Chattanooga

GLASS PLATE NEGATIVES

An incredible discovery...

It started with a purchase on eBay, and evolved to a significant acquisition of Chattanooga history. Hundreds of glass plate negatives - high resolution photos by even today’s standards - returned home.

The images captured over 100 years ago represent daily life, homes, friends, and landmarks that are difficult to place in our current landscapes.

Here we see young men and women with gleams in their eyes - great grandmothers and great grandfathers in their prime around 1900. Older people seen here likely experienced the Civil War and slavery. Their hardened faces tell a story of less prosperous and difficult days. While all of their lives have come and gone, we get a remarkable glimpse into their world.

Days of Future Past...

Glass plates represent a fluke of technology that made high-resolution photos available 100 years before there was a practical way to scan and view them at their fullest potential.

In the coming months - dozens of the best images will be featured here.

Some photo locations and details have been identified - most have not.

The likely photographer has been identified. His story will be told as well.