03 April 2012

London captured on camera in the 1870s

The Daily Mail publishes a collection of 23 photographs by John Thompson showing the reality of existence in London in the last quarter of the 19th century. The pictures, now stored at the Bishopsgate Institute, capture the lives of street beggars, chimney sweeps, street doctors and market sellers among many others.

The website of the Bishopsgate Institute has podcasts. I selected Hackney, that Rose-Red Empire. That London borough has been "persistently revived, reinvented and betrayed."  It was also home of my great grandparents prior to and during the first years of WW1. The podcast is about an hour in length. If you're tempted, but lack time, try the first segment with poetry by Michael Rosen.


Anonymous said...

Anne S. says, "It is interesting to realize that the streets of today, with many of the very same buildings, were teeming with an entirely different life in the 1870's. The photographs show how enterprising people could be just to exist. Thanks for finding these photos and for introducing us to the Bishopsgate Institute podcasts."

Pierce said...

Change the dress and a few of the tools, and you have pictures that can be taken in many big cities in the developing world.