Historic Photographs

Photography has been a great invention around first half of nineteenth century. It created possibilities of experimentation for the creative minds interested in making real images on paper. Following is a picture of a badly restored and mounted photograph created by one of the older techniques. We tried to analyze the technique by which it might have been created. For confirmed identification of the photographic technique we require some sophisticated analytical instruments, but i tried to do some very basic analysis without costlier techniques.

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Three striking observations are 1) the way tear has been mended, 2) the quality of the backing/mount-board, and 3) the label…

The microscopic view pointed towards either salt print or silver albumin print.

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Since we had to remove the backing and its a known fact that silver albumin prints are characteristically very thin, the task was difficult, with added delicacy because of the big tear.
There were more pictures that seemed to be silver albumin prints and with inappropriate recent mounting board.

When i started the daunting task of removing these boards, i discovered that the boards were not alone, these pictures had their mount board changed more than once as there were huge portions of the earlier mount boards still stuck to the photographs.

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1 Comment

  1. […] started  our discussion regarding old photographs (https://heritagepreservationatelier.com/2017/05/20/historic-photographs/) with an example of a silver albumin print. In this blog, we’ll see some other examples from […]

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