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American scientific expedition photograph albums (M343)

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Title:
American scientific expedition photograph albums
Creator - Compiler:
Preston, E.D., (Erasmus Darwin), 1851-1906
ID:
M343
Date [inclusive]:
1883-1889
Extent:
1.0 linear feet
Language:
English
Repository:
George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011
Abstract:
Two photograph albums, compiled by Erasmus D. Preston, documenting U.S. government sponsored expeditions (1883 and 1889) to track solar eclipses. The 1883 album contains 57 albumen photographs depicting the expedition's stops during the trip to and from the Pacific atoll Caroline Island. The 1889 expedition album contains 79 albumen photographs that document travel aboard the USS Pensacola to the west coast of Africa and to Cape Town and the Kimberly Diamond Mines in South Africa, and then back to New York via St. Helena, the Island of Ascension, Bridgetown, Barbados, and the Bermuda Islands. The photographs portray landscapes, urban views, expedition members and activites, and indigenous peoples.
Preferred Citation note:

Cite as: American Scientific Expedition Photograph Albums, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine

Erasmus Darwin Preston worked for the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey and was a member of two govenment sponsored expeditions, in 1883 and 1889, to track solar eclipses. Preston was active in astronomical, gravitational, and magnetic research; in 1898 he was the U.S. delegate to the International Geodetic Association in Stuttgart, Germany.

Two photograph albums documenting U.S. government sponsored expeditions (1883 and 1889) to track solar eclipses. The 1883 album contains 57 albumen photographs depicting the expedition's stops during the trip to and from the Pacific atoll Caroline Island. The images portray urban views, landscapes, and indigenous people in Panama, Ecuador, Peru, and Hawaii; there are also photos of the USS Hartford, the principal expedition vessel. The 1889 expedition album contains 79 albumen photographs that document travel aboard the USS Pensacola to the west coast of Africa and to Cape Town and the Kimberly Diamond Mines in South Africa, and then back to New York via St. Helena, the Island of Ascension, Bridgetown, Barbados, and the Bermuda Islands. The photographs depict many aspects of the voyage including landscapes, indigenous people, the ship and crew, and scientific equipment and instruments. There are group shots of indigenous people in Cape Ledo and on the Gold Coast of Africa and an extended series of single and double portraits, taken in Angola, of men, women, and children. Both albums include maps showing the routes of the expeditions.

1883 expedition album

Box 1 Volume 1

1889 expedition album

Box 1 Volume 2
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