This is a fabulous collection of over 6500 photochrom prints, at the Library of Congress, from the 1890s and early 20th c. The photos are available in up to 1024 x 765 resolution, at which size the detail is fantastic. Flikr has over 1300 with more being added all the time.
Photochrom Travel Views 1890-1910
Published primarily from the 1890s to 1910s, these prints were created by the Photoglob Company in Zürich, Switzerland, and the Detroit Publishing Company in Michigan. The richly colored images look like photographs but are actually ink-based photolithographs, usually 6.5 x 9 inches. Plenty more info at the Library of Congress Photochrom Prints.
Like postcards, the photochroms feature subjects that appeal to travelers, including landscapes, architecture, street scenes, and daily life and culture. The prints were sold as souvenirs and often collected in albums or framed for display.
The Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division assembled its collection from two sources that provided prints in mint condition. In 1985, the prints of Europe and the Middle East were purchased from the Galerie Muriset in Switzerland. In 2004, Howard L. Gottlieb generously donated the North American views.
Some possibly familiar examples:
|Banff and Cascade Mountain 1902|
|Moraine Lake 1903|
Just clicking through the hundreds of pictures from all over the world, locations mundane and exotic, really gives one a flavour for the Victorian scene. Some places haven't changed much, but others are almost unrecognizable now.
Keep your sightglass full, your firebox trimmed and your water iced.