Snap Shots of the West

The “snapshot-like” images detail life in British Columbia’s “Wild West” at the turn of the 20th Century. Unlike many of the “staged” photographs taken during the same time period, these images capture a proficient amateur photographer’s less formal perspective, examples of which include images of the former Strathcona Hotel and armouries in Nelson, BC, which appear to have been taken from the back door of Jake Ludwig’s home on Baker Street.

The Jacob “Jake” Ludwig sous-fonds consists of 202 black and white glass-plate and cellulose nitrate negatives. These photographs depict early BC mining camps and equipment; trains, steamships and sternwheelers of the Columbia Basin and the Coast; towns and cities including: Nelson, Rossland, Vernon, Kamloops and Revelstoke, parks in Vancouver and Victoria and various government buildings. Also included are some images of the Yukon, Southern Alaska, and Northern California.

The photographs in the gallery are numbered according to the file and negative number from the Stanley Triggs fonds. All images copyright Nelson and District Museum, Archives, Art Gallery and Historical Society (Touchstones Nelson).

The creation of the site has been funded in part by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, University of British Columbia, British Columbia History Digitization Program.