Thursday, January 9, 2014

Thriller Thursday: Bizarre Symbolism

I just love it when I find a kindred spirit out there in blog-land! I stumbled across the photo-history blog Hunting and Gathering by accident (or serendipity) the other day on 19th & early mid-20th century Georgia photographs and their associates. A photographer’s project has just started taking shape with me because of access to early photo cabinet cards I’ve had from the Cattaraugus County, New York area. The blog posts and work done on Hunting and Gathering inspired me to do more with this project of mine and I plan to post some of my work soon.

This post reminded me of the above photograph I have from a friend’s genealogy collection. My guess is that it is from the early 1900s as it appears to be a snapshot similar to ones I’ve seen from that time period and may have been taken with a Brownie camera. From what I understand from Maureen Taylor’s Uncovering Your Ancestry through Family Photographs, Kodak had sold a quarter million of these cameras by the year 1900.

The unusual subject of this photograph is certainly puzzling. You can see a skull and a pocket watch but any other details seem obscured. Anyone have any ideas about the origin or meaning of this?

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