[search options]


About the Fairfax County Public Library Photograph Collection

Henry H. Douglas Collection of Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Photographs
Fairfax County Extension Service Annual Reports | Format of Original Images
Related Resources | Search Tips

Currently the Fairfax County Public Library online photographic collection consists of approximately 190 photographs which are part of the Henry H. Douglas Collection of Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Photographs and approximately 300 photographs which illustrated the Fairfax County Extension Service Annual Reports issued between 1922 and 1948. Approximately 130 additional photographs from the Extension Agent's Office accompanied the Annual Reports. Finally, the collection contains seven photographs originally published in an article about Joseph Beard in the Washington Star Magazine, April 26, 1953.

Henry H. Douglas Collection of Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Photographs

The Virginia Room of the Fairfax County Public library is the repository for one of the largest collections of photographs relating to the Washington & Old Dominion Railroad. The Washington & Old Dominion Railroad began operation in the 1850s carrying passengers and freight between Alexandria and Bluemont. Some of the present-day communities in northern Fairfax County began as stops along the Great Falls Division of the railroad. The railroad ceased operation in 1968. While the collection has many images from the 1930s -1950s, it is particularly strong in documenting the last two years of the railroad's existence and its final disassembly. This emphasis is due in large part to the contributions of photographer Henry H. Douglas (1903-1987). Douglas edited and published the second edition of H. H. Harwood's Rails to the Blue Ridge. His photographs document the rolling stock, railroad employees, and scenes along the Washington & Old Dominion line. Earlier images depict stations and substations; rolling stock, including locomotives, mail and passenger cars; railroad crossings, bridges, and tracks; and an 1863 train wreck.

The Washington & Old Dominion right-of-way is now a park maintained by the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority. The 44-mile long park features bike and walking trails.

Fairfax County Extension Service Annual Reports

The Annual Reports of the Fairfax County Extension Service cover the tenures of Extension agents Harry B. Derr and Joseph Beard. By the 1920s Fairfax County had become one of the top dairy producing areas of Virginia. The introduction of scientific growing methods and new strains of wheat, as well as other crops, by the Extension Service served to foster continued agricultural growth until World War II when Fairfax developed into a suburban community. The photographs that are part of this collection depict farms and agricultural activities related to the harvesting and production of wheat, corn, soy beans, oats, poultry, cattle, hogs, and dairy products. There are also photographs of model farms and farm management demonstrations and the activities of Home Demonstration and 4-H clubs.

Format of Original Images

The images were scanned from black and white photographic prints.

Fairfax County Public Library System

Related Resources

Printed materials

Beard, Jane Estelle. 4-H in Fairfax County : A Chronicle of a Youth Movement. Charlottesville, Va., 1984.

Conley, Brian A. Catalog of the Photographic Archive of Fairfax County, Virginia. Supplement I. Fairfax, Va.: Virginia Room, Fairfax County Public Library, 1992.

Fairfax County History Commission. Catalog of the Photographic Archive of Fairfax County, Virginia. Fairfax, Va.: The Commission, 1991.

Fairfax County Extension Service. Annual reports, 1916-1959 (located in the Virginia Room of the Fairfax County Public Library).

Fairfax County, Virginia : A history. By Nan Netherton ... [et al.]. Fairfax, Va.: Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, 1978.

Harwood, Herbery Hawley, Jr. Rails to the Blue Ridge : the Washington and Old Dominion Railroad, 1847-1968. 3rd ed. Fairfax Station, Va.: Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority, 2000.

"Man with 1600 Bosses", Washington Star Magazine, April 26, 1953 (article on Joseph Beard).

Netherton, Ross and Nan Netherton. Fairfax County in Virginia: a Pictorial History. Norfolk: Donning, 1986.

Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority. Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park Trail Guide. Fairfax, Va.: The Authority, 1996.

Traser, Donald R. Virginia Railway Depots. Richmond, Va.: Old Dominion Chapter, National Railway Historical Society, 1998.

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. Bluemont  Division Schedule of Trains: Washington, Alexandria, Bluemont, and Intermediate Points, Effective April 14, 1924. Washington, D.C.: The Railway, 1924.

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. System Schedule of Trains: Washington, Alexandria, Bluemont, Great Falls, and Intermediate Points, in Effect March 15, 1926. Washington, D.C.: The Railway, 1926.

Williams, Ames William. The Washington and Old Dominion Railroad. Springfield, Va.: Capital Traction Quarterly, 1970.

Archival Material Located at the Library of Virginia

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. Account Journal, 1914-1944.

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. Bank Ledger, 1932-1946 and 1947-1952.

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. Cashbook, 1934-1941, 1941-1950, and 1950-1953..

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. General Ledger, 1932-1937 and 1938-1952.

Washington and Old Dominion Railway Company. Receivers' Balance Book, 1912-1950.

Other Online Images

Approximately 40 Fairfax County images are available as part of the Library of Virginia's Virginia Historical Inventory project.

Approximately 60 images are available from the School Buildings Service Photographs collection.

Search Tips

Punctuation and capitalization are disregarded. Entries in this database are arranged in letter-by-letter alphabetical order. In addition to the regular searches, you may click on any highlighted element of a database record (such as a title) to initiate a search on that element. Each record in the Fairfax County Public Library Photograph Collection database consists of:

Photographer's name

The names of photographers are recorded, if known.

Examples:

Titles

Titles consist of brief descriptions of the photograph taken from unpublished finding aids.

Examples:

Dates

The date the photograph was taken (if known) is recorded in the database record. Dates are keyword searchable. Examples of dates are:

Image Numbers

Image numbers were constructed based on the accession number assigned to each photograph by Fairfax County Public Library staff and are visible only in the MARC display. These numbers are keyword-searchable.

Examples:

Image numbers for Fairfax County Extension Service photographs always begin with the prefix "fxco_ex_".

Image numbers for Washington & Old Dominion Railroad photographs always begin with the prefix "washod_".

Subject Headings

Each record contains one or more subject headings. Words found within subject headings are keyword searchable.

Examples of subject headings are:

The dates reflect the decade in which the photograph was taken.

Links

Click on the URL at the top of the full record display to view the digitized image.

For more detailed help with searching, click on the "Help" link on the main search screen and scroll down to "Search Functions" and "Search Tips."