Here are two restored photos from a batch, telling the amazing story of a Toledo Steam Carriage on 871 Mile journey!
1902 Newspaper Article reads
Feb: “C.E. De Long, of Hot Springs, Ark., and J.E. Saules, of Toledo, Ohio, who started from Toledo in a “Toledo” steam carriage the day before Christmas, are reported to have reached Little Rock, Ark., on the 6th (February) , having been compelled to take the train from Memphis to Hot Springs in consequence of the heavy rains which had flooded the Mississippi bottoms and made the roads impassable. They remained in Little Rock until February 10, when they proceeded on their way by automobile.”
Lets look at this article in more detail. It was Christmas eve 1902. Weather for that year was cold, you can see ice on the mud puddles in the above image. It must have been below freezing! Now take a look at the distance from Toledo, Ohio to Hot Springs, Arkansas on Google and you get 871 miles. That is by modern roads! Back then the distance would have been much more. These impressive machines probably averaged around 4.1 Miles and hour on the flat without terrain and puddles and mud, hills, weather, break downs, maintenance etc. It took them the best part of 6 weeks to make this journey! Now that is an adventure!
The journey was no doubt made even longer by setting up a tripod and composing and taking photos along the way!
A very kind thank you to Nick Howell for providing the images from his restoration order. You can read more about these machines on toledosattic.org
From time to time i get some interesting photos to restore. Wednesday I took a delivery of some old photographic glass plates. They came in these lovely boxes. Two sizes of plates 5×4 inches and 7×5 inches. Both Kodak and Ilford plates, the Kodak selling point was “Anti-Halo” and the Ilford “Auto-Filter”. From research it seems they were circa 1923. The subject matter of the plates were hunting trophies. Leopard, Tigers, bears and Boar. (sorry permission not yet granted for display)
What was very interesting to me is that the larger box came with the instructions for development.
The recipes make interesting reading, I like the mention of the warning on the smaller box…
” Before returning unused film to this war-time package, care should be taken to ensure the film is wrapped in light proof paper. “
They were confident that unused film would be returned safely and unexposed even in war time!
Some old and varying sized negatives came along with the package for photo restoration in this envelope. The negatives, still hunting photos may have been intended for “The Explosives Department” at “Imperial Chemical Industries” in Calcutta as the envelope that came with it, was ready printed with the address. ICI eventually became defunct in 2008 after many years producing chemicals, explosives and paints before it was taken over by Akzo Nobel. Perhaps one of the employees was a hunter and simple kept his negatives safe in the envelope.
Certainly an intriguing story developing…
I just spotted a video on Lynda.com, a very reliable on line resource for learning. It describes using the “patch” tool as a useful tool for repairing scratches, tears and damage.
There is no doubt this tool is a great tool. In this case i feel that using something just because its there, is not always a good idea.
The video suggests you let the “content aware” algorithm do the work for you. Setting the parameters from “very loose” to “very strict.” I tried this with one of my images with damage and each and every parameter tested gave me a poor result, where the patched damage took a darker tone. See the first video below for how Bryan suggest it should work.
When i used the standard method of the patch it worked better in every case. Feel free to use the Lynda method but I would suggest using just the patch on its own. I am sure that Bryan O’Neil Hughes was just trying to show us that there are other methods to use but sometimes leaving it alone is just as good. Here is my quick test to explain why i have never use this option.
I am sure that content aware patch has its place but i could not get it to work on my image and never use it. Sure i use content aware occasionally but even then and more often than not i have to correct it.