Ossian Brown’s 2011 book Haunted Air is a collection of anonymous Halloween photographs from 1875-1955 and serves as a fascinating and uncomfortable historical artifact. Lately some of of the photos from the book have been making the Internet rounds and since today marks day one of this blog’s monthlong Halloween celebration, I figured it’d be a good time to make you folks feel an uneasy sense of dread as you peer into the lifeless, Shining-esque eyes of these haunting, homemade faces.
“The photographs in Haunted Air provide an extraordinary glimpse into the traditions of this macabre festival from ages past, and form an important document of photographic history. These are the pictures of the dead: family portraits, mementoes of the treasured, now unrecognisable, other. Torn from album pages, sold piecemeal for pennies and scattered, abandoned to melancholy chance and the hands of strangers.”
Haunted Air is available here.