How to date Victorian and Edwardian photographs

Use costume history to date photos. Learn tips and hints and examples to help you to achieve a date within 5 years either way of the photo ‘s original date. This will make your genealogy research so much more meaningful to you and your family. Learn by example how to use your own detective skills to examine your photo in detail. See how close you can get to the date which in some cases you may be able to verify with documentation. A Crowd scene of old Hebburn with children and women and men of all ages. The costume in the photograph is analysed in detail with snapshots of the main elements of the picture that lead to a date conclusion. Click on the headings below to go to full pages.

Impressive photos in Victorian costumes – Old & New Photography

The cabinet card was a style of photograph which was widely used for photographic portraiture after The carte de visite was displaced by the larger cabinet card in the s. In the early s, both types of photographs were essentially the same in process and design. However, later into its popularity, other types of papers began to replace the albumen process.

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The authors felt at the time that the images lent authenticity to the text, and their book is now regarded as a key work in the history of documentary photography. Source information: The image has been provided courtesy of The London School of Economics and Political Science Library and further information about the image and the publication can be found here. From the mids Italian migrants came to Britain from poor mountainous areas including around Parma and Lucca and, by the century’s end, from more southerly sources in the Frosinone and Caserta provinces.

Their regional costumes, languages, Catholic faith and extended family structure distinguished them from the host community. Most Italians who settled in Britain at this time came firstly to London especially in the Holborn area , but by the s had reached Glasgow and other northern industrial cities. The specific regions from which Italians came often determined the type of work they did. Many from the Parma area came as travelling musicians and street performers and gave rise to the stereotype of the Italian organ-grinder accompanied by a monkey, inspiring the mid-Victorian outcry against the mistreatment of some of the children involved in this trade.

Some Italians, particularly from the Lucca area, were associated with making plaster of paris statuettes, while migrants from Pordenone in the northeastern corner of Italy were associated with mosaic and terrazzo work. Many Italians who settled in Glasgow came from the Lucca area, especially the small town of Barga. A few earlier migrants from Como were more specialised and dealt in barometer and thermometer making and were found all over the country from Less skilled migrants from the south of Italy often worked as labourers in the asphalt and pavoir industry in London.

The South Wales Italian community came from the mountainous zone between Genoa and Parma, particularly from the town of Bardi, to own and work in cafes.

Aberdeen exhibition to show snapshot of Victorian-era photo craze

Evening dresses were often off the shoulder. Hair was parted in the centre with ringlets at the side of the head, or styled with loops around the ears and pulled into a bun at the back of the head. Paisley or crochet shawls were fashionable accessories, as were linen caps with lace frills for indoor wear, and large bonnets for outdoors. Capes with large collars were fashionable. Very fashionable men sported low, tightly cinched waists, with rounded chests and flared frock-coats that gave them a rather hour-glass figure inspired by Prince Albert.

Format. Begin by identifying the photograph’s format which will narrow the date to a broad time span. The major formats in the Victorian family album in Britain.

It was an era of exciting discoveries, inventions and exploration following the Industrial Revolution. Today, we look back at the British Empire differently to how it was viewed at the time. Indigenous people were often treated unfairly by the invading British and tensions ran high. Over time, the empire broke down and gradually, countries gained independence. You can read more about the British Empire and how it changed the world, in our British Empire facts.

In , an engineer named Henry Bessemer invented a new method for turning iron into steel making it possible to build ships, bridges and other structures on a scale like never before! Before trains, the fastest mode of transport was horses. All aboard! For the first time in world history, more people lived in cities than in the countryside , making city centres very cramped! Poor people lived in crowded slums — houses which were overcrowded, smelly and in bad repair.

As technology advanced, new machines left lots of people without jobs. Many resorted to workhouses , which provided basic poor relief like food, medical care and shelter in exchange for labour.

Victorian Photography

Over , photographs exist in collections at the National Library of Scotland, dating from the s to the present day. Mostly the photographs are part of the Archives and Manuscript collections , but others are held in our collections of maps , rare books and music , and in general collections and the Moving Image Archive.

Often they are associated with other material — for example, in personal or organisational archives. Scotland played a key role in photography from early on.

The exhibition “Victorian Britain and Tintype Photograph” and accompanying book (in the works) are part of an endeavour to establish the British tintype as a.

Most of us today take photographs for our family albums. The lucky ones among us have also inherited family photographs from the past. These photographs provide another type of record that can offer insights into our family history. But what can they tell us? How can we elicit the information they hold? And how do we analyse or evaluate that information?

The purpose of this course is to suggest how to approach the interpretation of the photographic record. Please keep referring to your own family photographs as you work through the course. This will help you assimilate the information and assist in the analysis of your own photographs. Don’t assume that once you have studied a photograph, you will have garnered all the information there is to be found.

Picturing the family

It has been running now for several years and in that time we have explored the lives of Victorian photographers and the people who sat for their portraits to be taken. The images on this site represent a wide range of 19th century Victorians from the lower working classes up to Royalty, from both Great Britain and the wider world. Whatever your interest in the world of Victorian photography, be it fashion, social history or even advertising, there is plenty here to interest and possibly entertain you.

