In the early days of photography, in the death-strewn wake of the Civil War, one man seized America’s imagination. A “spirit photographer,” William Mumler, took portrait photographs that featured the ghostly presence of lost loved ones alongside his living subjects. At a time when artists like Mathew Brady were remaking American culture with their cameras, Mumler was a sensation: the affluent and influential came calling, including Mary Todd Lincoln.

 

It took a circuslike trial of Mumler on fraud charges, starring P. T. Barnum for the prosecution, to expose a fault line of doubt and manipulation. And even then, the judge’s stunning verdict suggested no one would ever solve the mystery of how Mumler did it. This forgotten puzzle offers a vivid snapshot of America at a crossroads in its history, a nation in thrall to new technology while grasping desperately for something to believe in.

Apparitionists: A Tale of Phantoms, Fraud, Photography, and the Man...

$7.95Price
  • By Peter Manseau

    Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2017

    Used hardcover in very good condition

    335 pages

1 N. Lombardy St.

Richmond, VA 23220

804-353-1320

info@smallfriend.org

Sign up for our newsletter

© 2020 by Small Friend Records & Books. Proudly created with Wix.com