Powerful And Entertaining Historical Photos From The Past
By | May 2, 2018
Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu (on the left) around 1915, who later became known as Mother Teresa.
Collected here are photos of stunning architecture, fascinating archaeological finds, and landmark moments for major brands. Flip through the pages of history and you’ll find it is brimming with beautiful bursts of artistic genius, influential innovators, and revolutionary peacemakers... with unsettling slices thrown in every so often.
Pictured here is Mother Teresa, or Saint Teresa of Calcutta back in 1915. It was in 1950 that Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity which is a Roman Catholic religious congregation consisted of over 4,500 sisters and was active in 133 countries in 2012. They manage soup kitchens, orphanages, and counseling programs for children and families. They oversee homes for those suffering from critical illnesses.
Teresa was widely admired for her charitable work and received numerous honors, including the Ramon Magsaysay Peace Prize (1962) and a Nobel Peace Prize (1979). She was canonized on September 4, 2016.
600-year-old clock in the city of Prague is the World's oldest astronomical clock still in operation.
The Orloj is a 600-year-old clock mounted on the southern wall of Old Town Hall in the Old Town Square in the city of Prague. It is the World's oldest astronomical clock still in operation. The clock mechanism itself has three main components and statues of various Catholic saints on either side and a skeleton figure (representing death) strikes the time. It features a calendar dial with medallions representing the months and an astronomical dial and zodiac ring.
According to local legend, “Once the Old Town Astronomical Clock stops running for a long time the Czech nation will suffer bad times and the skeleton was supposed to confirm this fact by nodding his head.”
The lore goes on to state the only sign of hope would be the birth of a boy on the New Year´s night. Once the clock sets back in, the boy is allegedly supposed to “run out of the Týn Church across the whole square to the town hall. He has to run very fast to arrive before the last strike of the clock. If he makes it he will quit the skeleton´s evil power and avert all the evil.”
Here is a rare look at Thomas Edison in a moment with Henry Ford.
Check out these two brilliant besties just hanging out. These two inventors collaborated on many projects together, and were inseparable socially as well. It was in 1896, that Henry Ford attended a convention in Manhattan Beach where Thomas Edison was the guest of honor. The two met, bonded, and the friendship grew from there.
In 1915, they began taking camping trips each summer and often let in a supporting cast of famous characters join them each year. They were so close, that when the seven-bedroom home next door to the Edison’s was on the market, Ford scooped it up immediately. The wooden fence with gate separated the two estates, but always remained open and became known as the "friendship gate."
Coca-Cola was first introduced back in the 1880s.
The Coca-Cola Company originally intended their cola as a patent medicine. Invented in the late 19th century by John Pemberton, Coca-Cola was later bought out by Asa Griggs Candler, a businessman whose marketing tactics are what drove Coca-Cola to its dominance of the soft-drink market throughout the 20th century.
For those wondering about the origin of the drink’s name, it refers to two of its original ingredients, which were kola nuts (a source of caffeine) and coca leaves. Nowadays, the recipe is a trade secret.
Photo of two brothers who fought against each other during the Civil War.
This photo, “Brother vs. Brother, Richwood, West Virginia., 1910s” was taken by Finley Taylor, an early Appalachian photographer.
Truth be told, there were actually an alarming accounts of families that were divided by their loyalty to either the Union or the Confederate. The concept was common enough to earn its own slogan "Brother against brother", which has been used to describe the predicament families faced during the American Civil War. Especially those who resided on the border of states.
Not all military service men shared the beliefs of those they fought alongside. As if family loyalties being divided weren’t bad enough, there were men fighting against family members, for a cause that they didn’t even agree with.
Siberian bear-hunting armor from the 1800s.
What fresh hell is this you ask? Why it’s a suit of Siberian bear-hunting armor from back in the 1800’s…. When people apparently took bears down with ‘bear hugs’.
A commenter on the Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation message boards put it best with this assessment: “I suspect it is more likely to be for bear bating than hunting since I can't imagine anyone could run around the woods in it. It consists of leather pants and jacket (and an iron helmet) studded all over with 1-inch iron nails about 3/4 in. apart. The nails are held in place by a second layer of leather lining the whole thing and quilted into place between the nails.”
A 23-year-old actor named John Wayne in 1930.
Pictured here is a very young John Wayne back in the 1930s when he first got his big break. His first leading role was in "The Big Trail" (1930), which led to numerous leading roles in B movies in the Western genre all throughout the 1930s.
Wayne's career took off in 1939 and never looked back after being cast in John Ford's "Stagecoach". Wayne was an instant star and he went on to star in 142 more films; 83 of which were Westerns. As Biographer Ronald Davis put it, "John Wayne personified for millions the nation's frontier heritage.”
Creepy close up look at a mother wolf spider carrying her young.
