The "Images" Series

The Arcadia Publishing Company has become well-known for producing numerous titles on local topics that are predominantly historic in nature.  Including within these books are similarly historic, and often rare photographs accompanying the subject featured.  If you ever visit a bookstore such as Barnes & Noble you have likely ran across one of their books, which features and sepia-tone photo on the cover.  Their "Images" series is one of the most popular and highlights everything from railroads and towns to universities and businesses.  Naturally, such books are often big sellers in the local area and region they represent.  Over the years I have come to own several in the "Images" series and they are always interesting to peruse (even the accompanying information is not always correct at times).

A pair of Erie Lackawanna E8As led by #833 hustles a short train #6, the "Lake Cities," through Hammond, Indiana on a cold and snowy late winter day in March of 1964.

Mount Hope And Otisville

A few years ago I was contacted by Arcadia Publishing some time ago hoping to review one of their new titles at the time, Mount Hope And Otisville from their Images of America series. Because I am neither a native of Otisville, Mount Hope, nor New York state the region is not the least bit familiar to me. However, it may be to you and personally I found the book interesting for a few reasons: first, I grew up in a small town like Otisville so reading about a similar place was interesting in itself; and second, because the Erie Railroad constructed its main line through Otisville seeing the photos and reading about the history of that was similarly intriguing. In any event, I hope the information presented here highlighting the book will be of interest to you and perhaps even compel you to pick up a copy for yourself!

EL GP7 #1245 eases through the busy streets of Luzerne, Pennsylvania with a short freight as a crewman flags traffic on June 12, 1972. The Geep began its career as Erie #1245 in 1952.

Even if you are not familiar with Arcadia Publishing you have probably read one of their books, especially their Images of America series, which are titles with a black & white photo gracing the cover and highlighting a local town, community, or location. Because Arcadia's books are so personal and feature such local regions and areas (usually written by local authors who know the locations) the publisher has become very successful with current offices in Charleston (South Carolina), San Francisco, Chicago, and Portsmouth. The company specifically mentions the local nature of its books, "Publishers of local and regional history books."  The title Mount Hope And Otisville is written by Nancie Craig and Anita Goldsmith, both of which are residents of the local area and members of the Mt. Hope Historical Society (Craig is vice president while Goldsmith is president). Through 128 black and white images the two authors spent many hours compiling the book covers the long history of the two towns and the impact the railroad held on their growth.

According to Arcadia's official press release of the book:

Mount Hope and Otisville have been making history for years. From the Erie Railroad to today's thriving commerce centers, these two communities have been vital to the area's growth and development. In over 200 vintage photographs local authors Nancie Craig and Anita Goldsmith bring readers on a nostalgic journey down Mount Hope and Otisville's memory lane. The authors hope the book will "spur an interest in the history of our community, as well as show the importance of saving images for future generations."

The profits from this book are going to the Mount Hope Historical Society for construction of a local history library.

Highlights of Mount Hope and Otisville:

* Reveals many rare, unseen photographs from private and public collections.

* Features images of old churches, schools, and hospitals.

* Covers the Erie Railroad and its tunnel, and how they impacted the two communities.

* Includes photographs of the Otisville Tuberculosis Sanitarium.



Erie Lackawanna caboose #C233 tags along at the end of the "Day Falls Turn" rolling through Tonawanda, New York on July 10, 1973.

If you are interested in either the Erie Railroad and how it impacted local communities like Mt. Hope and Otisville or have an interest in the area (whether you are a native, have relatives there, etc.) you should certainly enjoy this book. The book currently retails for $19.99 here in the United States, which can be purchased through a number of different bookstores and retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc. You may also pick up a copy by visiting Arcadia Publishing's website directly, here. Of note, if you would like to purchase a copy through Amazon, Mount Hope and Otisville is slightly cheaper there than the current $19.99 retail price and may be ordered through the link below.


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