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I'm just now starting to archive all the photos my Mom has. Most of the ones we are doing now are the real old ones—her family photos and my Dad's family photos. The problem is she can't always narrow down the date enough to come up with a year. So that's causing me to have a lot of photos with '19xx-xx-xx' as the date. There aren't really any other family members who will know the answer so I doubt if the dates will ever be completed.

So that's causing me to have a lot of photos with '19xx-xx-xx' as the date. There aren't really any other family members who will know the answer so I doubt if the dates will ever be completed. Any suggestions as to how to handle situations like this so I don't have a long list of '19xx' photos?

I would suspect that most family photo collections have a considerable amount of paper prints that weren't dated or even captioned. Back then, it was probably so easy to think you would always be around to tell someone anything they wanted to know about your photos. Sometimes your prints will have part of the date, but then what year was it taken?

And even sadder, important people in our lives eventually pass, leaving us with only the memories they have successfully communicated to us. I must admit, my Mother is the last link to many of my family photos. Every day I wait to have her assist me with captioning info and dating our collection, is a day closer to the time I will be on my own for all of this information.

The basics of it are that you start off the filename of a photo with the date it was taken. Personally, I would rather see you mark them this way now, even though you are still a little bit hesitant and uncomfortable with how many of them you have.

You can get some information about a vintage photograph's origin simply 16mm still film edge code dating guide · Kodak roll film/print sizes. Which types of photos receive the most interest? Landscape and 3?4 portrait sizes, according to eHarmony's matching team. A medium shot. Looking for a little plus size online dating tips and tricks? We've added a dating and relationship expert to help you navigate dating as a plus.

Because, if you remove this information, you might be upset with yourself later for not making the effort to keep up with it. It won't hurt anything for this info to be there. If this highly specific formatting wasn't part of your workflow, then you might mistakenly make the assumption that you just forgot to include any kind of dating information in the filename or the caption within this photo. Additionally, it will now be documented for whomever inherits all of your work, that you didn't know this information.

It's possible for some of us who are taking it upon ourselves to archive our family's photos to just glance through many of our photos and remember what work we still have to do on them — such as finding out the date when particular photos were taken. But, put yourself in the position of someone who might take over your collection at whatever state it's going to be in.

They won't have all of your knowledge from all the time you spent with your collection. Just seeing those photos marked with x's will let this person know you did your best to find out when the photo was taken, but just never found out for sure.

Photo by olgaberrios. And so if it makes it seem more fun, think of it like you're putting together a giant and colorful jigsaw puzzle!

But other times, you're going to have to set pieces aside and wait until you gather more clues to help you figure out how they all fit together as a whole. You can't rule out looking for missing date information in places that are sometimes obvious yet easy to overlook. One of these places is the markings photo processors left us when developing our film.

Early last year, I found a collection of prints from a family vacation we took to Disney World. I wasn't sure when this trip was just from looking at them. My Mother was nice and wrote captions on the backs, but this time she didn't include the month or even the year that it happened.

Months later, I happened to come across a few slides my Dad took at a big theme park. Come to find out, they just happened to be from that same trip to Disney World! And it gets even better. Most slides have a date printed or stamped on them when they were developed. I can't say for sure this is the exact month and year we took our trip. But chances are, my Dad had the film developed that same month or the month after.

So this date gets me really close at least! Often, depending on the material the slide mount is made from, the photo processing date is either printed or stamped. You can see in this blowup image the stamped date that is almost invisible to the naked eye. Then I can label all of them with this month and year I found on the slides.

Like I was saying, it's really is like investigative work at times. As I piece together groups of photos, misplaced in different boxes and bags in my parent's house, I am finding clues that add up over time. And then I can really get a lot further into the process of chronologically placing these groups or events in order.

As far as prints, I rarely see any identifiable markings on their backs from processors. But, occasionally I will find a batch or two that were developed by a company that did print the processing date. Usually they are really faint and appear as almost watermarks. Various photo processing envelopes prints came in.

