These spectacular postcards show how some English landscapes have changed while others have remained exactly the same. They are the vintage postcards that our ancestors would have enjoyed while on holiday in Victorian Britain. The stunning beauty of these landmarks in the 1800s has been brought to life thanks to these colour postcards displayed here alongside photos as they look today
The Ireland of the 1890s may have been one of greater poverty than modern-day Ireland, but the views and beauty still came for free for anybody who walked the country’s shores. These incredible postcard photos, taken between 1890 and 1900, offer a magical look back at the Ireland of over 120 years ago.
Postcards from Calcutta in the late 19th and early 20th century are widely regarded as belonging to the golden age of postcards. They were dominated by photographs taken by companies like Johnston and Hoffman, prints by Thacker, Spink & Co., or oleographs by Raphael Tuck and Sons – which were also based on photographs. Take for example this series of six postcards of Calcutta. The pastel shades and dramatic skies mark significant deviations from the standard images of the city that were in circulation. The artist may or may not have used photographs as reference, but unlike most photographs that depict churches, public buildings or trams, these drawings recall a city that is bustling with people. Indians and Europeans seem to share space on his vibrant canvases without indication of social hierarchy. But who is this Frank Clinger Scallan whose name appears in each one of these paintings.
Taken at face value, it is nothing more than a postcard of a religious painting, sent by a holidaymaker to one of his closest friends. The signature on the back, however, suggests that all might not be what it seems. Sent by the legendary cryptologist Alan Turing to his psychologist Dr Franz Greenbaum, it appears to be a coded reference to one of history’s most enduring mathematical puzzles, as well as a possible hint to his thoughts of suicide.
Over a century ago, these spectacular shots were given an injection of colour to bring them to life. Crumbling castles and families paddling in the sea – these stunning postcards showcase a spectacular Scotland on the cusp of change at the end of the 19th century.
There was a booming postcard industry during the war, as soldiers sent their affections home to those they hoped were waiting.
The first time Sumner McKane mentioned publicly he was making a movie about old postcards, someone in the audience groaned, “Oh, no.” McKane could only laugh. He understood. A filmmaker, musician and historian, he was underwhelmed with the idea himself. He only agreed to spend time with the collection of early-20th-century black-and-white postcards as a favor to a friend at the Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport, which owns the collection. He didn’t think it would lead to anything. Instead, his reluctant dive into the museum’s vast collection of glass-plate negatives from the Eastern Illustrating & Publishing Co. opened a time capsule to a century ago and led to McKane’s third feature-length film, “The Northeast by Eastern.”
These postcards from the Detroit Publishing Company capture the natural grandeur of Switzerland at a time when true color photography was still in its infancy. These pictures of the sublime landscapes and stately towns of Switzerland were created using the Photochrom process, a technique for applying color to monochrome images with nuance and precision.
These color postcards of the sun-baked streets and Moorish architecture of Tunisia were created using the Photochrom process, a technique for applying realistic color to monochrome images that predated the spread of practical color photography. They capture the ornate palaces and bustling markets of Tunisia in its first decades as a French protectorate.
Over the next six months, Newberry Library, Chicago, will take possession of 2.5 million postcards from the Curt Teich Postcards Archives Collection, previously housed at the Lake County Discovery Museum in Wauconda. The collection's centerpiece is the 360,000-card archives of Curt Teich, a company that operated in Chicago from 1898 to 1978 and was the world's biggest printer of advertising and view postcards. Teich photographers took pictures in more than 10,000 towns and cities in the U.S., Canada and 115 other countries.
The collection also includes the Leonard A. Lauder Raphael Tuck
Collection of more than 35,000 postcards known as oilettes; the John I.
Monroe Collection of postcards printed by Paul Finkenrath of Berlin; and
the James R. Powell Route 66 Collection