Wyoming Station, Engine 23 on Main Track
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Andrew Joseph Russell
American, Wyoming, May 1868
Albumen print
8 13/16 x 12 1/16 in.

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The disheveled cast of characters standing on the station platform and alongside the steam engine in this photograph reveals the fierce, untamed spirit for which the Wild West is celebrated. With the exception of the woman at the far right, the rest of the figures form a band of scruffy men. One holds a shotgun, a necessary safeguard during the age of railroad bandits like Jesse James.

Perhaps the pipe-smoking engineer in the top hat was responsible for the customized antlers on the front of this shining engine. This ornament reflects the pioneering spirit of the Union Pacific Railroad, which began in Omaha, Nebraska, and made its way through Wyoming to join the Central Pacific Railroad at Promontory Summit, Utah.