Views of the Chinese Eastern Railway.
CHINESE EASTERN RAILWAY COMPANY (1903].)
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CHITA TO VLADIVOSTOK VIA HARBIN
80 tipped-in silver-gelatin photographs with printed English captions. Various sizes ranging from 8.9x12.7 to 19x26.7 cm. Oblong folio. Original leather binding, re-backed using the original spine. Occasional light fading to prints, but overall in very good condition. [Harbin], n.d. [but ca. 1901-
The Chinese Eastern Railway, also known as the Trans-Manchurian line of the Trans-Siberian Railway, linked Chita to Vladivostok via Harbin. It was built by Russian engineers after they were granted the concession by the Chinese government in 1896. This route substantially cut the travel time between St. Petersburg and Vladivostok. Traffic on the line started in November 1901, but regular passenger traffic as part of the Trans-Siberian railway did not commence until July 1903. Japan saw the line as a threat to their interests in China and after the Russo-Japanese war of 1905 the line was taken over by the Japanese and renamed the South Manchuria Railway. The present album was produced by the Russian government when construction was nearing completion and represents an extraordinary record of the features of the line, railway stations as well as the train itself. Of particular interest are the views of the interior and exterior of the "luxe" 1st class dining hall and compartments. Many of the photographs were taken in and around Harbin where the Chinese Eastern Railway Company had their headquarters. There was a strong Russian presence in Harbin and the Company was contributing to the entertainment infrastructure of the town with the "Harbin Railway Club" which incorporated a theatre and various "Health-stations" and sanatoriums. Also included is a gruesome photo of four decapitated heads of so-called "Hunghuze" bandits.
Stock Code: 233757