Watercolor Drawing of the H.E. Chamberlain Engine, Rutland Railroad, Presumed by William Linsley, c. 1870

Regular price $140.00

A little research led me to discover a collection of 46 watercolor illustrations of locomotives by William Linsley (Rutland, VT, 1851-1910) that are held in the collection of the Vermont Historical Society; I have included an image of one of those, of this same H.E. Chamberlain engine, and have to think this one was done by him as well--perhaps in advance of a more polished final version. At the time of his death in 1910, Linsley was described as “one of the best known of the old time railroad men,” and as "an enthusiastic collector of railroad relics, pictures, curios, etc., of which he succeeded in gathering a most interesting museum.” (More on his life long involvement with the railroads below.) Based on other examples, I believe this pencil and watercolor drawing was done in the late 1860s,, and surely through first hand observation as he would have known the Rutland Railroad intimately. To me it feels wonderfully proud and optimistic and wide-eyed, and made all the better by the pencil drawn clouds of trailing smoke.

William Linsley was the son of Charles (1795-1863) and Emmeline (1818- 1895) Linsley--Charles a prominent attorney who served as director and solicitor of the Rutland and Burlington Railroad Company. William Linsley learned to be a machinist and then worked as a fireman on the Erie Railroad, later returning to Vermont to work for 14 years as a fireman and engineer on the passenger train of the Burlington & Lamoille Railroad, and after that as a motorman on the depot line of the Burlington Traction Company trolley line until his death. 

13 7/8” x 11 3/16”, very nicely framed, as found; 11 1/8” x 8 1/4” sight.  All in very good condition.