Railroad Heritage, Fall 2021: Awards, Videography, Harwood, Chicago

Our Fall 2021 issue brings you an autumn-themed gallery of recent highlights from our collections processing efforts, including Jim McClellan’s cover photograph from the Denver & Rio Grande Western. Inside, feature articles spotlight our 2021 John E. Gruber Creative Photography Award Winners, showcase Herb Harwood’s photography, embark on a tour of “The Railroad and the Art of Place” in Chicago with Todd Halamka, and explore railroads and the moving image.

The issue also includes a glimpse of surrealism in poster art on the London & North Eastern Railway and a conversation with Al Louer, our second-longest-serving board member, including a peak into his collection of railroad art and artifacts. In addition to fall photographs, “Out of the Archives” introduces new collections and new members of our team. You can also read up on our traveling exhibitions and events, along with a review of Frank Barry’s new book.

$7.95, 68 pages, color and b/w

Railroad Heritage 66: Fall 2021

The Railroad and the Art of Place: An Anthology, panel discussion

Wednesday, September 15, 2021
7:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom
Registration closes on Tuesday, September 14 at 4:30 p.m. (CDT)

Now Available on YouTube

The Center for Railroad Photography and Art’s upcoming publication, The Railroad and the Art of Place: An Anthology, was made possible by the collaborative efforts of a team of thirty contemporary and historical photographers, whose works are displayed across eighteen portfolios that visually contemplate the visible and philosophical imprint of the railroad on the American landscape. 

Join Alexander Benjamin Craghead, Jeff Brouws, Edd Fuller, David Kahler, and Kevin Keefe in a discussion on the original philosophy behind the publication, an overview of the project, and the decisions that went into the aesthetics of the book. 


Alexander Benjamin Craghead is a curator, photographer, essayist, and historian who writes about the intersection of technology, representation, and landscape. His publications include Railway Palaces of Portland, Oregon, as well as articles in magazines such as Boom! A Journal of California, California History, Railroad Heritage, The Smart Set, and Trains, and a regular column in Railfan & Railroad magazine. He holds a Ph.D. in Architecture, and is faculty at the American Studies program at UC Berkeley.

Jeff Brouws is a board member of the CRP&A and brings knowledge of nineteenth and twentieth century photography and a broad background in publishing, with seven photography books to his credit. His photographs can be found in numerous public and private collections.

Edd Fuller remembers visiting his grandparents near Roanoke, Virginia and seeing the remaining Norfolk & Western steam power hauling coal along the James River. That experience fostered a love of the railroad, and the landscape surrounding it. Edd lives with his wife in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains and edits The Trackside Photographer, a website focused on the places, the people, and the stories that define the railroad landscape.

David Kahler, FAIA, received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from Syracuse University and a Masters of Arts degree in Architecture from Princeton University. He had a private architectural practice based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for thirty-six years and was president of the Milwaukee Art Museum from 1974-76. He currently serves as a board member for CRP&A, and authored the publication The Railroad and the Art of Place.

Kevin Keefe is recently retired as vice-president-editorial for Kalmbach Publishing Co. and board member of the CRP&A. He served as editor of Trains from 1992 to 2000. As a student at Michigan State, he worked on Pere Marquette steam locomotive no. 1225, and he later authored a book about it.

Watch for an email on the evening of September 14th, which will include a Zoom link and log in information to all registrants.

This event is free.


Kevin Scanlon, Gautier Steel, Johnston, Pennsylvania, 2008
Edd Fuller, abandoned freight depot, Strasburg, Virginia, 2019


The Railroad and the Art of Place: Photographs by David Kahler, exhibition opening event

Friday, September 10, 2021 / 6-8:30 pm (CDT)
Grohmann Museum, Milwaukee School of Engineering
1000 North Broadway, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53202

The Center for Railroad Photography and Art, in collaboration with the Grohmann Museum at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, is proud to present The Railroad and the Art of Place: Photographs by David Kahler, an exhibition opening event on Friday, September 10 from 6-8:30 pm.

The event will feature a recorded introduction of the exhibition by photographer David Kahler.

In the late 1980s, David Kahler was deeply inspired by seeing an exhibition of O. Winston Link photographs. He soon began making annual trips to the West Virginia and eastern Kentucky coalfields, destinations that strongly resonated with his own aesthetic of “place.” Armed with a used Leica M6 and gritty Tri-X film, he and his wife made six week-long trips in the dead of winter to photograph trains along the Pocahontas Division of the Norfolk Southern Railway.

  • Doors open, 6 pm
  • Presentation, David Kahler recorded talk (with introduction by James Kieselburg & Scott Lothes), 6:30 pm
  • Reception, 7:30 pm

The Center for Railroad Photography and Art and the Grohmann Museum have collaborated to present this exhibition, which features more than 40 photographs and is distilled in a book of the same name published by the Center.

Reservations are not required, and the event is free. MSOE currently requires masks for all individuals.

