in several photographs. The photographs were taken in Placer
County at Emigrant Gap, Cascade, and Blue Canon. Each photo bears a printed caption and photographer's number. The title of
the collection is the one embossed on the cover of the album. Also embossed on the cover is the name "W.H. Kendal," whose
bookplate is pasted to the inside front cover of the album.
Isaiah West Taber was born in New Bedford, Massachusetts August 17, 1830. Taber went to sea at the age of fifteen and spent
several years working on whaling ships in the North Pacific. He came to California in 1850, where he spent four years working
first as a miner, then a farmer. Taber returned to New Bedford in 1854 where he studied dentistry and began a dental practice.
An interest in amateur photography eventually became his life-work. He settled in Syracuse, New York, where he opened his
first studio. In 1864 he returned to California at the inducement of the photographers Bradley and Rulofson, whom he worked
for until 1871. Taber established the "Taber Gallery" at No. 12 Montgomery Street in 1871. His highly successful business
was well-known for portraiture and a vast stock of California and Western views -many of which were the unacknowledged works
of other photographers. Taber's success and stature in California and abroad are evident in his being awarded the photographic
concession of the Midwinter Fair of 1893-94 in San Francisco, his being sent to London in 1897 to photograph the pageant of
the Queen Victoria Jubilee, and his commission to photograph King Edward VII. Taber's career ended in 1906 when his entire
collection of glass plates, view negatives and portraits on glass were destroyed in the San Francisco earthquake and fire.
He died February 22, 1912.
One album containing 15 mounted photographic prints: black and white; 22 x 28 cm.
15 digital objects
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Restricted original. Use of original album only by permission of the appropriate curator. Inquiries concerning these materials
should be directed, in writing, to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library.