Alexander Gardner Photographs of British Boundary Commission Photographs, circa 1865-1867

Overview of the Collection

Gardner, Alexander, 1821-1882.
Alexander Gardner Photographs of British Boundary Commission Photographs
circa 1865-1867 (inclusive)
1.5 Linear feet of shelf space, (1 box), (5 items)
Collection Number
PC 96 (collection)
Five photographic prints of images originally created by the British Boundary Commission in 1860-1861, depicting Fort Colville, Fort Vancouver, and the Kootenay Mission.
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.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

Alexander Gardner was one of the preeminent U.S. photographers during and after the Civil War. He owned a studio in Washington D.C. The British Boundary Commission was one of the groups conducting the northwest boundary survey, following the settlement of the U.S./Britain northwest border in 1946 as the 49th parallel.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Five 8.5"x7" mounted second-generation photographic prints of historic northwest settlements. All are labeled but undated. Two are of Fort Colville, two of Fort Vancouver, and one of the Kootenay Mission. All bear common branding: "A. Gardner, Photographer. 511 Seventh Street, Washington. Published by Philp & Solomons, Washington." However, these second-generation images, photographs taken of photographs. The original images were British Boundary Commission photographs (ca. 1860-1861); those images were later photographed by Gardner on behalf of the British and American Joint Commission for the Final Settlement of the Claims of the Hudson's Bay and Puget Sound Agricultural Companies, which was investigating claims submitted in 1865 by those companies for losses suffered in relinquishing their rights below the U.S. - British border.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

[Item description] Alexander Gardner Photographs of British Boundary Commission Photographs, 1821-1882 (PC 96)

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

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


The five images are in their original order, as identified by lettering. Titling below is taken verbatim from the mounts. H.B. Co. abbreviates "Hudson's Bay Company's," while B.B. Commission is "British Boundary Commission."

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description
A Roman Catholic Mission on left bank of Kootenay river. United States Photographs no. 1.
B H.B. Co. Fort Colville. United States Photographs no. 2.
C H.B. Co. Fort Vancouver. United States Photographs no. 3.
D Camp of B.B. Commission, Fort Vancouver. United States Photographs no. 3.5.
E View from Fort Colville looking across the Columbia. United States Photographs no. 10.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Rural missions -- British Columbia.

Corporate Names

  • British Boundary Commission.

Geographical Names

  • Fort Colville (Wash. : Army garrison) -- Photographs
  • Vancouver Barracks (Wash.) -- Photographs