By Safdar Nensey
I recently acquired the attached undated, large sized & paper thin, photograph pertaining to Karachi. It is about always easier to judge the age / date of a vintage postcard if it is postally used. If not, even then in this day & age of internet, one can “find” the age through Google et al search. However, in the case of this photograph of Ladies Gymkhana (now Karachi Gymkhan), it was a wee bit challenging. I am dating this photograph to circa “turn of the 20th century” (early 1900s, perhaps even pre-1900 to 1905) based on the following premise: Firstly, such thin paper photographs (stuck on cardboard pages of an album) are indicative of an older vintage (pre-1900). After ~1910 or thereabouts, paper used for photography printing was much thicker. Secondly, on the left-ish corner of the photograph, one can see the tall Holy Trinity Church (build in ~ 1855) with its upper floors, built to serve as a lighthouse too for ships arriving at Karachi Harbor, still intact. They were partly removed, about 40 ft in total, in 1905, “owing to the foundations’ showing signs of weakness” (Reference: Karachi Handbook & Directory 1928-29). Based on this, it is inferred that the photograph is atleast taken in 1905, if not earlier.This note is a bit longish. However, I alway see if I can provide some context to the picture and hence add value, as I see it, instead of simply sharing them, which again is not bad at all. Hope this help a bit. After this post, I will share 2 additional vintage postcards of the Holy Trinity Church – one with the tall tower and the other with the shorter one – but both are classified as vintage.
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