Back in 1909, a super-rich French banker named Albert Kahn decided to create a photographic record of the world using the new color photography process that had just appeared, the Autochrome Lumière. He commissioned 4 photographers to take their cameras to places all over the world. One of the cities they documented was Paris.
Starting in 1914, Kahn’s photographers (Leon Gimpel, Stephane Passet, Georges Chevalier and Auguste Leon) began to document life in Paris using the pioneering color process, which featured color filters made from dyed potato starch grains.
Here’s a beautiful gallery of the color photos they made a century ago (with some color enhancing done on the original shots):