Buenos Aires: . Commercial oblong folio album in textured leather covers. String bound, approximately 11.5" x 15.5". Gilt titles (including Perkins' name) stamped to front. 49 leaves, 46 with photographs, postcards and various scrap materials mounted both recto and verso with final 3 pages blank. 177 black and white snapshot photographs in various sizes, most approximately 5.75” x 3.5”. Also with: 72 photographic postcards as well as several ephemeral articles including letters, business cards, hotel receipts, programs, menus, invitations, booklets, etc. Leather flaking at cover edges with a bit of dry rot. Slightly worn at page ends, a few elements apparently perished. Otherwise well preserved with contents generally very good or better. Very good +. Item #14426
Scrapbook and photograph album belonging to Fred W. Perkins, then Chief of the Office of Motion Pictures for the United States Department of Agriculture, chronicling his trip and work as motion picture photographer for the U.S. delegation attending the first Pan American Congress of Highways, held in Buenos Aires in October, 1925 (with 14pp. program and other scrap from same present). Images begin as the party, aboard the S.S. Santa Ana, makes its way through the Panama Canal, headed south along the western coast of South America, capturing the party’s meetings with dignitaries as well as the citizens and environs of Panama City, Talara (Peru), Lima, Mollendo (Peru), Tocopilla (Chile), Antofagasta (Chile), Chanaral (Chile), Coquimbo (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Santiago (Chile), Buenos Aires, Montevideo (Uruguay), Rosario (Brazil), Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Notable figures shown include President Chiari (Panama), President Augusto Leguia (Peru), U.S. General John J. Pershing, President Arturo Alessandri (Chile), President Marcelo T. de Alvear (Argentina), President Jose Serrato (Uruguay) and Governor Washington Luis (Sao Paulo). The album carefully records the delegation's travels, with all photographs meticulously captioned, and ends with a photo of the delegation being received by President Coolidge upon its return. The meeting was the first of many cooperative gatherings between the United States and the Central and South American countries who would come to develop the Pan-American Highway, Earth’s most vast roadway network. But for an approximately sixty-mile break along the Panama-Colombia border, it stretches continuously from Alaska, just south of the Arctic Circle, to the Southern tip of Chile, connecting all of The Americas. An extensive album of clearly captioned photographs, travel receipts, business and calling cards, programs, and the like. A important memento, with expertly crafted images of not only the delegation’s activities, but also Perkins at work as an early film documentarian.