The years between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s saw a flowering of railroad photography in America. Photographers vied with one another to find archetypal railroad scenes that they recorded with novelistic precision. The most demanding technical efforts, however, were devoted to capturing the railroads at night. Here, in a stylish and moving book, are the last great steam engines, lonely motormen, silent stations, and more, all evoking the spirit of night railroading-as quintessentially American as cool jazz-in its glory days.
Starlight on the Rails celebrates the work of mostly unsung artists in stirring duotone photographs. The authors of this book and their 20-odd fellows-all highly skilled masters of lighting and composition-created visual poetry that memorializes an aspect of American life that will long be fondly remembered.
JEFF BROUWS grew up in the San Francisco Bay area, simultaneously discovering trains, photography, and the writing of Jack Kerouac at the age of 13. His photographs have appeared in several books, including Highway: America's Endless Dream. He now lives with his wife in Red Hook, New York.
EDWARD DELVERS traveled the country photographing trains through the late 1960s, then studied photographic science at MIT under the tutelage of Dr. Harold Edgerton. He has since worked in fields from aviation to satellite communications. He lives in Techachapi, California.
RICHARD STEINHEIMER, whom many consider the dean of American railroad photographers, has published numerous articles in Trains magazine and several books. He lives in Sacramento, California.
90 photographs in duotone, 6 photographs in full color, 113/8 x 105/8" [via]