History with its flickering lamp stumbles along the trail of the past, trying to reconstruct its scenes, to revive its echoes, and kindle with pale gleams the passion of former days. ~Winston Churchill

29 October, 2012

The Zoo, 1900

A warning-- for a post featuring a lot of cute and beautiful animals, this is very depressing. Zoos in 1900 didn't quite have the animal standard of living we're used to...

The Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, from glass plate negatives. 

From the collection of the Field Museum Library, Chicago. 


The Field Museum Library




The Field Museum Library



The Field Museum Library

10 October, 2012

A Proper Send-off

When a ship sets sail, it's important to say goodbye properly. And how do you do that? With streamers, of course!




George Jackman, State Library of Queensland

The Stratheden, Hamilton, Australia, 1930s-50s. Source



Sam Hood, Australian National Maritime Museum

The S. S. Ceramic, Sydney, c. 1925. Source



Sam Hood, Australian National Maritime Museum

The S. S. Ceramic, Sydney, c. 1925. Source


08 October, 2012

St. Andrews in the 1840s

Photographs of St. Andrews, Scotland, a town that is dear to my heart. Not only that, but photographs from the 1840s, essentially the first decade of photography. You may remember Hill and Adamson for their portraits of the 1840s; if not, have a look, they are amazing. 

Notes on the images: Hill and Adamson were using Talbot's calotype process, creating paper negatives (calotypes) and making prints from them (salt paper prints). Some of the images in this postare original salted paper prints; these have experienced noticeably more deterioration  with colour shift and fading and losing detail and other fun stuff that happens when photos deteriorate. The others come from images of the negatives themselves, digitally transferred into positive images by the University of Glasgow Library (let us pause and thank them). Paper negatives are more stable than salt prints, and much of the original detail and contrast is preserved. Originally, the salted paper prints would have looked more like the digitally altered images. So, I thought I'd use both.

There are many more things to say, but enough with the text, let's look at the pictures!

From the special collections of the University of Glasgow. 



University of Glasgow

St. Andrews Cathedral and St. Rule's Tower. From negative. Source



University of Glasgow

The cathedral and tower, original salted paper print. Source



University of Glasgow

South Street, from negative. Source

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