Fifties Friday: On the record

Fifties Friday: On the record

img. The British Lbrary CC BY via Europeana.

From the curatorial effort of the EU project 1950s in Europe Kaleidoscope, every week on Friday there’s a new set of carefully selected photographs to be explored on the project’s website.

Today we present “On the record”.

Taken from the opulent collections of The British Library, these images document the variety of magnetic recorders in use during the 1950s. The principle of magnetic recording was first demonstrated by the Danish engineer Valdemar Poulsen in 1900. In the next few years, devices using a wide range of magnetic recording mediums were developed by researchers in Germany, the UK and the US. Several photographs showcase the Minifon, made in Germany: one of the last wire recorders ever to be produced. Marketed during a period when Cold War espionage was acute, the pocket-sized Minifon had accessories for covert recording, such as a small microphone that could fit onto a lapel. Find more 1950s technology on and keep browsing our WITH collections!


Fifties in Europe Kaleidoscope is co-financed by the Connecting Europe Facility Programme of the European Union, under GA n. INEA/CEF/ICT/A2017/1568496

Subscribe to Our Newsletter


Photoconsortium, International Consortium for Photographic Heritage

Via della Bonifica 69, 56037 Peccioli, Pisa, Italy


All the photographs in this website are licensed under Creative Commons.

Credits Page