Life Photographs

Posted by sepoy on November 21, 2008 · 1 min read

You might have found out, by now, that Google has uploaded Life magazine's trove of photographs from the 1860s onwards onto their formidable servers. They are of decent quality - with some tags/Labels. The viewer, of course, cannot add their own notations, labels and tags. ((If they did allow it, I could tell them that the shopkeepers are obviously not posing in front of their "spice store" but their local optician)) I would have liked to see this in Flickr with their level of user-interaction. These photos need metadata, folks. Us historians cannot make sense or teach from them, unless you let us interact with the metadata. Not to mention that I would have loved to see a "page scan" along with the photograph to get a sense of how these images were consumed upon initial reception. As it is, I am not even sure if the "Date taken" corresponds to the date of issue or not.

Still, some amazing South Asia stuff. Moslem League, Muslim League, Jinnah, and most intriguingly, Kipling's India.

Some newfound favorites:

Tear down the Wall (via sarah)


sarahjane | November 21, 2008 I like this one. I'd love to see what snapshots she got!

Afaque | November 21, 2008

Loved the Quaid's and Fatima Jinnah Photo... how beautiful their faces are there... :)

Desi Italiana | November 21, 2008

There is a healthy helping of pictures of Air India flight attendants, like this one who's handing out "spices to Madrasi Brahmin passenger during trip across India." And this 1946 pic of vultures eating corpses after Hindu-Muslim riots:

Frog in a Well - The Japan History Group Blog | December 01, 2008

[...] discussion has been the new Life Magazine collection hosted by Google Images: you can see examples here, here and here, among others. Speaking of photographs, one of the advantages of digital collections [...]