Well knock me down with a feather! You'll never guess what I discovered today - a big cardbooard box full of boxes of colour slides which I had taken many, many years ago!
So, just to start (!), this is a picture which I took in July, 1965 when, at the age of 17, I went on a two week cruise which had been organised by my school - and we visited France, Spain, Portugal and Morocco. All for the princely sum of £40, though that was a lot of money in those days. I'm sure that I still owe my parents for most of that!
I took this picture on Kodachrome colour slide film with my little secondhand Voigtländer Vito B camera which I had bought a couple of years previously for £12. I still have it to this day and it still works!
This is Belém Tower (or Torre de Belém) which stands on a very small island just off the north shore of the River Tagus at Lisbon.
In the late 15th century, King John II of Portugal had designed a defence system for the mouth of the Tagus that depended on the Fortresses of Cascais and São Sebastião (or Torre Velho) in Caparica on the south side of the river. These fortresses did not completely cover the mouth of the river and further protection was required. It was King Manuel I of Portugal, in the early 16th Century, who revisited the idea, ordering the construction of a military fortification on the northern margin of the Tagus, around the beach in Belém. In 1519, the build had concluded (just five years before Manuel's death), and Gaspar de Paiva was temporarily stationed to command the fortress. The commission became permanent on 15 September 1521, when Gaspar de Paiva was appointed the first Captain-General, or alcalde, and who named the fort to the invocation of the city's patron saint, naming the fortress the "Castle of São Vicente" (Castelo de São Vicente de Belém).
Belém Tower saw active service during Portugal's invasion in 1580 by the Spanish fleet and further service during the French invasion of Lisbon during the Peninsular War (1807 - 1814).
In the 1990s, the property was transferred into the Instituto Português do Património Arquitectónico and a full restoration was completed. In 1993 it was classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and it was also included, on 7 July 2007, in the registry of the "Seven Wonders of Portugal".
In this picture you can also see, at far left, the huge "Christ the King" statue ("Cristo Rei"), a Catholic monument and shrine, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ. It lies almost 5 kilometeres distant on the south bank of the River Tagus.
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holmertz (34647) 2014-02-18 13:32
What a lovely surprise! Finding a box full of old slides just like that doesn't happen every day. Scanning all those pictures is likely to keep you busy for a while. Maybe they are not all as good as this, which as a composition fares well in comparison with most pictures on TE. It also seems that your box had been stored in a suitably cool and dark place, because I can hardly trace any deterioration of the colours. Taken almost half of a century ago and looking as fresh as new. That's fantastic.
dta (60201) 2014-02-18 13:57
Hello John ,
Wow ! Almost 50 years old , and a superb quality . May be a "kind" of overexposure , or slightly faded colors ; but I'm not sure . I suppose that nothing (or so few) has changed in the close surroundings of the tower . May be that is very different for the oopposite bank of the Tagus .
Thanks for this oldie .
lousat (68565) 2014-02-18 14:04
Waaw...this is an archeo-pic!! You are very very old my friend..ehehe...i was just born when you toke this pic! And it's very nice,classic but perfectly made,and i like a lot your excellent scannering work for a beautiful result! Have a good night and thanks,Luciano
tenretin (1465) 2014-02-18 14:37
Sympa de nous faire partager ce voyage dans le temps. La qualité de la photo est excellente ainsi que la composition.
Merci pour le partages.
carlo62 (23702) 2014-02-18 15:47
un vero reperto storico, incredibile la qualità di questa foto dopo tanto tempo e dopo la scansione.
Quella gita è stata un grande regalo, non era facile spendere certe cifre per mandare un ragazzo di 17 anni in quegli anni.
Adesso aspettiamo altre sorprese dalla tua scatola/cilindro magico.
npecanhuk (59020) 2014-02-18 18:23
Gosh! I love that Tower! I'm glad I visited it ten years ago! And... yes, this picture was taken whem I was around one month old! LOL
For a slide copy... so old (am I old???), it's excellent and... surely... very beautiful!
