Photography

Wanted: A New Home for Photo of a Civil War Soldier

A California resident is trying to find a new home for a historical photo with Southern Indiana connections. Dan Fahey, who lives in Berkeley, Calif., is the owner of an antique photograph of William P. Davis, a Southern Indiana resident who served in the Union Army during the Civil War. After conducting some research, Fahey discovered that the soldier was born in New Albany in 1834, and he served as an officer in the 23rd Indiana Volunteer Infantry Regiment.

How to Store Print Photographs So They Last for Generations

I suspect a lot of genealogists will be interested in this article: How to Store Print Photographs So They Last for Generations by Signe Brewster in the Wirecutter website at: https://www.nytimes.com/wirecutter/blog/store-print-photographs/.
“Every few years during my childhood, my family and I would purge as much as possible from our overstuffed garage. But we could never bring ourselves to touch the big blue bin overflowing with stacks of photographs, its contents spanning several lifetimes’ worth of birthdays, vacations, and friendships.

Tens of Thousands of Australian Prison Portraits Captured Online from 15 Jails Over 50 Years

If your ancestor or other relative was a (ahem) guest of the New South Wales government for a while, you may find his or her picture in an online database

The NSW State Archives recently digitised 46,000 images and collated them in an exhibition titled Captured: Portraits of Crime. From “wicked old woman” Sarah Clifford to William Plummer, who spent five decades in and out of jail there are tens of thousands of records to rifle through.

Born in Jamaica in 1833, Sarah Clifford was a known pick pocketer in both NSW and Tasmania.

Brooklyn’s Old Tax Photos are Now Available on the ‘1940s Street View’ Website

If you had ancestors from Brooklyn or if you lived there yourself or if you have any other interest in the city, you might want to check out an article by Kevin Duggan in the BrooklynPaper.com web site. Depression-era tax photos of every building in the city are included, making it easier for researchers and history buffs to navigate several hundred thousand snapshots of buildings from 1940s New York City.

Left: The Williamsburgh Savings Bank Tower at Hanson Place seen from Fourth and Atlantic avenues. Right: The former elevated train above Myrtle Avenue near Navy Street.
Municipal Archives, City of New York

According to the article:

The History of Digital Photography

Digital photography is so new you might not think it would have any history. An article by Allison Marsh and published in the IEEE web site will prove you wrong.

Photo: George Eastman Museum
This 1975 digital camera prototype used a 100-by-100-pixel CCD to capture images. Digital photography didn’t enter the mainstream for another 20 years.

Author Marsh starts at the beginning with the world’s first digital camera created in a laboratory 46 years ago, then mentions many of the highlights since then.

MyHeritage Photo Enhancer Goes Viral

I wrote about MyHeritage’s new Photo Enhancer one week ago at https://bit.ly/3eC7XGZ. The new product obviously has become very popular as the MyHeritage Photo Enhancer has now gone viral, with over ONE MILLION ENHANCED PHOTOS!

One of the MyHeritage employees told me today that the company has received amazing feedback from users who are excited, impressed, and even moved to tears as they see their family members in crystal-clear focus. One user commented that this feature “has enabled me to ‘know’ my grandparents in a way that I could not have otherwise.”

Introducing the MyHeritage Photo Enhancer

MyHeritage has just announced the release of something I have not seen before in any genealogy web site: a feature that brings blurry faces in any photo into sharp focus. Photos are enhanced using specialized technology that produces outstanding, high-definition results.

Perhaps you have old photos that look grainy or blurred, or photos of large family gatherings with many faces that are too small to recognize clearly. The MyHeritage Photo Enhancer aims to solve these age-old problems and produces phenomenal results that let you see your ancestors more clearly than ever before.

Online Photo Archive Brings Romania’s History Back to Life

If you have ancestry from Romania, you probably will be interested in learning more about the lives of Romanians from an online collection of historic and modern photographs. The free archive that publishes analogue pictures donated by the public is filling a void in Romania’s collective memory – and creating a ‘mosaic of its history’, its founder explains.

