Full Color Fantasy

This lovely color lithograph bird’s eye view of Tacoma and the Mountain is attributed to Edwin S Glover and was filed in the Library of Congress in 1878.1878.detail The original is held in the University of California Berkeley Bancroft Library and the very costly color litho publication was produced by A.L. Bancroft & Company.

The pastoral, Currier & Ives style rendering of New Tacoma is mostly a fabrication from the impossible aerial perspective to the grassy almost stump free landscape. But it was the sense of reality and open land that made bird’s eye views so useful to the Northern Pacific Railroad and land agents eager to lure investors to the far west. Not everything in the picture was a lie and for those that made it to Tacoma there were marvels and moments that no picture could capture.

This and other treasures like it are available for viewing at the Digital Public Library of America.   https://dp.la/

1879 Bird's eye in color

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