The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

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mikey R
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Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by mikey R » 04 Aug 2009 08:25

Hi guys,

Well it would seem the address evidenceincamera is working again, or at least it now refers to the new TARA site! I visited it last night.

It also looks like the search room is open too.

Having a quick look around the site I found some great photos that we've not seen before from TARA all viewable on google maps. There is definatly not 5 million images online but a list of places they now plan to get images online for- Finally!

Ive sent in a search request to test the water. I'll post updates as to how well it goes.

http://tara.rcahms.gov.uk/ (enjoy!!)

Also 300 dpi images for £10!

Mikey R

dagann
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Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by dagann » 04 Sep 2009 09:19

Thx mikey R.
I'm happy Tara website was finally created.
There are not a lot of pics so far, but i hope they will soon add tons of them :P

To really see details, 300dpi seems to be the minimum.
10£ to get a 300dpi online picture sounds a bit expensive to me :(
But it's better than nothing.
Sorry for my english :)

Ropey
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Location: UK

Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by Ropey » 16 Dec 2010 19:27

Here's an update.

I had the luxury of two days in the archive looking for aerials of the Italian Campaign. Staff are friendly and the search room comfortable, but the [i]procedures [/i]are inadequate and for anyone who is tempted to ask for a remote search my advice would be [b]don't [/b]unless you really have to.

The issue is that while the content is fantastic the finding aids are inadequate, and you are paying for this massive inefficiency at a rate of £1 per minute. Nor does this business model give them any incentive to improve this (or even to work quickly). In the two days I was there I managed to have pulled and viewed perhaps 20 microfilms. Of these, almost all were unmapped so it was guesswork whether a particular area was covered by a sortie. Furthermore, one film turned out to be of Ancona rather than Termoli - about 100km awry - and others were not immediately identifiable without extensive (and slow) comparison with Google Earth. I found some gems (anyone for shots of the breakthrough on the Hitler Line?), but if I'd been paying by the minute I'd be a poor man!

I discussed the future with staff there and it looks bleak, but nor did they seem to be seeking any imaginative solutions. I suggested that online users such as you and I would have the indexes mapped in short time and voluntarily. This would not effect what should be the core business of the archive - selling photographs -and indeed by making the search process less prohibitive, would increase their sales. Anyway that ain't going to happen, and you will continue to pay through the nose for a search. All I can suggest is that you write to them and point out how unreasonable their charges are.

Then there is the cost of reproduction, ranging from the £10 for a 300dpi scan mentioned above to a wacking £65 for a 1600dpi. Just how does the resolution of a scan increase the cost of a digital image, other than the cost of storage, or perhaps building in a licence fee? If it is the licence you are paying this should be stated. Otherwise why not a flat fee?

Anyway... If you can make it to Edinburgh for a day or two you will love what can be found even if you can't afford copies. If you can't get there and don't have a friend who can do it for you then think twice - you will be paying for a lot of wasted time, and have to pay even if nothing is found!

There are [b]alternatives[/b]: Aerofototeca in Rome have a reasonable collection of Italian subjects and (currently) will look pics up for you for free if you can give them the GSGS map number (eg. 160 for Cassino). I believe (but don't know for certain) that NARA in the US has an aerial photo collection. The IWM in England has many aerials in files that are not catalogued online. They are kept at Duxford and at the moment can only be found through their internal catalogue. I'd be willing to bet the Canadians have a collection but they are not user friendly if they are not online already.

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Karte
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Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by Karte » 17 Dec 2010 14:07

The collection at NARA is quite good as I work with in on a near weekly basis. If needed I can go over the ins and outs of i all.

Ropey
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Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by Ropey » 20 Dec 2010 11:22

Incidentally, I enquired about the cost of a copy of a finding aid. One sortie plot will set you back £50. Clearly the RCAHMS has no commitment to making this collection accessible. If you can't get there in person, or find an efficient researcher who can, then my advice would be to write them off as a source unless you a, have more money than sense (in which case fly there) or b, are desperate.

KARTE
Are you able and willing to write a short guide for the forum of how the NARA collection can be accessed?

snowy90
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Joined: 13 Feb 2011 23:40

Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by snowy90 » 16 Feb 2011 05:40

Karte wrote:The collection at NARA is quite good as I work with in on a near weekly basis. If needed I can go over the ins and outs of i all.

Have you thought any more about writing up the quick guide? I'm planning a trip to NARA and would like to know what to expect. I would send a PM but that function is not yet enabled on my account.

GHQ Berks
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Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by GHQ Berks » 03 Sep 2018 17:40

Hi, Are you still interested in the Luftwaffe aerial reconnaisance photos? I am researching them in relation to the British GHQ stop lines built in 1940 against the imminent invasion of the UK by the Germans. You said in one post on this forum that you sometimes get copies of aerials from University of Maryland. I need some copies to defend a landscape on the stop line from housing development and wondered whether you can help or if you know of anyone at Maryland who can. Grateful for any help you can give, Chris

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Karte
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Location: USA

Re: The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives

Post by Karte » 02 Jul 2019 15:57

Hi Chris, after a bit of time away from this site I am back. I am guessing your request might be OBE now, but let me know.
Thanks, Matt

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