A group of men from Sic, in the Transylvanian county of Cluj in 1982. Photo: http://www.azopan.ro / Szoleczki Laszlo

Vivid-Pix Brings Back Family Memories –Relive Past Reunions & Create This Year’s — Virtually

The following announcement was written by Vivid-Pix:

Vivid-Pix AI Photo Restoration Software Instantly Restores Old Photos

June 4, 2020, Savannah, GA — Vivid-Pix brings back family reunion memories while making new ones. Family reunions may be different this year, but Vivid-Pix RESTORE patented AI image restoration software will help you relive past reunions and virtually create this year’s reunion. Vivid-Pix instantly brings your treasured, old photos back to life and with these tips to plan a virtual reunion, you can connect with family members and friends when you aren’t able to meet in person. With Vivid-Pix technology, make this a year to remember and share with future generations.

Relive Yesterday’s Memories and Plan a Virtual Reunion

Vivid-Pix and Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective®, have collaborated to put together everything you need to hold a virtual reunion. Learn more at https://vivid-pix.com/solutions.

OpenSFHistory is an Online Archive of more than 50,000 Historic Images of San Francisco and the Bay Area

OpenSFHistory, an online archive of over 50,000 historic images of San Francisco and the Bay Area, recently launched a project to integrate modern-day S.F. with its historic past. With walking tours halted and most historic sites closed, the folks behind the site are hoping their “guerrilla history posters” will give residents a little entertainment and education.

Church and 22nd as it appeared in June of 1916. The construction of the J-Church line can be seen on the right.

MyHeritage Announces New Colorization Settings for MyHeritage In Color™

MyHeritage (the sponsor of this newsletter) has announced that you can now customize the settings for MyHeritage In Color™ to achieve even better results for your colorized photos. Quoting from the announcement:

MyHeritage In Color™ is an automatic colorization feature that brings your old black and white family photos to life using sophisticated machine learning technology. It has become one of our most popular features recently, with nearly 11 million photos colorized in less than 3 months!

We are pleased to announce that it is now possible to customize the colorization settings of MyHeritage In Color™, to improve its results even further.

The quality of automatic photo colorization depends on many factors, such as the quality of the original photo, its resolution, lighting, contrast, sharpness, and so on. In most cases, MyHeritage In Color™ will produce excellent results. However, in some cases there is room for improvement. Adjusting the settings allows you to fine-tune the colorization process, giving you more control over your final image and resulting in a higher-quality colorized photo that you’ll be more than proud to share.

This beautiful couple, Jacquie and Norman Levy, were photographed together in 1947 in Denver, Colorado in this black-and-white photograph:

Previously Unseen Street Photos of Greater Manchester, England, in the Post World War 2 Decade

Back in 2018, Timepix embarked on digitising a collection of 46,000 previously unseen street photos of Greater Manchester, England, in the post World War 2 decade. The good news is that the collection is finally finished and the watermarked images are free to browse and share at https://www.timepix.uk/browse.

Main Post Office, Ordnance Survey Revision Point photograph in Greater Manchester

Vivid-Pix Launches “Your City – Your Story” 11 City Tour

The following announcement was written by Vivid-Pix:

VIVID-PIX LAUNCHES “YOUR CITY – YOUR STORY” 11 CITY TOUR –IMAGE RESTORATION SOFTWARE BRINGS FAMILY STORIES & MEMORIES BACK TO LIFE

Crosses U.S. to Showcase Patented AI Photo & Document Restoration Software and Education Programs for Family Historians, Genealogists, & Hobbyists

Vivid-Pix RESTORE Before & After Photo

Savannah, GA, February 18, 2020 – Vivid-Pix www.vivid-pix.com launched a 11 city “Your City – Your Story” U.S. tour to showcase its patented Vivid-Pix RESTORE AI photo and document restoration software that automatically restores treasured memories with just one-click. The Vivid-Pix journey includes the largest family history event in the world, RootsTech, held Feb. 26-29 in Salt Lake City, Utah.  

MyHeritage in Color™ Goes Viral: Over a Million Photos Already Colorized

MyHeritage (the sponsor of this newsletter) has obviously had great success with the newly-launched service that offers computer-generated color enhancement of old black-and-white photographs. See https://blog.eogn.com/2020/02/12/myheritage-in-color-breakthrough-feature-to-colorize-family-photos/ for the original announcement.

Photographs courtesy of David Allen Lambert

In the first 5 days since the service was launched, more than a million photos have been colorized — and the numbers keep growing. You can read more about the service and also see a number of colorized photos and testimonials published on various social media sites in an article in the MyHeritage Blog at https://blog.myheritage.com/2020/02/myheritage-in-color-goes-viral-over-a-million-photos-already-colorized/.

