See how Washington, DC and Smithsonian visitors have shared their trips with others by taking a historic look at the Smithsonian through the picture postcard. This page provides a few general methods for determining a time period or date for postcards. Postcard producers printed cards that followed the current trends of postcards. Dates can be approximated by the material and design of a postcard. Our Postcard History page provides information about these general trends. For example, a card printed on linen was most likely produced between and
Do you have a box of old, undated family photos somewhere up in the attic-or maybe buried in the back of some closet?
Oct 14, Introduction: In this article, Mary Harrell-Sesniak shows how you can date old, undated family photos by first figuring out what type of photograph they are, and uses old newspapers and other sources to illustrate different types of keitaiplus.com is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. Do you have a box of old, undated family photos somewhere up in the . Find out how to identify and date Real Photo Vintage Postcards on Playle's. Database with images of stamp boxes and backs to identify the age and paper manufacturer of old Real Photo Postcards. Other clues: picture content, card size, printing process, phone/zip codes, and real photo postcard stamp boxes. Inherent content of the picture may be helpful in dating (assuming that the postcard used a recent view). The Official Identification and Price Guide to Postcards by Diane Allmer (New York: House of Collectibles, , ISBN , page 16), suggests looking at the following.
Have you wondered how you were ever going to figure out who these family members might be, since the old photographs lack inscriptions or dates? Genealogy is a lot like detective work, gathering clues to make the pieces of your family puzzle fit together.
Old, undated family photographs are pieces of evidence, clues that-if you examine closely enough-might yield some answers.
By knowing a little of the history of photography, you might be able to solve the mystery of those old photos by first recognizing what type of photograph they are-which in turn will help you narrow down the date range for when the photo was created. This blog article will help you do that. Evening Star Washington, D.
This dating guide compiled by the Curt Teich Archives, a wonderful wealth of images and information, provides detailed information about the postcard print numbers and dates. Further Resources "Postcard History," Smithsonian Institution Archives. "Evolution of the Smithsonian Postcard," Smithsonian Institution Archives. There is some confusion on what Real Photo Postcards (RPPC) are, and how to differentiate from a printed postcard. Real Photo Postcards are photographs that are reproduced by actually developing them onto photographic paper the size and weight of Postcards, with a Postcard back. May 10, Dating Old Photo Postcards In addition to the postcards that everyone sends or collects from vacations, in the early years of the 20th century people often had a photograph taken and put on a postcard. Fortunately for us the manufactures of the photographic paper for the post card, have information on the back to help.
It was created with a camera obscura, a device used by artists to project images on a wall or screen. After a long eight-hour exposure time, the image became affixed. Perhaps your family pictures are identified-but in all likelihood many are not, so narrowing time periods for the creation of each photo is important in trying to date them. Some of my earlier GenealogyBank Blog posts provided other tips for dating undated photographs, including one showing how historical newspapers can assist greatly with photo dating by comparing the clothing of people in your undated photos to clothing styles shown in old newspaper advertisements.
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See a list with links to these photography-related blog posts at the end of this article. You can also use historical newspapers to learn how to recognize photographic types, and also to research photography studios, as shown by the newspaper articles used in this blog post.
To start, familiarize yourself with photographic timelines, such as the timelines available in the list of websites below. Although there are numerous types of photographic processes, most of your old photos are probably ambrotypes, daguerreotypes, tintypes, cabinet cards or carte de visites CDVsalong with some lesser-known types such as cyanotypes.
Since I'm no fashionista, I turned to websites such as Family Chronicle, which also has published two books on dating photos, for help in matching styles with a particular keitaiplus.comting experts such as Maureen Taylor, whose website includes a blog and provides teleseminars, are also a good resource. In my photo, both men are wearing loose-fitting jackets with wide lapels.
To see examples of different types of photos, use your favorite search engine such as Google. After searching for a specific type, such as a daguerreotype, click the image option. A distinctive characteristic of an ambrotype is that the image is a positive image created on a transparent sheet of glass, by what is known as wet plate collodion printing.
