|Albumen print, Stereo card (imperial-size), ca. 1878|
Tan mount, with the title and negative number (308) printed on mount recto; Kilburn's printed Littleton, N.H. credit and an ex-collection stamp on mount verso.
The Portland & Ogdensburg Rail Road trestle shown in this image crossed the Frankenstein Gulf at a height of 80 feet, an engineering marvel that spanned 520 feet from cliff to cliff. The trestle was initially supposed to be made of wood, but when the shipment of lumber was significantly delayed the engineers decided to erect an iron structure. When the narrow trestle was completed in the Summer of 1875, some observers described it as "spindly." Three of the train's crew can be seen in this view, two at the front of the locomotive (one taking a commanding stance indeed) and the third behind the tender.
The trestle was named after the Frankenstein Cliff that towers above it. The name was bestowed in the 1850s by none other than Dr. Samuel Bemis, one of America's very first photographers, in honor of the prominent landscape painter Godfrey Frankenstein.