If your initial instinct is to kill it with fire and salt the earth beneath it, you wouldn’t be alone. What you’re looking at here is a creepy close up look at a mother wolf spider carrying her young. These "heebee-jeebee" inducing creatures are not webspinners, they are hunters and live mostly in solitude. They can be opportunistic when it comes to hunting, they’ll usually wait for passing prey near their burrow and pounce. Sometimes chasing it over short distances.
They have excellent eyesight, two of their eight eyes are larger and prominent, which also helps to distinguish them from the nursery web spiders and grass spiders they somewhat resemble.
Margaret Hamilton standing next to her handwritten code that helped the Apollo 11 mission be a success in 1969.
Pages and pages of code… all handwritten by computer scientist and systems engineer, Margaret Heafield Hamilton. Hamilton was Director of the Software Engineering Division of the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, which developed on-board flight software for the Apollo space program. It was in 1986, she founded and became CEO of Hamilton Technologies, Inc. The company was developed around the Universal Systems Language based on her paradigm of Development Before the Fact (DBTF) for systems and software design.
In addition to code, Hamilton has published over 130 papers, proceedings, and reports about the 60 projects and six major programs in which she has been involved. For her work leading the development of on-board flight software for NASA's Apollo Moon missions she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama on November 22, 2016.
A 19th Century vampire hunting kit.
Check out this antique vampire hunting kit, fully stocked with everything you’d need to ward off or completely extinguish any blood-sucking fiends you come across while traipsing through 19th-century Europe. You see these things being auctioned off all over the place nowadays for all the aspiring Van Helsing's of the world– sadly most of these kits are not authentic.
Real or not, they all usually contain some combination of wooden stakes with a mallet, silver bullets, garlic concoctions, a pistol with accouterments, crosses, holy water, and last but certainly not least, The Holy Bible.
Buccleuch Avon, considered to be the ancestor of all modern Labrador Retrievers, 1890.
It was the 2nd Earl of Malmesbury who bred the Buccleuch Avon for use in duck shooting on his estate at Heron Court on the south coast. He chose this particular breed because of their expertise in waterfowling, their thick but short coat– which ‘turns water off like oil’ and their tail which he likened to an otter’s.
In the early 1880s, the 6th Duke of Buccleuch and the 3rd Earl of Malmesbury met while hunting and the Duke of Buccleuch was gifted two Labrador Retrievers by Lord Malmesbury. These dogs were mated and a strong bloodline was developed between those dogs. In fact, all Buccleuch Labradors can be traced back to those first imported dogs.
A Pigeon Bus from WWI, served as a collecting point for messenger pigeons from the front lines.
There were over 100,000 carrier pigeons used as messengers during the war. It was pretty simple really, Pigeons always fly home, so the trick was to make sure the pigeons' nests were in located where the troops needed to send messages. Pigeons were kept at military bases, headquarters, and even bg old busses like this one, that served as a collection point.
As it would turn out, the pigeons were far more reliable than any man-made machinery when it came to getting secret messages sent safely. Kind of hard to intercept a note in mid-air afterall. According to records, the birds delivered 95% of their messages correctly (not to shabby).
Because of this, Pigeons became so valuable that the British government actually issued a poster warning that "Killing, wounding or molesting homing pigeons is punishable under the Defence of the Realm regulations by six months imprisonment or £100 fine".
An American soldier keeps a constant reminder of his girlfriend back home, with his helmet band filled with her photograph - Vietnam, 1968.
This photograph was taken on May 1, 1968 during the Vietnam War. Stationed in Cu Chi, South Vietnam, this American soldier misses his girlfriend so much his helmet band filled with her photograph. No doubt her photograph served as a touchstone for him, providing comfort in those terrifying times. All of the soldiers sent to war would have benefited from some source that would provide a constant reminder of home and all they had to stay strong and alive for. Meanwhile, back home in the states, an entire generation was protesting the conflict and demanding the safe return of the Americans sent over.
Hippies rural commune – 1969.
Here's a serene still of a commune of hippies back in 1969–the same year as Woodstock. Wonder if this groovy bunch was in attendance. The entire Hippie sub-culture was based on inner and outer peace, love, and getting back to nature (usually by way of hallucinogenics). These ideals are what forced them to the anti-war movement, which began to disintegrate after Woodstock, 1969.
That’s not to say protests stopped and that the ‘free love’ ideology died– because it didn’t. It just all began to lose its sense of urgency. It was as if Woodstock was what they’d been fighting for. They’d accomplished a harmonious coexistence in a drug-induced haze. It all came to a head and could now be encapsulated in a singular event in 1969.
Chester E. MacDuffee proudly stands next to his newly patented, 550 lb diving suit, 1911.
