Guide to PH025 Gertrude Fitzgerald Photograph Collection

Samuel Sisneros



Gertrude Baird Fitzgerald (1876-1956) was born in Fulton, Illinois. She married Benjamin Fitzgerald, an engineer, in 1896. His job took the family throughout Mexico, including Madera, Chihuahua, where he was employed by the Pearson Lumber Company. During their travels, Gertrude took photographs of the family and the places they lived. During the Mexican Revolution, Gertrude and her children, Gerald and Nellie, fled Mexico several times. In 1915, they settled in El Paso, Texas. Benjamin went to Louisiana to work for his family's business, but Gertrude stayed in El Paso for health reasons. Although she no longer worked as a professional photographer, she continued taking pictures.

The collection contains materials created and collected by Gertrude Fitzgerald. The Madera photographs show the Pearson Company facilities and social life in the town of Pearson (now called Mata Ortiz). Also included are photographs of Mexican Federal troops and a few images of landscapes and pre-historic cliff dwellings near Casas Grandes. The El Paso, Texas area photographs include local landmarks, military life at Fort Bliss, some photographs of Mesilla, New Mexico, and a large number of postcards. The photographs not taken by Gertrude Fitzgerald are of the mines in Hurley and Santa Rita, New Mexico, and panoramic photos of Mexican revolutionaries.