Hello from the West Coast! In honor of the final week of my show, Sun Ruins at Golden Gallery in New York, I'm posting my favorite heart-breaker of ruination: photographer Carleton Watkins (pictured with cane) being led away from his studio in the aftermath of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire. The contents of his studio were destroyed.
This image is from the Bancroft Library Archive at the University of California, Berkeley. More of their San Francisco Earthquake and Fire images can be found here.
Thankfully, this gem wasn't destroyed:
Section of the Grizzly Giant, 33 Feet Diameter, Mariposa Grove, Yosemite, No. 111, Albumen silver print, 17 x 20 1/2 in.
From the Getty: "Galen Clark, the figure in this photograph, was designated as the guardian of the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoia about the time Abraham Lincoln ceded it to California in 1864. When this picture was made, Clark lived in a cabin (not pictured) nearby and maintained a rustic way station for visitors traveling to Yosemite Valley via the Mariposa Trail, which was developed in 1859. "
Click here for the Getty's online archive of Carleton Watkins photographs.