Top of page

Collection Photo, Print, Drawing [Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection, 1902-1908]

[ Volume 1 ]

More Resources

[ Volume 2 ]
[ Volume 3 ]
[ Volume 4 ]
[ Volume 5 ]
[ Volume 6 ]
[ Volume 7 ]

About this Item


  • [Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection, 1902-1908]


  • Album 1: Photographs of China: Photographs depict the life of Thomas Wilson Haskins, Assistant Chinese Secretary of the American Legation, and his wife Elizabeth Gowan Haskins (later Elizabeth Workman), mostly in Peking (Bejing), China. Photographs include numerous images of American and other legation staff activities such as picnics, swimming, dinners, visits to historic sites, and football games. In Peking are shown: street scenes, a camel caravan outside the city walls, the dedication of a gate to Clemens von Ketteler (German diplomat killed in Boxer Rebellion), street barbers, the American Methodist hospital, the Yellow Temple, a funeral procession, the "Tartar" wall, Canal Street, Legation street, an execution of a criminal, a bronze prayer wheel, masked ceremonial dancers in the courtyard of the Lama Temple (Yonghe Temple), the Temple of Confucius, the Haskins' homes, the American Legation building, the Temple of Heaven and the Altar of Heaven, dedication of the Italian church, the American Embassy with staff in front, and a spring race meet in 1908.
  • Album 2: Photographs of China: Photographs show street scenes, the Great Wall of China, large sculptures of camels and elephants along the Ming Road, the pailou (gateway) at the Ming tombs, near Beijing; landscapes, carts and wagons on a road possibly during Thomas Haskins' journey to see the 13th Dalai Lama, aerial and landscape views, and a view of scaffolding around a building. Also includes images of Thomas and Elizabeth Haskins including "Tom and Bess on the Ming road" and in bathing suits at a beach; Elizabeth Haskins with a parasol and a group portrait at the Jade Fountain, Beijing, showing Capt. Clifford, Elizabeth and Thomas Haskins, Mr. Holwill, and Miss Daisy Rockhill. Some photographs are captioned in Chinese characters and were probably not taken by Haskins. These images depict Shenyang (previously Fengtian, now in Liaoning Province) including a bell tower, the gate of an underground palace of Beiling (Emperor's Tomb), the North Emperor Tomb showing elephant statue, the Eastern Tomb, the Ceremonial Hall, Imperial Palace, Beiling (North Tomb); and the eastern half of the Imperial Palace (or Imperial Tombs?), Beiling.
  • Album 3: Photographs of Midway Island: Photographs show Thomas Haskins' return journey by ship in 1906 to the United States. His ship hit a reef on Midway Island (Atoll) and he was stranded for a long layover. Depicted are the ship, people in row boats (life boats?), tents on a beach, Haskins in front of a tent, a panoramic photograph of Midway Island, buildings, birds, man in a turban, and people in costume for a play. The newspaper clipping in this collection "Beached on reef, Haskinses return" gives more information about this trip. Album contains one loose photograph captioned "Grace?" possibly showing Grace Gowan Haskins Workman ca. 1950s.
  • Diary: Journal kept by Thomas Haskins of his trip with William W. Rockhill to visit the 13th Dalai Lama in Wutaishan, China in June of 1908. Haskins and Rockhill were the first two Americans to visit a Dalai Lama. Haskins describes their travel to Wutaishan,their two meetings with the Dalai Lama and discussions of trade, treaties and Tibetan political affairs; their exchange of gifts with the Dalai Lama, visits to market, and taking of photographs. In the pocket of the diary is a letter from "Charles A. Killie" to Thomas Haskins dated May 14, 1908. Killie is probably Reverend Charles A. Killie (1857-1916) who worked at the American Presbyterian Mission in Beijing. The letter gives details of the route to Wutaishan with distances and advice about food and lodging. Diary is wrapped in Tibetan brocade cloth wrapper.
  • Documents: Collection also includes one typescipt letter from Thomas Haskins to William Henry Workman (the future husband of Elizabeth), dated Sept. 10, 1904 and a travel document for Thomas Haskins and his wife signed by "W.W. Rockhill", Legation of the United States, Peking, August 9, 1906.
