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New Flickr Photo Set: Historic Newspapers

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Photograph of igloo taken by explorer Frederick CookMedia consumers today are bombarded with imagery of current events — some of them ephemeral, on our TV screens, and some more indelible.

A century ago, the use of halftone images was beginning to revolutionize newspapers and bringing the immediacy of photography to the masses.

Today the Library launched a new photostream on our Flickr page to celebrate this visual heritage. It is a series of 52 weekly supplements in the New-York Tribune, beginning 100 years ago in 1909. About 50 new pages will be added to the stream every month.

More details can be found here and here.

The timing of the new photostream is deliberate: The Library of Congress and the NEH, our partner in Chronicling America, will make some exciting announcements on Tuesday about the program — which I, of course, don’t want to preempt here.

By the way, the image in this post comes from a Sept. 26, 1909, Sunday supplement. It is a photograph taken at the North Pole by explorer Frederick Cook, whose papers are held by the Library of Congress.

Another fave pointed out by staff is this image (click on the large image or visit the persistent URL for higher resolution). It presents relative size comparisons of things such as annual sugar and tobacco consumption in the United States, versus the height of buildings such as the Pyramid at Cheops or the Washington Monument.

What are some of your favorites?

Comments (7)

  1. Media consumers today are bombarded with imagery of current events — some of them ephemeral, on our TV screens, and some more indelible.

  2. The timing of the new photostream is deliberate: The Library of Congress and the NEH, our partner in Chronicling America, will make some exciting announcements on Tuesday about the program — which I, of course, don’t want to preempt here.

  3. Wow! Very neat. I would never imagined it would have been possible for a picture to be taken at the north pole in those conditions in this time period.

    Although theimage lacks detail it is still very interesting. It will be neat to browse the other images.

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