May 18, 2011

Civil War Era Photo Album Arrives!

A few days ago a Civil War era photo album arrived in my mailbox. It was sent to me by a reader of my Olive Tree Genealogy blog, who had also seen my Lost Faces website. 

My reader is a woman who told me she bought the photo album many years ago, mainly because most of the photos were identified by name. She hoped to find a descendant but wasn't sure how to go about the search. So she tucked the photo album away, only to pull it out last month and offer it to me as a gift.

Many readers know of my personal collection of Civil War era CDVs (Cartes de Visite) and tintypes. I also collect daguereotypes and ambrotypes. Many of my photo albums with their identified photos are online on Lost Faces.

You can imagine my delight when my new friend offered to send me her album for Lost Faces. She does not wish to be recognized and has asked me to keep her name anonymous but I can still give a public shout out to such generousity of spirit.

When the album arrived, I spent an enjoyable afternoon slowly documenting and photographing the album page by page. Although the album is in rough shape the CDVs are still in very good shape, and the names of individuals are written in beautiful legible handwriting on the album pages.

Tomorrow begins the work of carefully and slowly removing each picture from its album page. After I remove each picture I photograph both front and back and list each photo by identified name. At this time I also assign a unique identifier and number to each photo that was in the album. I'll share more on how I do this in my next blog post.

6 comments:

The Grandmother Here said...

When you say the album is Civil War Era, does that mean the pictures are of Americans rather than Canadians?

The name on the picture shown looked like Nathaniel Dutton and I was excited because there are Duttons in Oxford County, Ontario. But looking closer I think it's Sutton not Dutton.

Genealogy Blogger said...

Hi Diana - By Civil War era I'm referring to years, not locations. I mean the time period 1860s and in some cases early 1870s in regards to when the photos were taken (my best estimate)

In this case the photo album is American and the surname is Sutton :-) I've got a post scheduled to come out in a week which provides the full list of names and photographer locations on each identified CDV

a3Genealogy, Kathleen Brandt said...

Wow...Trying not to covet! Too late. Loving RAOK from readers!

Judy said...

Don't know if I understood what you meant about explaining the removal and ID process, but I hope it's possible to give us hints on actually removing photos safely from old albums. I have a beautiful velvet album that belonged to my husband's grandmother. The photos aren't labeled, although I can identify a few, but I can't see a way to slide the photos out without using some force. Any tips on tools or techniques for removing photos that have been in an album for more than 100 years will be appreciated so much!

Judy said...

PS-It just dawned on me that you said the names in the album are Sutton-that was the maiden name of my husband's grandmother who owned my velvet album!!

Wishing...wishing...wishing.... ;-)

Arcee said...

I have a photo of 2 WWI soldiers in uniform, taken in Florida by my grandmother. They have names and states (Texas & PA) but I don't know how to find recent relatives who might like a copy which I would be happy to share.
I remember one of the names was Chester Waugh. I would have to look for the other, but I have it.
Robin Wallace, Asheville, NC