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Dating Old Photos
Dated Imprints
Public Domain


Examples from the Photographers Database

Typical Records are illustrated below, they range in detail from a simple source citation, to several lines of description. In a few cases a record may be just a cross-reference, but those are kept to a minimum, and only used when the real name is substantially different from the name the record is found under, which is rare. All photographer records have a source citation or file reference, a few have both. When the source is a file, it may be a text file, which could be anything from a single descriptive line quoted from some source, to several pages of research notes. If the source file is an image file, it is usually a photograph by the photographer, or occasionally a photograph of the photographer or a photo studio, camera or other item associated with that photographer, or a copy of an advertisement or the photographers imprint.

Sample Photographer's Record:

Name: Mundy, L C
Address: USA,NY,Utica,11 Broad
Description: Photographer of photo or photos in the ClassyArts collection: {000/065-0.jpg-[1877(ins)]} Estimated Active Date: 1877
Source: A. J. Morris personal collection
File Reference: 161

Source Detail:
Photos and photo related materials in the Andrew J. Morris personal collection and virtual collection files.

NOTE: Dates reflect information from THE CITED SOURCE only, not a compilation of all sources referring to the same photographer. This record only has one date, one found written on the photograph and judged to likely be the date it was taken. Different records show different dates, the start or end of the business, a date when active, or an estimated date based on the age of a photograph or other clues on the image (e.g. written dates are treated as estimates since they aren't always accurate). If it were a date we estimated, instead of one written on the image, it would show a span of years, such as '1875-1880'. For the location, the format is COUNTRY,STATE[if USA],City,Street.

Two Records For the same Photographer:

Name: Hinsey, Alexander
Address: USA,IL,Pontiac
County: Livingston
Description: Listed in the 1860 census for Pontiac village, Livingston county IL as 'Alex Hensey' age 22, born IL, occupation 'Dagarian', wife Eliza, also 22, born MI. Alexander Hinsey in 1870, Photographer, 31, wife 30 born NY, dau Nettie 3.
Born: 1838(ca)
Start Date: 1860(ca)
End Date: 1870(ca)
Source: US Federal Census

Source Detail:
Quick look-ups in online copies of the US Federal censuses, 1840-1930.

Name: Hinsey, Alexander
Address: USA,IL,Pontiac
County: choose
Description: Active as a daguerreian in Pontiac, Ill., 1860.
Active Date: 1860(ca)
Source: Craig's Daguerreian Registry

Source Detail:
Information extracted from Craig's Daguerreian Registry at (as of October 2001)

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Example Photos From Our Archives

Typical Images are available by clicking on the links below. It is important to note the size (in pixels) as listed in the description, and the approximate file size. These give a clue as to the quality of the image. Most images in our collection are of good quality, but we include a few that are fuzzy or smaller than we like to see, when they are the only examples we have for a particular photographer, or they are identified, and we feel family members may prefer a bad copy to none-at-all. Poor quality or damage to the image not readily visible in the thumb-nail, will be noted in the description.

Chester Spiegel 1877

CDV portrait of a young boy, full length, standing, leaning on the arm of a chair that has been draped in cloth, plain background. His hair is short, combed and parted to one side, doesn't cover the ears. He wears a jacket with two rows of buttons down the front and possibly a sailor-like white collar, stiff cuffs of a white shirt extend out the arms of the jacket. He has shorts that go just below the knee, long striped socks that reach up to the bottom of the shorts, and leather boots that extend a couple inches above the ankle. He has a broad dark belt around his stomach area that could be part of his outfit, but more likely is an addition by the photographer; it probably goes around the posing stand, the base of which is visible behind his feet. The cardstock is white both sides, smooth on front and glossy-smooth on back. At the bottom front is the imprint 'Mundy, 11 Broad St. Utica, N.Y.' The back is inscribed in ink 'Taken / October 15th 1877, / Chester Spiegel.' with that last line in darker ink. The imprint has an ornate rectangular area with cherubs and curlicue lines, and a banner at bottom, below which is the photographers signature in facsimile. In the center of the rectangle is his monogram LCM and on the banner '11 Broad St' on left and 'Utica, N.Y.' on right. The printed signature reads 'L C Mundy'

Chester Spiegel 1877 -- 87059 bytes (396 pixels wide, 638 pixels high)
Back of Spiegel portrait showing L C Mundy imprint -- 112240 bytes
Back showing L C Mundy imprint and an inscription: Taken October 15th 1877, Chester Spiegel

Other sample images, not yet in the database:
This little pig went to market stereo card, 1424 pixels wide, 705 pixels high, and approximately 537 kilobytes in size
Welcome Hotel, Burns OR real-photo postcard, 1595 pixels wide, 978 pixels high, and approximately 464 kilobytes in size


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And pay 7.5 to 50 cents (depending on subscription level) for each image like this!

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