Western Pacific Postcards


Spike Gang at Elko Nev.: Real photo card, (AZO 4-up triangles), with the caption in the picture "Spiking Gang on W.P.R.R. Elko Nev, 1909. Atherton and Son, Artists". No back caption. Handwritten message reads "This is where I am it is in town. I am well be a brave boy. Best love, a Happy Christmas & New Year to Arthur. R. A. N." Due to the extreme clarity of the photograph, and the modern technology available in scanning and enhancing, here's a closer look at several parts of the picture:

The Feather River Canyon

Three Tunnels: Front caption: "5580. Three Tunnels in Grand Canon of the Feather River, Western Pacific Railway." Back caption: "Three Tunnels: This view, both novel and picturesque, shows in a slight degree the obstacles overcome in constructing the Western Pacific through the mountains traversed by this railroad." Center strip contains the initials "HHT CO". Card is unused.

The Pulga Bridges --

The Tobin Bridges

The criss-crossing auto and rail bridges at Tobin CA, in the Feather River Canyon, have proved a favorite subject for rail photographers over the years, and likewise, postcard publishers. To get a sense of the passage of time represented by these three cards, take a close look at the growth progress of pine tree on the embankment at the right-hand end of the rail bridge.

Belden: Front caption reads, "3298 - Belden, California, Grand Canyon of the Feather River, On Line Western Pacific." Published by Souvenir Publishing Co. San Francisco. Postmarked November 12, 1912 at Berkeley Cal.

Big Bar: "5960 In the Feather River Canon, near Big Bar California, Western Pacific Railway." Back caption reads: "In the Feather River Canon: Unlike most other canons in the United States, where all is desolation -- not a living thing, not even vegetation, everything stamped with the seal of death -- the Feather River Canon is a living inspiration, and in all seasons the evergreen forests look the same." Published by HHT Co. Not used.

"Western Pacific Exposition Flyer in the Feather River Canyon, Plumas County, California," reads the caption on the back. Published by J.C. Bardell, San Francisco. Not used.

"Grand Canyon of the Feather River, On Line Western Pacific". Train looks faked (no logo on tender). Published by Souvenir Publishing Co. San Francisco. No postmark.

Tunnel Near Keddie: Front caption reads, "752 - Train Leaving Tunnel Near Keddie Cal., on Line Western Pacific." Card published by Souvenir Publishing Co. San Francisco & L.A. Card has not been used.

Utah and The Great Salt Lake

The Salduro Salt Beds: Front caption reads, "3301 - Salt Beds near Salduro, Utah. On Line Western Pacific. Salt is from 2 to 20 ft. Deep and 98% pure." Card published by Edward H. Mitchell, Publisher, San Francisco. Card has not been used.

"On the Great Salt Beds, Near Salduro Utah. These beds of salt 98 per cent pure are eight miles wide and sixty miles long." Card published by Detroit Publishing ("Phostint"). Postmarked September 1911.

Crossing Great Salt Lake: Front caption: "5579. Western Pacific Crossing Southern End of the Great Salt Lake. Black Rock at Right, Stansberry Mountains in the Distance." Back caption: "The Western Pacific crosses an arm of the Great Salt Lake by a new route across the southern end of that silent sea, and a little further on enters upon the Great Salt Beds. Here for thirty miles the roadbed is laid upon white, solid salt, form one to fifteen feet thick and extending four miles on either hand." No publishers data. Logo with N. American continent and US flag, with the motto "See Europe if you will, but see America First." Card is unused.

Crossing the Great Salt Lake: Front caption: "71227 The Western pacific Railway Crossing the Southern End of the Great Salt Lake, Utah." Card published by Detroit Publishing ("Phostint"). Card is unused.


Oakland, California: Front caption: "2177 - Western Pacific Passenger Station, Third and Washington Streets, Oakland California." Published by Edward H. Mitchell, San Francisco. Not used.

Stockton, California: Front caption, "Western Pacific Depot, Stockton California." Vertically on back: "Pacific Novelty Co. San Francisco - Los Angeles" Postmarked Stockton Calif, June 17, 1926.

Sacramento, California

Marysville, California

Oroville, California

Portola, California: "At Portola, Calif. J.H. Eastman #B-586." Real Photo card, not used. Closeup of the depot, and a closeup of the switcher sitting in front of the depot.

Salt Lake City, Utah


WP Number 58. Back rubber stamped info indicates photo was taken in Oakland Calif on August 19, 1931. Real-photo card, AZO four-squares. Not postally used.

WP Number 326 Realphoto card, no other info. Card is unused. (Collection of John Wilson)

WP Number 524 Back caption: "Mighty Mountain Mallet No. 254 starts train at Keddie in 1945 heading East with close to 100 carloads of California merchandise." Photo by Western Pacific, published by Bob Fremming, Dallas, Wisconsin 3-58 (Collection of John Wilson).

EMD FT #910: Real Photo card, front caption: "Diesel Locomotive. Eastman's Studio." No other information on the back. Not postally used.

Back to the Lobby...