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Rare prints and maps...Since 1918! Click here to go to Darvill's home page.

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~ About the "Land of Living Color" ~

In 1898, the Southern Pacific Railroad had a problem. The company was the largest landowner in California, and now that there were direct railroad routes to the Golden State, it was ready to sell land. The problem was California’s image. Eastern magazines had portrayed it as a land of quick money and questionable morals, a young state suitable for speculators but not for upstanding families.


To combat negative images etched in minds on the East Coast, the railroad company launched the first-ever Western magazine. Sunset Magazine, named in honor of the Sunset Limited railroad line, was issued in May 1898. Its stated purpose was to “chronicle the world of the West over which the dawn of future commercial and industrial importance is just beginning.” The first issue contained just 16 pages and ran stories on the wonders of Yosemite and the beautiful, garden-filled streets of Los Angeles. It took the good things about Western living and made them seem accessible and possible for the masses.


~ About the prints ~

These prints were purchased by Fred T. Darvill in the early 1900s directly from the publisher. They are know in the industry as "overruns." They are the unbound pages that would have been inserted in the "Land of Living Color" booklet published in 1915 using photos from early editions of Sunset Magazine. Fred knew these images would sell well in his rare print store in San Francisco. He was right! Since they show glimpses of life in the Western U.S. in the early part of the 20th century they have been popular ever since. They have been available exclusively at Darvill's Rare Print Shop since Fred had the foresight to purchase them 100 years ago!

The printing method appears to be what is known as "Full Color Letterpress," a precursor to modern printing methods. Many seem to have been printed from hand-colored black and white negatives.

The sheet size is approx. 8¼ x 11¾ inches, with an image size of approx. 5 x 7¾ inches. There is a delightful description of the scene written just below the image in each print. These nostalgic prints look great once matted and framed. They make wonderful, inexpensive gifts.


Price of print : $15

Please click on image for larger view

Conquerors of the Peak
"Conquerors of the Peak"
(Mt. Rainier, WA)

A Fly on the Wall of the World
"A Fly on the Wall of the World"
(Olympic Mountains, WA)

A Corridor at Stanford University
"A Corridor at Stanford University"
(Palo Alto, CA)

The Muses in the West
"The Muses in the West"
(Berkeley, CA)

A Tourney of Winter Knights
"A Tourney of Winter Knights"
(Coronado, CA)

A Royal Roadway
"A Royal Roadway"
(Seattle, WA)

On the Cliffs of Monterey
"On the Cliffs of Monterey"
(Monterey, CA)

On the Columbia River Highway
"On the Columbia River Highway"
(WA, OR)

A Lake in Golden Gate Park
"A Lake in Golden Gate Park"
(San Francisco, CA)

Songs in the Sierra
"Songs in the Sierra"
(Sierra Mountains)

Parliamentary Palaces in Victoria
"Parliamentary Palaces in Victoria"
(Victoria, BC, Canada)

Flower Vendors in San Francisco
"Flower Vendors in San Francisco"
(SF, CA)

Fun on the Feather
"Fun on the Feather"
(Sacramento Valley, CA)

A Pergola in Pasadena
"A Pergola in Pasadena"
(Pasadena, CA)

The 'Forbidden Garden' of Santa Barbara
"The 'Forbidden Garden'
of Santa Barbara"
(Santa Barbara, CA)

Motoring in Yosemite
"Motoring in Yosemite"
(Yosemite Park, CA)

A Vesuvius in California
"A Vesuvius in California"
(Mt. Lassen, CA)

Among the Torrey Pines
"Among the Torrey Pines"
(Del Mar, CA)

The Pagan Altar of Mount Shasta
"The Pagan Altar of Mount Shasta"

In the Heart of Oakland
"In the Heart of Oakland"

Yachting in San Francisco Bay
"Yachting in
San Francisco Bay"

Portland, the City of Roses
"Portland, the City of Roses"

Tahoe, 'The Big Water'
"Tahoe, 'The Big Water'"

At the Well of Acoma
"At the Well of Acoma"

In the Klamath Country
"In the Klamath Country"

Ferry Building, San Francisco
"Ferry Building, San Francisco"

The Serra Cross on Rubidoux
"The Serra Cross on Rubidoux"
(Riverside, CA)

The Last of the Arizona Missions
"The Last of the Arizona Missions"
(San Xavier del Bac, Tucson, AZ)

A Winter Landscape in Southern California
"A Winter Landscape in Southern California"

The Captain of the Yosemite
"The Captain of the Yosemite"

Unwritten Music
"Unwritten Music"
(San Gabriel, CA)

Springtime in the
"Springtime in the
Santa Clara Valley"

The Mission of San Carlos
"The Mission of San Carlos
de Carmelo"
(Carmel, CA)

Upland Riders
"Upland Riders"
(Mt. Rainier, WA)

The Majestic Falls of the Shoshone
"The Majestic Falls of Shoshone"
(Snake River)

The Mountain that was God
"The Mountain that was God "
(Mt. Rainier, WA)

Fishing on San Francisco Bay
"Fishing on San Francisco Bay"

At the Shrine of the Parent Tree
"At the Shrine of the
Parent Tree"
(Riverside, CA)

A Floral Fairyland
"A Floral Fairyland"
(Mt. Rainier, WA)

A Desert that has been Redeemed
"A Desert that has been Redeemed"
(Imperial Valley, CA)

The Sands of Summer-Time
"The Sands of Summer-Time"
(San Diego, CA)

Gardens of Gold
"Gardens of Gold"
(Southern CA)

A Stairway at Walpi
"A Stairway at Walpi"

A Desert Dawn in the Great Southwest
"A Desert Dawn in the
Great Southwest"
(AZ, NM?)

The Mission of San Juan Capistrano
"The Mission of San Juan Capistrano"

A Prehistoric Garden
"The Prehistoric Garden"

Spirit Canyon, NM
"Spirit Canyon,
New Mexico"

Tribute to the Dead
"Tribute to the Dead"
(General West)

Sunset on the Columbia
"Sunset on the Columbia"
(OR, WA)

A Harp of Many Strings
"A Harp of Many Strings"
(Sacramento River, CA)

Just Across the line in Mexico
"Just Across the line
in Mexico"
(Juarez, Mexico)

A Trip to the Sky
"A Trip to the Sky"
(Mt. Lowe, CA)

The Sequoias of Santa Cruz
"The Sequoias of Santa Cruz"

The Gentle Harbor of Avalon
"The Gentle Harbor of Avalon"
(Catalina Island, CA)

In Eastlake Park, Los Angeles
"In Eastlake Park, Los Angeles"

The Jewel of the Cascade
"The Jewel of the Cascade"
(Crater Lake, OR)

A Painting that has No Peer
"A Painting that has No Peer"
(Grand Canyon, AZ)

The Forests of Vancouver Island
"The Forests of
Vancouver Island"
(BC, Canada)

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