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Aug 10, 2022

Using New Tech to Investigate Old Photographs

In 1860, roughly 30 years after photography was invented, a series of photos were taken across Europe and India. Many of these were captured by prominent photographers at well-known landmarks and sites. But in other cases, it’s still unclear where, when, and by whom these photographs were taken. How to identify the location of these photographs?

An article by Foeke Postma published in the bellingcat.com web site describes one method that has been used recently to identify the locations.

Postma writes:

“New tools and a wealth of online data make it easier to navigate more than 150 years of evolving landscapes, cities, buildings and street names. Reverse image searches, Google Lens, digitised newspapers, heritage and auctioneering websites, AI colourisation and tools such as Peakvisor can help add valuable information and understanding to historic art collections.

“These tools and methods allowed us to pinpoint the location of several of these photographs. Here’s how we did it — and how you could, too.”

Yes, you might be able to use such techniques to identify the locations of old, unlabeled, family photographs.

You can read Foeke Postma’s article at: https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/2022/08/09/using-new-tech-to-investigate-old-photographs/.

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