Vintage Photographs

  • Reflecting on times of ..
  • flights of fancy
  • exotic ladies
  • exotic travel
  • ancient civilizations
  • mundane work places
  • leisure locations
  • wartime woes
  • crazy ideas
  • seafaring adventures
  • beauty at rest
  • slow bicyclists
  • fast cars
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Welcome to SCImages


Vintage photographs that I come across increasingly impress me! In an age of digital photography and videography, it is amazing just how many great, enticing, unusual and erotic photographs exist from yesteryear. I have decided to explore this more thoroughly and I am going to include many of these vintage pictures in the headliner and blog articles of this website. Scanned from the internet and else ware, these are relevant to the golden age of film photography from the 1880's to the 1990's, including ancient autos, aeroplanes, advertisements, family portraits, street life, nude female models and pinups, from that era as well as more recent times.

Yonge Street 1890

Click on the image to get a magnified view of this vintage photo of Yonge Street, Toronto from the 1890's. Note the preponderance of overhead wires but little traffic or people; a far cry from today!


Now as to what I do! I specialize in the digital restoration of damaged old photographs, negatives, slide transparencies and documents. Your special family antiquities can be salvaged by digitally scanning the objects and then by utilizing state of the art computer software, correct the deficiencies and print onto modern materials.

On The Move!

Posted on Dec-04-2016 by Admin   |   

Moving Day circa 1920

Click on the photo to magnify the image

Moving Day in Union City, Michigan! Taken from the Bicentennial 1976 booklet at the Union City Public library, the picture, estimated to have been photographed in the early 1920's, is titled "Ed Lincoln and his truck". The truck, pictured moving a family's possessions, is stopped at the corner of Broadway and Allen Streets with Soldiers Park and the Congregational Church in the background. By the look of the leafless trees and dreary wet weather, it appears to be either late fall or early spring time.

Moving Day was a tradition in New York City dating back to colonial times and lasting until after World War II. On February 1, sometimes known as "Rent Day", landlords would give notice to their tenants what the new rent would be after the end of the quarter. The tenants would spend good-weather days in the early spring searching for new houses and the best deals and on May 1st all leases in the city expired simultaneously at 9:00 am, causing thousands of people to change their residences, all at the same time!

Moving Day (French: jour du déménagement) is also a tradition (but not a legal requirement) in the province of Quebec, dating from the time when the province used to mandate fixed terms for leases of rental properties. It now falls on July 1, which is also Canada Day.

A Femme Fatale!

Posted on Nov-13-2016 by Admin   |   

Mata Hari

Click on the photo to magnify the image

Mata Hari is considered one of the most notorious spies in history and was a very tragic figure in real life. Born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle in the Netherlands on 7 August 1876, her early life was privileged and comfortable. However, after the death of her mother in 1891 and the decline of her father's business, Zelle left home aged 18 and soon married a much older man and moved to the Dutch East Indies island of Java. Unfortunately it was an abusive relationship which produced two children, a son who died at two from some form of poisoning and a daughter who died at 21, possibly from complications relating to syphilis!

Zelle moved back to Europe in 1903 and began performing in Paris under the name of Mata Hari (Malay meaning "Eye of the Dawn") as an exotic dancer in 1905. She instantly won acclaim for her near-naked performances, which were quite risque for the time. By the time World War I had broken out in 1914, she had retired from dancing, but it was at that point she was blackmailed, by the French, to use her seductive powers to spy on Crown Prince Wilhelm, eldest son of the German Kaiser. However Zelle it seemed, became a double-agent by promising to spy for the Germans, although this later was found to be dubious in nature. The French eventually uncovered her in a sting operation and a sensational, though extremely one sided, trial unfolded. Zelle was convicted and executed by firing squad on 15 October 1917, and it was said that Mata Hari refused to be blindfolded and even blew a defiant kiss toward the firing squad!

In hindsight, it appears Mata Hari was more a scapegoat of the French failures during the war, rather than any damage she had done as a spy. Many historians believe she was, an unfortunate pawn caught in the horrors of war, rather than a "femme fatale"!

Wish You Were Here!

Posted on Oct-27-2016 by Admin   |   

Westbury Leigh postcard

Click on the photo to magnify the image

The photo above is actually of a picture post card depicting the quaint town of Westbury Leigh in England around the 1900's. By that time the post card had become a favourite of travellers on vacation and a lucrative trade for makers and vendors.

The earliest known picture postcard was a hand-painted design on a card, posted in Fulham in London to the writer Theodore Hook in 1840, bearing a penny black stamp (another first). He probably created and posted the card to himself as a practical joke on the postal service, since the image is a caricature of workers in the post office. Amazingly, in 2002 the postcard sold for a record £31,750!

In the United States, the custom of sending through the mail a picture or blank card stock that held a message at letter rate, began with a card postmarked in December 1848 containing printed advertising.The first commercially produced card was created in 1861 by John P. Charlton of Philadelphia, who patented a postal card, and sold the rights to Hymen Lipman, whose postcards complete with a decorated borders, were labeled "Lipman's postal card".

Now That's Camping!

Posted on Oct-09-2016 by Admin   |   

Family on holiday in a railway camp coach, 1956

Click on the photo to magnify the image

The serene scene above is entitled, "Family at Cheddar station sitting in deckchairs beside a camping coach, 1956." Camping coaches were former railway carriages offered by many railway companies in the United Kingdom, that families or groups of friends could hire and stay in for their holiday. They had been converted to contain a bedroom and bathroom, kitchen and living room. and were situated on camp sites at scenic railway stations around Britain and at coastal resorts or in the countryside.

The coaches were old passenger vehicles no longer suitable for use in trains, which were converted to provide basic sleeping and living space at static locations. The local railway staff looked after the coaches as part of their duties. Many of the coaches would be removed from their stations in the winter and overhauled at the railway's workshops ready to be returned in the spring, being placed on sidings.

The number of camping coaches offered for hire declined from the mid-1960s as other forms of holidays became more popular and, as the condition of the vehicles deteriorated, so the number of staffed stations at which they could be sited were decreased. The last were offered to the public by the London Midland Region of British Railways in 1971!

A Rather Large MP3 Player!

Posted on Sep-27-2016 by Admin   |   

Marconi-Stille recorder

Click on the photo to magnify the image

If you are older than 50 you will probably remember someone having a reel to reel tape recorder in their home! These rather antiquated and cumbersome machines evolved into much smaller 8 track and then cassette tape recorder players which, in themselves, were eventually taken over by CD/DVD disc players and now SD devices.

The behemoth shown above, is the Marconi-Stille recorder being installed at the BBC in 1935. At the time the BBC required a fast run-up time, a direct motor drive, quieter running and high speed rewind to replace their aging sound recording equipment. Marconi was responsible for the mechanical design of the system and the BBC Research Department for the electronics.

Modern Wonder Magazine, in a September 1937 article wrote "One of the wonderful machines in use by the BBC is the Marconi-Stille magnetic recorder-reproducer. This instrument enables broadcast speeches and music to be "stored" on a long steel ribbon by magnetism so that they may be re-broadcast at any time.....The machine comprises two large drums on which special steel tape is wound by means of an electric motor. Between the drums, electro-magnets are arranged, and the tape passes between the pole-pieces of these magnets. The impulses in the coils of the electro-magnets cause the tape to be magnetized in larger and smaller amounts, and when the tape has been treated, it forms a highly accurate record of speech and music."

A superb and very technical article can be seen here

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