Art & Ephemera

R.H. Trueman Silver Gelatin Print in Original Wood Frame -- Rare Photo of a Painting of the SS Empress of China CPR Ocean Liner


  • Details
    FOR SALE ☞ Rare Framed Silver Gelatin Print by R.H. Trueman of the SS Empress of China for CPR

    DESCRIPTION ☞ Framed photograph of a painting of the SS Empress of China by R.H. Trueman and Norman Caple, taken for Canadian Pacific Railway. Silver gelatin print in original dark brown wood decorative frame, with original backing board and square nails on the back. Photo is labeled '1208 S.S. Empress of China (property of C.P.R.) / Trueman and Caple, Photo, Vancouver, B.C.'

    BACKGROUND INFORMATION ☞ Truman worked as a photographer across Canada, but primarily in British Columbia between 1890-1911.

    Trueman started his career in Brampton, Ontario in 1886, but sold his first studio to move to Brandon, Manitoba to homestead with his wife, Minnie. He returned to his home province of Ontario after his wife's death in 1893, and there met and formed a partnership with young Norman Caple from England. The two are supposed to have met in Toronto.

    Trueman & Caple travelled the Canadian Pacific Railway line for about a year, commission to take photos along the way by CPR, before they set up headquarters in Vancouver. After the partnership was dissolved, Trueman remained in Vancouver but is not listed in the directories of 1895-1897. He continued to travel extensively and up until two months before his death was managing his Revelstoke branch studio.

    Trueman was a superb landscape photographer and was one of few West Coast photographers to print his negatives on platinum paper. He died in Vancouver on February 22, 1911.

    The SS Empress of China was built in 1890-1891 by Naval Construction & Armament Co., Barrow, England for Canadian Pacific Steamships (CP). This ship—the first of three CP vessels to be named Empress of China—regularly traversed the trans-Pacific route between the west coast of Canada and the Far East.

    DIMENSIONS ☞ Photo measures approximately 7.25" x 9.5" Wood frame measures approximately 16" x 18.5"

    CONDITION ☞ Photo has been trimmed a bit oddly on the right side but it is more of quirky charm of the time period rather than something that takes away from the photo itself. Some oxidation and foxing on photo backing paper. Frame has some chips in the decoration on the wood. Original square nails are still in place and very difficult to remove without risk of damaging the frame so we have not been able to check the back of the photo to look for Truman and Caple's stamp on verso.

    Please see photos. Color may differ slightly in real life from how it appears on your screen due to varying monitor settings. Have a question about this item or want to see more photos? Send us a message & we’ll get back to you ASAP!

    ABOUT US ☞ Front Street Antiques is located in downtown historic Kaslo, British Columbia, Canada. We are a husband and wife team on the hunt for interesting items that inspire nostalgia and curiosity. As antique enthusiasts, we do our very best to describe any imperfections and quirks, as well as provide a general background on the item; however, we are not yet experts on every item in our store. If you have additional information about an item for us, please send us a message -- we are always grateful to learn more :)

    PLEASE NOTE ☞ Item will be carefully packaged up and shipped within 3 business days of sale, often sooner. We combine shipping on multiple items -- please send us a message prior to purchase to give us a heads up & we will be happy to refund the difference upon shipping!

    All our listings are considered collectible, retro/vintage (25+ years) or antique (100+ years) and are rarely brand new. The majority of our stock comes from auctions and private collections or estates. Items for sale may display some age related wear and/or minor flaws consistent with the date of manufacture. Photos are included as part of the description. Due to the age and nature of our stock, all items are sold "as is" and final sale unless damaged in transit and covered by insurance.

    Items listed on our Etsy store are also available for sale in our physical store location and may sell at any time! Visit us in person to check out our wide variety of stock - 416 Front St. Kaslo, BC

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    Estimated shipping times

    • Canada : 3 - 10 business days
    • United States : 5 - 14 business days

    I'll do my best to meet these shipping estimates, but can't guarantee them. Actual delivery time will depend on the shipping method you choose.

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