The Past Returns in Color

A long time ago, I read that it used to be far more common for people to dream in black and white but once color TV became commonplace, the number of people who dreamt in color dramatically increased.

If that is true (I don’t know if it is), it would make sense for people to dream in black and white during the time they were likely to have black and white televisions at home, and to switch to dreaming in color later when they replaced their older TV sets with newer models that could show color pictures. Of course, that would also suggest that people would have dreamt in color before they had televisions and their dreams adapted to reflect what they saw on the screen when they got a black and white TV set.

I’m curious: does the past seem more real to you when it’s in color?

Enjoy these five colorized photos, taken between 1890 and 1910!

Petra. Man stands against oleanders in bloom. 1907. LOC


Le Chateau d’eau and plaza, Exposition Universal, Paris in 1900 (source unknown)


Place de l’etablissement thermal, Aix, France, 1890 (LOC)


University Belgrade Serbia Photo shows the Kapetan Misino zdanje building in center background 1890 (LOC)


New Orleans panorama, 1907 (source unknown)

2 thoughts on “The Past Returns in Color

  1. I don’t know if it looks more realistic, but it certainly is more beautiful! The handpainting foto technique is long lost as an industry, but some of the best films of my life were made with this old technique. Think: Wizard of Oz, any sepia toned (single colored silent film), etc.

    Liked by 1 person

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