1800s

Vintage: Gum Bichromate Process by Robert Demachy (late 19th Century)

Vintage: Gum Bichromate Process by Robert Demachy (late 19th Century)

Robert Demachy was the leading French proponent of Pictorialism and the director of the Photo-Club de Paris, the French parallel to the American Photo-Secession (led by Alfred Stieglitz), the Viennese Kleeblatt, and the British Brotherhood of the Linked Ring. Like his American and European counterparts, Demachy produced and promoted a type of photography that self-consciously evoked drawing and painting-part of…
Historic B&W photos of Copenhagen, Denmark, late 19th Century

Historic B&W photos of Copenhagen, Denmark, late 19th Century

In 19th century, Copenhagen experienced a period of intense cultural creativity known as the Danish Golden Age. Painting prospered under C.W. Eckersberg and his students while C.F. Hansen and Gottlieb Bindesbøll brought a Neoclassical look to the city’s architecture. In the early 1850s, the ramparts of the city were opened to allow new housing to be built around The Lakes…
Vintage: Women’s Styles of Maine from the Late 19th Century

Vintage: Women’s Styles of Maine from the Late 19th Century

19th century fashions are highly romanticized in books and movies. Despite the prim and proper feminine ideal of the day, fashions in this period created an often exaggerated, ostentatious look. Tight corsets, gigantic hoop-skirts, and outrageous bustles make today’s fashion trends look sedate by comparison. These rare and interesting vintage photographs from Camden’s Knox Mill treasurer Charles W. Babb (1863-1956)…
Vintage: Daguerreotypes of St. Louis from 1848-70 by Thomas Easterly

Vintage: Daguerreotypes of St. Louis from 1848-70 by Thomas Easterly

Thomas Easterly (1809-1882), a native of Vermont, was an itinerant photographer in Iowa and the upper Midwest until 1848 when he settled in St. Louis. He operated a daguerreotype studio in the city until the 1870s. Thomas photographed mostly portrait, but street and urban photography were parts in his work. Here are some rare photographs capturing everyday life in St. Louis…
Historic B&W photos of Berlin, Germany (19th Century)

Historic B&W photos of Berlin, Germany (19th Century)

The Industrial Revolution transformed Berlin during the 19th century; the city’s economy and population expanded dramatically, and it became the main railway hub and economic centre of Germany. Additional suburbs soon developed and increased the area and population of Berlin. In 1861, neighboring suburbs including Wedding, Moabit and several others were incorporated into Berlin. In 1871, Berlin became capital of…
Vintage: Washington DC in the mid-19th Century (1840s-1860s)

Vintage: Washington DC in the mid-19th Century (1840s-1860s)

In the 1830s, the District’s southern territory of Alexandria went into economic decline partly due to neglect by Congress. The city of Alexandria was a major market in the American slave trade, and pro-slavery residents feared that abolitionists in Congress would end slavery in the District, further depressing the economy. Alexandria’s citizens petitioned Virginia to take back the land it…
Vintage: Dublin in the late 19th Century (1860s-1890s)

Vintage: Dublin in the late 19th Century (1860s-1890s)

Dublin, unlike Belfast in the north, did not experience the full effect of the industrial revolution and as a result, the number of unskilled unemployed was always high in the city. Industries like the Guinness brewery, Jameson Distillery, and Jacob’s biscuit factory provided the most stable employment. New working class suburbs grew up in Kilmainham and Inchicore around them. Another…
Vintage: Victorian Era Portraits by Lady Clementina Hawarden (1860s)

Vintage: Victorian Era Portraits by Lady Clementina Hawarden (1860s)

Lady Clementina Hawarden (1 June 1822-19 January 1865) was a noted portrait photographer of the 1860s. Hawarden first began to experiment with photography in 1857, taking stereoscopic landscape photographs before moving to large-format, stand-alone portraits of her daughters. Much of Hawarden’s life remains a mystery to us. It is doubtful that she kept a diary as nothing has been discovered,…
Vintage: Everyday Life of Cairo in the 19th Century (1860s-1880s)

Vintage: Everyday Life of Cairo in the 19th Century (1860s-1880s)

