Saturday, February 26, 2011

Shades The Magazine 2.0

There are exciting changes to Shades The Magazine for 2011. We'll call it Shades 2.0.

Shades 2.0 will be published six times a year. January/February, March/April, May/June, July/August, September/October, November/December. The date of publication will be between the 1st and the 15th of the beginning month. The next issue of Shades is scheduled between the 1st and the 15th of March.

We are bringing back some old favorites and adding some soon to be new favorites in Shades' content.

Returning Columns:

Appealing Subjects – Where Law & Photography Meet - Craig Manson
Healing Brush – Preserving Our Ancestors One Pixel At A Time - Janine Smith
In2 Genealogy - Discovering Family History Today - Caroline Pointer
Penelope Dreadful – A Dreadful Tale - Penelope Dreadful
The Last Picture Show – Behind The Photograph - Editor
The Year Was – What Happened The Year Of – Sheri

New Columns:

Ancestor ArtiFacts – Questioning Preservation – Denise Levenick
Putting Down Roots – Writing Your Family History - TBA
iAncestor – Picturing Technology - Denise Olson
A Brush With History – Scrapbooking Old Photos (Tips & Tricks) - fM
Dressed To The Nines – Godey’s Ladies - Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective

Special Appearances:

A Date With An Old Photograph – Case Studies & Clues Dating Old Photographs -Editor
Behind The Camera – Photographers of Old – Editor
Captured Moments - Featuring Heritage Scrapbooking and Art - Show & Tell From Readers
The Future of Memories - Where Memories Meet The Future - Denise Olson
The Humor Of It - Through A Different Lens – Donna Pointkouski

With the advent of several new columns we're asking you, the reader; "Would you like to contribute?"


Great-Aunt Agatha’s treasures got you down? Are you confused about how to undo past preservation mistakes and best save your family heirlooms for the next generation?

From photos stuck with hardened glue to funny-smelling movie film, from crocheted lace to crumbling newspapers, family historians are faced with a myriad of preservation problems. Caring for family treasures is a great responsibility, but it’s not hard when you are armed with Ancestor ArtiFacts.

Shades of the Departed is delighted to announce a new column dedicated to helping you find answers for tough questions. Denise Levenick is our resident expert, but if she doesn’t know the answer, she’ll find an expert who does!

Send your preservation, archiving, and restoration questions to Include your question, name, email, and the URL of your blog or web site if you have one.

See below for submitting photographs.


Do you have a beautiful digital heritage scrapbooking layout or artwork you'd like to share. Submit it to Captured Moments at Shades. We would like to feature the very best digital artwork from readers' submissions.

You're the one who Captured The Moment. Show and Tell.

Submissions are to be emailed to with the words Captured Moments in the subject line.

Please submit a brief paragraph telling us about your design, who is featured and why you were inspired. Include your name, email, and the URL of your blog or web site if you have one.

This is not a how-to, but we would like to know the software photo editing program and products you used. Credit the commercial backgrounds, elements, brushes, frames, layouts, etc. you used; or yourself if they were your own creation.

Also submit a high resolution image of your work.

See below for submitting photographs.


Shades is always on the lookout for feature articles. Do you have an idea as it relates to old photographs? If so, we would love to hear from you. We are looking for authors for feature themed articles. Send your idea to with the words "Shades Feature Article" in the subject line.

Include your name, email, the url of your blog or website, and a short synopsis of your idea. Article length is flexible. Shades would also like a short bio of 50 words or less and a photograph of the author if your idea is selected. This will appear as “About the Author” at the end of each article. And don't forget, Shades is about old photographs. We encourage you to submit several for the article.

Upcoming Shades issues will feature old photographs as they relate to occupations (due by 1 April) and toys (due by 1 June).

See below for submitting photographs.


When submitting photographs and digital artwork for publishing in Shades we ask that the image be 300 dpi and at least 8 inches wide for the scrapbooking layouts and digital art. Please send the image as a JPG or TIFF file.

Please send the files via a free file transfer site such as or Both have a free membership, require registration, and have limitations on file sizes.

If you use, please register for the Lite account. Log in, choose Send File, browse your computer for the correct file, and attach. Yousendit will provide a secure link to your file. Cut and paste the link into your email, along with any other information that has been requested. (See categories above.)

We hope to see you in the pages of Shades The Magazine.


Monday, February 21, 2011

One Of Our Nation's First Gun Safety Demonstrations

The Unintended Target
A Bonnet of 1802

Lewis and Clark's secret weapon - a late 18th Century .46 cal. 20 shot
repeating air rifle by Girandoni , as used in the Napoleonic Wars.

