In addition to the postcards that everyone sends or collects from vacations, in the early years of the 20th century people often had a photograph taken and put on a postcard. Fortunately for us the manufactures of the photographic paper for the post card, have information on the back to help date the card. Playle has a wonderful website to help us. It contains the letters AZO, with four triangles pointing up — dated This is a favorite of mine, as it is an outdoor scene.
dating old postcards
Tips for determining when a U.S. postcard was published
This guide is meant to aid the collector in identifying and dating real photo postcards, and to act as a reminder that it is impossible to do so with great accuracy. A lthough real photo postcards were made in a variety of ways, they hold one identifiable feature in common. The tonalities of photos are completely continuous to the eye producing true greys, for they are created by the reaction of individual photosensitive molecules to light rather than the transfer of ink from a plate. In printed images the grey areas are usually made up of black marks that are spaced to create the optical illusion of greys. Though most of us today are familiar with the concept of photo grain, this is mostly because we have experienced very large prints made from small 35mm negatives.
Value of Old Postcards
Every subject known to man can be found on a postcard. Post Card History and Dating Methods. Although the world's first picture post cards date from the s to the mids, post cards, as we know them, came into being in the United States about Prior to that time, there were trade cards and postal cards, which usually carried advertising or printed messages. Trade cards became popular with the enterprising merchants who distributed them from the s to the s.
See how Washington, DC and Smithsonian visitors have shared their trips with others by taking a historic look at the Smithsonian through the picture postcard. Postcards, as we are familiar with them today, have taken a considerable amount of time to develop. First restricted by size, color, and other regulations, postcard production blossomed in the late s and early s. Postcards were popular because they were a quick and easy way for individuals to communicate with each other. Today deltiology, or the collection of postcards, is a popular hobby.