Eerie Photos Not Suitable For History Books
Mary Anne MacLeod was a poor Scottish immigrant who arrived in America in 1930 and married an up-and-coming businessman named Frederick Trump. The mother of businessman and future president, Donald Trump.
It is a crazy world out there! It is filled with strange places, bizarre objects, weird events, and odd yet beautiful people. That is what this gallery of photographs is all about. We want to celebrate the rare moments in history as captured on film. In this collection of photos, you will see strange artifacts from the past, significant moments in world history, and some rarely seen images of your favorite celebrities.
This pretty young girl is Mary Anne MacLeod, the mother of former president Donald Trump. The youngest of ten children, she was born in 1912 in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland and immigrated to the U.S. when she was just 18 years old. A few years later, Mary Anne, who was living with her sister in Queens, met a young real estate developer at a party. His name was Fred Trump. The couple got married on April 5, 1936, and spent their honeymoon in Atlantic City. Mary Anne gave birth to five children. The fourth one was a son named Donald whom she named after her grandfather, a Scottish fisherman, who was lost at sea.
In March, 1959, the first Barbie doll goes on display at the American Toy Fair in New York City.
When Ruth Handler debuted Barbie, a doll with adult features, at the 1959 American Toy Fair in New York City, the toy was not an instant hit. It took some convincing to persuade adults into believing that young girls wanted non-baby dolls. Handler, however, understood this. She observed that her own daughter, Barbara, preferred playing with adult paper dolls because she could play house with them. After a tentative start, Ruth Handler proved the critics wrong. Young girls did, indeed, want to play with a doll that allowed them to envision grown-up life. Barbie went on to be one of the biggest toys in American history.
Blanche Monnier was a French woman who was noted for her beauty.
The story of Blanche Monnier is heartbreaking and tragic. The beautiful young French socialite made a splash on French society in the 1870s. Her bourgeoise upbringing and her stunning good looks attracted many suitors, but Blanche announced that she planned to marry a non-gentrified, nearly penniless lawyer who was much older than her. Her mother was furious. She reacted by locking her daughter into an attic hideout where she kept her prisoner for 26 years, with the help of Blanche’s brother, Marcel. During her captivity, Blanche was kept near starvation and languished in the dark. In 1901, an anonymous letter to the Paris Attorney General alerted authorities to her situation and the unfortunate socialite was finally rescued.
Ella Fitzgerald sitting in a jail cell for singing to an integrated audience, 1955. 🎼
On October 7, 1955, singer Ella Fitzgerald was arrested and hauled to jail in Houston, Texas. Her crime? She was entertaining an integrated crowd. By this point in history, rules about racial segregation had been outlawed, but in some places, such as Houston, segregation was still the norm. Ahead of Ella Fitzgerald’s concert, the tour manager, Norman Granz, had the signs in the theatre designating a “White” section and a “Negro” section taken down. The theatre owner was furious and alerted the local police. When the concert began, Ella Fitzgerald, along with Dizzy Gillespie and Illinois Jacquet were arrested on trumped-up charges. The real problem was that some people in Houston were not ready to let go of “Jim Crow” laws.
Iron workers above the North Tower of the World Trade Center in 1973.
Construction on the North Tower of the World Trade Center kicked off in later summer, 1968, and work on the South Tower began about six months later. The massive towers were built using metals from U.S. Steel and Bethlehem Steel with hundreds of laborers contracted to erect the steel and iron framework, including these high-flying men. If you think this looks like a dangerous job, you’re right. Between the time work started on the building and when the job was completed, 60 workers were killed on the job. Six workers died in 1970 when a truck struck a propane tank and exploded. Although the Towers were finished in 1970 and 1971, the official dedication wasn’t held until 1973.
Children playing with a toy guillotine, France, 1959
A morbid relic from the deadly and brutal French Revolution, the guillotine is an efficient tool for carrying out gruesome executions by beheading the condemned person. During the heyday of the French Revolution, the guillotine was called ‘the people’s avenger’ because it was used to execute several of the royal and political elite, including King Louis XVI and Queen Marie Antoinette. The guillotine was designed to swiftly lop off the person’s head and catch it in a basket. So why are these kids playing with a toy replica of such a horrific killing device? Who knows? But there have been plenty of questionable children’s toys in the past, including toy guns, toy knives, and toy bows and arrows.
