Argenta and Little Rock Railroad Scenes on Postcards

Copyright 2011 by Bill Pollard

Most railroad related postcards from central Arkansas show the Missouri Pacific (Iron Mountain) passenger station in Little Rock. Cards illustrating union depot were produced into the early 1960s. There are at least three producers of early postcards which included other railroad scenes in this area. Examples are shown from each series, and digital scans of similar cards are solicited to help complete this coverage.

One of the more prolific producers of Argenta postcards was Henry J. Miller, Importer & Publisher, Argenta, Ark. Miller's later cards were all made in Germany as can be seen from the image quality. The first card is backmarked "Henry J. Miller's Post Card Series "Argenta, Ark." The Puzzle switch is identified on back as No. 1, and the Iron Mountain Shops as No. 3. All of these cards have a divided back, and the postally used cards are postmarked between 1907-1910.

The "deadly puzzle switch" was located near the north end of the Baring Cross bridge. In this view, the Baring Cross shops and roundhouse are to the left, and the Baring Cross bridge is behind the photographer.

Another local distributor of postcards was I. Goodman in Little Rock. Many of Goodman's cards were also produced in Germany, but there are also other examples which were from a different source. All cards have a divided back, with postmarks between 1907-1912.

C.U. Williams "Photoette" series, originating in Bloomington, IL, made up in variety what it sometimes lacked in production quality. Williams cards, particularly those with the blue overtint, tend to lose detail in the shadows, but his cards are the only coverage of some views.

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