Kurz & Allison. “The Great Conemaugh-Valley Disaster, Fire & Flood at Johnstown, PA. Friday May 31st, 1889.”
Chicago: Kurz & Allison, ca. 1890. Larger uncolored scarce second edition. 24 x 35 5/8 (paper). Lithograph. Top margin trimmed just into image about ½ of an inch. Left and right hand margins trimmed to image. Six inch tear into image at top with two short tears into image at top all skillfully repaired and in-painted. Two repaired tears in bottom margin with small fill in title letters skillfully in-painted. Three small holes in image skillfully filled and in-painted. Small minor stain in image upper right hand corner of image. Else, good condition for such a large print. Very scarce. A/A
This scarce print of the Johnstown flood was issued by Kurz and Allison not long after the disaster. This uncolored lithograph is a larger version than the more familiar smaller color printed one. There were significantly many more prints issued of the smaller chromolithograph version. The two prints share the same perspective with similar details but this print has four inset images in the image corners. Top left inset depicts the bursting of the reservoir. The bottom left inset is a girl fleeing from the flood on horseback. The top right inset image is the recovery of the victims and the bottom right hand inset depicts identifying the dead. In the center of the image is the loss of life on the railroad bridge. We could not find this print in the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Collection, nor in any other public collection. Most likely, the reason for the scarcity of this print is that Kurz and Allison possibly did not print that many, and in conjunction with the size of the print and that the firm utilized a thinner more delicate paper than their other prints, could be the reasons why many did not survive.