  • Loose photographs: Photographs show a head-and-shoulders portrait of Thomas Haskins, two group portraits of Haskins and U.S. Embassy staff in front of a building, and one group portrait of men indoors at the U.S. Consulate in Mukden, Manchuria, including the U.S. Consul Willard Straight (on far left) and Haskins (second from right). Also included are six photographs of Wutaishan at the time of the 13th Dalai Lama's residence. Captions for these photographs read: "Wu-tai shan, Shansi. General view of the Pai-t'a and the temple of the Great Lama of Wu-Tai", "Nine miles northwest of Shin-Tsui, on the road to Wu-tai shan. View up to the Tai-shan ho to Tung-tai, one of the five sacred mountains", "Wu-tai shan, Shansi. Head priest and second priest in prayer wheel pavilion at base of Pai-t'a", "Two miles north of Shih-tzui, on the Ch'ing Schui ho, Shansi, on the road from Lung ch'uen kwan to Wu-tai shan. The entrance to the Tiger Temple (Tai Lou Szu), where the Emperor K'ang Hsi killed a tiger 300 years ago", "Wu-tai shan, Shansi. Market scene near the great pagoda" and "Wu-tai shan, Shansi. Courtyard and exterior of temple, Lou-hou-sze." Also included are four photographs by Sanshichirō Yamamoto taken at the home of Irish Customs inspector Sir Robert Hart (1835-1911) in 1904 and 1907. Three of these photographs depict group portraits of Elizabeth Haskins and other foreign attaches and their families outdoors. One photograph shows the servant's band with their instruments.
  • Newspaper clippings: American newspaper articles mostly about the engagement and marriage of Elizabeth Gowans to Thomas Haskins and obituaries for Thomas Haskins. One article titled "Beached on reef, Haskinses return" gives an account of Thomas Haskins' stay on Midway Island after his ship ran aground on a reef on Midway Island as he was returning to San Francisco.
  • Other locations in China shown are the "Avenue of stone animals" leading to the Ming tombs, the gulf of "Pei-Chili" at Newchuang (Niuzhuang), the summer home of the Haskins at Rock Point, "Peitaiko" (Beidaiche); Port Arthur and possibly Tianjin (Tientsin). Places outside China include: "Lotus Lake" in the Imperial Gardens, Seoul, Korea; and tori gates and temples at "Miajima" (Miyajima), Japan.
  • People depicted include Thomas Wilson Haskins, Elizabeth Gowan Haskins and other members of the American Legation such as U.S. Minister to China, Edwin Hurd Conger and his wife Alice Pike Conger; John Gardner Coolidge, first secretary of the American Legation; Julian Arnold, and student interpreters including Percival S. Heintzleman; Marine officer Thomas Holcombe and Captain Melbourne, members of the U.S. Legation Guard. Also shown are the Empress Dowager Tzu Hsi (Cixi) with the imperial princesses; Alice Roosevelt Longworth arriving at Tsientsin, General Nelson A. Miles; the Italian chargé d'affaires Prince Livio Borghese and his wife Princess Borghese; Chinese teachers of the Americans including "Wei"(?) Haskin's first teacher; and Miss Daisy Rockhill. Includes one portrait postcard of five Chinese priests (?) by Japanese photographer Sanshichirō Yamamoto. Inscription inside album reads: "Thomas Wilson Haskins, Elizabeth Gowan Haskins, Peking." (Former title: Scenes of China, 1902-1908)
  • Transcript of a taped interview: Elizabeth Gowan Haskins Workman was interviewed by her daughter Anne William Workman in San Francisco, California, on November 8, 1969. The interview focuses on the life of Workman and her husband Thomas Haskins in Beijing, China. Interview includes information about Workman's travels to China with her mother to marry Haskins in 1904, her relationships with other foreign delegation staff, friends, family and servants; social activities such as banquets, picnics, skating and polo; the couple's houses in Beijing and the "Peitaiko" (Beidaiche) resort; audiences with the Empress Dowager "Tzu-Hai" (Cixi); meetings in Washington, D.C. with President Theodore Roosevelt; trips to the Western Tombs, Ming Tombs and Great Wall; a trip to San Francisco in 1906; the birth and death of her two children; Haskin's trip with William W. Rockhill to see the 13th Dalai Lama in Wutaishan in June 1908; the death of her husband; her life in the United States on her return; and her later marriage to Willam Henry Workman. Workman's sister Edith "Dee Dee" Gowan also participates in the interview. People mentioned by Haskins include Irish customs inspector Sir Robert Hart, U.S. ambassador William W. Rockhill, Italian diplomat Prince Livio Borghese, American writer Putnam Weal, Madame Boissonas, a French friend; Marine Legation Guard Thomas Holcomb, and missionaries Dr. Headland and Dr. Lowry.