Jack Riano, a clown and circus member, dressed as comic strip character Popeye the Sailor Man, 1937. Credit - @baptistecolors
Circus performer Jack Riano looked super creepy in his 1937 Popeye the Sailor Man costume. The Popeye comic strip character was created by cartoonist E.C. Segar in 1929, but at the time, Popeye was only a bit character in his comic strip, Thimble Theatre. The main character of the comic was a lazy do-nothing named Harold Hamgravy and his lanky girlfriend, Olive Oyl. Popeye was hired by Hamgravy to captain a ship for him, but readers fell in love with the tough-talking sailor. Eventually, Hamgravy faded out and Popeye stole his girlfriend. Good thing, too, otherwise Jack Riano would have been dressed like a creep Hamgravy.
Train at Paris' Montparnasse Station that derailed as it entered the station, 1895. 🚂
Oops! The Granville-Paris Express came into the station at the Gare Montparnasse terminus a little too hot on October 22, 1895. It seems that the train’s conductor was trying to make up some time to keep the train on schedule, so he was going too fast as he approached the station. By the time the driver hit the brakes, it was too late. The train overran the buffer stop and smashed through the back wall of the station. When the dust cleared, the train was dangling from the station to the street below. Thankfully, all the passengers and crew on the train survived, but a passerby on the street below was killed when bricks fell on her. The train’s engine stayed nose down on the street for several days before the mess was cleaned up. Photography was a new hobby in the late 1800s, therefore amateur and professional photographers flocked to the scene to snap pics of the strange sight.
Oldest map of the New World engraved on a 500-year-old ostrich egg, circa 1500s.
Dating back to 1504, the Ostrich Egg Globe is significant because it is the first globe that includes the New World on it. The New World portion is highly inaccurate – North America is depicted as a cluster of islands – but it nonetheless shows that the globemaker had knowledge of the existence of the New World. The globe was made using the rounded halves of two different ostrich eggs that were then put together to form an orb. On the Ostrich Egg Globe, and on the Hunt-Lenox Globe for which it was a prototype, there is a phrase that translates, “Here be dragons.”
Harley-Davidson founders William Harley and Arthur Davidson posing on their motorbikes in 1914.
When William S. Harley and his buddy, Arthur Davidson, decided to make motorized bicycles in 1901, the first thing they did was to paint a sign saying “The Harley-Davidson Motor Company” to hang above the door of their work shed. This was all before the two men, who were 20 and 21 years old respectfully, had even started work on their motorized bike. In fact, they had no idea how to go about building their dream vehicle. They had to persuade Arthur Davidson’s older brother, Walter, a machinist, to help them. Within a few years, they had a working motorcycle, though it took several more years to make the company viable. It was worth the wait. Harley and Davidson created an American icon.
Castell Coch is a 19th-century castle built above the village of Tongwynlais in South Wales.
This stunning castle, built in the 19th century Gothic Revival style, is Castell Coch. Located in South Wales, the place has a long history … and it didn’t always look the way it does now. The original castle was constructed shortly after the nearby town of Cardiff was conquered by the Normans in 1081. It was abandoned and fell into disrepair until it was acquired by Gilbert de Clare. He ordered the castle to be rebuilt and used it as a fortress between 1267 and 1277 to oversee the Welsh territory. It was destroyed in a rebellion in 1314 and sat in ruins until it was inherited by John Crichton-Stuart, the 3rd Marquess of Bute, who was keenly interested in old architecture and had a boatload of money. He commissioned the rebuilding of Castell Coch into the stunning structure we see today.
Amelia Earhart being helped out of her deep-sea diving suit after exploring the ocean at Brook Island in Rhode Island in 1929.
Wait … Amelia Earhart was a famous pilot, not a deep-sea driver, right? Well, for a brief time, she was both! When the aviatrix visited a resort on Rhode Island’s Brook Island, she had the opportunity to see a submarine that had been designed and built by inventor Simon Lake to assist with search and rescue efforts around the region. Someone in the group suggested that Earhart, well-known for being an adventure seeker, don the brass diving gear and explore the ocean’s floor. On her first attempt to dive, however, Earhart got cold feet when she got just a few feet below the surface. She had better luck the next day, but diving wasn’t her thing. She stated that divers really “must have their nerve”.
Captured German troops being marched past a grain elevator on their way to Siberian gulags, Stalingrad, 1943.
The German prisoners in this photograph from 1943 and being taken to a Siberian Gulag. Under Vladimir Lenin, the Soviet government operated a series of forced labor camps in the inhospitable Siberian wilderness. The camps were one of the Soviet government’s chief solutions for dealing with political repression. The prisoners sent to work in the Gulags could be foreign prisoners of war, like these men, or they could be Soviet nationals who displeased someone in power. Even petty criminals could be sentenced to a stay at a Gulag. Conditions at the Gulags were terrible. The prisoners were not properly fed or clothed and were forced to work long hours doing backbreaking labor.
