La Grande Place, the Old Houses, Brussels, Belgium


This photochrome print of the Grande Place in Brussels is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites in Belgium” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). This square is the traditional center of Brussels, the location of city hall and the city’s market place. Its present appearance has not changed since around 1695, when the French army under Louis XIV destroyed its older structures, which had been built in the Middle Ages. The houses shown here reflect a Gothic–Baroque style of architecture, popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. Baedeker’s Belgium and Holland including the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg (1905) described the square as “one of the finest medieval squares in existence, presenting a marked contrast to the otherwise modern character of the city, which occupies an important place in the annals of Belgium.”

Subject Date

Publication Information

Detroit Publishing Company, Detroit, Michigan


Type of Item

Physical Description

1 photomechanical print : photochrom, color


  • The Detroit Photographic Company was launched as a photographic publishing firm in the late 1890s by Detroit businessman and publisher William A. Livingstone, Jr., and photographer and photo-publisher Edwin H. Husher. They obtained exclusive rights to use the Swiss "Photochrom" process for converting black-and-white photographs into color images and printing them by photolithography. This innovative process was applied to the mass production of color postcards, prints, and albums for sale to the American market. The firm became the Detroit Publishing Company in 1905.

Last updated: September 4, 2013