  • Haskins, Thomas Wilson, 1879-1908, photographer
  • Workman, Elizabeth G. (Elizabeth Gowan), 1882-1975, compiler
  • Yamamoto, Sanshichirō, 1855-1943, photographer

Created / Published

  • [between 1902 and 1908]


  • -  Cixi,--Empress dowager of China,--1835-1908
  • -  Thub-bstan-rgya-mtsho,--Dalai Lama XIII,--1876-1933
  • -  Conger, Edwin H.--(Edwin Hurd),--1843-1907
  • -  Coolidge, John Gardner,--1863-1936
  • -  Haskins, Thomas Wilson,--1879-1908
  • -  Miles, Nelson Appleton,--1839-1925
  • -  Rockhill, William Woodville,--1854-1914
  • -  Workman, Elizabeth G.--(Elizabeth Gowan),--1882-1975
  • -  United States.--Department of State--People
  • -  Americans--Social life--China--Beijing--1900-1910
  • -  Buildings--Midway Islands--1900-1910
  • -  City & town life--China--1900-1910
  • -  Consulates--American--China--1900-1910
  • -  Diplomats--American--China--Beijing--1900-1910
  • -  Embassies--American--China--Beijing--1900-1910
  • -  Executions--China--Beijing--1900-1910
  • -  Gardens--Korea--Seoul--1900-1910
  • -  Historic sites--China--1900-1910
  • -  Houses--China--1900-1910
  • -  Interviews--California--San Francisco--1960-1970
  • -  Streets--China--1900-1910
  • -  Temples--China--1900-1910
  • -  Theatrical productions--Midway Islands--1900-1910
  • -  Tombs & sepulchral monuments--China--1900-1910
  • -  Torii--Japan--1900-1910
  • -  Travel--China--1900-1910


  • Clippings--1900-1910
  • Correspondence--1900-1910
  • Diaries--1900-1910
  • Group portraits--1900-1910
  • Landscape photographs--1900-1910
  • Photograph albums--1900-1910
  • Photographic prints--1900-1910
  • Portrait photographs--1900-1910
  • Typescripts--1960-1970


  • -  Albums were compiled by Elizabeth Gowan Haskins Workman. Most of photographs probably taken by Thomas Wilson Haskins (1879-1908).
  • -  Housed with the Rockhill Tibetan collection per the donor's request.
  • -  Most photographs are captioned in English. Some also include Chinese language captions.
  • -  Title devised by Library staff.
  • -  Gift; Barbara Workman Janeway; 2010.
  • -  Diplomat Thomas Wilson Haskins (1879-1908) served in the American Embassy in Peking (Beijing) from 1902 to 1908. He was appointed as the Assistant Chinese Secretary of the American Legation and was also an interpreter. He married Elizabeth (Gowan) Haskins (1882-1975) of San Francisco in 1904 in China. In June 1908, Haskins traveled with Willam W. Rockhill, the US Ambassador to China, to visit the 13th Dalai Lama in Wutaishan. Haskins was promoted to the position of Consul in Swatow, South China in 1908 but died that year before he could take the position. His wife moved back to the United States where she later married William Henry Workman (1874-1951).
  • -  Forms part of: Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection (Library of Congress).


  • 1 album (230 photographs and 1 postcard) ; 30 x 21 cm (album)
  • 1 album (40 photographs) ; 19 x 28 cm (album)
  • 1 album (47 photographs) ; 15 x 20 cm (album)
  • 1 diary (36 pages) : pencil, leather-bound ; 8 x 13 cm.
  • 1 transcript (135 pages): typescript ; 28 x 22 cm.
  • 13 photographs : some on mounts ; 29 x 32 cm or smaller (mount)
  • 20 prints : newspaper clippings ; 36 cm x 17 or smaller.

Call Number/Physical Location

  • Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection [Tibetan cage]


  • Library of Congress Asian Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA dcu

Digital Id

Library of Congress Control Number

  • 2012646613

Rights Advisory

Access Advisory

  • Use digital images. Original served only by appointment because material requires special handling. Please consult reference specialist for Tibet in the Asian Division.

Online Format

  • pdf
  • image

Additional Metadata Formats

IIIF Presentation Manifest

Rights & Access

More about Copyright and other Restrictions

For guidance about compiling full citations consult Citing Primary Sources.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Haskins, Thomas Wilson, and Sanshichirō Yamamoto, photographer. Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection, -1908. Beijing Korea China Seoul Midway Islands California San Francisco Japan, 1902. composeds by Workman, Elizabeth G. , Iler [Between 1902 and 1908] Photograph.

APA citation style:

Haskins, T. W. & Yamamoto, S., photographer. (1902) Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection, -1908. Beijing Korea China Seoul Midway Islands California San Francisco Japan, 1902. Workman, E. G., comp [Between 1902 and 1908] [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Haskins, Thomas Wilson, and Sanshichirō Yamamoto, photographer. Thomas Wilson Haskins Collection, -1908. comp by Workman, Elizabeth G. , Iler [Between 1902 and 1908] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.