Homo sapiens — or modern humans — originated in Africa somewhere around 200,000 years ago. Unfortunately, most of the things we know about the early stages of human history are just theories and hypotheses. Thanks to the invention of photography, we can take a small glimpse into the past and know a little bit more about our ancestors. Some of these rare historical photos can really turn our world upside down.
We has decided to share this noteworthy collection of rare historical photographs with you.
New York, circa 1950
Nothing unusual, just two construction workers having a lunch high above the city.
Pelé, the greatest soccer player in the 20th century during the filming of Victory, 1981
In the film, Victory, Pelé plays Luis Fernandez from Trinidad and Tobago. His character is a part of a team of allied prisoners of war (POWs), that are forced to play a soccer match with a team of Nazis.
This movie was inspired by the so-called Death Match in which FC Dynamo Kyiv defeated German team Flakelf while Ukraine was occupied by the Nazis in the Second World War. There are a lot of myths surrounding this story. The most popular story is that the Ukrainian team was threatened to lose the match or die.
Dynamo players didn’t pay attention to that warning and won the game. Later they were executed and became national heroes for the Soviet people.
Empire Pool, London, 1938
A pre-war family wears gas masks at the pool. Gas masks were issued to British civilians in anticipation of the war with Germany.
In 1985, Ebony Magazine predicted what Michael Jackson might look like in the year 2000.
In 1985, Ebony magazine tried to imagine what Michael Jackson would look like by the year 2000. It’s really far from how he actually looked at the age of 42.
Princess Diana shaking hands with an AIDS patient without gloves, 1991
On October, 25th, 1991, Princess Diana visited Casey House, An Aids Hospice, In Toronto, Canada. She was talking to the residents of the hospice and wasn’t afraid of being touched by them.
Man taking a Schnee bath, circa 1910
A Schnee bath was a hydrogalvanic diathermy therapy used for muscle rehabilitation and stimulation. It was named after its inventor, German physician, Paul Schnee.
Slave trade in Atlanta, Georgia,1864
Note the building with the sign, “Auction & Negro Sales”. In 1864, the slave trade business was still alive and well in Georgia.
A child of the KKK meets a Georgia State Trooper, 1992
A KKK child plays with the shield of a state patrol trooper during a Klan march in Gainesville, Georgia. No one is born with prejudices, they’re taught them.
The only few things that Gandhi possessed in his life
Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian activist, who was famous for his political and religious views. Some people consider him a paragon of ethical living and pacifism. Gandhi was devoted to asceticism, that is why he didn’t have many personal belongings.
An African-American family purchasing ice cream from an isolated stand in Alabama, 1956
Photographer Gordon Parks followed three African-American families in their everyday lives during the segregation in Alabama.
One of the first diver suits, 1911
Chester E. Macduffee and his invention, the diver suit. It weighed around 250 kg.
The very first Coca-Cola bottle, 1899
Coca-Cola first bottled under contract in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The company’s President, Asa Candler sold the bottling rights for $1. The bottles that were used at that time were straight-sided Hutchinson bottles with metal stoppers.
Chang, the Chinese giant, with his wife and manager, circa 1870
Zhan Shichai was a Chinese giant who toured the world as “Chang the Chinese Giant” in the 19th century. His height reportedly was more than 8 feet or 2.44 m.
Millie and Christine McKoy, American Siamese twins, circa 1890
These American conjoined twin sisters traveled the world by the stage names, “The Carolina Twins”, “The 2-Headed Nightingale”, and “The 8th Wonder of the World”. They performed song and dance for entertainment.
Mabel Normand, 1918
Mabel Normand was the first real ’’movie star’’. She is the person who brought Charlie Chaplin into the movie business.
A prisoner taken by Security Forces, 1977
A prisoner was taken by Rhodesian Security Forces and stands with a rope around his neck. This is 1 of 3 photos that were awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1978.
What photo surprised you the most? Have you already seen any of these pictures?
Let us know what you think in the comments below!