The Jackson and Sharp Photograph Collection contains roughly 8,500 glass negatives, film negatives, and prints dating from 1869-1946. To document construction of its cars and ships, Jackson and Sharp had each photographed, and in 1950-1951, the American Car and Foundry Company donated many of the negatives to the Delaware Public Archives. The 3,715 prints are arranged alphabetically by type of car, ship or item and thereunder chronologically by date of manufacture. In some cases, chronological order was not strictly maintained.
The majority of the collection, roughly 2,315 prints, consists of exterior and interior views of various types of railroad cars produced by the company between 1869 and 1932. These cars include diner, freight, mail-baggage-passenger, private, sleeper and those exported to foreign countries. Views of railway equipment, cars under construction, railroad wrecks and hand cars are also contained.
Many different types of ships built between 1884 and 1946 are represented in the collection, consisting of about 900 prints. These include ferry boats; naval craft produced for the federal government, especially during World War I and World War II; pleasure craft; schooners; freight, passenger, and tanker steamships; and work craft such as barges, dredges, drydocks and tugs. Also included with ships are shipyard views and ship plans and emblems.
The collection also contains smaller groups of items like roughly 350 prints of street cars, produced for both domestic and foreign use between 1875 and 1918; 27 views of motor trucks, 1924-1931; roughly 120 prints of millwork, 1894-1922; and four views of Job Jackson’s house.
This series consists of fifty-one drawings and blueprints related to rail car construction. Ranging in date from about 1881 to 1937, the collection contains twenty-five plans, elevations, and cross-sections for a variety of cars and equipment. Twenty-six drawings and blueprints dealing with the interior design of railroad cars, such as room layouts, furnishings, and fixtures, can also be found.
Ninety-six ship drawings, dating roughly from 1885 to 1937, illustrate the range of shipping constructed by Jackson and Sharp. Diagrams, plans, cut-away views, and drawings of barges, tug boats, schooners, yachts, and a number of other vessels, as well as ship equipment are represented.
Also included in the collection are plots of company property and building plans dating from 1924 and a map of Wilmington, 1911.
The cost books record the production costs for three railroad car orders and show the order lot number, when the cars were shipped, the quantity and type of material used, the price rate for each, and the total cost. These records include the cost book for sixty steel solvent recovery cars produced for Hercules Powder Company, 1916; the cost book, five photos, shipping list, shop order, and blueprint for three first class coaches manufactured for the Columbian National Railway, 1923; and the cost book, shipping list, shop order, thirteen photos and a blueprint for a Rede de Viacao Sol Mineira sleeping car, 1929.