No, this is not a space suit or a killer robot. What we have here, is a suit of submarine Armor and its creator, Chester E. Macduffee. This photo was taken in 1911 but ended up in Popular Mechanics Magazine in December 1914. They reported the new armored diving suit went down to a depth of 212 ft. in Long Island Sound, establishing a new American record for deep-sea diving.weighing in at around 550 pounds, this aluminum alloy beast looks like it would drown its wearer!
Aerial view showing the medieval ruins of Dunluce Castle resting on top of Mermaids Cave in Northern Ireland.
Here we have a breathtaking aerial view of Dunluce Castle ruins and its stunning surroundings in Northern Ireland. It’s located on the edge of a basalt outcropping in County Antrim (between Portballintrae and Portrush), and sits on top of what’s known as the Mermaid’s Cave. The castle is surrounded by extremely steep drops on either side, but is accessible by a bridge which connects it to the mainland.
The Castle was built in 1500 by the McQuillan family. The MacDonnell’s showed up 50 years later and took the castle by force. They, however, ended up besieged by the English for years! Eventually the English took over the castle but the MacDonnell’s didn’t go down without a fight. They attacked the castle, scaled the cliff face, and climbed the corner towers. It was there that they hanged the English captain and it’s said his ghost still haunts the tower today.
Glacier National Park, Montana, 1913.
What a breathtaking view these men were enjoying back in 1913.
Like the rest of the United States, the region that became Glacier National Park was first inhabited by Native Americans. It’s located in Montana, on the Canada–United States border and encompasses over 1 million acres, parts of two mountain ranges (sub-ranges of the Rocky Mountains), over 130 named lakes.
Over 1,000 different species of plants and hundreds of species of animals call this impressive expanse home. In fact, this stretch is the centerpiece of what’s known as the "Crown of the Continent Ecosystem,” a region of protected land encompassing 16,000 square miles.
Life during the Great Depression 1930s.
Here’s a photo of a little girl in her kitchen back in the 1930’s during the Great Depression. Food (as with most resources) was scarce during this time and people had to get pretty creative. In fact, according to historians, modern society can learn a lot from the myriad ways people put food on the table during the Great Depression.
While some people raised livestock and grew their own fruits and vegetables, others had to stretch every dollar and pinch every penny to get the most food for their buck during hard economic times. Families were taught to creatively stretch out their food budgets and toast, potatoes and flour seem to be the popular, inexpensive ingredients. The expensive meat was typically eaten only once a week. Some (now popular) cheap foods were even invented during the Depression, such as Spam, Ritz Crackers, Krispy Kreme doughnuts and Kraft macaroni and cheese!
Before Google, there was this...
Though it may be hard for some to believe, there was life before Google! Research was far more intense and time consuming when it had to be done in Libraries with search results stored in library card catalogue s such as the one pictured here. That’s right, you had to look stuff up by hand, flipping through indexes until you found the source that would aid you in your quest for knowledge.
There are still some libraries that have card catalogs on site, but sadly they aren’t updated very often anymore and are strictly a secondary resource. The card catalog has been replaced by the online public access catalog (OPAC).
Captured together American Airlines DC-3 and a Stagecoach, circa 1939.
Captured here are visions of the past and future riding side by side– pretty neat. The stagecoach paved the way for the modern day automobile and the DC-3 revolutionized air travel!
It was late 1938 when The DC-3 first took flight. According to the Smithsonian, prior to its introduction, “a flight from New York to Los Angeles typically required 25 hours, more than one airline, at least two changes of planes and as many as 15 stops or so.”
But because of the DC-3, all it took was a single plane to cross the country, usually stopping only three times to refuel. Today, this aviation game changer hangs suspended in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
David Rothman and Albert Einstein dressed for the beach at Horseshoe Cove in Nassau Point, 1939.
Here’s a casual Albert Einstein all dressed for a day at the beach, posed on a rock with a contracting David Rothman all decked out in his work attire. This was taken at Horseshoe Cove in Nassau Point in the summer of 1939. Einstein was staying in his Long Island summer home which he rented so he could spend the summer playing his violin and sailing (even though he never learned to swim). As for those fancy shoes he’s wearing, those were $1.35 at Rothman’s department store and evidently caused some initial confusion.
Einstein’s thickly accented request for a pair of “sundahls”, which Rothman interpreted as “sundial”, the scientist was eventually able to get these white sandals on his feet. He later laughed off the whole episode, blaming “mine atrocious accent!”.
His glorified rowboat named the Tinef, which is supposedly Yiddish for junk. It was small, maybe about 15 feet (4.5 meters) or so, and very unprepossessing.
Everett Holt won a contest in 1925 by shoveling a record-breaking 16 tons of coal.
First Drive-in theater, Los Angeles, 1935.
That’s right, it was a cutting edge as you could get for 1935. You could watch talking pictures on an enormous screen from the comfort of your own car. All the snacks and blankets you desire and no noisy strangers hogging the arm rest and bumping elbows with you.
