1900s

Vintage: Photography by Jack London (1900s)

Vintage: Photography by Jack London (1900s)

In his photography, London showed his powers of perception and revealed his compassion, respect and love for humanity. Most of his photographs remained unpublished until 2010 when authors Jeanne Campbell Reesman, Sara S. Hodson and Philip Adam published Jack London Photographer with 200 images. London lived during the first true mass-media era, when the use of photographic images ushered in…
Vintage: Everyday Life of Siberia (1900s)

Vintage: Everyday Life of Siberia (1900s)

The growing power of Russia in the West began to undermine the Siberian Khanate in the 16th century. First, groups of traders and Cossacks began to enter the area. The Russian Army was directed to establish forts farther and farther east to protect new settlers from European Russia. Towns such as Mangazeya, Tara, Yeniseysk and Tobolsk were developed, the last…
Vintage: New York City before the Indoor Toilets

Vintage: New York City before the Indoor Toilets

If you’ve ever bemoaned the fact that you share a bathroom with several family members or housemates, you’re not alone. Most New Yorkers live in apartments and most units have just a single bathroom. A hundred and fifty years ago, however, the situation was much worse. At the time, New Yorkers had just a few choices when it came to…
Vintage: People Mesmerized by Holiday Windows in New York City (1900s)

Vintage: People Mesmerized by Holiday Windows in New York City (1900s)

Each year department stores unveil their holiday window displays to admiring crowds. Festive windows have been a tradition in New York City since the 1870s; R.H. Macy, of the retailer Macy’s, is largely credited with having created one of the first Christmas window displays in 1874. In recent years, gazing into store windows has become almost as much a tradition…
Vintage: Portraits of President Theodore Roosevelt (1900s-1910s)

Vintage: Portraits of President Theodore Roosevelt (1900s-1910s)

When Theodore Roosevelt became president of the U.S. in 1901 America’s society and economy were changing rapidly, and with his energy and visionary leadership he set the maturing nation on the path to prosperous growth and diplomatic influence that would last throughout the 20th Century. By the time he left office in March 1909, Roosevelt also had changed forever the…
Vintage: Portrait of Miss Lily Elsie (1900s and 1910s)

Vintage: Portrait of Miss Lily Elsie (1900s and 1910s)

Lily Elsie’s biggest success came in creating the title role in the English-language version of The Merry Widow in the London production. Edwardes took Elsie to see the original German version (Die Lustige Witwe) in Berlin. Elsie was at first reluctant to take on the demanding part, thinking her voice too light for the role, but Edwardes persuaded her to…
Vintage: Scotland during the Edwardian Era (1900s)

Vintage: Scotland during the Edwardian Era (1900s)

The Edwardian era was a time of unprecedented social and political revolution in Britain. By the start of the new century, the country had reached a level of such general prosperity that, for the first time, working men and women were in a position to both argue and agitate for a share of the wealth. In Scotland, at the centre…
Vintage: Public portraits of President Theodore Roosevelt (1900s)

Vintage: Public portraits of President Theodore Roosevelt (1900s)

On September 6, President McKinley was attending the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York when he was shot by Leon Czolgosz. Roosevelt was vacationing in Vermont, and traveled to Buffalo to visit McKinley in the hospital. It appeared that McKinley would recover, so Roosevelt resumed his vacation in the Adirondacks. When McKinley’s condition worsened, Roosevelt began the trip to Buffalo.…
Vintage: Everyday Life of Mexico City (1900s)

Vintage: Everyday Life of Mexico City (1900s)

Under the rule of Porfirio Díaz, Mexico City experienced a massive transformation. Díaz’s goal was to create a city which could rival the great European cities. He and his government came to the conclusion that they would use Paris as a model, while still containing remnants of Amerindian and Hispanic elements. This style of Mexican-French fusion architecture became colloquially known…
Vintage: Everyday Life in Belgium (1900s)

Vintage: Everyday Life in Belgium (1900s)

Belgium was one of the first countries to experience an Industrial Revolution, which brought prosperity in the 19th century but also opened a political dichotomy between liberal businessmen and socialist workers. The king set up his own private colonial empire in the Belgian Congo, which the government took over after a major scandal in 1908. Belgium was neutral but its…
Vintage: Streets of St. Louis, Missouri (early XX Century)

Vintage: Streets of St. Louis, Missouri (early XX Century)

When Missouri became a state in 1821, St. Louis County was created from the boundaries of the former St. Louis subdistrict of the Missouri Territory; St. Louis city existed within the county but was not coterminous with it. Starting in the 1850s, rural county voters began to exert political influence over questions of taxation in the St. Louis County court.…
Vintage: San Francisco Before the Quake (1900s)

Vintage: San Francisco Before the Quake (1900s)

By 1890, San Francisco’s population approached 300,000, making it the eighth-largest city in the United States at the time. Around 1901, San Francisco was a major city known for its flamboyant style, stately hotels, ostentatious mansions on Nob Hill, and a thriving arts scene. The first North American plague epidemic was the San Francisco plague of 1900–1904.
Vintage: Everyday Life of Seoul in Korean Empire (1900s)

Vintage: Everyday Life of Seoul in Korean Empire (1900s)

In the late 19th century, after hundreds of years of isolation, Seoul opened its gates to foreigners and began to modernize. Seoul became the first city in East Asia to have electricity, trolley cars, water, telephone, and telegraph systems all at the same time. Much of this was due to trade with foreign countries like France and United States. For…
Vintage: Boats of Old China (Junks) in the 1900s

Vintage: Boats of Old China (Junks) in the 1900s

A junk is an ancient Chinese sailing ship design that is still in use today. Junks were efficient and sturdy ships that sailed long distances as early as the 2nd century AD, although whether this is indeed a date by which the hull form which we know as the junk’s had found its final form is extremely dubious. Most scholars…
Vintage: Sami People and Arctic (1900s)

Vintage: Sami People and Arctic (1900s)

The Sami people are an indigenous Finno-Ugric people inhabiting the Arctic area of Sápmi, which today encompasses parts of far northern Norway, Sweden, Finland, and the Kola Peninsula of Russia. The Sami are the only indigenous people of Scandinavia recognized and protected under the international conventions of indigenous peoples, and are hence the northernmost indigenous people of Europe. Sami ancestral…
Vintage: American Child Laborers by Lewis Hine (1900s-1910s)

Vintage: American Child Laborers by Lewis Hine (1900s-1910s)

In 1908 Lewis Hine became the photographer for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC), leaving his teaching position. Over the next decade, Hine documented child labor, with focus on the use of child labor in the Carolina Piedmont, to aid the NCLC’s lobbying efforts to end the practice. In 1913, he documented child laborers among cotton mill workers with a…
Vintage: Daily Life of Vienna, Austria by Emil Mayer (1900s-1910s)

Vintage: Daily Life of Vienna, Austria by Emil Mayer (1900s-1910s)

From 1891 to 1896 Emil Mayer studied law at the University of Vienna. In 1896, he earned the juris doctorate. In 1894, while still a student, he converted from the Jewish community to Catholicism. After his studies he settled in Vienna, where he worked as a lawyer. His first experience in photography was as an amateur. He was a member…