Dating carte de visite survival guide for dating a medical student
Given the number of calls a lady or gentleman made during a day or week, imagine the prodigious number of photographic visiting cards they would have to buy.
Contemporary writers do give us some tantalizing glimpses of where they did continue to play the role of social intermediary.
In the early 1860s, both types of photographs were essentially the same in process and design.
Both were most often albumen prints, the primary difference being the cabinet card was larger and usually included extensive logos and information on the reverse side of the card to advertise the photographer’s services.
Cabinet cards, popular in the late 1800s, are easy to recognize because they are mounted on cardstock, often with an imprint of the photographer and location just below the photo.
There are similiar card-type photographs, such as the smaller which was introduced in the 1850s, but if your old photo is about 4x6 in size then chances are it is a cabinet card.
The last cabinet cards were produced in the 1920s, even as late as 1924.
patented in France by Andre Adolphe Eugine Disderi in 1854, and became the first type of photograph to be mass-produced.
Despite the name, cartes de visite were rarely used as visiting cards.Although a writer in 1862 did say the carte de visite had come to "overshadow the contents of every card basket," it is likely visitors left their photograph there because the photograph album was still somewhat of a rare item at the time.By 1862, the fashion of "having one's likeness photographed upon his visiting card," according to Scientific American, had been modified into the custom of distributing dozens of small portraits among friends.The details need to be compared with fashionable dress of a given date, and then subtle judgments may be made, or additional data supplied through knowledge of the family tree, the photographer's name and address, or the nature of other contributory details such as studio props., or buildings and vehicles included.Knowledge of the history of photography in terms of various processes and their dates of introduction, styles of image produced such as the carte-de-visite, and the size of images most popular at different times, can also be brought to bear.