In 1915 a partial drive-in theater was opened in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Makeshift drive-ins began popping up. In the 1920s, "outdoor movies" became one of the most popular choices for summer entertainment, but relatively few of these "drive-in" experiments were made.
Once sound stepped onto the scene and drive-ins became better equipped, they started booming. The drive-in's peak popularity came in the late 1950s and early 1960s, particularly in rural areas.
Five ancient wooden chariots discovered completely intact with horses from the Zhou Dynasty, 650 B.C.
Check out this ancient Chariot Fleet with horses that was unearthed from their tomb in China. A total of 5 chariots and 12 horse skeletons dating back to the Zhou Dynasty, 650 B.C. were found. According to an article published in national Geographic, the Archaeologists who made the discovery believe the tomb was originally dug as part of the funeral rites of a minister or other nobleman during the Eastern Zhou dynasty period, about 2,500 years ago.
Gandhi - late 1930s
Check out Gandhi back in the late 30’s, looking a bit antagonistic and rather happy about it. Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian activist who became the leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule. Gandhi who led India to independence (through nonviolent civil disobedience) and inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world.
Gandhi famously led Indians in challenging the British-imposed salt tax with the 400 km (250 mi) Dandi Salt March in 1930 and called for the British to Quit India in 1942. He spent quite a bit of time imprisoned, through multiple arrests in South Africa and India. He lived a modest life in a self-sufficient residential community. He is widely known as the Father of the Nation.
Here's a vintage Harley motorcycle from 1904.
While some of the Internet is still engaged in a feud over when the first Harley came out (1903, 1904, or 1905). Harley celebrated its 50th year anniversary in 1954 and basic mathematics gives us a start year of 1904. Of course, then they threw everyone off when they celebrated their 100th anniversary in 2003… (cue X-Files theme) so long-live the Harley conspiracy chatter!
Either way, this is a photo of a vintage Harley Davidson taken back in 1904. The very first Harley was actually black with gold pin striping, so perhaps this white one was the second model.
Italian sculptor Giovanni Strazza's The Veiled Virgin.
Here we have a photo of ‘The Veiled Virgin’, a Carrara marble statue that was carved by Italian sculptor Giovanni Strazza. The exact date this stunning depiction of the Blessed Virgin Mother, was completed remains unknown. But it’s believed to have been in the early 1850s. Despite it’s appearance of being translucent, the veil, like the rest of the statue, is also made of marble. Marble busts of veiled women were a popular theme among Strazza's contemporaries,most notably Pietro Rossi and Raffaelle Monti.
The Veiled Virgin was kept at the Episcopal Palace next to the Roman Catholic Cathedral in St. John's until 1862. It was presented to Mother Mary Magdalene O'Shaughnessy, the Superior of Presentation Convent, by Bishop Mullock. It has remained under the care of Presentation Sisters, in Cathedral Square, St. John's since then.
Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a crowd from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial where he delivered his famous, “I Have a Dream,” speech during the Aug. 28, 1963.
The overwhelmingly massive but peaceful rally was the largest assembly for a redress of grievances that the capital had ever seen. King was the last speaker. He spoke of struggle and stressed the importance nonviolent action and protest. “Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.” He told the crowd, then he went on to deliver what became the best known speech in U.S. history, second only to the Gettysburg Address.
“ I have a dream…. that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’ I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.”
Norma Jeane Dougherty at age 15 in 1941, later to become Marilyn Monroe.
Despite her seemingly outgoing nature as a woman, Norma Jeane Dougherty was very shy as a child and still suffered from bouts of shyness and insecurity as an adult. She was so shy growing up, that she developed a stutter, she never fully got rid of it but was able to mask it thanks to the dictation lessons by the studio vocal coaches. According to Marilyn, her Aunt Ana was the first person she ever truly felt loved by, in fact, Ana was the first person to encourage Marilyn to become an actress in the first place. Aunt Ana died in 1948, and Marilyn’s husband at the time, Joe DiMaggio, made arrangements to ensure Marilyn would be buried in the same cemetery when she passed away.
Preserved mummy of Ramesses II, who died age 90 in 1213 BC. Housed at the Cairo Museum.
Check out the preserved mummy of Ramesses II which is currently housed at the Cairo Museum. Ramesses II died age 90 in 1213 BC and from what scientific analysis of his mummy reveals, he was suffering from severe dental problems and was plagued by arthritis and hardening of the arteries. The examination also revealed battle wounds, old fractures, and it’s believed his arthritis forced him to walk with a hunched back for the last decades of his life.
90-years old is pretty impressive, especially back then. He outlived most of his wives and children and left great memorials all over Egypt. After his death, he was buried in a tomb in the Valley of the Kings and moved to a royal cache where it was discovered in 1881, and is now on display in the Cairo Museum.