Caledonia 1892

Dublin Core



This collection of images is based upon an 1892 birds-eye panorama of Caledonia, NY published by Burleigh Litho of Troy, NY. According to John William Reps, Lucien R. Burleigh was responsible—whether as artist or publisher—for some 228 lithographic city views (it is possible, even likely that the Caledonia map was executed by an employee named Christian Fausel). Trained as a civil engineer, economic recession pressed Burleigh into finding other ways of making a living. He began city viewmaking during the 1870s and by the mid-1880s was well established in his profession. His usual practice was to work from an available map, determine the most advantageous viewpoint (for a village like Caledonia, typically 1500 feet above the ground), and making small sketches at the street level. Another important task during a two- or three-week stay was soliciting subscriptions for the panorama: it took perhaps 100 persons, each paying $2.50-3:00 for a map, for the project to break even.

The Burleigh map’s legend provides us with a snapshot of Caledonia in 1892, just recovering from a major fire in 1891. It lists railroad stations, churches, the public school, and even Seth Green’s fish hatchery, but a majority of the numbered locations are commercial enterprises—a likely base of customers for purchasing copies of the completed work. Using old newspapers and trade magazines, this collection has gathered advertising from most of the businesses. Its purpose is to populate an interactive map for the “Heraldry” section of the “Clans of Caledonia” exhibit, where we see immigrant affiliations interacting with national and commercial icons—a complex process of so-called “Americanization.”



Collection Items

Residence, Warehouse and Elevator of Wm. Hamilton, Caledonia, Livingston County, NY

Auspice Maria

Cross Botonee

Caledonia School No. 5

Buffalo, Rochester, and Pittsburgh Railway station, Mumford

Lehigh Valley Rail Road Station, Caledonia

Geo. Davis, Billiard Hall

New York State Hatchery and Fish Ponds, Caledonia NY

New York Central Railroad Station, Caledonia

John Ball & Co., Produce Elevator
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