Colour Photos of 1950s France pc

Colour Photos of 1950s France 

Americans holidaying in the south of France, circa 1956.  There is a rack of picture postcards by the door; the woman holds a pencil, the gent is displaying what seems to be a tourist guidebook.


A collection of Kodachrome slides from the Pete Grafton Collection.

Chateau D’If,  Tourisme Nautique –  Vieux Port, Marseilles, circa 1956.

What follows are Kodachrome slides taken by an American couple on holiday in France circa 1956.  The year is a guess, based on clothes and cars.  The photos are no later than 1957 as Kodak did not start dating the mounts of their Kodachrome slides (when processed) until 1958. The first group of photos including the two above were taken in the Marseilles, Arles and Avignon area in early Spring.

Extract from Michelin Map France Sud, 1965 revision. With grateful acknowledgment to Michelin.

All these Kodachrome slides were bought on ebay by Pete Grafton in 2008, from a vendor who regularly sold slides on the ebay site.


It seems the American visitors above took a trip on the Chateau D’If tourist boat around the old port (Vieux Port), besides taking a couple of snaps of local youngsters fishing.

Vieux Port (The Old Port), Marseilles.
Vieux Port, Marseille, 1956.
Vieux Port, Marseille. 1956.

 Both boys have sand/mud on their hands. In 2019 these boys will now be approaching their mid-seventies.
The American couple stayed a night or two in a hotel possibly either in or near Arles or Avignon.
The American woman with…? A fellow hotel guest, or Le Patron de L’Hotel ? Or…?

The hotel dining room.
The view from the hotel dining room. There is a chance the car seen on the left is a car hired by the American couple. There is a glimpse of a similar car in a photo of Le Palais des Papes (Palace of the Popes) in Avignon.
Arles,  Roman ruins.
Arles, price of entry to Roman ruins and a cat sniffing the sign.
Two young girls. Assumed to be Arles or Avignon. Detail.

Church entrance, with daughter, son and father, possibly. Assumed to be either Arles or Avignon. Detail.

Unidentified town square. “Cycles Magaly” and a Gendarme talks to a car passenger. Detail.

Pont d’Avignon (and dog).
Avignon and a parked Cadillac, believed to be a Series 62, with a Norwegian plate. A sign to the right of the Banque de France indicates the way to Le Palais des Papes (The Palace of the Popes)
Le Palais des Papes, Avignon.
Monument du Centenaire (detail), Avignon.  Someone is looking out of the window above the Creme Eclipse sign
Monument du Centenaire, Avignon.
Theatre Building, Avignon, detail.

Citroen 2CV and Volkswagen Beatle, believed to be in Avignon. (Detail).  The country of origin of the all numeral registration plate on the Volkswagen has not, yet, been identified.

Avignon: “Services Touristiques, Provence Voyages“, and a Gendarme. Detail.


Eh Maintenant?

Marseille, the Old Harbour, circa 1956. Note the washing drying out on the fourth floor.
Marseilles, the Old Harbour.  Grateful acknowledgement Vichie81/Shutterstock.

C’est la vie!


1950s Paris in Colour

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