Post-mortem Photography - History.. this information came from
I know that this is not something that we would normaly do but out of all the websites that I seen and have read about Post-mortem this was one of the far better ones. I havew just cut and pasted but I want you all to know where it has come from .
Post-mortem photography is often difficult for modern-day audiences to understand. Why would anyone want a photograph memorializing their loved one while he or she is propped up on chair or lying on their deathbed?
Like many other historical artifacts, understanding post-mortem photography requires an understanding of the surrounding culture, context and era. During the Victorian era, photography was on the rise thanks to the invention of the daguerreotype in 1839. This made portraiture more accessible. For the middle class who were often not able to afford a painted family portrait, the cheaper and quicker method of the daguerreotype suddenly made memorializing loved ones an attainable reality.
Anyone with a Facebook account knows how commonplace childhood and family photos are today. Most phones come equipped with a high-definition camera. Parents create online galleries and websites devoted exclusively to the regular growth and activities of their children. Imagine a time when families didn't own a single photo or painting of their loved one. The childhood mortality rate of the Victorian era was particluarly high. For many of these grieving families, a post-mortem photograph may have been the only image of their child they owned.
Also, travel was more difficult for mourners, so the photographs allowed distant family members to see their passed loved ones in the event they were unable to attend the funeral.
When one considers the culture surrounding these photos it provides a context for better understanding post-mortem photography and its place in history.
Many early post-mortem photographs depict the departed in life-like poses. Children are often seen in cribs or beds, surrounded by flowers and their favorite toys or personal items. Adults are often propped up in chairs or seen standing, usually supported by special frames. Later photos may include coffins and groups of mourners, especially if the deceased was a priest or public figure.
Sometimes mourners are included in the photos, especially when children were the subject. Due to the long exposure time required for taking the photos, the living members move around a bit, causing them to appear blurry or in less sharp focus than the deceased. This can create an almost ethereal effect.
- Article by A. Paul Myers
Not for the Fant at heart please dont look if you have a weak stomach this is just posted on to show examples on the Post Mortem article.
Photos were from:
( The Portrait above is second type of post Mortem Photograph- If you cant tell the female on the left is deceased and the artist painted her eyes on the photo.) (www.petroliaheritage.com)
(this Portrait is type one and type three post mortem photography)(www.guerrillapoop.com)
(this portrait is type one Post mortem photography)(www.Flicker.com)
(This Photo is Type Two post Mortem the Mother is alive holding her sons death certificate and her deceased son)(www.ebay.com) (for sale for 4.99)
(Post Mortem type 2- the sister on the left is deceased and the sister on the right is still living)(www.ebay.com)(for sale for 19.99)
(type one post mortem photography)(ww.ebay.com)(for sale)
(Post mortem photography type 2)(grief stricken mother with deceased child)(www.archaography.com)
(these photos can be found in sleeping beauty: memorial photograph in america for sale on amazon for 289.95)
(post mortem type 2 the boy is braced on the brace and is deceased with living sister next to him)(www.industrialmusics.co.cc)
* Just to verify things our team does not search for Post-mortem Photographs, neither do we take them at our cases. This is Just an Interesting topic of how people have dealt with death and afterlife*
We've all heard of some people taking photo's for a hobby but have you ever heard of people taking Post-Mortem Photo's?
For the people who have never heard of Post-Mortem Photography, Memorial Portraiture, or Memento Mori. It's Basically taking photo's of the recently deceased, now you have to think to yourself who would ever do that it's morbid, creepy, weird and disturbing but quite frankly our ancestor's have been taking what the movie "The Others" called Death Photo's since the near end of the 19th century and faded out in the 20th century.
Why did they take these photo's when they could have taken them when their beloved was still alive, frankly because the commission for a painted portrait was either to expensive or the child for example wouldn't sit still long enough for the artist to paint them but mostly due to the extremely high mortality rates of children in the Victorian era, so sometimes unfortunately the Post-Mortem photograph was the only photograph the families had of their child. In 1839 the Claguerrotype was invented making portraits cheaper and faster. soon after the Carte de viste was invented making it to were you could print more then one copy from the negative. So families were able to send photo's of the deceased to relatives who were unable to attend the funerals.
The first type of Post-Mortem photo's were mostly close-ups on the face or photo's of the full body but rarely in a coffin, basically making them look like they are in a deep peaceful sleep.
The second type of Post-Mortem Photo's were made to look like the deceased were still alive, rouge was placed on their cheeks to give them a rosy complication, their eye's were sometimes left open or eye's were painted on the photo's. Mostly they would pose their deceased, The children were often posed to look like they fell asleep on the couch or in the crib with their favorite toys or The deceased were posed standing up for these types of photo's they created a life-size porcelain doll stand that had a base and a post going up the back of the deceased with clamps at the waist and neck with stiff wire's running to the back to pose the arms. Many were posed with their living family members most of the time with their mothers.
The Third Type of the Post-Mortem Photo's made the deceased less life-like and were placed in their coffins with flowers around them. Some very famous people were subjects of the Post-Mortem photos like: president Abraham Lincoln , The Dalton Gang and Jesse James.
These types of Post mortem photos are still practised around the world but mostly in eastern Europe and in my family. I don't find these Photos weird in fact I find them quite beautiful types of art. More like a completion of the circle of life. We enter the world and are photographed and sometimes leave this world photographed.
Editor: Jolene McClish
Resources from Eyclipedia via internet
archalogical.com, Flicker.com,ebay.com and etc.(located on the side bar of the website)
Hello everyone, we received an email from Gerard Cantinotti. He has some post mortem photos that he offered to our group to post on our page so I thought that I would make him a section here to post some of his wonderful photos. enjoy and thank you very much for the photos. There were alot of photos and there is just not enough space for all of them but here are a few.