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[Detail] U.S.S. Alert. Photographer - W H Jackson, 1901 or 1902

Historical Research Capabilities: The Detroit Photographic Company's "photochrom Process"

This collection's Subject Index, features 313 color photochrom prints. These mass-produced images of cities (e.g., Denver, Colorado), university buildings (e.g., Harvard House), and natural landscapes (e.g., Grand Canyon) can be used as the basis for examining how popular prints reflected and influenced cultural trends in the United States.

  • What types of images were mass-produced in color?
  • Why do you think that a person would purchase these prints? Where do you think that these images were displayed?
  • What do you think that these images imply about popular subjects and artists during the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries?
  • How do the subjects of these prints relate to events such as the growing environmental movement or industrialization?
  • Why do you think that color renditions of black-and-white photographs were so popular?
  • Are there contemporary products that use a similar process?

Touring Turn-of-the-Century America: Photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company 1880-1920 can be used for a variety of arts-related projects. Historic photographs provide an opportunity to discuss the importance of composition while reproductions of paintings facilitate art criticism. Many images can also be the basis for creative projects such as writing a newspaper or creating a drawing around a photograph.