Edouard Baldus Lyon, Viaduc du Rhone
Medium Salt print from wet plate negative
Mount on original mount
Photo Date 1855-56 Print Date 1861c
Dimensions 10 x 16-7/8 in. (254 x 429 mm)
Photo Country France
Photographer Country France
Contact Alex Novak and Marthe Smith
About This Image
Wet stamped in black ink with title and facsimile of photographer's signature on recto of mount below print. Image is from the PLM album (Chemin de Fers de Paris a Lyon et a la Mediterranee), pl.6. A powerful image with the sweep of the viaduct dominating the image. It was taken several years earlier than the other version with the single span of this viaduct, probably shortly after it was built in 1855. The lamp posts in the later photograph are not present in this image.
Retouching is common on prints of this image to compensate for the unevenness of the negative's collodion coating in the section showing the river. The sky has been masked on the negative. This bridge, with five 40-meter iron arches, spanned the Rhône in Lyon to effect the junction of the Bourgogne and Méditerranée lines in 1856. Though modified in subsequent years, this bridge is still in service.
A copy is in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.