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Trinity Digital Collections

p16264coll4

About this collection

Art Work of San Antonio was published by the W. H. Parish Publishing Company of Chicago, Illinois, in 1894. It was a part of a series of guides written about various American cities and directed at tourists and settlers, each containing a descriptive essay and photographs of the city and its landmarks. Like other titles in the series, Art Work of San Antonio was split into multiple parts when sold. The twelves volumes included 87 photographs and 18 pages of narrative description. 

 

The photographs in Art Work of San Antonio capture a variety of San Antonio scenes. Many photographs are of prominent businesses, and there are also photographs of churches, parks, hospitals, orphanages, and government buildings. The collection includes photographs of the homes of prominent San Antonians, many of which are still standing today. Particularly striking are the photographs of the San Antonio River, which capture a rural view of the landscape that no longer exists. Perhaps most surprising is that the entire set only contains one photograph of the Alamo, a site that today dominates the area's tourism industry. 

 

The narrative essay depicts San Antonio as a diverse, modern city rooted in its history, and with ample opportunities for all who might settle there: "The poverty of language to rightly and fittingly describe this quaint unique city, which so  strangely blends the ancient and the modern, is apparent when anyone attempts to do this subject justice....San Antonio bids you come and share the benefits vouchsafed by the God who regulates the seasons, and doeth all things well."

 

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