TFS - congrats,
jjcordier (70549) 2014-02-18 22:40
Je suis aussi en plein scan de mes anciennes diapos....je ne sais pas si c'est bon signe! tu avais déjà un bon sens du cadrage à l'époque! La difficulté est de restituer les couleurs d'origine, les diapositives les ayant un peu perdues.
emka (68624) 2014-02-18 22:52
Hello John, What a found in old box! It must be a real surprise and fun. And it looks quite as new - no traces of ageing, excellent composition, good colours, amazing. In 1965, I made photos but I had very cheap Russian camera - smiena. I still have it somewhere as an museum object. And the photos were black and white. Only at the beginning of seventies I started to make colour slides. It was so exciting to have colour on photos. But the main problem was a quality of the film, after the years nothing can be done.
And such a cruise organized with the school, also great thing. We had a few excursions but only a few days and it was impossible to go anywhere abroad.
Looking forward to more oldies MAlgo
Royaldevon (24324) 2014-02-19 2:06
Well, John, I'm amazed that you have such treasures hidden away! And to think you had forgotten about them after 20 (give or take a few) years! You won't have time to go walking, now, with all these slides to scan and update!
This is a fine shot, beautifully composed and with lovely textural details of the tower. The light is really to your advantage, creating long shadows that seem to give a 3D appearance.
It has scanned very well.
You must be pleased.
Have a great day,
ACL1978 (7323) 2014-02-19 21:22
Hello John! Just poking my head in after a long absence. And what a great find you've made! I hope we get to see lots of these as you uncover the gems. This is a beautiful tower, and the shot itself has held up very well considering its age (nearly 50 years!) I hope you've been well.
photoray (8440) 2014-02-20 11:08
Fine detailed view of Torre de Belem, the excellent Portugal architecture from half a millennium ago, and still in great condition. I especially like the unique wall towers.
Ironically as stated money bought a lot more in 1965. A year earlier our college's Western Civilization History professor took any students interested around Europe for three months in the summer for $2,000 total. I missed out on this lifetime chance, because I had to work summers to pay for college.
Thanks for sharing,
ktanska (23442) 2014-02-21 9:32
I could never guess this one is so old. Obviously you could get amazing results already those days with good equipment. But not with negative film I think.
It is a beautiful and well recognizable tower. Direction of light is very good for showing those shadows and adding contrast.
macjake (49318) 2014-02-21 10:24
i couldn't believe my eyes when i read that this photo was taken in 1965!
when i viewed it I honestly thought it was a recent photo, especially because you just went to Portugal too.
Seems like the majority of tourists come home with a photo of this Tower, and it's in all the tour books as well. But this one is a bit different because we often see it close up.
hmm....I didn't expect Palm Trees in Portugal! Must be a very temperate climate, sounds nice.
Its going to be fun to see what you have in store for us with you newly found treasure haha
excellent scanned image my friend
jcpix (9298) 2014-02-23 8:55
Indeed, this must have been one happy surprise to find these old photos. I have a box full of slides myself, but none dating back this far, or even with the same image quality as you've restored. I must say, looks great for its age!
I always enjoy seeing old pictures such as this, there's obviously a very nostalgic and historical quality about them, and it raises curiosity as to what something like this would be like today. My guess is that it's very much the same. A developed (pun intended :))sense of compositional skills already formed when this was taken, usually when most 17 year olds wouldn't have even bothered with detail of any sort. I'm sure you parents have long since forgiven the debt. :)
Glad you pointed out the distant statue, adding another point of interest, which might have otherwise been lost against the stature of the tower. Thanks for sharing these classics. Hope to see many more. Enjoy the new week ahead. Take good care.
mkamionka (28422) 2014-02-25 5:20
this is so impressive. I like that you included the palm trees here. I have been there but I don't remember seeing them Curious if they are still there. They add a nice exotic touch to the scene. The quality is stunning. My negatives from before 2004 are heavily damaged but I was tough for them taking them back and forth through the ocean and several countries. So I admire you excellent quality here. It was way before I was born and as a child I don't remember seeing a color photo for a very long time. Not speaking of the fact that traveling abroad seems like a science fiction for me at that time.
You have obviously had a great eye from the beginning and a good care for details.
very well done,