8 History-Making Photographs

From a close-up of a spider to the first underwater colour images, these pioneering pictures capture the spirit of exploration.

By Becky Little
Published 9 Nov 2017, 03:38 GMT

There’s nothing like a photo of a “first.”

A first can be a discovery, like the first trip to the North Pole. It can be a technological advancement, like the first successful aerial colour photograph. Or, it can be a combination of both—like the highest vertical photo for its time, captured from the first helium balloon to reach the stratosphere.

Here, from our archives, are those and other pioneering photos.

8 From the Archive is a weekly selection culled from National Geographic's archive, and curated by Archivist Bill Bonner and Senior Photo Editor Jessie Wender.

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