Photograph Album: In and Around Spokane, Washington, 1889

Overview of the Collection

Photograph Album: In and Around Spokane, Washington
1889 (inclusive)
.25 linear feet of shelf space., (1 box)  :  Oblong quarto album (14 x 18 cm.) containing ten black-and-white photographs mounted on five stiff card leaves. Most photographs ca. 11 x 13 cm. Period pencil captions inscribed in lower margins of photographs accompany each image. Album leaves are period papered boards. Album spine is blue fabric embossed with pattern in silver. "Boards are rubbed, scraped and bumped along with light soiling and some old mildew stains to pages" (from seller's description).
Collection Number
PC 165 (collection)
This album contains photographs of the Spokane area from the 1880s.
Washington State University Libraries' Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections (MASC)
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
Terrell Library Suite 12
Pullman, WA
Telephone: 509-335-6691
Access Restrictions

This collection is open and available for research use.


Content DescriptionReturn to Top

"Photos include Monroe Street Bridge, Post Street Bridge, town scene looking north from Post Street, County Court House, Dam at City Water Works, Twickenham Ferry, 2 pictures of Coeur d'Alene in Idaho, 2 of the balloon ascension and parachute jump at Loon Lake. One of the photographs shows a parachute descent from a hot-air balloon at Loon Lake about 35 miles north of Spokane. The jumper is undoubtedly "Captain" Thomas S. Baldwin as he was the only daredevil making parachute attempts at this time. Baldwin was a 19th century circus aerialist who, after becoming fascinated with hot air balloons, modified his act in 1875 so that he could perform from a bar hanging below an airbag. He quickly became a star attraction at fairs all over the country, Canada, and the Far East, performing almost 3,000 acrobatic ascents. Noticing that the novelty of his act had begun to fade, Baldwin and his brother designed a light, flexible, and compact parachute. "In front of an audience at San Francisco's Golden Gate Park on January 30th, 1885, Baldwin offered the park manager a deal - he would jump from a hot-air balloon for $1.00 per foot of height, with 2,000 feet being the maximum. The crowd, unknowingly, witnessed the first public descent in a parachute by an American, and Baldwin was soon dubbed 'The Father of the Modern Parachute.' Although Baldwin invented the first parachute harness, his jumps were nothing like those of today. Baldwin would ascend in a sitting position on a small seat beneath his balloon. When he reached the desired altitude, Baldwin would pull a rip panel in his balloon to release hot air, causing the balloon to begin a rapid descent. With the momentum needed to fill the parachute with air, Baldwin would then jump from the seat." (National Aviation Hall of Fame)" (seller's description).

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

[Item description] Photograph Album: In and Around Spokane, Washington, ca. 1889

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries, Pullman, WA.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Acquisition Information

Purchased by WSU MASC in 2017.

Processing Note

This collection was processed by Greg Matthews.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top