Nose shaping tool from 1944.
Beauty-conscious girls and young women in the 1940s tried to reshape their noses to make them more appealing. No joke. As this young girl from 1944 is showing us, nose shapers were a way to try to add saucy lift to the tip of one’s nose or smooth out a bump on one’s nose. So, did they work? In theory, they could work. Just think about how ancient cultures used to bind babies’ heads to elongate their skulls or put metal rings around women’s necks to make their necks longer. Still, to see any real changes, the nose shaper probably needed to be worn when the girl was very young and worn frequently enough to alter how the nose grew.
1941 Packard 8-door open top tour bus.
Detroit-based Packard Motor Car Company, which was in business from 1899 to 1856, was the top luxury can manufacturer of its day. Anyone who could afford to own a Packard was doing quite well for himself. The car company was an industry innovator. In 1941, Packard unveiled its 8-door tour bus with an open top, the perfect vehicle for sightseeing or cruising the boulevard with all your friends. The 8-door car was a short-lived enterprise. At the start of World War II, Packard stopped producing luxury cars and retooled its factories to help the war effort.
Office life before the invention of AutoCAD and other drafting softwares. ✏️
Engineers and drafters today have it easy. They can do their work sitting behind a computer. Back before AutoCAD was released in 1982, drafters had to do their work by hand using pencils, rulers, T-squares, protractors, and really, really big sheets of paper. Oh, and they might have to lay on the floor to do their work. After AutoCAD was released, training centers popped up around the world to teach drafters, architects, and engineers how to use the software. In the years since, it has saved countless pencils and reduced the number of strained backs among drafting professionals.
Belle the Hippo survived the Siege of Leningrad due to her caretaker, Yevdokia Dashina._
The Siege of Leningrad had a profound effect on the entire city, but the small Leningrad Zoo, which had been founded in 1865, was in a dangerous situation. As many of the exotic animals as possible had be evacuated from the zoo when the shelling began, but it was impossible to move all the animals. One of the animals left behind was Bella the Hippo. Without funding, food, or water, the zoo could not care for Bella and the other animals. They were doomed to die of starvation, before a dedicated caregiver named Yevdokia Dashina stepped in. Throughout the 872-day siege, Dashina transported barrels of water to the zoo on sled and brought produce from her garden to keep Bella alive.
Fleetwood Mac in 1977.
The year this photo was taken, 1977, Fleetwood Mac released their best-received album, Rumours. It was the band’s eleventh album and it was the group’s goal to capitalize on the success of their 1975 album. In the few years between albums, the members of Fleetwood Mac had weathered drug use and breakups which provided fodder for the album’s lyrics. The Rumours album spawned such hit songs as “Go Your Own Way”, “Chain”, “Oh Daddy”, and “You Make Lovin’ Fun”. Many music critics have called Rumours one of the greatest albums of all time.
An M4 tank of burning at the intersection of Karl Heine St and Zschochersche St in Leipzig, Germany, after being hit by a Panzerfaust. (1945)
The M4 Sherman tank, like the one we see burning in this photograph from 1945, was the most popular medium-sized take used by the Allied forces in World War II. Did you know that Sherman tanks were named by the British to honor an American Civil War hero, General William Tecumseh Sherman? The value of the M4 Sherman tank during the war cannot be understated. Because of this, tens of thousands of tanks were manufactured and sent to all parts of Europe and Northern Africa. Durable and maneuverable, the tanks helped to turn the tide of war and ensure an Allied victory.
Bernie Sanders and his son, Levi, 1971.
In 1971, the year this photograph was taken, Bernie Sanders was beginning his electoral political career. He became a member of the Liberty Union Party, a group that helped start the anti-war movement in the country. At the time, he was a recent college graduate – he earned a degree from the University of Chicago in political science – and engaged in activism in his home state of Vermont. Sanders met his first wife, Deborah, in college and the couple were married from 1964 to 1966. They had no children together. Sanders’ only child, a son, Levi, shown here, was born in 1969 to Sanders’ girlfriend at the time, Susan Campbell Mott. Sanders later married Jane O’Meara Driscoll and helped to raise her three children as his own.
1916 propaganda map created by the Allies during World War 1. This map showed what they believe would've happened to the United States if the Central Powers had won. 🗺️
The Allied forces were not above using scare tactics to garner more support during World War I. Just take a look at this propaganda map from 1916. It was created for shock value to offer a visual representation of what North America might look like if the Central Powers had won the war. According to this map, much of the United States would be in control of the Germans and called ‘New Prussia”. Japan would control the west coast, including California, Oregon, and Washington. Native Americans would get a small portion of land in New Mexico and Canada would become a territory of marauding barbarians.
