Episode 52: Our Picture-Taking Ancestors with Peter Dumas

Our past is for sale. Our parent’s stuff and previous generations as well.  You can find the most amazing things at flea markets. That’s what New Englander’s call these outdoor sales.  I regularly visit two of these. In the summer months, the Providence Flea occupies a small space on the waterfront. If it’s there. I am too. It’s a mix of antique and collectible vendors as well as artist spaces.  

One of my favorite people to chat with at the Flea is Peter Dumas of Picture This Antiques.  He specializes in old cameras. I’ll let him tell his story. Oh…and the glass plate camera he mentions…well.. I couldn’t leave it there. It now sits on a shelf in my office along with other cameras he’s sold me.  

In addition to the Flea I make at least one visit to the Brimfield Antique Market in Brimfield, Massachusetts. It’s held three times a year but for some reason my tradition is to go in July. Yes. In the 90 degrees sweltering heat and humidity. Think 100K people and vendors spread out on 12 fields. I’ve walked miles looking at stuff learning history as I go. And picked up some wonderful photos too. Here’s some of the things I’ve seen.  My favorite is the last one. You really can find anything at Brimfield. Do you know what it is? I do, but let’s see if you can guess. 

About My Guest: 

Peter Dumas is the owner of Picture This Antiques. A chance sale of a vintage camera led him to create a business that’s related to historic cameras. 

Here’s that lovely red Kodak camera I bought last year. Isn’t it cute?


About Maureen Taylor:

Maureen is a frequent keynote speaker on photo identification, photograph preservation, and family history at historical and genealogical societies, museums, conferences, libraries, and other organizations across the U.S., London and Canada.  She’s the author of several books and hundreds of articles and her television appearances include The View and The Today Show (where she researched and presented a complete family tree for host Meredith Vieira).  She’s been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Better Homes and Gardens, The Boston Globe, Martha Stewart Living, Germany’s top newspaper Der Spiegel, American Spirit, and The New York Times. Maureen was recently a spokesperson and photograph expert for MyHeritage.com, an internationally known family history website and also writes guidebooks, scholarly articles and online columns for such media as Smithsonian.com. Learn more at Maureentaylor.com

Did you enjoy this episode? Please leave a review on Apple Podcasts.