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13 Comments | Vintage
Here is the background story, translated from an article in Dutch:
>Sometimes something is the opposite of what it appears to be. This is not a happy wedding photo of the architect Carl Weber and his wife Emily Stratford. This photo was taken four hours after Emily’s death. > >If you look closely, you can see the strings that hold the arms of the deceased Emily in position; even the sticks to keep her eyes open. It’s a horrible, lugubrious idea, but for the architect it’s the only way to capture his wife in a photograph at that moment. It’s the year 1850. Photography is still in its infancy and something for the higher classes. Architect Weber may come from a well-to-do family, but the death of his wife completely surprises him. > >It is only at that moment that he realizes that his wife is not in any photograph. He takes a loving act of despair. "In the picture they are both looking seriously, but with a big difference: Emily ‘posed’, with strings to hold her arm high and sticks to keep her eyes open, while she had been dead for four hours already", says [priest and local historian] René Aarden on our website. > >It is undoubtedly one of the most macabre photographs from our extensive collection. The background of this photograph also explains the unfathomable gaze of the young widower who, so soon after the death of his wife, pretends to pose as if their happiness has yet to begin. In reality he is left behind as the single father of a one year old daughter.
Dude…. brutal, stunning capture of loss and sadness.
Still more romantic than my wedding pics
That might be the scariest thing I have ever seen
The story adds so much detail, but I still couldn’t place myself in his shoes. Isn’t the point of pictures is to capture a moment in someone’s life? He’d always know she was dead in that.
creepy… But I guess you didn’t have to worry about her sitting still.
I have to admit, I don’t like this very much.
This is both heartwarming and a little bit macabre. But also kinda darkly comedic. I mean, people keep their loved one’s ashes in urns. So nothing too weird here.
Looks like a fake story, to be honest. No strings or sticks in the eyes of the woman are visible. Her head would hang much lower unless it’s held in place by something.
During the mid 19th century photography required very long exposure times, so people had to sit still in front of the camera still for several seconds. That’s why we see such blank facial expressions in old photographs. I believe that this is the case as well.
This is called post mortem photography, it was very common in those days, sad but interesting
Im skeptical. He looks at least as dead as she. The "strings" used to prop her look more like a decorative chain. There’s been other fraudulent death pictures passed around the internet before.
Death Photography was a thing for a while. Photography was expensive and uncommon, sometime the only photo taken of a person was after they were dead.