See more ideas about Victorian photography, Vintage photography, Vintage photos. Provides vintage photograph restoration, books, and photo dating tips to “Mad as a hatter” In 18th and 19th century England mercury was used in the​.

What people are wearing in historical photographs can offer many clues as to the earliest possible date of a portrait, group photograph, or street scene with figures. Dress details may provide additional information, such as the social status of the wearer, their occupation, and sometimes their location or region. The details need to be compared with fashionable dress of a given date, and then subtle judgments may be made, or additional data supplied through knowledge of the family tree, the photographer’s name and address, or the nature of other contributory details such as studio props.

Knowledge of the history of photography in terms of various processes and their dates of introduction, styles of image produced such as the carte-de-visite, and the size of images most popular at different times, can also be brought to bear. These combined factors can usually be combined to allow the dress historian to arrive at a close approximate dating for any given photograph featuring people in clothes.

There might be a considerable time lag before London fashions reached the provinces, and older people, while picking up on the contemporary silhouette or material in their dress style, might retain some fashion features and hairstyles from their youth. Changes in men’s fashions have generally been more subtle, and less sensational than women’s, and photographs of even the most well-to-do gentlemen are therefore far more difficult to date accurately by dress alone.

In contrast, by the end of the 19th century women’s fashions tended to bring in a new detail each season, so the most fashionable ladies’ photographs can often be dated to within a year. Some fashion features neatly typify decades, for example men’s side partings and women’s ringlets in the s, men’s centre partings and women’s leg-of-mutton sleeves in the s. Certain features are time limited, such as crinoline frames worn only for eleven years from to , soft bustles gathered up by internal ribbons in the early s, artificial hairpieces from around to , fishtail trains on dresses c, stiff angular bustles over steel frames c, and the introduction of female fringes and hair frizzing in the s.

Looking at fashion plates and paintings, and original Victorian clothing, as well as observing the dress detail in Victorian novels and diaries, is essential background reference for the dress historian when seeking accurate dating for photographic portraits. Knowledge of tailoring and dressmaking, jewellery styles, trimmings such as furs and feathers, and accessories such as handbags, belts and hats, and of fabrics available and popular at different times, all contribute to making an accurate assessment of date.

It is worth noting that our view of the Victorians’ dress sense may have been somewhat distorted by both a tradition for wearing ‘Sunday best’ in photographs, and the need – in the first fifty years of photography – for photographic studios to issue instructions on what to wear, to achieve the best contrast and detail in black and white.

Victorian photographic techniques

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Dating Victorian photographs from the dress detail Victorian Women, Victorian Fashion, Victorian Home Decor. Saved from

From ‘Street Life in London’, , by John Thomson and Adolphe Smith The subject of the accompanying illustration is a vendor of cough lozenges and healing ointment. He was originally a car-driver employed by a firm in the city, but had to leave his situation on account of failing sight. His story, told in his own words, is as follows :- “First of all I had to leave my place on account of bad sight. It was brought on by exposure to the cold.

Inflammation set in the right eye and soon…. Find and follow posts tagged creepy pictures on Tumblr. Victorian photographer Emma Johnston is all but forgotten now but her work documenting the Hampstead middle-classes from to will be sold at auction later this month. A Knocker-up was a profession in England before alarm clocks were affordable or reliable. It was their job was to rouse sleeping people so they could get to work on time.

Dating old photos

Skip to main content Victorian Photography. Photography: A Victorian Sensation. Only 1 left in stock more on the way. An excellent little book on the early days of photography, published to accompany an exhibition last year at the National Museum of Scotland. I missed out on the book at the time, so it was good to get a copy, and look back on an excellent exhibition. NMS do a great exhibition, and always a great book to go with it.

Commercial portrait photography began in the s and old family photographs can portray ancestors from the early-Victorian era onwards. Many historic.

Science and Technology 5 min read. Discover how Victorian inventors and entrepreneurs succeeded in capturing the very first images. Daguerre was the first person to publicly announce a successful method of capturing images. Daguerre released his formula and anyone was free to use it without paying a licence fee — except in Britain, where he had secured a patent. Above: Black and white lithograph entitled La Daguerreotypomanie. This example has been adapted to take small rectangular images, and is fitted into a wooden box which once also contained the necessary equipment and chemicals.

A daguerreotype is a single reversed image, made as a direct positive onto a silvered copper plate. Its reflective surface is an easy way to tell the difference between a daguerreotype and an early photograph taken using a different technique. The image is made of a combination of silver and mercury, resting on that plate. Because they were so fragile, they were usually protected with a cover-glass and held in small leather-bound cases as treasured objects, in many ways similar to miniature painted portraits.

As the daguerreotype process only creates one image at a time, multiple copies of the same picture could only be produced by taking several photographs, or by engraving directly from the daguerreotype plate. See more daguerreotypes from the exhibition in our collections search.

How to date a Photograph