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Photo Exhibit Focuses On Trains

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HUNTINGTON, WV -

Paying tribute to the community's long-time ties to railroading, the Huntington Museum of Art is hosting a traveling exhibit of more than 50 photographs depicting railroads and images related to railroads from around the world.

"Tracks: Photography and the Railroad from the George Eastman House Collection" opened Nov. 3 and will remain on view until Jan. 27, 2013.

On Nov. 27 at 7 p.m., the museum will offer a guided tour of the exhibit and an appearance by author and local historian James E. Casto portraying rail tycoon Collis P. Huntington. A reception will follow. Admission to the event is free.

Margaret Mary Layne, the museum's executive director, termed the city of Huntington a "natural fit" for the traveling exhibition of railroad photographs. Not only was the city founded by Collis P. Huntington as the western terminus of his Chesapeake & Ohio Railway, "trains and the railroad still define the layout of the town and remain an important part of its identity and culture."

A description of the exhibit prepared by George Eastman House, which originated it, notes that in the early decades of the 19th Century "two new inventions changed our understanding of space and time. The railroad made it possible for people to travel well beyond a day's walk from their home, and the photograph permitted a kind of time travel that made detailed and exact memory possible, even beyond the grave…. Even today, when the train is less and less important to most of us, its image retains the power to stir our feelings and engage our thoughts."

The photo exhibit includes works by Bisson Frères, William Henry Jackson, Alvin Langdon Coburn, Lewis W. Hine, Aaron Siskind and others.

The George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film opened in 1949 and is the world's oldest museum dedicated to photography. It's located in Rochester, N.Y., in the former home of Eastman (1854-1932), who founded the Eastman Kodak Co. and invented roll film, helping to popularize photography.

Sponsors for "Tracks" at the Huntington Museum of Art include the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. For more information about the Huntington Museum of Art, visit www.homoa.org or call (304) 529-2701.