Miss America contestants in 1920.
If we want to get technical, the ladies in this photograph were contestants in the Fall Frolic Pageant of 1920 in Atlantic City. This event is widely considered to be the forerunner of the Miss America Pageant. It was organized as a way to bring more visitors into the businesses along Atlantic City’s famed boardwalk. Margaret Gorman was crowned the “Golden Mermaid” at the Fall Frolic. She returned as a contestant the following year when the event was officially called the Miss America Pageant. Once again, Gorman took home the crown as the first Miss America.
Dunnottar Castle, Scotland 🏴
Donnottar Castle in Scotland has been reduced to ruins since it was built in the Medieval era, but it was an important fortress in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was the secret hiding place of the crown jewels of Scotland, which were hidden from Oliver Cromwell and his invading army in the 17th century. One hundred years later, it played a role in the Jacobite risings, in part because of its strategic location on the northeastern coast of Scotland. After years of disrepair, Dunnottar Castle was restored and opened as a tourist attraction in the 20th century.
Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis and Audrey Hepburn photographed by Bob Willoughby in 1953.
This photograph, taken by photographer Bob Willoughby in 1953, offers us a rare glimpse at the goofy friendship between funnymen Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis and the beautiful and classy Audrey Hepburn. Willoughby shot this pic, and a series of other ones, when Martin and Lewis, who she called ‘the boys’, visited her on the set of Hepburn’s film, Sabrina, which was released in 1954. Willoughby had the ability to capture the candid and relaxed moments with Hollywood stars to show fans the more human side of their favorite celebrities. Willoughby was called “the man who virtually invented photojournalistic motion picture stills,” by Popular Photography magazine.
A locomotive hanging over Aliso Street after running off the end of the rails, Union Station, Los Angeles, 1948 🚂
Things go a little dicey on this #19L locomotive on January 25, 1948. The California train’s brakes failed as it was departing from the Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal, crashing through a steel guardrail and concrete barrier before coming to a stop. When the dust settled, the train’s engine was precariously dangling about 20 feet above the street, causing passersby to spit out their coffee. The workers quickly disconnected the engine from the rest of the railcars, but it took a few days before the engine could be safely backed up and removed from its dangerous perch. Fortunately, no one was injured in the accident.
Wendell Corey and Jimmy Stewart playing chess while Grace Kelly watches on the set of the film Rear Window (1954)
Just two years before she married Prince Rainer III and became the Princess of Monaco (April, 1956) American actress Grace Kelly starred in Rear Window alongside Wendell Corey and James Stewart, seen here playing a game of chess between takes. The thriller was directed by Alfred Hitchcock and many film critics name this as the best movie of Hitchcock’s career. Some have even called it one of the greatest movies ever made. The plot centers on a wheelchair-bound man who passes his time looking out his apartment window and watching his neighbors. His innocent spying takes a turn when he observes a murder.
Casa Batllò in Barcelona.
Barcelona is one of Europe’s most beautiful cities. From the Sagrada Familia to the Cathedral of Barcelona, the city is filled with beautifully designed buildings. Right in the center of the city is the Casa Batllo. Designed by Antoni Gaudi in 1904, the art nouveau structure is one of the hottest tourist stops in the city. The locals refer to the Casa Batllo as the ‘castle of bones’ because the exterior has an unusual, skeleton-like quality to it. There are very few straight lines, and the building seems like a living thing. The arched roofline resembles a dragon. Casa Batllo was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 2005.
2000-year-old floor mosaic depicting a dog and a knocked-over gold vessel, Alexandria, Egypt.
Dogs are man’s best friend and that is as true today as it was in antiquity. Just look at this mosaic floor that dates back at least 2000 years. It was discovered in Alexandria, Egypt, and, according to experts, it may be the earliest example of a dog motif in a mosaic floor. The ancient Greeks and Romans both used mosaic for flooring, Their designs, however, usually featured plants, geometric shapes, and astrological figures. This dog, which looks to be some type of terrier, looks like he just knocked over a Greek vase. Could it be that this mosaic was an early example of dog shaming?
House dresses in a fashion catalog from 1921.
Up until the 1900s, it was the responsibility of the housewife to sew all the clothing for the family. Only the very wealthy or bachelor men went to tailors for custom-made clothes. With the boom in the textile industry and the invention of sewing machines, clothing could finally be mass-produced in factories and sold at a price that the average person could afford to pay. The house dresses shown in this catalog from 1921 are a few of the options for everyday dresses for housewives. Of course, these dresses were meant for casual wear. If the housewife needed to go to town, she would change into a nicer dress for the occasion.
