Eerie Photos Not Suitable For All Viewers

By Sophia Maddox | July 24, 2023

Portrait of Robert Earl Hughes (1926 - 1958), who was the world's heaviest man, as he pets the family dog, in Fishhook, IL, 1949. 

You’ve heard that a photo is worth a thousand words, but photos like the collection here have stories with so much more to say. These pictures give an insight into what life was like in eras as disparate as the 18th century and the 1970s. You’ll see what life was like for a kid in America during the baby boom, and how the Native people of America lived long before the modern metropolis existed. These rare historical aren’t just informative, they’re a fun look at a time long gone, and maybe a time that you wish you could go back to. Prepare to be astonished and read on!

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(Photo by Robert Natkin/Getty Images)

Robert Earl Hughes, who was the heaviest person in the world during his lifetime, supported himself financially by selling photographs of himself, like this one seen here. He also made guest appearances at carnivals, circuses, and fairs throughout the United States. The Missouri-born Hughes was a fairly average infant until he contracted whooping cough at the age of five months old. It is believed that the whooping cough caused his thyroid gland to rupture, which in turn, led to his tremendous weight gain. At his max, he tipped the scales at 1,071 pounds. Although he died in 1958, he remains the heaviest human on record who was about to walk and not completely bedridden.

The 79th floor of the Empire State Building, after a B-25 bomber crashed into it


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Source: Wikimedia Commons

Unfortunately, New York City with its sky high buildings and proximity to multiple airports is somewhat of a target for low flying planes. One of the earliest memories of a plane smashing into a building comes from July 28, 1945, when residents were terrified after a B-25 bomber in the middle of a routine test mission crashed into the Empire State Building. 14 people were left dead following the incident which Therese Fortier Willig remembers as a living nightmare. She told NPR:

In the other side of the office, all I could see was flames. Mr. Fountain was walking through the office when the plane hit the building and he was on fire -- I mean, his clothes were on fire, his head was on fire. Six of us managed to get into this one office that seemed to be untouched by the fire and close the door before it engulfed us. There was no doubt that the other people must have been killed.