I just came across the most interesting family story of momento mori. The above photo on the left is the bloggers maternal great-grandfather, George. George had a twin sister that died in infancy. No photo was taken of her. To remedy that, they dressed George as a girl (which he looks pretty unhappy about) so they could ostensibly have a photo of the deceased daughter too. (I put the photos together myself so I wasn't able to pin from her blog, but I will attach it below.
"1860s ... the boy is deceased" NO. Standing post mortems are an urban legend. Stands were used to steady people for long exposure times used in photography at that time. It's impossible to prop up a dead person in this fashion! The stand couldn't hold up that much 'dead weight', the mouth would hang open, and the head and limbs would flop down. Could a person even hold up a dead child and have her look natural? No, and a stand can't do it either!
This boy named Herre died in 1873 at the age of two years and a half. The photo was found in his father's diary, which mentions the following: "We had one portrait made in his bed after he died by Ephraim. Later he put the head on a portrait of his child, wearing Herre's clothes, which became quite good". A very unusual example of early photoshopping avant la lettre!
MUG SHOT (1920's) Fay Watson was arrested for possession of cocaine and fined. Related to: australia, criminals, justice and police museum, mugshots, new south wales police department, old, vintage, women's crimes:
The families who practiced this tradition are very strong, as you can tell by their straight, emotionless face. I can not imagine my child's lifeless body resting on me one last time and me keeping it together like this.