MyHeritage In Color™: Breakthrough Feature to Colorize Family Photos

Introducing MyHeritage In Color™ (Photo: Business Wire)

Introducing MyHeritage In Color™ (Photo: Business Wire)

Computer-generated color enhancement of old black-and-white photographs is a technology that has been available for some time at rather high prices. Now the same technology has been made at to the public at reasonable prices. That’s reasonable as in FREE.

Yes, that’s right. MyHeritage is offering to create COLOR COPIES of your black-and-white photographs at no charge. Best of all, the change to color is done automatically by computer software. I do not know of any other online genealogy service that has a similar offer.

I have tried the colorization process briefly this morning and am impressed. It allows you to do more than look at old photos — it lets you experience them, creating a deeper connection with your family history than you ever thought possible. I plan to use this process on ALL my old digitized black-and-white photographs.

How Artificial Intelligence is Helping Identify Thousands of Unknown Civil War Soldiers

Norman Spencer Pierce

Another great use of modern technology:

David Morin in Exeter, N.H. owns a collection of more than 260 Civil War military pictures. Until now, many of the men in the photos remained a mystery to him — but in the course of the last year, he identified many of them by using Civil War Photo Sleuth, a website that uses facial recognition technology, a form of artificial intelligence (A.I.), to identify the men in such photos. And in 2020 the site is planning to add a new feature, after a successful test: a way for users to get second opinions on potential photo matches.

“Today history is so much better documented and the chances of things living on are so much greater,” says Morin.

White House Photographer David Kennerly to Keynote RootsTech 2020

The following announcement was written by FamilySearch, the organizers of RootsTech:

RootsTech 2020, the world’s largest family history convention, is pleased to announce David Hume Kennerly, Pulitzer Prize—winning White House photographer, as the featured keynote speaker on Friday, February 27, 2020, at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah. Kennerly will share some of his incredible stories as part of RootsTech 2020’s 10th anniversary celebrating genealogy and technology innovation.

David Hume Kennerly has a rich legacy of impressive contributions to photography and history. His photos have appeared on more than 50 major magazine covers. He has photographed 10 U.S. presidents and served as a contributing editor for Newsweek magazine and was a contributing photographer for Time and Life magazines. American Photo magazine named Kennerly “One of the 100 Most Important People in Photography,” and Washingtonian magazine called Kennerly one of the 50 most important journalists in Washington, D.C.

My Photos from RootsTech/London

I wrote about the RootsTech/London conference in another article I published today at https://wp.me/p5Z3-8r4. I took so many photographs, however, that I decided to post them here in a separate article.  You will notice there are a lot of photos! Hopefully, these will give you a “flavour” of what it was like at the conference.
Yes, there were crowds! However, the ExCeL Center is so large that it never seemed crowded.

Nick Barratt hosted the Keynote Speeches every day

The “Other Conference” Held at the ExCel London this Weekend

I have written extensively about the RootsTech/London conference held this past weekend. I mentioned the “ExCeL Exhibition Centre is capable of holding two or more large events simultaneously. Indeed that happened this past week.”

The attendees from both conferences often were walking in the same hallways and eating in the same restaurants within the exhibition centre. I haven’t seen these people at the other genealogy conferences I have attended. I thought I would show a few pictures from “the other conference.”

Comic Con London was full of special and celebrity guests from stars from your favourite films to game experts and voice over actors. It is a place to meet these special guests who are heavily involved in the entertainment industry that help craft it and produce it.

Attendees at Comic Con conferences often dress in costumes depicting their favorite video games, films, and comic book characters. Oh, excuse me. That last one should be called graphic novels, not comic books.

In any case, here are a few pictures I took in the halls of the ExCel London this weekend:

Thousands of Free Historic Photographs Online

Sometimes you can find valuable gems in unexpected places. One example is the UnSplash web site.

According to Wikipedia:

“Unsplash is a website dedicated to sharing stock photography under the Unsplash license. The website claims over 110,000 contributing photographers and generates more than 9 billion photo impressions per month on their growing library of over 810,000 photos.[1] Unsplash has been cited as one of the world’s leading photography websites by Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine, CNET, Medium and The Next Web.”

I am amazed at the many photos about all sort of topics that may be found on UnSplash.com. Best of all, you may download and use the photos for all sorts of purposes free of charge.

For instance, while looking for photos I could use in this genealogy newsletter, I went to https://unsplash.com and entered a search for “Ellis Island.”