From Mathew Brady's Civil War photos to Ansel Adams' landscapes to Irving Penn's magazine shots, antique and vintage photographs are highly collectible. Photography was introduced in the U.S. in 1839, and immediately became popular.
Daguerreotypes dominated the field of photography until the mid-1850s. A daguerreotype is a copper plate covered with a thin layer of polished silver that looks like a mirror when held at a certain angle. By the mid-1840s, they were affordable for the average person, and it is therefore relatively easy to find old daguerreotypes today. Most daguerreotypes were studio portraits, where the subject posed for the photograph at the photographer's studio. Daguerreotypes featuring outdoor or street scenes are far rarer.
In the mid-1850s, ambrotypes replaced the daguerreotype. An ambrotype is a negative that has been put on glass and placed against a black background to make it look like a positive. Ambrotypes were popular until the 1890s. Another example of a cased image like the daguerreotype or ambrotype is the tintype, which was patented in 1856 and was made using a thin sheet of iron.
Stereoviews, also known as stereographs, were also created in the late 1850s and reached a peak of popularity in the 1870s. Stereoviews were cheap photographs that simulated a 3D view. In the 1880s, various companies decided to mass-market stereoviews that featured pictures of foreign locations to homes and schools. Stereoviews remained popular throughout the early 1900s.
In 1859, the carte de visite, which had been created in France, was introduced to the U.S. The carte de visite, or CDV, was a 2.5 inch by 4 inch print made of paper. As it was more affordable than previous forms of photography, it was accessible to a wider group of people. Many Civil War soldiers had their photographs taken and printed as a CDV.
Real photo postcards are another popular form of photographic print. Real photo postcards were made by developing a photograph onto postcard-sized photo paper with a postcard backing. They are still made today.
The most popular paper photographic print is the gelatin silver print, or black and white photograph. Gelatin silver prints have a long lifespan if well-maintained. Most 20th cen...
Scarcity, condition, and the identity of the photographer and subject all play a role in determining the value of antique and vintage photographs. Some examples of popular (and collectible) photographers include Lewis Hine, Robert Frank, W. Eugene Smith, Danny Lyon, Paul Outerbridge, Jr., and the photographers associated with the Farm Security Administration, such as Ben Shahn, Dorothea Lange, and Walker Evans.
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Clutton steeplejack's vintage photographs reveal century of local historySomerset Guardian, July 26th
Clutton steeplejack's vintage photographs reveal century of local history. By SG_SNorbury | Posted: July 26, 2015. Demolition of Temple Cloud brickworks in 1921. VIEW GALLERY. Clutton steeplejack's vintage photographs reveal century of local history. X...Read more
Vintage photographs reveal tattoo-mad men and women with inkings from HEAD-TO-TOEDaily Mail, July 22nd
In the 21st century there has been an explosion in the number of young men and women getting themselves inked, with tattoo sleeves now seen on every High Street.... but a new book around body art proves the movement is nothing new. The tome, titled 100 ...Read more
See Vintage Photographs of Summer Camp Memories From the '80sTIME, July 13th
Summer is for many a season of youth and dreams, of lighthearted moments we have longed for, as sunbeams and shadows stretch on hot sidewalks and a nightly breeze, along with crickets' chirping, serenades our dreamy thoughts. “Many of us as kids wait ...Read more
Williamsport: Grit Photograph CollectionNorthcentralPa.com, July 9th
This book is a look through 100 years of Grit newspaper history. Dietrick Lamade, a German immigrant and self-made man who settled in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, published Grit a Sunday-morning staple and America's favorite family newspaper. The first ...Read more