Max Miller collection, and: New Material Fallen Flags Railroad Photos

Jim Mischke

Fallen Flags Site:

Thank you for the heads up, Charlie.   These Brunswick views are a welcome gllimpse of B&O at the start of Chessie,  From the daisy-picker count, 8-26-73 must have been a railroad festival.   Mr. Geller must of been a saint of patience to wait for the crowd and other photogrtaphers to part for each photo.    Like a B&OHS convention.

Also take a look at Elwood's 22-23 October 2022, many B&O steam views, do it soon, it is about to fall off the FIFO-based new additions list.

Max Miller Collection:

Many steam views in the above link are from Max Miller.    I had the honor of looking at his collection for diesel images at his house, he was gracious and had 100 printed up for me.   A dealer, this was a paid proposition.  A fun afternoon with a friendly B&O man.

Historically speaking, there were some deep downsides to these photos.   

-  Max Miller was a B&O track supervisor at Cottage Grove, Ind. with a family, which put him on a short leash even with a company pass.   As a photo collector, he traded widely to fill out his collection with locomotives he would not see on the Indianapolis Division and other nearby divisions.  He traded with Paul Dunn, Ralph Dunn, RS Short, Charles A. Brown and many others.

-  He stamped his prints with his name and address.  People take that for crediting as his photo.   NO.   Although he did take photos, the ratio is others-to-his was 30:1 or more.   Max Miller collection is a proper credit nearly all of the time.

-  Another clue is that he did not take good photographs himself.  I do not know how his trading partners put up with it.

-  He kept his collection organized in cigar boxes grouped with paper clips, no sleeves.   Every manipulation gouged the emulsion or dented the film.   He would show me a group by dealing them out to me like a card dealer.   With no labeled sleeves, he would recall caption information from memory, both upon my asking in person and later when the printed group arrived.

-   Miscaptioning is the norm with his collection, to the point where proper caption is likely elsewhere at another time.     Example:  one shot of P7c/e 5312 is labeled "Cincinnati OH - 06/29/1959 - (Max Miller photo)".   Never mind the GG1 in the background (Ivy City) and that in 1959, 5312 as 112 was going from stored surge fleet to razor blades, definitely not under steam.

Inline image

-   Even his traded negative prints left something to be desired.   Besides paper clip damage there was a systematic soft focus to everything.   Probably an enlarger/operator error, not the least of which might be eyeballing enlarger focus with eyes no longer 35 years old.  

Bottom line:  Use this colection with upmost caution.

There are negative collectors among us, I would like to hear their perspective.

On Wednesday, December 21, 2022, 05:04:32 AM MST, borr7500 <borr7500@...> via <borr7500@...> wrote:

Check out the new material for November 8 and 16 on the Fallen Flags website, not just locos and cars there are some others of interest.