A Photographic Portrait of America's Last Great Steam Railroad. Foreword by Scott Lothes. Afterword by Conway Link
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O. Winston Link is America's most celebrated railroad photographer. Link began photographing the Norfolk and Western, the last major steam railroad in the United States, in the mid 1950s, when the N&W was converting its operations from steam to diesel. Link's N&W project captured the railroad industry at a moment of transition, before the triumph of the automobile and the airplane that ended passenger service on the line and before the corresponding dramatic reduction in the workforce. And, just as importantly, Link's work reveals a small town way of life that was about to experience seismic shifts and in many cases vanish completely. The images in O. Winston Link: Life Along the Line focus on the people and communities surrounding the railroad, in particular recording life in the Appalachian portion of the Norfolk & Western's service area. The book is published in cooperation with the O. Winston Link Museum in Roanoke, Virginia, which holds the complete archive of Link's N&W project. It replaces two previous Abrams books on Link, Steam, Steel & Stars and The Last Steam Railroad in America. O. Winston Link: Life Along the Line offers a broad view of the entire range of Link's portfolio of the last years of the Norfolk and Western in steam, including excellent examples of both the keystone work and of the photographs, such as modernist images, that have not been previously published.