Monday, March 31, 2008

Library of Congress tea images

My girlfriends and I decided to throw a little last-minute tea party over the weekend, and I thought you'd enjoy seeing the photo, above. I'm the gal sitting next to the vase of flowers at far right. Well, OK, not really. But wouldn't you love to have been part of such an elegant affair as this tea party of yesteryear? This is just one of many digital images you can find on the website of the Library of Congress, which says it "offers broad public access to these materials as a contribution to education and scholarship." You can read the legal stuff to see which photos are available and which are not, but all the ones I'm showing here are downloadable with no known restrictions on publication.

So what would one do with such images, like this one of some cute little girls having a tea party? Well, I can think of several ideas. 1) My fellow tea bloggers might use a photo that illustrates a post on their blog! 2) I can see these images being used for tea party invitations, scrapbooking, decoupage, collage, altered art, jewelry making (think soldered photo charms) and many other projects. 3) Tea educators and researchers might find some images they wish to use in their programs and materials.

This photo of a Senate Ladies' Tea is one I find quite amusing, since some of the ladies look a little too serious.

And perhaps my favorite of all is this photo of Mrs. George Pullman. I fairly swooned when I saw this photo, loving everything from her beautiful gown to the lovely tea service and the elegant lace tablecloth (double-click the photo to see the details better). I found these and many other great images using such search terms as tea, afternoon tea, tea party, teacup, teapot, tea set, tea service and tea leaf. And I'm sure I've merely scratched the surface of the treasures awaiting at this valuable web site.


  1. Oh, thank you! I am always on the lookout for these lovely old tea images, and I feel like you've opened a treasure chest for me!!!!!

  2. What a great website. Thanks.

  3. That site is so interesting. Thanks.


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