Mountains, glaciers and summer mountain pastures Collection

This corpus is essentially composed of photographs - digitised glass plates - which most often represent the glaciers of the French Alps. Initially used as teaching materials at the French national school of forestry (ENEF), they are still relevant for understanding and monitoring the evolution of glaciers and mountain ranges in a context of global change.

Part of the photographs comes from the French National School of Forestry (ENEF), founded in Nancy in 1824 under the name of the Royal Forestry School (École royale forestière).

The photographs illustrate glaciers, natural disasters (flooding, rockfalls, avalanches) in the Alps and other French massifs, as well as life in the mountains.

The photographs presented were taken by Joseph Tairraz and his son Georges, pioneers of mountain photography who immortalised the main glaciers of the Mont Blanc massif.

Every year, from 1888 to 1938, they took photos of the glacier fronts of the Mont Blanc massif. These photographs have proven very useful in tracing the evolution of the mountain stream morphology.

nota bene : documents related to the moutain land restoration are available in the "moutain land restoration" collection

On the same subject

  • Glacier
    Mountainous Area

    The Tairraz family, a dynasty of mountaineer photographers

    Three men from the Tairraz family, mountain guides from Chamonix, photographed the Mont Blanc glaciers every year from 1891 through to 1933. Their photographs provide invaluable data for tracking the evolution of the glaciers from the industrial revolution to the 20th century. Today, they are greatly threatened by global warming.