Frequently Asked Questions


What is this?

In a way, it's a time machine. SepiaTown lets you use your computer, tablet or even your smartphone to see what the very spot you're standing on looked like decades or centuries ago.

Anyone can browse and search to see images from the past.

Registered SepiaTown members can upload, map, and share historical images from any given location and time period with other users around the world.

What does it cost?

Nothing. SepiaTown is free. The images on the site are submitted by their owners (or are free of known restrictions). We make no claims of ownership, and we don't charge users to upload or view them.

How do you deal with mistakes?

We rely on image uploaders to make sure their images' location and information are correct. However, we also encourage feedback from our users. If you think you see a mistake, contact us and we'll let the uploader know about it. In the future, we'll be implementing a better system for this process.

I don't see historical images in the location I searched for. Where's my SepiaTown?

SepiaTown is user generated. The image collection on SepiaTown grows daily, but only because of our community members, who use their passion for history to expand the collection.

If you don't see images from a specific location, we encourage you to contact the historical society, library, museum, or other institution for that location and tell them about SepiaTown. Why Upload?

Image Archiving

Whose images are on this site?

Anyone who wants to be. We welcome historical images from private collections to archives from libraries and historical societies. The more people who upload their images, the better the experience for the user. We also encourage users to volunteer to help their local archives by uploading (if permissible) their collections.

How does an image get uploaded?

mages can be uploaded by any registered user. It's free, fun and easy to do.

Learn more about uploading your images.


Who owns the images?

It varies from user to user. Some folks upload their own images. Some upload images with permission from archives, or upload images that are free from copyright restrictions. Before uploading images, registered members must electronically affirm that the image is either owned by them or free from restriction. As explained in our Terms Of Service, we make no claim on the copyright status. We exist only to provide an interesting historical experience.

The Future of SepiaTown

What's coming up next for SepiaTown?

We are hard at work in the SepiaLabs on several new features that will make your experience even better, from improved search capabilities to uploader profiles plus a cool new mapping game. Stay tuned and keep checking back.