Ghostly Photos of Steam Locomotives at Night

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Photographer O. Winston Link documented the end of an era when he shot a series of steam locomotives at night, right before railroad companies transitioned to diesel fuel in the late 1950s. Most of Link’s images recorded the Norfolk and Western Railway, a company that also manufactured their trains in-house. This was fascinating to the artist who loved the rail vehicles and preferred shooting them at night — a technique he pioneered that required an intricate setup to produce his stunning silver gelatin prints. By 1960, Norfolk and Western swapped steam for diesel, and Link’s passion project — in which he gathered over 2400 negatives of steam locomotives — was over. His ghostly night trains chug and roar back to life in his photographs, which you can see more of past the break.

Image credit: O. Winston Link [Spotted via @matthiasrascher]

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link

Image credit: O. Winston Link (pictured on the left)