Filed Under: History Facts

3D Photos Existed In The 19th Century

When we look at photographs from the 19th century, it’s easy to forget that the people being photographed lived in the same vibrant world we inhabit today.

Regular black and white photos are for suckers.  Let’s take a peek into the past by combining a very old technology, stereographic photography, with a fairly new medium, the GIF, to create immersive 3D images.

Behold the magic:

Japanese MenSumo Wrestlers Looking Awesome

All of these images were taken in the late 19th century by T. Enami, a prolific photographer during the Meiji era in Japan.  The original stereoscopic images were professionally colored around the same time. Depending on the complexity of the photograph, it could take up to 10 hours to color a single photo.

The stereoscopic slide before being combined into a GIF.

Fortunately, these colored slides have been sliced and combined into GIFs so you don’t have to press your face to the screen and blink each eye independently like a maniac.

These beautiful historical documents were uploaded by Okinawa Soba via Flickr. Thank you sir.  You’re doing God’s work, and we salute you.

Lets take a look at these wonderful images.

The captions are my own, and are based on absolutely zero knowledge of the historical facts.


A Japanese ornament dealer falls asleep listening to Enya


Two women pretend there is an invisible forcefield between them.


A man feels silly for bringing his umbrella despite no chance of rain.


Two ladies practice horse torture.


Looking natural while contemplating murder.


“Stick your hand in it.”


Checking out an early statue of Roseanne.


For more information on these amazing images, this site goes in depth on many of T. Enami’s photographs.

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