We recently looked at some novel and occasionally gorgeous early cosplay from the late 1800s — here's the diametric opposite of that.

This trick photograph from 1875 — which comes to us from the George Eastman House Collection — depicts a fellow who has decapitated himself with nary a repercussion. It makes all of those poor souls in spirit photographs vomiting ectoplasm out of their noses look tame in comparison.

Along with this headless photo, we've included a litany of vintage pictures that have razzmatazzed our imagination for one reason or the other, such as an old Santa Claus on the verge of dipsomania.


And for more horrors of the frozen image, see this collection of ventriloquist dummies and early Disney costumes. Also, here's a treasure trove of vintage cat photography for those of you who can't get enough of felines without dignity.

See also: The giant rabbits of tall tale photography.


(A ghost, 1905)

(Good lord, is that a drunk Santa.)

(Santa, loaded for bear during World War I)


(An invaluable tome, 1902)

(A tourist's photograph from Cairo, 1880)

(A 3D image of the spirit of Christmas invading a household, 1897)

(Mardi Gras costumes, 1911)

(A stereograph card, 1906)

(1885, brings to mind those prancing cats )