Two friends enjoying their Belgian beer (1971).
“I’m just having one beer tonight.” That’s probably what these two Belgian buddies told their wives when they stepped out for a drink. But with glasses this size, who needs another round? Did you know that Belgian beer lovers are quite particular about their drinkware? Brewmasters in Belgium work hard to select the best style of glasses to complement their beer and it is not uncommon for breweries to design their own style of glasses for their signature beers. From mugs and steins to wiezens and kolsches, there are a variety of beer glasses to be had. The fellows in this photo are sipping out of chalice-styles glasses, albeit oversized ones.
Jim Carrey and Eddie Murphy pose for a photograph after running into each other while working on the same studio set in 2000.
Selfie time! When two of the most popular comedians happen to bump into each other at the studio, they have to stop for a photo op, even if they are still in costume. Such was the case in 2000 when Jim Carrey was filming How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Eddie Murphy was shooting The Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, the sequel to his hit 1996 movie, The Nutty Professor. It’s not often you see the Grinch cheesing with Professor Sherman Klump, aka Buddy Love.
Tomb of Ramses II, Egypt ⚰️
The Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses II was perhaps the greatest and most powerful pharaoh of ancient Egypt. Much of Ramses II reign was dedicated to the construction of great temples, monuments, and cities. He also explained Egypt’s empire by taking military control of Canaan and Phoenicia. Ramses had a long and prosperous life. Egyptologists believe he was in his early 90s when he died and was placed in an elaborate tomb in the Valley of the Kings. His body was later moved to prevent it from being stolen by tomb looters. Ramses II original resting place was the biggest tomb in the whole valley and consisted of more than 150 chambers and corridors, all fit for a king.
John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in the classic film The Quiet Man (1952) ☘️
Did you know that the 1952 John Wayne-Maureen O’Hara movie, The Quiet Man, was based on a short story that ran in the Saturday Evening Post? Frank S. Nugent adapted the 1933 short story into the screenplay for The Quiet Man and director John Ford cast John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara to star in it. The action followed a boxer who returns to his native Ireland. In fact, the majority of the movie was shot on location in Ireland and is well-remembered for beautiful shots of the verdant Irish countryside. The Quiet Man earned John Ford an Academy Award for Best Director.
Rides at a fair in France in 1910.
That looks safe! Thrill rides of the early 1900s were often designed and built by amateurs with no experience in amusement ride safety. Sure, they were probably lots of fun, but the lack of safety features meant that injuries were common. In the decade that followed – and after a series of highly publicized deaths – regulations were put in place to keep passengers safe. Seat belts were an important first step. Brakes and automatic shut-off mechanisms, too. Finally, extensive testing of amusement rides became standard. All of this was done with the goal of making thrill rides safe for riders, but it is clear that there is still more work to be done. Recently, a teen died when he fell from an amusement ride in Florida, highlighting the need for constant safety upgrades.
Photographs of a couple trying not to laugh or smile for the camera 😅 (1880s)
Yes, photography existed in the 1880s. It actually started much earlier when Joseph Nicephore Niepce of France developed a way to create a permanent photograph on paper in 1826. In the decades that followed, advances were made in photography and more and more people tried their hands at taking pictures. Still, sitting for professional portraits was a luxury few people could afford. A person living in the late 1800s probably only had their picture taken a few times in their lives. Today, people snap a few dozen selfies before breakfast.
Fairytale Cottage, Blaise Hamlet, Bristol, England.
This quaint fairytale cottage is one of a cluster of nine such cottages in the Henbury district of Blaise Hamlet, located north of Bristol, England. The hamlet was built in 1811 as retirement cottages. John Scandrett Harford, a wealthy local patron and owner of the Blaise Castle House, financed the project and the cottages were designed by John Nash in his classic Picturesque style of architecture. The cottages had thatched roofs, cute dormer windows, and unique chimneys. Footpaths connected the cottages to each other and to a Victorian cottage garden and sundial.
An unidentified woman taking a selfie in the mirror with a box camera, 1900. 📷
When photography was still in its infancy, one of the simplest types of cameras was the box camera, like the one seen in this photo. It was, as the name suggests, a cardboard box that had a lens at one end. Film was affixed to the inside of the box, on the wall opposite the lens. The first box camera available for the public was released by the Kodak company in 1888. It became the standard box camera that was mimicked by other manufacturers. Kodak made their box camera user-friendly by selling it preloaded with film. When the customer was done taking photos, they sent the entire camera back to Kodak where the company would develop the film and reload film into the camera before returning it to the customer.
