This is a large format photobooth photo, before and after cleaning. The process was very unsophisticated (a cotton bud lightly moistened with cold water, used to gently wipe away any residue). It is usually a very safe option, though I knew it was risky on older photos. The image is improved in some ways, worse in others. I wasn’t expecting the emulsion to come away. Whenever I have tried this on other photos, the emulsion remained stable. I didn’t notice it had happened until it was dried and flaking off.
This photo of a charming, smiling elderly woman, has quite a poignant and shocking inscription on the back. ” T***, Sister to Grandma D***. Married an abusive husband, F****.” With such a tranquil, kindly face it is hard to read those words without a profound sense of shock and sadness. I hope she weathered her personal storm as well as her face suggests she might have.
All three names are inscribed in full (including a surname) but as the ladies have names that are very unusual, I thought it best not to publish any of them in case any members of her family are still with us. The photo is undated and came in a large mixed lot of photos from a seller in the USA.