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 photos. Mary 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 attic-or maybe buried in the back of some closet? 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.
Cabinet Cards The larger version of the carte-de-visite, these images were mounted on heavy card stock to keep the photos from curling. These photographs were frequently displayed in cabinets or bookcases, hence the name. Time period: Post-Civil War period, beginning in and enjoyed a peak of popularity from to Cabinet cards are. A more accurate way - if your photograph is a carte de visite or a cabinet card (i.e. - only) - is to use our DIY dating wizard - it is UNIQUE and FUN and is available ONLY on this website. The Wizard will date your photograph to within a 9 year time span or less, if not, we will custom date your photograph personally at no additional cost. Oct 14, Cabinet Cards. Cabinet cards were introduced in by a British studio called Windsor & Bridge. As they were larger (typically 4" x 6" or 4 ?" x 6 ?") and printed on card stock, they were more durable than other paper types.
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Share using email. Courtesy of Tracee Hamilton This photo of the King brothers is a tintype probably taken circa Type of photograph To learn more about my mystery photo, I checked examples of photos in the collections of Andrew J.
Fashionable clues I now turn to fashion to see if what these men are wearing can help me narrow the date range of the photo.
Also, if there is any object with writing in the photo it will appear reversed. Photo was often displayed in an ornate, hinged box.
But tintype photo studios were still around into the early s as a novelty. Early tintypes were put under glass, but later were placed in cardboard sleeves. Cabinet cards are rarely found after Identifying characteristics : The thickness of the card stock, the color of its borders and whether it has rounded corners s to or square corners after can often help determine the date of a photograph.
Many prints also included the name and location of the photography studio on the bottom of the card.
Last Use: Cabinet cards are rarely found dating after , although cabinet cards continued to be produced into the early s. Dating a Cabinet Card: Details of a cabinet card, from the type of card stock to whether it had right-angled or rounded corners, can often help to determine the date of the photograph to within five years. First introduced in the s, cabinet card photographs were similar to cartes-de-visite, only larger. Measuring approximately four inches by six inches and mounted on cardstock (similar to cardboard), cabinet card photos got their name from their size-they were just the right size to be displayed on a cabinet. Although some cabinet cards.
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Dating old photos cabinet cards
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Antique Photographs and Photography - Identifying Daguerreotypes, Ambrotypes, and Tintypes
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. Can you identify what type they are, and thereby limit the date range for the people in the picture?
Good luck with your detective work! I am so glad I found your blog and twitter account today! I have a 2. Is there any way I will ever be able to tell when it was taken. It is of one of us in a diaper so no clothes, no houses, nor cars.
It is in bad shape, but it is the only childhood pic of whoever it is. Can you help. Some people compare the distance between various facial features eyes, nose to see if they can find a match, but since this is a baby picture, it is doubtful it will work.
Hope you solve this puzzle some day. Nice site! It is Thanks for any info.
Unfortunately I am unable to tell you much. Try getting an expert to examine it as hand coloring started very early.
It would also be important in determing the proper care. Please follow up when you learn more about it. It is available as a free or as a print-on-demand book. Some mats and cases were used for only a brief time, allowing you to date some early photographs to within a year.
Sep 05, About cabinet cards. Cabinet cards are photographs mounted on stiff pieces of cardboard. They were introduced in the s and gradually superseded the smaller carte de visite format. The front of the card is usually printed or embossed with the photographer's details, and the back of the cabinet card is often printed with elaborate fireemblemheroestips.coms: May 15, This is such a great article on dating old photos. I have one more suggestion - I have been successful in dating some of my cabinet cards by cross referencing the photographer in the city directory of the time period, noting what years that photographer appeared at the particular address printed on the card. DATING CARD MOUNTED PHOTOGRAPHS © [email protected] - HOME - Comments Card mounted photographs from the 19th and early 20th century, such as cartes-de-visites, cabinet cards and stereographs can be generally dated by their format and mount type.
The dates provided are based on my own research, a five-year labor of love, where I located nearly 5, objectively dated early photographs. This book would not have been possible without the assistance of the many institutions, collectors and antique dealers who shared their expertise and their dated images, provided illustrations, and made many suggestions and corrections.
Thank you, all. I was wondering if that dates from the design itself or is just a playful tag added by the author.
Secondary links Subscribe. From the office: 10 tips for dating old photographs. By Editor, 12 December - pm. Thursday, 12 December We received a Christmas card from the Llewellyn-Bowen family this week, Laurence, his wife and two daughters dressed up in a s jazz style. It made me think of our feature on postcards in our Christmas issue written by photo dating expert Jayne Shrimpton that included a Christmas postcard from her collection. This card, sent from the Sudan infeatures a photograph of a soldier inserted into a festive mount.
We associate postcards now with holiday scenes, but in the first half of the 20th century they were also commonly used as mounts for personal photographs. We find some of the most common queries from readers are to do with photo dating. Boxes of old photographs can sometimes come down the family with no indication of who the sitters are.
With a date, you can narrow the field of possible suspects and even, sometimes put a name to a face as it stares back at you from the past:. Understanding the history to cartes de visite CDV and cabinet cards will also help you narrow down a timeframe.
There are plenty of websites that can guide you. Just as with format, sizes for prints changed over time. Again, look online to find guides on sizes of photographic prints. Many CDVs include the name of the photography studio. Although usually long gone, you may be able to find them listed in directories. There are also websites that collect details of photographers.