View Full Version : Kodak paper dating

09-15-2012, 10:51 AM
Hello, I was referred to this site and I am wondering if anyone can help me date some photos based on the Kodak watermark stamped on the back, which states


I also noticed that underlining of the 'R' and 'E' in MANUFACTURED would alternate from watermark to watermark like so,


Any help would be appreciated.

09-15-2012, 03:54 PM
To elaborate more on the topic.

As some of you may or may not know, not all Kodak photo paper is branded with the same watermark on the back. Knowledge of the different types of watermarks and the time period in which they were used can be useful to those who collect vintage photos. For example, if someone was trying to sell you a colored photo of Marilyn Monroe, which you were told was printed in 1961 on Kodak photo paper, and when you turned it around you saw


You should be hesitant to trust them because from 1961 – 1972 Kodak marked their colored photo paper with,


Before that time they were marked with “EKC” encircled by a double-lined circle.

In 1972 and up until the early 1990s they changed the mark to,


Now, trying to determine a more exact date for photos printed during this 20 year or so time period can be tricky. During this time period Kodak also used selective underlining of letters and in the 1980s they also introduced selective overlining of characters. So, if you have a photo with this watermark and some of the letters have an overline you know that the photo could have been printed no earlier than 1980. However, I am not sure if all Kodak colored paper had overlines in their watermarks during the 1980s or if only some.

What I am hoping is that someone here with more knowledge of Kodak’s branding scheme can help me narrow down the possible age of these photos a little more.

To finish up, in 1989 Kodak started to brand each of their individual product lines with a unique backprint/watermark.

09-16-2012, 04:01 PM
Am I the only one using old paper?? :laugh:

I've been using vintage B&W paper for lumen prints, and have several different kinds of Kodak paper I haven't used yet. Some of the prints I did on Velox have 'A KODAK PAPER' w/the trademark R on the back - all caps but KODAK is in larger letters than the rest. That batch was from paper that expired in 12/66 (saved the label). It's 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches but I have similar paper (Velox, Kodabromide) in various sizes that were manufactured within a few years of each other.

Even though I have mostly paper for B&W prints it looks like the same watermark may have been used for that as well as color. The closest to that I have is Panalure, which is for B&W prints from color negatives.

I don't seem to have any so far from the era you're looking at (later '60's thru the 70s?), but I haven't looked thru my whole stash yet. I have old paper going back to some that expired in 1909 (so I'm about 100 years too late to take them up on their offer to replace the paper!) and some Azo that says it can be developed by gaslight.

What else do you have to go on? - gogo boots? bell bottoms?? maybe we can help narrow it down that way!

11-27-2012, 07:21 PM
When I worked in a lab in the 70's and 80's our Kodak rep told me that the underlined letter in the word manufactured indicated the papers position in the master roll it was cut from.