Iaeger, West Virginia, February 1996. Photograph by David Kahler
David Kahler, FAIA, received his Bachelor of Architecture from Syracuse University and Master of Arts in Architecture from Princeton University. He also holds an honorary Ph.D in Architecture from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee and an honorary D.Eng. from MSOE. He had a private architectural practice based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, for thirty-six years where he raised four children and served as the President of the Milwaukee Art Museum from 1974 to 1976. Kahler currently serves as the Vice Chair of the Center for Railroad Photography & Art.

Amtrak’s Evolving Image

Wednesday, August 25, 2021
7:00 – 8:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom
Registration closes on Tuesday, August 24 at 4:30 p.m. (CT)

Now Available on YouTube

Amtrak Brand Communications Manager Matt Donnelly joins the Center for Railroad Photography & Art to discuss the development of Amtrak’s brand over the last 50 years. Donnelly will discuss Amtrak’s earliest attempt at developing a paint scheme, the creation of its iconic liveries of the 1970s and 1980s, and the challenges of creating a consistent image on a diverse fleet of railroad equipment.

Originally from Auburn, New York, Matt Donnelly is a career railroader, joining Amtrak in 2005 after graduating from the State University of New York at Oswego. He’s worked in field and corporate positions, including as a ticket agent in the Syracuse and Rochester, New York stations, as a trainmaster in Washington Terminal, in product development overseeing the Capitol Limited, Cardinal and Silver Service, and auditing. He is currently Amtrak’s Brand Communications Manager based out of corporate headquarters in Washington, D.C. Matt studied dark room photography and has been published in various rail industry publications over the past twenty years.

This event is free.

Amtrak’s first timetable, and one of the first pieces to publicly display the newly created Amtrak name and logo. Copyright the National Railroad Passenger Corporation.

Call for Submissions: Rails-to-Trails Project

About the Project

Rail-Trail Connections

Before: Victor Hand, A railcar inspects St. Paul Pass on the Milwaukee Road mainline near the Montana-Idaho border at Adair, Idaho, on June 15, 1978. After: Route of the Hiawatha trail, St. Paul Pass, Idaho. Copyright Traillink user.


We are looking for photographs showing contemporary views of rail-trails. You can help us develop a new exhibition project exploring the ways railroads continue to connect people and places, even when they no longer exist. Through the revitalization and reuse of abandoned rail lines, rail trails provide public access to former railroad spaces as recreational trails. The project aims to educate the general public about the prolific influence that railroads have left on the United States’ history, geography, economy, and community structures through the lens of the rail-trail movement and its presence in both rural and urban life.

The exhibition will be presented as re-photography using the CRP&A’s own collection for historical images juxtaposed with present-day images to contextualize the narrative of the rise, decline, and renaissance of many American railroads in a frequent tale of rebirth as rail-trails.

We need your help showing the contemporary changes along these rail lines. On the adjacent tab is a list of rail-trails set to be featured in the exhibition that still need to be photographed. They are split into two priority groups based on importance to the project.

You can photograph these trails in a number of ways.

  • Re-photography: take an exact re-photograph of a CRP&A image
  • Social change: show how human interactions and built infrastructure along the rail line have changed
  • Landscape/Environmental change: show how the physical landscape along the rail line has changed


For information about submitting to this project please send a note detailing which trail(s) you would be interested in photographing to submissions@railphoto-art.org. Our exhibition staff will provide you with additional information about the best approach to photographing a specific trail as it relates to the exhibition narrative.

There is no limit on the number of trails you can contribute to. All images must be high-resolution JPEG or TIF files with a pixel dimension of at least 3,000 on one side. Please provide basic caption information, location and date, as well as optional supplemental text describing your journey to make the photograph. Please also provide your contact information: name, mailing address, email address, and phone number.

If selected, the CRP&A may feature your photograph(s) in our upcoming rail-trails exhibition project, and may also use them in our journal, Railroad Heritage, online, or in another appropriate format. The Center reserves the right to retain electronic copies for future publication, use on website, Facebook, and other social media, or for public exhibition. In all cases, the photographer retains the copyright to the image.

Trails to Photograph

Still looking for photographers for these trails

Trail Name State Priority
Razorback Regional Greenway Arkansas 1
Bay Area Trail Collaboration California 1
San Francisco Bay Trail California 1
Withlacoochee State Trail Florida 2
Atlanta Beltline Georgia 1
Silver Comet Trail Georgia 1
Trail of the Coeur D’Alenes Idaho 1
Green Bay Trail Illinois 2
Robert McClory Bike Path Illinois 2
Rock Island Trail Illinois 1
Sauk Rail-Trail Iowa 1
Lamoille Valley Rail Trail Maine/Vermont 2
Baltimore Greenway Trail Network Maryland 1
Capital Crescent Trail Maryland / Washington, D.C. 1
Betsie Valley Trail Michigan 2
Macomb Orchard Trail Michigan 2
Cowboy Recreation and Nature Trail Nebraska 1
Erie Canalway Trail New York 1
D&L Trail Pennsylvania 1
Path of the Flood Trail Pennsylvania 2
Pine Creek Rail Trail Pennsylvania 1
Burke-Gilman Trail Washington 1
Medicine Bow Rail Trail Wyoming 1