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Steam Power
Railroad Photographs of
O. Winston Link
October 11 - December 21, 2003

Exhibition Reception
Fourth Friday
October 24, 5:30–7:30 pm

Exhibition Lecture
A Photographer with a Cause:
O. Winston Link in Context
by Thomas H. Garver,
Exhibition Curator and Organizing Curator,
O. Winston Link Museum, Roanoke
Wednesday, November 5, 5:30 pm
Campbell Hall 153

O. Winston Link’s photographs of the final years of steam railroading on the Norfolk & Western Railway are one of the best records of this vanished transportation. Beginning in 1955, Link made more than 20 trips over a five-year period photographing the towns and countryside on the N&W line. While Link is best known for the photographs he made at night, he captured the life and culture of the railroad, its people and the folks who lived along the line, at all hours of the day. For Link the steam railroad was a vital ingredient to the good life of America, an essential part of the fabric of our lives. It is this quality he captures so tellingly in his photographs.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1914, Link worked as a commercial photographer. He displayed great skill in making industrial
photographs that required special camera techniques and lighting effects. A videotape, Trains That Passed in the Night, following subjects of Link’s photographs and the set-ups he made to snap them, is shown during the exhibition in the Museum.

The exhibition was organized by The History Museum and Historical Society of Western Virginia in Roanoke from the collection of Thomas H. Garver, who was Link’s studio assistant in New York from mid-1957 to mid-1958.

Organized by The History Museum and Historical Society of Western Virginia, Roanoke


O. Winston Link (American, 1914-2001)
Hawksvill Creek Swimming Hole, Luray, Virginia, 1956
Gelatin silver print, 26 x 22 inches
Lent by The History Museum and Historical
Society of Western Virginia from
the Collection of Thomas H. Garver