Sometimes, they are actually being stored in the original envelopes or boxes the prints and slides came back from the developers in. There might be processing date stamps, printed copyright dates, or other visual clues to help you narrow down a date. I've actually found a few paper cash register receipts from the developers with the date of purchase right there at the top, stuffed in the envelope with our stored prints!

I found this copyright date printed on the plastic 35mm negative holder we got from the film processor. Try getting a good start organizing your undated photos chronologically by how a person ages in them. Some will be harder than others to decipher — sometimes a person won't appear to change much from one year to another. This might be the best way for old photos of your parents — especially the ones before you were present. The initial unorganized state of chaos could be overwhelming to some people.

But, once you have the beginnings of actual order, memories may come back. I was so jealous! This goes along well with the last suggestion about ordering photos by how a person is aging in them. If for example, you are trying to organize a large collection of photos of your Mom, ask her to write out a simple timeline outline of her life in chronological order. Note as any dates as she can remember or you can help her recover. Be sure to list all major life events and the locations they occurred.

My Grandmother travelled with my Mother all over the United States while she was growing up.

Specific Tintype Plate Size Table. Credits/Resources/Related links. Postcards. Resource Links for Post Card Dating. Reference Photo Dating Books. A tutorial to help everyday people add the dates to photos in your Every day I wait to have her assist me with captioning info and dating our collection, .. the. pdf pages vary in size from what appears to be the top 1/2 or 1/3. What size images do I receive in my package? Do I also get prints? You will receive 12 - 24 images (depending on your package) x pixels, about.

They lived in many places before finally settling in Kentucky as adults. I have few really old photos in our collection — I mean ones that date back into the really early 's and mid to late 's. But for these, identifying clues such as the type of photograph, or the fashion subjects are wearing in the photo, could be important clues in discovering when the photo was taken.

For someone like myself who still knows little about any type of photo before the film stocks used in the 's, research will show there used to be types of photographs called daguerreotypecabinet card and tintype.

For example, if any of these are found to be represented in your collection, you will be able to narrow down a period of time when this type of photography was often used. The same with fashion and clothing — even in more recent decades. The 's here in the United States wasn't the only year for iconic fashion! Other periods had their own stand-out identifying style you can be on the look-out for. Especially with hats and other decorative accents like jewelry, scarves and shawls.

Also, take into consideration the colors and patterns used not only in clothing, but also in the furniture and items throughout a photograph. These are often clues to help you pinpoint a date range of a photo.

That's little ol' me standing in front of a couch that couldn't have been the product of that many decades!

Easy detective work here. Of course it's probably already occurred to you to ask your immediate family about the missing dates of certain photographs. Now, I know you probably haven't spoken to some of them in years or maybe even decades. And there might even be a good and unspeakable reason why you haven't!

But putting those negative stories and police records aside, consider how much knowledge they may recall that you and your immediate family can't.

Or you could friend them on whatever social networking site is popular or maybe email them. And while the U. Postal Service is still in business, you could even send them a real paper letter! They may LOVE you for showing or giving them a copy of an old photo they were in! Remember, a photo of a birthday party may represent just another party you had growing up to you. But to your cousin, or that odd hairy neighbor who lived down the street from you that just happened to drop by that day, it might have been a life changing experience for them!

Everyone is unique and files away memories in their brains differently than someone else. Oh of course I remember that birthday party of yours! You were so cute then. You had that cake decorated like a choo-choo train! And it was I remember that because my son had just turned 4 as well, just the month before, and so I knew exactly what present would be perfect for me to get you.

It was popular at that time and so it was difficult to find in stores, so I bought one for both of you at the same time! After reading all of this, you too might feel just like Patty D.

Please know that, when trying to implement any of the suggestions I just gave you, just making small baby steps of progress now will feel like great strides at times later.

Or maybe you could break it down a little bit further. Do whatever it takes, just to get you a little bit further along in organizing, sorting and labeling! And if this helps you to know, I scan my prints and slides completely out of order. And then I move the photos around in my photo manager Aperture to put them into some sense of chronological order using many of the above techniques.

