Istanbul postcards and photographs collection, 1890-1940

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Collection is a set of postcards and photographs from late 19th and early 20th century Turkey, depicting scenes and people in the Üsküdar neighborhood of Istanbul, Turkey, and in other unidentified areas of Istanbul. Materials in the Üsküdar series have been individually numbered and described in English and Turkish. Materials in the Ottoman period postcard series have been translated from French and described in English.
0.2 Linear Feet
Materials in Turkish and French.
Collection ID:


Scope and content:

Collection consists of individual postcards and photographs of Istanbul, may in the Üsküdar area of the city, dating from the late 1800s through the 1930s. Some postcards are blank; others have been mailed and contain correspondence. Images depicted vary but include markets, mosques, streets and houses, schools, palaces, harbor scenes, piers, and other geographic landmarks. There are images of both people and methods of transportation. Most people are anonymous, but there are some depictions (illustrations) of Florence Nightingale. Photographs are silver gelatin or photomechanical prints. Some postcards are illustrations, at times hand-colored. Items are described individually.

Biographical / historical:

Üsküdar, traditionally known in Italian and English as Scutari, is a large and densely populated district and municipality of Istanbul, Turkey, on the Anatolian shore of the Bosphorus. It is bordered on the north by Beykoz, on the east by Ümraniye, on the southeast by Ataşehir, on the south by Kadıköy, and on the west by the Bosphorus, with the areas of Beşiktaş, Beyoğlu, and Eminönü on the opposite shore.

Source: Wikipedia (accessed May 17, 2019).

Acquisition information:
The Istanbul Photographs and Postcards Collection was received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book Manuscript Library as a purchase in 2019.
Processing information:

Processed by Meghan Lyon, Sean Swanick. Materials were assembled by a book dealer who subsequently provided Turkish captions (with English translations later provided by library staff). Accession 2019-0188 added by Leah Tams, December 2021.

Accessions described in this collection guide: 2019-0054, 2019-0188.


Items in the Üsküdar series are numbered and are sleeved and foldered in numerical order.

Rules or conventions:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard


Click on terms below to find related finding aids on this site. For other related materials in the Duke University Libraries, search for these terms in the Catalog.

Islamic architecture
Turks -- Pictorial works
Photographic postcards
Nightingale, Florence, 1820-1910 -- Pictorial works
Üsküdar (Istanbul, Turkey) -- Pictorial works
Turkey -- Description and travel


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Collection is open for research.

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The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

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Preferred citation:

[Identification of item], Istanbul Photographs and Postcard Collection, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.