Rising, 1887

This cyanotype takes the viewer deep into the City of Tacoma’s origins. Before the NP Railroad completed the entire transcontinental route to Commencement Bay, Tacoma was a frontier town with high hope. Once people in Chicago could buy a ticket to Tacoma on the Pacific coast it became a city. Here’s a moody image of the Northern Pacific Railway headquarters building with the brick walls up and the builders silhouetted like pickets around its parapet. It was the first piece of the city to come in 1887. The wooden frontier town in the distance would soon disappear. Like winter solstice, this indigo observation captures the changing of season for Tacoma from mud and tree stumps and wood fire smoke to brick and mortar and steam. Note the posture of a city rising.

 

cyanotype NP bld

Note August 2017:

It was the construction of this new headquarters for the Northern Pacific Railway that rendered the NP Land Office at 9th and C (Broadway) redundant. The story of its short life, the move and the monumental replacement is told in this post  THE FIRST

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