What Can Old Pictures Tell Us About The History Of Tattoos?

Photo digitizing service

Preserving old photographs can give us a glimpse into history. While many people view tattoos as a relatively recent fad — coming to the forefront in the past 10 or 20 years — that’s just not true, and now there are pictures to prove it. Vintage photographs, restored and digitized in the soon-to-be published collection 100 Years of Tattoos, show men and women around the world with ink (and lots of it!) as early as the 1920s.

Head-To-Toe Tats Have Been Around For Nearly 100 Years, Photographs Show

Not only were tattoos popular much earlier than previously thought, it also wasn’t entirely unheard of to have a full arm sleeve, or even full body tattoos. The Daily Mail describes a notable picture from the upcoming book: “One particularly striking shot from the late 1920s shows a woman laying on her side as a man carefully inks one of her arms to complete her intricate full body suit.” Decades ago, military men and circus employees (often hired specifically for their unusual and plentiful body art) were among the most likely groups to have head-to-toe tattoos. The replication of these historic photos and the October 2015 publication of the telling collection is possible thanks to old photo digitization, including picture scanning services and digitizing slides services.

Photo Preservation In Everyday Life

While interesting, most of us don’t have to worry about personally preserving such photographs in our day-to-day lives. That does not make digital photo services and scanning photographic slides is any less important. What about that black-and-white photograph of your grandmother from 1920? Or even pictures of your parents — or your kids — as children? The truth of the matter is that, up until recently, photographs have not been taken or stored in a digital photograph. As such, preserving these memories, and — in the case of older relatives — your family history depends on picture scanning services.

Since the first photograph was snapped in the 1800s, people all over the world have captured over 3.5 trillion pictures. What’s more, 24% of Americans describe family photos as some of their most valuable possessions (more valuable, in their opinion, than birth certificates and Social Security cards). And another 47% have taken zero steps to preserve old family photographs. Picture scanning services not only give us a glimpse into history, but also allow us to hold onto family photographs for years — even decades — to come.

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