Then & Now: Stories from the Commons is a 78-page photo book full of historic images from the late 1800s and early 1900s in Australia.
Behind the book:
On April 8 2008, the Powerhouse Museum became the first museum to join The Commons on Flickr. This project is about increasing access to publicly-held photographic collections that have no known copyright restrictions. Flickr members are encouraged to add tags and comments to the images; that in turn, allows us to feed the data back into our collection records.
We started by uploading 200 historical images from our Tyrrell Photographic Collection to The Commons - adding more on a weekly basis. Our Tyrrell Collection consists of 7903 plates from the two principal Sydney photographic studios, in the late 1800s to early 1900s, of Charles Kerry and Henry King. The Collection was bought by James R. Tyrrell in 1929, and later sold to Australian Consolidated Press. The media group donated it to us in 1985. The images mainly depict the city of Sydney and scenes of rural life in surrounding areas.
We now have more than 1000 images in The Commons, including the very playful Phillips Collection and a small selection from the Clyde Engineering Collection. On Flickr these images have reached a far greater audience than ever before. We will be adding more collections in the future.
This book has been produced for the dedicated members and people behind the scenes. They have been totally committed to this project. You will see many of the same names appear throughout these pages - offering valuable comments and research. Each photograph was uploaded into Flickr with one tag and the community has given these images a life of their own by offering metadata in a variety of different languages. We hope you take pleasure in looking through this selection of Flickr favourites!