Monday, February 27, 2012

Top 10 People with Only One Known Photograph

We love to look at pictures because it gives us a chance to remember a specific moment in time.  For this reason, family portraits are among the most cherished items in most households.  In the 1830s, the first commercially successful photographic process, the daguerreotype, was invented.  Daguerreotype photography spread rapidly across the United States in the early 1840s.  People loved the process because they were able to obtain an exact likeness of themselves and their family members for the first time, making portrait photographs extremely popular.

The first use of photographic film was pioneered by George Eastman.  Eastman’s first camera was named the “Kodak” and was offered for sale in 1888.  The time period between the first photo and the first commercially sold camera (1838-1888) has become known for a large collection of rare pictures.  Many famous outlaws from the American Old West and influential personalities from the middle of the 19th century have only a few known photographs.
In some rare instances, famous historical figures are known to have only one existing photograph.  This article will examine ten famous people with only one remaining picture.  Some notable figures that were not included are Mary Seacole, Bahadur Shah II, David Owen Dodd, Ike Clanton, Moondyne Joe, Regina Jonas, Etta Place, and Louis Keseberg.

10. Karl Denke

In 1870, Karl Denke was born in M√ľnsterberg, Silesia in the Kingdom of Prussia (now Zi?bice in Poland).  There is not a great deal of information about Denke’s life as a child, but as an adult he was well-liked in the community.  Between the years of 1918 to 1924, Denke operated a rooming house in his hometown.  His tenants affectionately called him “Papa.”  He also played the organ for the local German church.  It has since been realized that Denke led a much more sinister lifestyle.  He was a mass murderer that cannibalized the remains of over 30 people.
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