I find this method to be easier for me because I am quick and comfortable with computers. So know this is a great option if you are the same way. If I personally had to do it this way, I never would have gotten started because like I said, our photos are almost completely out of order and my parents live 2, miles away.

It would have been extremely challenging to organize the entire collection first without their physical presence and help. So wrapping this up, Patty DI am so glad to hear you have such a good start on your photo collection. I bet it feels good! And this was a great question you asked by the way. It's a question without an easy and single definitive answer that will work for everyone.

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So, that means there are many people out there asking it. So thank you for asking me!

I hope some of this will be of help to you. I'm sure some of it is obvious and you've already thought with it. But, maybe the way in which I wrote it out will shake loose something in your head that could possibly help you out more. And for you, reading this, I am sure these suggestions are just the beginning of what could help Patty and others out with this problem.

Can you think of any other ideas that may have helped you out that could help someone organize and date their photos that I didn't mention here?

Now, check for an email that was just sent to you and CLICK the button inside to confirm your subscription. I have found some slides that have Jul stamped on them. Would I be right to assume they are from July of ? The july of is when the slides were developed, so depending on how long the roll took to use, could have been that month, or a few months prior. Film was taped together into huge rolls for developing and that number would have been where to cut so the right person got the right pics.

You can use items in the photos that tend to not be around for long and keep changing or tech that can be dated to a certain year.

Instead of glass, the image was on an iron plate. Early tintypes were in small, hinged cases like the daguerreotypes and the ambrotypes.

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However, the cases were soon replaced by paper sleeves. Carte des Visites CDV were introduced in The carte de visite gained popularity quickly during the Civil War as soldiers and family exchanged photographs.

Cabinet cards and carte des visites CDV are often confused. Like the CDV, the cabinet card was also an albumen print on thin paper and mounted on thicker paper.

The style or type is determined by many things, including size, shape, parts and use. For example, a real photo postcard (a postcard with a photographic image. Dating by mount type and style provides a rough indicator for identifying images. The caveat is Card mounted photo designation by size (all sizes in inches). Tips from Genealogist Lisa Lisson and The Photo Organizers. Daguerreotypes are typically small with the most common size being 2 3/4 x 3.

The primary difference is the size. The cabinet card reached its peak popularity in the s but was used into the early s. Have you ever remembered when a photograph was taken of you based on your hairstyle or on the clothes you wore? Narrowing the date range a photograph was taken will narrow down the potential candidates the people can be.

The photograph below the cabinet card from above dates to the early s. This photograph of Mary Elizabeth Scott below was taken in the early — mids. Notice the center part with the bangs. Her hair is pulled into a bun in the back. The bodice of her dress along with the narrow sleeve is also indicative of this time period. She wears a typical hairstyle of the day with a middle part and the hair styled over the ears. Her full skirt and the fuller sleeves were common in the fashions of Civil War women.

Where do you find examples of hairstyles and fashions from different time periods? What type of photograph is it? Research the hair and clothing fashions you find.

With this information, you will be able to estimate the date your photograph was taken and begin to narrow down who could possibly be in the photograph. Lisa believes researching your genealogy does not have to be overwhelming. All you need is a solid plan, a genealogy toolbox, and the knowledge to use those tools. Passionate about genealogy research and helping others find resources and tools to confidently research their genealogy, Lisa can be found at LisaLisson.

This is a great article. I only wish I had images as old as Daguerrotypes in my family collection. They must have been handed down to the wrong descendents not me if there were any at all.

Hi please help me know the year in which this photo of our grandmother has been taken. It has been taken somewhere in Ghana, west Africa. Thank you so much.

Dating photos by size

This is such a great article on dating old photos. I have one more suggestion — I have been successful in dating some of my cabinet cards by cross referencing the photographer in the city directory of the time period, noting what years that photographer appeared at the particular address printed on the card. Thought you might like to see the earliest in my collection, a carte de visite taken inmy great-great grandmother, Katherine Sheets Faust, age 17 luckily for me on this one, her name and age had been written on the back.

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