Dating old pichtures
Many are found in gilt frames or in the leather or plastic (thermomolded) cases of the earliest ambrotypes.Size range from one-fourth plate and are often datable by the Potter's Patent paper holders, adorned with patriotic stars and emblems, that were introduced during the period.The technique of making such enlargements were so complicated that few photographers had the proper skill to make an enlargement from a standard studio negative.Much of the demand for larger photographs could be satisfied by making larger negatives and larger cameras to handle them.REVENUE STAMPS ARE A TOOL FOR DATING PHOTOGRAPHSAs part of the effort by the Congress to fund the Civil War, among a number of taxes levied was an 1864 Act which provided that sellers of photographs affix stamps at the time of sale to "photographs, ambrotypes, daguerreotypes, or any sun pictures", according to the following schedule, exempting photographs too small for the stamp to be affixed: Less than 25 cents: 2 cents stamps (blue/orange). Values for all of these stamps appear in the Scott's Specialized Catalog of United States Stamps.side set of images of a single scene, viewed simultaneously through an optical device held to the eyes like a pair of binoculars.Flaws that were not obvious in the smaller cards now became very visible. Success in retouching led to innovations in the darkroom and at the camera.
Uncased tintypes have been found with canceled tax stamps adhered to the backs. Neither the chocolate tint nor the rustic look are to be found in pre 1870 tintypes. Tiny portraits, 7/8 by 1 inch, or about the size of a small postage stamp, became available with the invention of the Wing multiplying cameras.The stamps date these photographs to the period of the Wartime Retail Tax Act, 1 Sept. They were popularized under the trade name Gem and the Gem Galleries offered the tiny likeness at what proved to be the lowest prices in studio history.Gem Galleries flourished until about 1890, at which time the invention of roll film and family cameras made possible larger images at modest cost.Each eye looks at a slightly different image, and the fusion of the two images in the mind creates the illusion of depth. Sizes of stereo cards and slides: The typical mass manufactured stereo card of the period between the Civil War and WW I had a standard dimension: 3 1/2" x 7". The earliest of these cards were made on slightly curved mounts; later cards were made on slightly curved mounts that permitted greater clarity when they were seen in the stereopticon viewer.A number of photographers, working with larger field cameras, created slightly larger cards of 4" x 7", 4 3/8" x 7" and 4 1/2" x 7".