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really rare photos from the streets

Stunning photos of the working poor in Victorian London. Note the wall advertisements.

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  1. Jon Chen Jon Chen November 20, 2013

    A rare and powerful glimpse of a large segment of Victorian society; Dickens wrote colorfully about these people, but to actually see them, as they were, is a special thing.  Re: the posters — the diagonal, almost horizontal placement — careless or calculated?  The odd orientation certainly catches the eye, which is what you’d need to make it STAND OUT amidst the incredible clutter along that wall.  Am I right in my assumption that the Card Dealer, was actually drawing/hand lettering, some posters that might be plastered along that earlier pictured wall?  Or was this more the sort of genteel stuff you’d see in the shops, on or in a display case?  I can’t help but think that with the rise of cheap printing/illustration, this fellow’s livelihood is at risk.

    • Garnet Psaltery Garnet Psaltery November 21, 2013

      I believe the poster man is applying paste to the top of the poster – part of the process during which it doesn’t really matter how he holds it up and is probably a habit.

      I cannot help looking for my typist’s ancestors, as a good number lived in those parts, Lambeth and Westminster in particular.

  2. Cleetus O'Reatus Cleetus O'Reatus November 20, 2013

    That be a mighty fine ass-cart in picture eight – yes, b’y, mighty fine indeed!

  3. Tepic Harlequin Tepic Harlequin November 20, 2013

    After seeing the lad with the harp, don’t feel out of place playin me chello now!

  4. Kimika Ying Kimika Ying November 22, 2013

    These are great. I get a feel for the living people they were rather than distant stories and history.

    One picture, number 13, did puzzle me briefly. It is captioned: “A black cab looks very different in 1877 as it patrols the London streets looking for customers.”

    I didn’t get it at first. I looked at it closely thinking, “It looks like an ordinary cab. What could………oh.”  Living in Babbage does that to a person (and I like it).

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