19th Century Photography

Welcome to our 19th Century Photography site. We hope you will find this information on the history of photography both entertaining and informative. Whether you collect antique photographs, or just have a box of old family photos to identify, these pages will help you determine exactly what you have. We do not discuss the monetary values for old photos, but be assured, whatever you have has some economic value, in addition to whatever sentimental value it may represent. Take good care of those old photos!

The links in the header at the top of this page will take you to the main sections of the site. The History section provides a brief overview of the development of photography. The Types pages will give you a short description of each of the most popular photographic processess and formats used in the 19th century. The Dates section is our most popular area, with detailed information on dating card mounted photos printed before 1900.

For a short essay on the place of photography and photohistory in the pursuit of family history, follow the Genealogy link. Our Gallery has thumbnail images of the illustrations used on this site, with links to descriptive pages and larger views. We have also added a section on Postcards — which looks at dating early 20th century cards.

If you find these pages of interest, or if you have further questions or comments, join our Photo Identification Discussion Group for an ongoing discussion of the topics covered here. Or go to ClassyArts, and its associated blog: When was That? for more of our efforts to record and disperse photohistory information.