Saturday, July 17, 2010

What Dealers Do

Because of the damage, I would never have purchased this photo if it had not been part of a collection. This nice 19th century portrait was pulled out of a photo album. The glue and bits of black paper on the back is a dead give away. I've been known to complain about dealers breaking up collections and destroying the context of the photos. What might be a nice image, becomes an historically interesting photo when left with the other pictures in the collection. And, of course, a lot of photos get damaged when the dealer is clumsy when removing photos from albums. Lille could be a name, or it could refer to the city in France. The initials that follow the name are a mystery.


  1. I'm with you. It always breaks my heart a little when I find photos with the traces of an album page on the back. All the details that might have put it in context are gone.

  2. I agree with you also, but as we know single photos and postcards can often bring more money. I found that I had done a bit of the same thing - unwittingly. I had a number of postcard albums. I left the nice old ones intact, but I removed the ones from the not-so-nice albums. I then took them and sorted them to join the rest of my collection - various holidays, hotels etc. But when I really started reading the backs of the cards, I was sorry I had done it. I found that the family histories were really a more appropriate grouping than the categories. Now, I'm trying to re-sort them, which is much harder.