162 years later, famous Cincinnati photos restored

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Just after lunch on a sunny, September Sunday, two guys stood on a rooftop in Newport and took eight snapshots of Cincinnati's skyline.

For 162 years, no one knew exactly what time of day Charles Fontayne and William Porter took their photos.

Now, they do. Solving that mystery was an added bonus from a recent $40,000 examination, restoration and stabilization of one of the most famous set of photos from the 1840s.

The images Fontayne and Porter captured from the current site of the Newport Aquarium are woven into the fabric of Cincinnati history. And, they changed the way the world looks at photography.

"This is a tour de force, work of art of the highest level. It was a marvel in its day at exhibitions in Philadelphia and London and continues to be held in high esteem today," declared Ralph Wiegandt. As senior project conservator at Rochester's George Eastman House International Museum of Photography, he oversaw the work on the eight historic snapshots....

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