"Lewis had proceeded only three miles when he pulled over at an island and at the request of the pioneers living on it gave a demonstration of his air gun, purchased from gunsmith Isaiah Luken of Philadelphia. It was a pneumatic rifle. The stock was the reservoir, and it could be pumped full of air to a pressure of five to six hundred psi, at which point it was not much inferior in hitting power to the Kentucky rifle. That it produced no smoke or noise astonished the frontiersmen.

Lewis fired seven times at fifty yards 'with pretty good success.' He passed the curiosity around for examination. It went off accidentally; the ball passed through the hat of a woman about forty yards off, 'cutting her temple; she fell instantly and the blood gushing from her temple. we were all in the greatest consternation supposed she was dead but in a minute she revived to our enespressable satisfaction, and by examination we found the wound by no means mortal or even dangerous." Never again did he pass the air gun around when it was pumped up and loaded. (Emphasis added.)"


Ambrose, Stephen E. Ambrose.
Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the opening of the American West. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996.

A Treasure Gun from the NRA National Firearms Museum. See more at Narrated by Phil Schreier.

Note: Lewis & Clark Expedition (1806-1806). Could only find an 1802 bonnet illustration, but doubt pioneer women had the latest fashion.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Maureen Taylor Shares Couple Love!

I love The Photo Detectives' videos. In this one, she takes a nostalgic look at couples in photos.


Valentine's Love From Shades

Hearts United Live Contented

Love and rings are, they say, intimately associated. Mary Queen of Scots wedding ring was made of a center heart shaped stone, three stones set in an ancient crown on each side, and beyond a fleur-de-lis in gold.

Gold. Have you ever been curious as to where the gold in so many Valentine's gifts came from? Gold originated in the center of stars. It's heated until the star runs out of fuel. Then the star collapses. When the star collapses it blows sending precious gold deep into the universe until its bits condense into a planet.

From inside the planet they make their way to the surface where we may dig them up. All the gold we give and receive on Valentine's day was forged in a collapsing star. The journey represents 3 million light years. (This is a rather simplistic version, for the real deal read Galactic Gold.)

So, as you hold that lovely piece of gold in you hands, you will have a new found respect for its origin.

Oh, and the guy who dug it up for you!


"Gossip On Rings." Cassell's Family Magazine. Volume 8. London, 1891. pg. 601.


Cabinet Card of Old Miner Type Fellow w/ Canteen 1890
. Unknown. Sold Feb.2, 2011 by eBay zippershark.
(I tried contacting the winning bidder for permission to use this photograph without success. If it is yours, please email me and I will credit.)


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Twice Told Tuesday - The Crisis - Black History

Twice Told Tuesday features a photography related article
from old photography books, magazines, and newspapers.

Our history, warts and all.

The Present Crisis

by James Russell Lowell

. . .New occasions teach new duties; Time makes ancient good uncouth;
They must upward still, and onward, who would keep abreast of Truth;
Lo, before us gleam her campfires? We ourselves must Pilgrims be,
Launch our Mayflower, and steer boldly through the desperate winter sea,
Nor attempt the Future's portal with the Past's blood-rusted key.

The Crisis was founded by W.E.B. Du Bois as the official publication of the NAACP in 1910. It is a journal of civil rights, history, politics, and culture and seeks to educate and challenge its readers about issues that continue to plague African Americans and other communities of color. The Crisis has been the magazine of opinion and thought leaders, decision makers, peacemakers and justice seekers. It has chronicled, informed, educated, entertained and, in many instances, set the economic, political and social agenda for our nation and its multi-ethnic citizens. The Crisis takes its name from the poem excerpted above.

March 1912

In public school No. 3, Brooklyn, N.Y., Miss Rosa Taylor, a colored girl, completed the course in six and one-half years (a thing which has not been done since the founding of the school 250 years ago), and took the bronze medal in the spelling bee.

In the same school Miss Marion Allen, a daughter of Mrs. William Trotman, took the silver medal for proficiency in German at the midyear promotion.

There were 108 pupils in the class and eighteen of them were of German descent. The silver medal was the highest honor and was given by the German-American National Bund.

The German gentleman who presented the medal nearly lost his breath when he saw the little colored girl of 14 years who took it.

These two were the only prizes offered and they were taken by the only two colored pupils in the class. The audience of 5,000 roared in applause.


Magazine and Photograph

"Education."The Crisis, March 1912, 215.