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Do you recognize the background? This game of matching was paying off. Armed with a set of city directories, I quickly determined that the photographer, Napoleon Loupret was at 51 Central Street in Lowell, Massachusetts from to Bingo — I had a probable date or so and a city Lowell, Massachusetts. I also knew that I had a family, a woman, who was about 30 or so, who had children, born sometime between and When I first started researching this photograph, I had a hunch that the woman was my second-great-grandmother, and that the children were my great-grandmother and her older brother.

The age differences were just about right. But — once I narrowed the date range to , and later to about — the ages no longer worked. My great-grandmother was the youngest of her family, but born early enough that she would have been 12 at the time of the photographs, not 2 or 3 as the children pictured clearly are. Great post, as usual.

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Fashions changed in the 19th century just as they did in the 20th. In the early s, for example, curled bangs became popular. Yes, sometimes, sitting back and analyzing an old photo is one of the most interesting aspects to genealogy as a hobby. I find facial hairstyles to be the best clue in men. One is pretty easy to date because it shows his youngest son, born in , as a toddler.

Is My Image a Tintype?

Those started to go out of fashion around or so. Thank you for the follow too! My family has come across some tintype photos of what we believe is our older family, but the time range is so hard to figure out. Could I send you an email of these and you give me any info you can. Hi Tasha — Sure, I can look at them. I have a box of tin photos too and they also came from the same photographer.

Tintype - 19th Century Photographs

We might be related! I have a tin type of my grandmother,her name was Siddine Owens, Navarro County,Texas, Another photo is showin her husband o be, Aflter about 10 years old when the civil war broke out.

Now, about the photo ot Siddin Owens, she is dressed well, wearing a boach at her neck and a ring on her finger. The photographr tocuhed these two items up with gold, and it is real gold, otherwise it would have turned green the next day. After all of these years, it is still GOLD. I have never seen this before. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. A List of Photographers in Lowell, Massachusetts In the Phoenix Plate Co.

They created a sensation among the photographers throughout the country, and the pictures made on the chocolate- tinted surface soon became the rage. During this period "rustic" photography also made its debut with its painted backgrounds, fake stones, wood fences and rural props. Neither the chocolate tint nor the rustic look are to be found in pre tintypes. Gem Period - They were popularized under the trade name Gem and the Gem Galleries offered the tiny likeness at what proved to be the lowest prices in studio history. Gem Galleries flourished until about , at which time the invention of roll film and family cameras made possible larger images at modest cost.

It was no longer necessary to visit a studio that specialized in the tiny likeness. Gem portraits were commonly stored in special albums with provision for a single portrait per page. Slightly larger versions also existed. Some Gems were cut to fit lockets, cufflinks, tie pins, rings and even garter clasps. Carnival Period - Itinerant photographers frequently brought the tintype to public gatherings, such as fairs and carnivals.

Plate Size and Color

They came equipped with painted backdrops of Niagara Falls, a beach, a boat, and other novelty props for comic portraits. In the nineteenth century it was common to request a photographer to make a deathbed portrait of a loved one. A card stock product, nearly four times the size of previous photographs on card stock. The larger size created new problems of photographic quality. Flaws that were not obvious in the smaller cards now became very visible. This gave rise to a new skill of photo retoucher. Success in retouching led to innovations in the darkroom and at the camera.

Diffusion of the image reduced the need for retouching.

This led to verbal skirmishes between photographers who insisted in "truth in photography". Opponents called retouching degenerating, demoralizing, and untruthful practices. Cabinet cards can be further dated by color of stock, borders, corners and size. Design and colors of these cards followed those of the cards of that time. Cabinet cards are rarely found after Photographs mounted on card stock.

The most popular mount sizes were: Less than 25 cents: Stamps were applied from 1 Aug.


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Blue playing card stamps are known to have been used in the summer of as other stamps were unavailable as the levy came to an end. The stamp was to be canceled by requiring that the seller cancel the stamp by initializing and dating it in ink. The most rare of all of these stamps is the one cent red "playing cards" and the most common is the orange two cent "playing cards".

How to date a Photograph

The stereograph is an almost identical side- by- side set of images of a single scene, viewed simultaneously through an optical device held to the eyes like a pair of binoculars. Each eye looks at a slightly different image, and the fusion of the two images in the mind creates the illusion of depth. Sizes of stereo cards and slides: The typical mass manufactured stereo card of the period between the Civil War and WW I had a standard dimension: This is the size commonly found in boxed sets.

The earliest of these cards were made on slightly curved mounts; later cards were made on slightly curved mounts that permitted greater clarity when they were seen in the stereopticon viewer. Until about the smaller sizes were sold at twenty five cents per card and the larger "artistic" size for fifty cents. Within a decade sets of twenty or more were made on printing presses, not by a hand photo- graphic process.

The on- glass slides, a stereo form more popular in Europe than in America, were available in two standard sizes, 45 x mm and 6 x 13 cm. Both were smaller than the standard card stereograph. A large contact print. To identify the wet- plate negative, look for an uneven coating were the syrupy colloidal base of the glass plate did not flow to the very edges of the glass.


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  • Dating and Identifying Your Old Family Photographs?
  • Tintype - Wikipedia.
  • How to Date Old Photos - Daguerreotype, Cabinet Card, Tintype - Geneal!
  • Tips for dating old photograhs.

Many of the plate edges reveal torn or rippled emulsion and even the fingerprints of the darkroom technician who handled it with wet fingers. Only occasionally is it possible to determine whether a print was made from a wet- plate negative, especially if the outer edge of the print has been trimmed away. It is the edge that would immediately reveal the irregularities of the coating prepared in the field. Few Americans could afford the cost of a studio enlargement made with a solar enlarger. The technique of making such enlargements were so complicated that few photographers had the proper skill to make an enlargement from a standard studio negative.

Much of the demand for larger photographs could be satisfied by making larger negatives and larger cameras to handle them. Wet plate negatives were often 11" x 14" up to 20" x 24" sheets of sensitized glass. Wet- plate photographers helped to open the American West by taking their cameras out of the studio and on location assignment with the survey teams of the U.