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Fargo Engineering Company records, 1897-1951 (majority within 1910-1930)

11 linear feet

Company established by William G. Fargo of Jackson, Michigan, a pioneer in hydroelectric engineering. The company specialized in providing civil engineering design, construction, and consultation services for various power plant projects and dams mainly in Michigan but also in Connecticut, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, and Wisconsin. The record group consists of two series: Job Files and Office Files. The Job Files series consists of the following subseries: Alphabetical Cross Index of Jobs, Visual Materials, Design Reports and Site Specific Materials, and Engineering Field Notes. The Office Files series includes business correspondence of William G. Fargo for the period of 1897 to 1905 and relating in part to the construction of an interurban/electric trolley system for Jackson, Michigan. Office Files also includes a folder of office specifications, contracts and test procedures and a folder of published promotional sales material.

The records of the Fargo Engineering Company consists design reports, field notes, and photographs of various dam an power plant construction projects as well as office files, primarily correspondence. The records consist of eleven linear feet of materials dating from 1897 to 1951 with the bulk of the documents dating from 1910 to 1930. The record group has been divided into two series: Job Files and Office Files.


Michigan Historical Collections topical photograph collection, circa 1860-1959

0.5 linear feet (in 2 boxes) — 1 oversize box

The Michigan Historical Collections Topical Photograph Collection offer a broad and varied glimpse into nearly one hundred years of Michigan history, from the 1860s into the 1950s. The provenance of most of the photographs has been lost and therefore these images have been grouped together by subject into an artificial accumulation. Subjects depicted range from industry and transportation to clothing styles and social customs.

The photographs in this collection were received from various sources. Subjects include carriages, automobiles, Great Lakes shipping, railroads, and mass transit, especially street railroads. There are also images documenting activities within the mining, forestry, and lumber industries, mostly in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Also included are photographs of various ethnic groups and their societies, notably of Native Americans (1870s-1930s) of the Manistee and Ludington, Michigan, areas. Some of the images are street views and private residences in various Michigan towns and cities. Of interest are photographs of Michigan units taking part in the Spanish-American War and the "Polar Bear Expedition" of World War I. There is also a series of bookplates, [acquired from?] William H. Bicknell, many of which relate to the University of Michigan.


Otto C. Thompson family photograph album, 1898-1916 (majority within 1898-1913)

1 volume

The Otto C. Thompson family photograph album contains group and individual portraits of family members, pictures of farms and scenery in rural Indiana, and views of downtown New Albany, Indiana, taken during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Otto C. Thompson family photograph album (16.5cm x 30cm) contains 130 photographic prints taken from September 14, 1898, to 1916. The album covers are missing. Pictures are pasted one or more to a page, and most are captioned. The majority of images were created from 1898-1913.

The photographs depict middle-class life in the Midwest with portraits and views of urban and rural scenery, family and business activities. Included are views of downtown New Albany, Indiana in the early 20th century, and views of two of the city's Presbyterian churches. Other locales include Lafayette, Indiana; Borden, Indiana; and Mitchell, Indiana. Of particular note are a group of three images showing the exterior, interior, and signage of Otto C. Thompson's gramophone dealership at 107 East Main Street. A page of notable portraits of men includes a mail-carrier and a hunter with ammunition belt. Other portraits show Sherley Thompson as an infant and toddler, children bathing in a washtub, and photographs of various individuals family groups taken outdoors, sometimes doing farm work or posing by houses. A large group appears gathered around an early automobile and another posed at the time of a funeral. Other vehicles pictured include an interurban electric car in a snowy winter landscape, paddlewheel riverboats, and steam trains in motion along the countryside and emerging from a tunnel. A group is shown riding a miniature train in front of St. Louis Union Station. Some images feature farm animals such as horses, cows, pigs, sheep, and chickens, and others were taken during the flood of 1913.