People standing by a car accident in Washington, D.C. (1921) Color @sannadullaway
In the early 1910s and 1920s, automobile travel greatly increased in the United States. With more cars on the roads, it was only a matter of time before there was a spike in automobile accidents, like the one shown in this colorized photo from 1921. Folks had a lot to learn about automotive safety. During the time of this accident, cars didn’t have seatbelts or airbags. There were no emergency braking system or crash detection cameras. Car insurance was a thing – it was created in 1897 – but it wasn’t yet mandatory for drivers to have it. In fact, few places had stop signs or traffic signals. Drivers in the 1920s did have one safety feature in their favor … there were no cell phones to distract drivers.
Undine Rising from the Fountain is a marble statue made by American sculptor Chauncey Bradley Ives, 1880s.
American artists, Chauncey Bradley Ives, was the sculptor behind this masterpiece, which is titled “Undine Rising from the Fountain”. The sculpture’s name comes from the name of the mythical water nymph of European folklore. Ives, a native of Connecticut, got his start as a woodcarver’s apprentice when he was just 16 years old. He later studied with Hezekiah Augur, a New Haven-area woodcarver who also worked in marble. This gave Ives an opportunity to try his hand at carving marble. Ives was commissioned to carve marble portraits in Boston and New York before he moved to Rome to continue his studies. “Undine Rising from the Fountain”, which Ives carved in 1884, is still considered to be one of the best examples of the American neo-classical movement.
Viking Sword Path, Iceland ⚔️
Where else but Iceland can you expect to find this unique causeway that is shaped like a Viking sword, complete with a curved hilt. The island country embraces its Viking heritage in its art, architecture, and apparently in its road construction. The last place on Earth to be inhabited by humans, Iceland was a well-known stomping ground for Vikings who sailed from Norway, Sweden, and Denmark to Iceland, Greenland, and at least one place in Canada. Today, we think of Vikings as a bunch of marauding pillagers, but in fact, most of them were farmers who only went marauding and pillaging when needed. If you want to drive over the Sword Road in Iceland, you need to travel to the Snaefellsnes peninsula to find it.
Photo of identical twins Janos and Istvan Lukacs. Neither married and they slept in a farmhouse built by their parents, with clay walls and kerosene lamps, Hungary, 1985. Photo - Janos Stekovics
Photographer Janos Stekovics was so enamored with the rugged strength of the Lukacs twins of Hungary that he shot a series of photographs of the brothers, Janos and Istvan, in the 1980s. He compiled those images in a book that gives us a glimpse at the humble lives of these two confirmed bachelors, who were in their golden years when they were photographed by Stekocis. The twins lived their whole lives in a rural farmhouse with no electricity or running water. They worked ten-plus hours a day tending their farm animals and growing produce in their gardens.
US Navy Rear Admiral and computer scientist, Grace Hopper, was one of the leading minds behind Mark I — the world's first operational electromechanical computer. 💻
One of the most brilliant minds in the early days of computer science, Grace Hopper was a woman ahead of her time and an inspiration for all girls who dream of a career in STEM. In the 1940s, Hopper, who has a Ph.D. in mathematics from Yale University, joined the Navy Reserves and worked on the Mark 1, the world’s first computer. It was Hopper who developed the first computer language to program computers and her work is still used today. She rose through the ranks in the Navy to become a rear admiral and spent 28 years in the military. She worked for the Eckert-Mauchly Computer company and helped develop the UNIVAC 1 and the COBOL computer language.
Tiananmen Square just before the massacre, 1989.
In 1989, during a time of rapid political and social reforms in China, thousands of students packed Tiananmen Square in a protest calling for freedoms of speech, freedom of the press, government accountability, democracy, and due process under the law. The protests started small around April 15 but gathered more momentum as the weeks went by. At its peak, there were more than one million people in the Square. Although it was not well-organized, the students, like the ones seen here, were optimistic that they could help bring about much-needed changes. On May 20, the government declared martial law and prepared to send 300,000 troops to Beijing to break up the protest. On June 4, tanks rolled into Tiananmen Square and soldiers fired on the students. An official death toll has never been released by China, but experts believe as many a several thousand student protesters and innocent bystanders could have been killed in the incident.