Under the Ottomans, Cairo expanded south and west from its nucleus around the Citadel. The city was the second-largest in the empire, behind only Constantinople, and, although migration was not the primary source of Cairo’s growth, twenty percent of its population at the end of the 18th century consisted of religious minorities and foreigners from around the Mediterranean. Still, when…
Vintage: B&W Photos of Scotland from between the 1840s and 1880s

Vintage: B&W Photos of Scotland from between the 1840s and 1880s

In 19th century Glasgow became one of the largest cities in the world, and known as “the Second City of the Empire” after London. After 1860 the Clydeside shipyards specialised in steamships made of iron (after 1870, made of steel), which rapidly replaced the wooden sailing vessels of both the merchant fleets and the battle fleets of the world. It…
Vintage: Amsterdam in Victorian Era by Jacob Olie (1890s)

Vintage: Amsterdam in Victorian Era by Jacob Olie (1890s)

At the end of the 19th century, the Industrial Revolution reached Amsterdam. The Amsterdam-Rijn kanaal was dug to give Amsterdam a direct connection to the Rhine and the Noordzee kanaal to give the port a connection with the North Sea. Both projects improved communication with the rest of Europe and the world dramatically. They gave the economy a big boost.…
Vintage: Everyday Life in Jamaica (1890s)

Vintage: Everyday Life in Jamaica (1890s)

The second half of the nineteenth century was a period of severe economic decline for Jamaica. Low crop prices, droughts, and disease led to serious social unrest, culminating in the Morant Bay rebellions of 1865. However, renewed British administration after the 1865 rebellion, in the form of Crown colony status, resulted in some social and economic progress as well as…
Vintage: Helsinki in the late 19th Century (1890s)

Vintage: Helsinki in the late 19th Century (1890s)

During the 19th century, Helsinki became the economic and cultural center of Finland; as elsewhere, technological advancements such as railroads and industrialization were key factors behind the city’s growth. The first Helsinki railway station opened in 1862 with service to Hämeenlinna. Beginning from the late 19th century, the Finnish language became more and more dominant in the city, since the…
Vintage: Japan in the late XIX Century (Meiji period, 1870s-1880s)

Vintage: Japan in the late XIX Century (Meiji period, 1870s-1880s)

In 1869 The Emperor was restored to nominal supreme power, and the imperial family moved to Edo, which was renamed Tokyo (“eastern capital”). However, the most powerful men in the government were former samurai from Chōshū and Satsuma rather than the Emperor, who was fifteen in 1868. These men, known as the Meiji oligarchs, oversaw the dramatic changes Japan would…
Historic B&W photos of Amsterdam, Holland in the 19th Century

Historic B&W photos of Amsterdam, Holland in the 19th Century

The end of the 19th century is sometimes called Amsterdam’s second Golden Age. New museums, a train station, and the Concertgebouw were built; in this same time, the Industrial Revolution reached the city. The Amsterdam-Rhine Canal was dug to give Amsterdam a direct connection to the Rhine, and the North Sea Canal was dug to give the port a shorter…
Vintage Daguerreotype portraits from XIX Century (1844 – 1860)

Vintage Daguerreotype portraits from XIX Century (1844 – 1860)

Mathew B. Brady (1822 – 1896) was one of the first American photographers, who pioneered the daguerreotype technique in America. Brady opened his own studio in New York in 1844, and photographed Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams, among other celebrities. Here is a collection of mid 19th century Daguerreotypes produced by Mathew Brady’s studio (1844 – 1860). From the…
Historic B&W photos of Florence, Italy in the 19th Century

Historic B&W photos of Florence, Italy in the 19th Century

Florence replaced Turin as Italy’s capital in 1865 and, in an effort to modernise the city, the old market in the Piazza del Mercato Vecchio and many medieval houses were pulled down and replaced by a more formal street plan with newer houses. The Piazza (first renamed Piazza Vittorio Emmanuele II, then Piazza della Repubblica, the present name) was significantly…
Vintage Black and White photos of German Castles

Vintage Black and White photos of German Castles

The centuries of invasive enterprises of the Romans from the South, Vikings from the North, and the multitude of marauding tribes and nomads from the East, each wreaking their own special brand of terror, necessitated construction of border, royal and community fortifications throughout Europe. But individual castle building is what sets Europe apart from previous defensive constructions. Personal castle building…