Rawley Springs promotional photograph album
Scope and Contents
The Rawley Springs Promotional Photograph Album, circa 1875, is a bound volume comprising thirty 5 1/4" x 4" albumen prints depicting the Rawley Springs Resort, surrounding area, staff, and visitors. Early ownership signatures belonging to J(oseph) S(amuels) Strayer of Port Republic date to 1875 and 1882.
People identified in the album include Major C(addis) B(ohannon) Luck, manager of the Springs; Uncle Jim Lightfoot, a Black employee; and Virginia Governor James L. Kemper. A photograph labeled "Fat Men of Rawley" includes seven men identified by their surnames: Morrison, Soullard, Graves, Russell, Millins, Luck, and Houck. Unidentified persons include visitors to the resort as well as Black workers. Buildings and sites include Virginia House, Washington House, Baltimore House, bowling alley, lower dining room, old laundry, billiards rooms, Juliet's Tower, Lover's Leap, Ball Room Rock, and Blue Hole.
- circa 1875
- Strayer, Joseph S. (Joseph Samuels), 1853-1896 (Former owner, Person)
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Biographical / Historical
Rawley Springs is located approximately ten miles west of Harrisonburg along U.S. Route 33. By 1825 Rawley springs was being promoted as a resort due to the medicinal properties of the waters. Fire struck the resort in 1886 and several buildings were burned including the Virginia House and Washington House. They were rebuilt but burned again in 1915.
The photographs were taken by W(illiam) E. Cowen of Baltimore, Maryland. According to the 1870 census, Cowen was residing in Culpeper, Virginia and employed as a Daguerreian artist (photographer).
Joseph S. Strayer (1853-1896), whose owner's signature appears in the book, was a resident of Port Republic, Virginia, specifically Bogota on Lynnwood Road.
0.08 cubic feet (1 bound volume in 1 folder) ; 8 1/2" x 10"
Language of Materials
The Rawley Springs Promotional Photograph Album, circa 1875, is a bound volume comprising thirty 5 1/4" x 4" albumen prints depicting the Rawley Springs Resort, surrounding area, staff, and visitors.
The album was sold along with a promotional booklet announcing the June 15, 1885 reopening of the resort at Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates' November 10, 2012 auction. The album and booklet descended in the Byrd family of Rockingham County prior to being sold by Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates.
Purchased from Between the Covers Rare Books in March 2023.
- A Guide to the Rawley Springs promotional photograph album, circa 1875
- Tiffany Cole
- March 2023
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- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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