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James Ambrose Cutting is credited with the process, which dates to the early s. If you think you have an ambrotype take note of the casing, as the style can also be a clue to the time period.
Both types were printed on paper or card stock, and originally created through a type of albumen printing which was used to bind images to paper. It is also referred to as a calling or visiting card.
This cabinet card from my photo collection identifies the photographer as James S.
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Research shows he lived fromand if my guess is correct, this sepia-toned image was probably taken between She used it to record images of plants for her research, as described in this article from a South Dakota newspaper. Popular in the s, you can still find them today, and the photographic process is published on the Web.
This cyanotype from my collection is of an ancestor born inand I estimate it was taken between His technique also incorporated the camera obscura, but by introducing copper plating with a thin layer of silver exposed to the fumes of iodine crystals, he was able to capture the images.
Daguerreotypes were very popular from the s into the s or early s. Daguerreotypes or dags changed the world of photography, offering our ancestors their first opportunity to sit for portraits. Many appear to be serious or grimacing in their portrait-which, some people today speculate, was from having to sit still for a long time while their picture was being taken.
However, this may be somewhat of a myth. Exposure time ranged from seconds, and after the sitting time was reportedly just a few seconds. If one wanted multiple pictures, there was no way to make copies of the original-so multiple sittings would have to occur.
This ad from a New York newspaper promoted a daguerreotype exhibition to benefit local charities. Dags of many famous people can be found online, including some of Abraham Lincoln at www. The tintype production method is similar to that of ambrotypes.
Other common names of similar photographic processes are melanotype and ferrotype. Sometimes they were created with a wet plate and at other times with a dry plate.
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The image was underexposed and darkened by lacquering or other methods, and then coated. Interestingly, the metal used was not tin, but a very thin iron that resembled tin.
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A magnet can determine if there is metal in your picture. Since tintypes were often taken at carnivals, many have a fun quality about them. Notice in this tintype a Library of Congress imagea man was seated before two mirrors placed at right angles, in order to provide five images.
Tintypes were often sold in a paper sleeve for protection. The maid looked at the man sheepishly.
To learn more about tintypes and the other commonly-used photographic processes, revisit the timeline at Phototree. The site also has tips to help you identify the characteristics of pictures.
Although this is just a sampling of photographic types, hopefully this article gives you a few ideas on how to identify and date your family treasures. Go get that box of old family photos and look at them closely.
In the early stages of postcard production, government-produced postcards varied in size, depending on the type of postcard. On June 1,the General Postal Unionan international postal organization, signed a new treaty, changing its name to the Universal Postal Union.
This treaty set the maximum size for postcards produced by governments of member nations at 3. Afterpostcards typically measured 3. In the s, some printers began producing 4 x 6 inch postcards.
Curt Teich was the largest volume printer of these types of postcards in the world from the s to the s. This dating guide compiled by the Curt Teich Archivesa wonderful wealth of images and information, provides detailed information about the postcard print numbers and dates. Report of the Postmaster-General. Greetings from the Smithsonian A Postcard History See how Washington, DC and Smithsonian visitors have shared their trips with others by taking a historic look at the Smithsonian through the picture postcard.
Oct 22, French postcard dating from | Source This is the oldest card in my possession. The address side gives the date the card was manufactured, September , along with instructions that ONLY the address was to appear on this side of the card, with further instructions on how to write the address accurately. [Annual Auction] [Annual Show & Sale] [Newsletter Archives] [Postcard Dating] Post Card History and Dating Methods Although the world's first picture post cards date from the s to the mids, post cards, as we know them, came into being in the United States about Sep 05, Movie star postcards have been collected by the public since the silent era. New York Giants real photo postcard with the blank panel for writing at the bottom. Only the address could be written on the back. Dating Real Photo Postcards In the United States real photo postcards originated in .
Dating Postcards. Menu: Greetings from the Smithsonian.
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I Introduction and History. II Dating Postcards. III History of Postcards. IV Postcard Galleries. II Arts and Industries Building.