The real Ingalls family from the Little House on the Prairie books. From left to right- Caroline, Carrie, Laura, Charles, Grace and Mary. 1890s
The real-life story of the Ingalls family was quite different than how it was depicted in the beloved 1970s television series, Little House on the Prairie. For starters, the family moved around a lot. The setting for the TV show was primarily the prairie town of Walnut Grove. In the Little House book series, the family moves from Wisconsin to Kansas to South Dakota, but in reality, the family also lived in Iowa and Minnesota, too. Ma and Pa finally settled down in DeSmet, South Dakota, where they had a homestead. Later, they moved to a house in town with daughter, Mary, who never married.
René Magritte, The Blank Cheque, 1965 🎨
As you can tell from the 1965 painting, Belgian artist Rene Magritte specialized in creating clever and thought-provoking works with an unexpected twist. Although his style was labeled as surrealism, his art had influenced painters in the pop art and minimalist genres. As you can see in this painting from 1965, which is titled “The Blank Cheque”, Magritte painted ordinary scenes but added an optical illusion to trick the observer’s eye. He sought to create images that caused confusion and inconsistencies in the brain of the observer, which was one of the hallmarks of the surrealism movement.
Princess Victoria of the United Kingdom, Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom and Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna of Russia photographed in London in 1908.
A trio of princesses posing for the camera in 1908. In this historic photo, we see Princess Victoria of the United Kingdom, her mother Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom, and her mother’s sister, Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna of Russia, who was known as Princess Dagmar of Denmark before her marriage to Emperor Alexander III. The women were all known for their beauty, charm, and intelligence. All played musical instruments and spoke several languages. They even inspired the fashions of the day.
Old traditional thatched cottages in West Lulworth, Dorset , southwest England.
Those super quaint and charming thatched roofs that a found in the English countryside harken back to the Bronze age. When new houses were built, the construction workers couldn’t just run to Lowe’s to get the materials they needed. They had to use the building materials they had available to them. One abundant natural resource was tall grasses, such as wheat and straw. The builders used bundles of plant material, tightly tied together in thatches to cover the roofs and repel rainwater. It worked so well that this method is still being used today.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar with his basketball coach John Wooden.
In sports, the coach is supposed to impact the lives of his players. In the case of famed UCLA basketball John Wooden. Wooden was in his mid-50s when he recruited a talented 18-year-old basketball player named Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Wooden became a mentor to the young player and helped guide him through college and professional basketball. In turn, Abdul-Jabber taught Wooden some important life lessons as well. The two remained close until Wooden’s death at the age of 99.
Here's a unique harp guitar made by the Gibson Mandolin-Guitar Company in 1920.
When you think about Gibson guitars, you probably think about the electric guitars that the rockers use, but the company also makes acoustic instruments, including mandolins. As early as 1910, however, the Gibson company was more focused on banjos and mandolins than on the less-known guitars. In 1920, the same year that this mandolin was made, Lloyd Loar, a famous mandolinist, joined the staff at Gibson, working as an acoustics engineer in the research and development department. Thanks to his expertise, the Gibson mandolin has a reputation as a top-of-the-line instrument.
Antique bed, 1876.
This antique bed, dating back to 1876, is a real beauty. In those days, most people were lucky to have a raised bed instead of a heap of bedding on the floor. Raised bed were nothing new – they date back before the time of Ancient Egypt – but they were a luxury not everyone could afford. Still, it was safer to sleep on a raised bed. It kept rodents and, heaven forbid, snakes, from cuddling up with humans for the night. Did you know that beds in inns were often shared among guests, even complete strangers? In the English town of Ware, a 16th century innkeeper had a giant four-poster bed built for his guests. According to one account, 26 butchers and their wives all slept on the bed together one night. Yes, that’s 52 people!
After the closing night party of our play, we weren't completely sober, said Jimmy Stewart. Henry Fonda asked, If you play your accordion in the middle of Times Square at 330 am, would anybody come
A couple of drunk buddies! Good pals, Henry Fonda and James Stewart appeared together in four movies, On Our Merry Way, How the West Was Won, Firecreek, and The Cheyenne Social Club. They also shared the stage in plays and musicals, too. They admired each other’s talent and, in general, just enjoyed each other’s company. And they liked to share a drink or two together. In this photo, we get a glimpse of their friendship. It was taken in the wee hours of dawn after the pair left a closing night party. Fonda challenged Stewart to play his according in the middle of Times Square to see if anyone would stop to listen.
Aerial view of Barcelona, Spain
Let’s hear it for the urban planners! This aerial photograph of Barcelona shows just how well-planned-out the city is. That’s quite an accomplishment for a city that, according to some, might be older than Rome. Just how and when Barcelona was founded is up for debate. In fact, there are two different origin legends. One claims that Hercules, the hero from mythology, founded Barcelona. The other one says that Hamilcar Barca, a 3rd-century military general, founded the city and named it Barcino after his family name. That story seems a bit more plausible than the first one.
