Historic City Views

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: Historic views of Melbourne (1800s)

Vintage: Historic views of Melbourne (1800s)

The decade of the 1880s was one of extraordinary growth, when consumer confidence, easy access to credit, and steep increases in the price of land, led to an enormous amount of construction. This ‘land boom’ was followed by a severe economic crash in the early 1890s which lasted until the end of the century. During the boom, Melbourne had reputedly…
Vintage Glass Plate images of Streets from Sydney City (1900s)

Vintage Glass Plate images of Streets from Sydney City (1900s)

The year 1840 was the final year of convict transportation to Sydney, which by this time had a population of 35,000. The municipal council of Sydney was incorporated in 1842 and became Australia’s first city.Gold was discovered in the colony in 1851 and with it came thousands of people seeking to make money. Sydney’s population reached 200,000 by 1871. Following…
Vintage: historic photos of Hamburg, Germany in the late 19th Century

Vintage: historic photos of Hamburg, Germany in the late 19th Century

Hamburg adopted in 1860 a democratic constitution that provided for the election of the Senate, the governing body of the city-state, by adult taxpaying males. Other innovations included the separation of powers, the separation of Church and State, freedom of the press, of assembly and association. Hamburg became a member of the North German Confederation (1866–1871) and of the German…
Vintage: historic views of Breslau in the late 19th Century

Vintage: historic views of Breslau in the late 19th Century

Breslau became part of the German Empire in 1871, which was established at Versailles in defeated France. The early years were characterized by rapid economic growth, the so-called Gründerzeit, although Breslau was hampered by protectionist policies of its natural markets in Austria-Hungary and Russia and had to turn to the German domestic market. Breslau’s population grew from 208,000 in 1871…
Historic B&W photos of Chicago (19th century)

Historic B&W photos of Chicago (19th century)

In the 19th century, Chicago became the nation’s railroad center, by 1910 over 20 railroads operated passenger service out of 6 different downtown terminals. In 1883, the standardized system of North American time zones was adopted by the general time convention of railway managers in Chicago. This gave the continent its uniform system for telling time.
Historic B&W photos of Venice, Italy (19th century)

Historic B&W photos of Venice, Italy (19th century)

Venice became Austrian territory when Napoleon signed the Treaty of Campo Formio on 12 October 1797. The Austrians took control of the city on 18 January 1798. It was taken from Austria by the Treaty of Pressburg in 1805 and became part of Napoleon’s Kingdom of Italy, but was returned to Austria following Napoleon’s defeat in 1814, when it became…
Historic B&W photos of Rome, Italy (19th Century)

Historic B&W photos of Rome, Italy (19th Century)

In 1861 Rome was declared capital of Italy even though it was still under the Pope’s control. During the 1860s, the last vestiges of the Papal States were under French protection, thanks to the foreign policy of Napoleon III. It was only when this was lifted in 1870, owing to the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, that Italian troops were…
Historic B&W photos of Bordeaux, France (19th century)

Historic B&W photos of Bordeaux, France (19th century)

The 19th century is synonymous with the Industrial Revolution and the city of Bordeaux was developed and modernised during this period. The population doubled, to reach 230,000 inhabitants in 1891. At the end of the 19th century it finally and proudly became a Republican city. Artistic competitions were organised to show its political affiliation and the “Bronze Horses of the…
Vintage: St. Louis Streets (circa 1900)

Vintage: St. Louis Streets (circa 1900)

On August 22, 1876, the city of St. Louis voted to secede from St. Louis County and become an independent city. Industrial production continued to increase during the late 19th century. Major corporations such as the Anheuser-Busch brewery and Ralston-Purina company were established. St. Louis also was home to Desloge Consolidated Lead Company and several brass era automobile companies, including…
Historic B&W photos of Antwerp, Belgium (19th century)

Historic B&W photos of Antwerp, Belgium (19th century)

In 1830, the city was captured by the Belgian insurgents, but the citadel continued to be held by a Dutch garrison under General David Hendrik Chassé. For a time Chassé subjected the town to periodic bombardment which inflicted much damage, and at the end of 1832 the citadel itself was besieged by the French Northern Army commanded by Marechal Gerard.…
Historic B&W photos of Munich, Bavaria, Germany in the 19th century

Historic B&W photos of Munich, Bavaria, Germany in the 19th century

n 1806, Munich became the capital of the new Kingdom of Bavaria, with the state’s parliament (the Landtag) and the new archdiocese of Munich and Freising being located in the city. Twenty years later Landshut University was moved to Munich. Many of the city’s finest buildings belong to this period and were built under the first three Bavarian kings. Especially…
Vintage B&W photos of Venice, Italy (19th century)

Vintage B&W photos of Venice, Italy (19th century)

In the late 19th century Venice flourished as a port and a manufacturing center. The railway reached Venice in 1846. However Venice did not prosper under Austrian rule. In 1848 revolutions swept Europe and Venice rose in rebellion against the Austrians. For a short period Daniele Manin became president of an independent Venice. However Austrian forces bombarded the city and…
Historic B&W photos of Milan, Italy (19th century)

Historic B&W photos of Milan, Italy (19th century)

The political unification of Italy cemented Milan’s commercial dominance over northern Italy. It also led to a flurry of railway construction that had started under Austrian partronage (Venice–Milan; Milan–Monza) that made Milan the rail hub of northern Italy. Thereafter with the opening of the Gotthard (1881) and Simplon (1906) railway tunnels, Milan became the major South European rail focus for…