1922 Color Photos of Istanbul

Between October 1922 and February 1923, photographers Frédéric Gadmer and Camille Sauvageot visited Turkey. They photographed many places from Istanbul to Hatay, from Izmir to Ankara. The photographs taken by this duo with their Autochrome (AutoChrome) cameras are among the oldest color photographs of Turkey.

Autochrome was a photography technique invented by the French Lumiere brothers in 1907, which allowed the photographs to be obtained as color printouts.

The two photographers were a part of a world-wide project called Archives of the Planet (Archives de la Planète). It was initiated by Alberth Kahn, French banker and philanthropist, and it aimed to create “a kind of photographic inventory of the surface of the earth, as it was occupied and organized by men at the beginning of the 20th century.” So, the project was kind of like an early version of Google Maps.

Let’s start our nostalgic journey to 1922’s Istanbul without wasting time.

* These photos are from the archive of “Autochrome de Frédéric Gadmer © Musée Albert-Khan – Département des Hauts-de-Seine”. Its commercial values and material rights belong to this institution.

Soldiers are waiting for the arrival of the last caliph, Ottoman Sultan Abdülmecid Efendi – 1 December 1922
Soldiers await the arrival of the last caliph Abdülmecid Efendi in front of the Bab-i-Hümayun (Gate of the Sultanate) of Topkapı Palace – 1 December 1922
Abdulmecid Efendi, the last caliph, greets the soldiers and the crowd – 24 November 1922
Galata Bridge – 29 October 1922
A fruit stall on the back streets of the city – 29 October 1922
Gold-plated “Bayram Throne” used by sultans on feast days and enthronement ceremonies- 24 November 1922
Hırka-i Saadet Quarter of Topkapı Palace, where sacred relics are displayed – 24 November 1922
Golden Horn view from Galata Tower – 29 October 1922
The caliphate ceremony of Abdülmecid Efendi at Fatih Mosque – 24 November 1922
Entrance to Fatih Mosque on the day of Abdulmecid Efendi’s caliphate ceremony – 24 November 1922
View of Golden Horn from Eyüp Cemetery – 10 November 1922
Tombstones and wooden houses on the hill behind Eyüp Cemetery – 10 November 1922
Hagia Sophia Mosque – 27 November 1922
Sultan Ahmet Mosque fountain – 27 November 1922
Steamboats on the Golden Horn and Galata Tower at the back – 30 October 1922
A victory monument for Mustafa Kemal Pasha in front of Sirkeci Train Station – 29 October 1922
Captain of the ship La Phrygie, about to depart Istanbul – 23 February 1922
Boats on the Golden Horn and Galata Tower in the back – 29 October 1922
Boats on the Bosphorus – 31 January 1922
Akağa Tokatlı Bahri (last dwarf of the Ottoman Palace) – 24 November 1922
Akağa Tokatlı Bahri, standing alongside the gold-plated “Bayram Throne” – 24 November 1922
Hagia Irene Church – 27 November 1922
Bab-i-Humayun (Gate of Sultanate) and Ahmet III. Fountain on the right – 27 November 1922
Sultan Ahmet Mosque in the early morning – 27 November 1922
Horse carriages prepared for the caliphate ceremony of Abdülmecid Efendi in the garden of Topkapı Palace – 24 November 1922
Two sheep to be sacrificed for the caliphate ceremony of Abdülmecid Efendi in the garden of Topkapı Palace – 24 November 1922
Bab-üs Saade (Gate of Felicity) of Topkapı Palace – 24 November 1922
A passenger ferry in Galata Port – 29 October 1922
Boats in Galata Harbor – 29 October 1922
A sailboat and a view of the Galata Tower in the back – 29 October 1922

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