Actress-singer Pearl Bailey and her husband jazz musician-composer-bandleader Louis Bellson in 1957.
By all accounts, singer Pearl Bailey and her husband, Louis Bellson, enjoyed a long and loving marriage. Upon her death, Bellson commented that he had lost his best friend and soul mate. Their marriage, however, almost didn’t happen. When Bellson, a trombone player and the first white musician to play in Duke Ellington’s band, met the beautiful, talented, African American singer, Pearl Bailey, it was love at first sight. But it was also the 1950s and interracial marriages were frowned upon. Bellman’s father was the most outspoken opponent to their relationship, but it didn’t stop his son from flying to London to marry Bailey in November of 1952.
Actress-producer Bonita Granville, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz at the Mocambo nightclub in West Hollywood in 1943.
You probably recognized Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz in this 1943 photo, but you might not be as familiar with the other actress sitting with them. She is Bonita Granville. Granville spent nearly all her life working in Hollywood, having landed her first role at the age of three. She appeared in Westward Passage in 1932 and These Three in 1936. She was just 14 years old when she appeared in These Three, yet she earned an Oscar nomination for her work on the film. In the 1940s, Granville starred as teen detective Nancy Drew in a series of movies. After she married her husband, Jack Wrather, Granville tried her hand at producing. She and her husband were producers on the TV series, Lassie.
Abandoned farmhouse in New Hampshire, U.S. 🏡
They don’t make them like they used to. This abandoned house in New Hampshire shows off the stately architecture that was common in New England over a century ago. A home like this one would have been built by a wealthier family than the average farmer. From the arched windows, mansard roof, and sweeping balconies, the family that originally lived in this home enjoyed the finer things in life. It is just a shame that beautiful old places like this became abandoned and fell into disrepair. It the walls could talk, I’m sure they would have fascinating stories to tell.
A young couple in their engagement photograph in 1849.
When this happy couple got engaged in 1849, the wedding industry in America was becoming a thing. Prior to this time, most couples got married in the homes of one of their parents. Guest included only immediate family and, if times were good, they might enjoy a meal together after the ceremony. In the 1840s, however, weddings were becoming larger, more formal affairs. Brides started wearing special wedding dresses for their big day, trimmed with lace and beads. The wedding ceremony might be held in a church instead of the bride’s parent’s house, with more guests in attendance and a celebratory party afterward.
A small room in the hollow of a tree, Poland 🌳
No Keebler elves in here! A creative innovator in Poland built a tiny room in a hollow tree. It appears that the tree is still sturdy and healthy enough to loan out its innards for a guest room or playhouse, complete with a working door to keep out the riffraff and, as you can see if you peer inside, a window to let in plenty of natural light. There is even a solid floor. What would you call a hideaway like this? Is it a ‘man cave’, ‘she shed’, or, perhaps, a ‘me tree’!
A job offer with the Pony Express, 1860s. 🐎
Although legends of the Pony Express are intertwined with our understanding of the Old West, in truth, the famous quick-delivery service only operated for about a year. Maybe one of the reasons it was so short-lived was because it was difficult to get Pony Express riders. As this job posting implies, if one reads between the lines, the position was fraught with danger. It was best suited for expendable teen boys with no family to fret over them. Not just any adolescent boy would do. They needed to be skinny, yet strong, as well as daring and resourceful.
A dog dressed as a man with a cat on its lap, 1950s.
Today, folks love to dress their dogs up in blingy sweaters, outdoorsy bandanas, and even frilly tutus. There is a whole industry devoted to designing, manufacturing, and selling garments for dogs. You can even buy matching flannel pajamas, so you and your dog look extra on Christmas morning! But in the 1950s, most pups were not as pampered as they are now. That’s why this photo of a dog – I’d say a lab – dressed to look like a human man is so remarkable. Not only is this good boy wearing people clothes, but he is sitting in a chair like a human with cat on his lap.
A delivery man (with swagger) working for The Home Ice Company in Houston back in 1928.
Isn’t this guy cool? Literally and figuratively! As an ice delivery man, he probably spends much of his time in refrigerated freezers and trucks. Back when this photo was taken, few homes had refrigerators. Folks relied on iceboxes to keep their food from spoiling, but the ice would melt over time. Ice delivery services, like the one this man works for, brought chunks of ice to families on a weekly basis to replace the ice that had melted. As for why this guy is showing off his swagger, we don’t know. It could just be that the heavy ice is hurting his back and he shifted his weight for relief.