Apply Now for Conference Scholarships

Scholarships are available for two young and/or emerging visual artists to attend the Center’s next Conversations conference, April 28–30, 2017, at Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Illinois. At least two applicants who demonstrate financial need and creative work may be awarded docent scholarships, which provide attendance, lodging, and partial travel expenses in exchange for limited volunteer service at the conference. The deadline for applications is Monday, February 20, by 8:00 a.m. CST. Recipients will be notified by February 24. Download the application to get started.

Behind Broad Street, Waverly, NY, 2013Behind Broad Street, Waverly, New York, 2013, by John Sanderson, recipient of a 2013 docent scholarship.

Worldwide Winners of the 2016 Awards Program

Simon Jowett of the United Kingdom (above) and Olaf Haensch of Germany and have won first prize in the 2016 John E. Gruber Creative Photography Awards Program, in the “mobile device” and “most evocative” categories, respectively. Haensch won previously in 2008 and took second in 2009; Jowett is a first-time entrant. Second prizes went to Slovenia’s Miško Kranjec—another past winner—for “evocative,” and first-time entrant Ryder Bechtold of Denver, Colorado, for “mobile.” Charles McCreary of Minnesota and Jeremy J. Schrader of Illinois received the third prize awards, rounding out the top winners. Additionally, the judges selected a total of thirty-one images in their two “Also Liked” categories. We will soon add additional submissions for public viewing in a first-time web gallery.

Each of the three judges remarked that this year’s field was especially competitive, and that picking the winners was extremely difficult. The 331 entries came from 141 photographers living in more than thirty different states and ten countries—the second-most submissions all-time in a CRPA contest. After reviewing the images on their own, the judges spent more than four hours discussing and debating their final decisions. All of us at the Center extend our congratulations to the winners, thank the judges for their time and efforts, and thank everyone who submitted. Your work inspires us, and we can hardly wait to see what you will do next.

See all of the winners and read the judges’ commentary on the 2016 Awards page.

First Place: Simon Jowett

First Place: Olaf Haensch

Buy Our Publications

The Center’s journal, Railroad Heritage®, and other publications fill a unique niche: using photographs and art to inform the public and rail enthusiasts alike about the influence of railroads on economic growth and development, popular culture, and the lives of the hundreds of thousands of men and women who built and maintain North America’s railroads. Excellent images and highly researched and thoughtful writing characterize our publications. We launched Railroad Heritage in 2000 and now publish four issues annually, which our members receive for free as a benefit of membership. You can purchase previous issues here or by printing and mailing the order form (pdf).

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Railroad Heritage, Winter 2017: J.B. Jackson, Fogg on the P&LE, Gotthard Posters

You may not have heard of J.B. Jackson, but his impact on railroad photography has been profound. In the Winter 2017 issue of Railroad Heritage®, Alexander Benjamin Craghead takes an in-depth look at Jackson, his path-breaking work in geography and landscape studies, and his influence on how we view railroads. That includes the work of Jeff Brouws, noted author, photographer, and Center board member, whose view of the ex-Wabash coaling tower in Decatur, Illinois, appears on the cover. Howard Fogg’s paintings of the Pittsburg & Lake Erie Railroad anchor the issue’s other feature article, strikingly set against contemporary photographs of the same scenes by author Jerry W. Jordak. You can read all about our first regional conference, Conversations Northeast, in a review by Steve Barry, editor of Railfan & Railroad magazine. Jordan Radke, archives manager, returns for his regular Out of the Archives column, this time delving into copyright and other matters of intellectual property. With Switzerland’s new Gotthard Base Tunnel coming into regular operation in December 2016, Arjan den Boer’s regular column on European rail travel posters looks back at some of the advertising of the original Gotthard Railway. John Gruber offers a tribute to Hal Lewis, who died in 2016 and whose collection resides in the Center’s archive. You can also read a book review, letters from our readers, and an introduction of Peter Mosse, our newest board member.

$7.95, 48 pages, color and b/w

Railroad Heritage 46, Winter 2017

Conversations Northeast

The Center’s first regionally-themed conference about railroad photography and art, Conversations Northeast, was a great success. Attendance was 115 for the one-day event, held on October 29, 2016, at the University of Connecticut at Storrs. Attendees came from fifteen different states. The conference, co-hosted by Archives & Special Collections of the UConn Library, featured seven presentations and three exhibitions at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center. In the view at right, presenter Victor Hand shared his diesel-era photographs from the northeastern U.S. and around the world in “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Diesel.” Photograph by Steve Barry, Railfan & Railroad. See more photographs on the conference page.

Victor Hand