Watch: Climbers From 1899 Descend From Mont Blanc

On paper, the idea of adding color to vintage black-and-white photos or film can seem frivolous or unnecessary.

Why not just enjoy the original monochromatic versions?

Yet there’s something undeniably powerful about this emerging technology trend, and the Instagram account History in Color showcases that perfectly with a recent colorized video of Alps climbers in 1899.

The restored footage shows climbers descending the Mer de Glace, located on the northern slopes of the Mont Blanc massif in the French Alps. Originally from, the footage has an increased frame rate and was colorized using AI technology, according to the post.

It’s less than a minute long, but the video is sufficient for a time capsule. It shows us Victorian climbers, dressed in three-piece suits, using simple wooden canes to navigate this steep slope near Chamonix.

If your appetite for this kind of thing has been whetted, there’s plenty more to explore on this unique and worthy Instagram account.

Or if you’d like to dive into the most ambitious colorization ever, check out Peter Jackson’s “They Shall Not Grow Old,” which colorizes World War I footage to reveal just how terrifying the war actually was.

The result, the BBC wrote, “is utterly breathtaking.”

Andrew McLemore

An award-winning journalist and photographer, Andrew McLemore brings more than 14 years of experience to his position as Associate News Editor for Lola Digital Media. Andrew is also a musician, climber and traveler who currently lives in Medellin, Colombia. When he’s not writing, playing gigs or exploring the outdoors, he’s hanging out with his dog Campana.