Mumler, Fotografer yang Pertama Kali Memotret Hantu
William H. Mumler (1832
-1884) adalah seorang fotografer arwah Amerika yang bekerja di New York dan Boston. Foto arwah
pertamanya adalah potret diri yang dikembangkan untuk tampaknya
menunjukkan almarhum sepupunya. Mumler kemudian meninggalkan pekerjaannya sebagai perhiasan, dan
bukannya memilih untuk bekerja penuh waktu sebagai fotografer, mengambil keuntungan dari
sejumlah besar orang-orang yang telah kehilangan sanak keluarga dalam Perang Saudara Amerika.
Mungkin dua karya yang paling terkenal adalah foto Mary Todd Lincoln dengan arwah suaminya
Abraham Lincoln, dan foto Master Herrod, sebuah media, dengan tiga arwah pemandunya.
Setelah dituduh berbagai kegiatan, ia dibawa ke pengadilan untuk penipuan, dengan
mencatat pemain sandiwara PT Barnum memberikan kesaksian terhadap dia. Meskipun dinyatakan tidak
bersalah, kariernya sudah berakhir, dan ia meninggal dalam kemiskinan. Foto-foto Mumler dianggap
Sebelum memulai karirnya sebagai fotografer arwah, Mumler bekerja
sebagai pengukir permata di Boston, berlatih fotografi amatir di waktu senggang. Pada awal 1860
-an, ia mengembangkan sebuah potret diri yang muncul untuk menampilkan penampakan sepupunya yang
sudah mati selama 12 tahun.Hal ini secara luas diakui sebagai yang pertama foto roh seorang
subjek hidup yang menampilkan keserupaan dengan orang yang telah meninggal (seringkali seorang
kerabat) tercetak dengan arwah almarhum . Mumler kemudian menjadi fotografer arwah, dan pindah
ke New York, di mana karyanya dianalisa oleh sejumlah pakar fotografi, tidak satu pun yang bisa
menemukan bukti bahwa foto-fotonya adalah palsu.Fotografi arwah diyakini menjadi bisnis yang
menguntungkan kepada keluarga mereka yang tewas selama Perang Saudara Amerika mencari kepastian
bahwa di mana mereka tinggal.
Pengkritik karya Mumler termasuk PT Barnum,
yang mengaku Mumler adalah mengambil keuntungan dari orang-orang yang sedang dalam kesedihan.
Setelah penemuan bahwa beberapa hantu Mumler itu sesungguhnya orang-orang hidup,dan tuduhan
bahwa ia telah patah ke rumah-rumah untuk mencuri foto-foto almarhum kerabat,Mumler dibawa ke
pengadilan atas penipuan pada bulan April 1869.Barnum bersaksi melawan dia, mempekerjakan
Abraham Bogardus untuk membuat gambar yang muncul untuk menunjukkan Barnum dengan arwah Abraham
Lincoln untuk menunjukkan kemudahan dengan foto-foto yang dapat diciptakan.Mereka yang bersaksi
dalam mendukung Mumler termasuk Musa A. Dow, seorang wartawan yang Mumler telah memotret.
Meskipun dibebaskan dari penipuan, karier Mumler rusak dan dia meninggal di kemiskinan pada
tahun 1884. Foto-nya dianggap hoax dan hanya rekayasa.
Baltimore Residents Away From Turmoil Consider Their Role
BALTIMORE — In the afternoons, the streets of Locust Point are clean and nearly silent. In front of the rowhouses, potted plants rest next to steps of brick or concrete. There is a shopping center nearby with restaurants, and a grocery store filled with fresh foods.
And the National Guard and the police are largely absent. So, too, residents say, are worries about what happened a few miles away on April 27 when, in a space of hours, parts of this city became riot zones.
“They’re not our reality,” Ashley Fowler, 30, said on Monday at the restaurant where she works. “They’re not what we’re living right now. We live in, not to be racist, white America.”
As Baltimore considers its way forward after the violent unrest brought by the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who died of injuries he suffered while in police custody, residents in its predominantly white neighborhoods acknowledge that they are sometimes struggling to understand what beyond Mr. Gray’s death spurred the turmoil here. For many, the poverty and troubled schools of gritty West Baltimore are distant troubles, glimpsed only when they pass through the area on their way somewhere else.
And so neighborhoods of Baltimore are facing altogether different reckonings after Mr. Gray’s death. In mostly black communities like Sandtown-Winchester, where some of the most destructive rioting played out last week, residents are hoping businesses will reopen and that the police will change their strategies. But in mostly white areas like Canton and Locust Point, some residents wonder what role, if any, they should play in reimagining stretches of Baltimore where they do not live.
“Most of the people are kind of at a loss as to what they’re supposed to do,” said Dr. Richard Lamb, a dentist who has practiced in the same Locust Point office for nearly 39 years. “I listen to the news reports. I listen to the clergymen. I listen to the facts of the rampant unemployment and the lack of opportunities in the area. Listen, I pay my taxes. Exactly what can I do?”
And in Canton, where the restaurants have clever names like Nacho Mama’s and Holy Crepe Bakery and Café, Sara Bahr said solutions seemed out of reach for a proudly liberal city.
“I can only imagine how frustrated they must be,” said Ms. Bahr, 36, a nurse who was out with her 3-year-old daughter, Sally. “I just wish I knew how to solve poverty. I don’t know what to do to make it better.”
The day of unrest and the overwhelmingly peaceful demonstrations that followed led to hundreds of arrests, often for violations of the curfew imposed on the city for five consecutive nights while National Guard soldiers patrolled the streets. Although there were isolated instances of trouble in Canton, the neighborhood association said on its website, many parts of southeast Baltimore were physically untouched by the tumult.
Tensions in the city bubbled anew on Monday after reports that the police had wounded a black man in Northwest Baltimore. The authorities denied those reports and sent officers to talk with the crowds that gathered while other officers clutching shields blocked traffic at Pennsylvania and West North Avenues.
Lt. Col. Melvin Russell, a community police officer, said officers had stopped a man suspected of carrying a handgun and that “one of those rounds was spent.”
Colonel Russell said officers had not opened fire, “so we couldn’t have shot him.”
The colonel said the man had not been injured but was taken to a hospital as a precaution. Nearby, many people stood in disbelief, despite the efforts by the authorities to quash reports they described as “unfounded.”
Monday’s episode was a brief moment in a larger drama that has yielded anger and confusion. Although many people said they were familiar with accounts of the police harassing or intimidating residents, many in Canton and Locust Point said they had never experienced it themselves. When they watched the unrest, which many protesters said was fueled by feelings that they lived only on Baltimore’s margins, even those like Ms. Bahr who were pained by what they saw said they could scarcely comprehend the emotions associated with it.
But others, like Lambi Vasilakopoulos, who runs a casual restaurant in Canton, said they were incensed by what unfolded last week.
“What happened wasn’t called for. Protests are one thing; looting is another thing,” he said, adding, “We’re very frustrated because we’re the ones who are going to pay for this.”
There were pockets of optimism, though, that Baltimore would enter a period of reconciliation.
“I’m just hoping for peace,” Natalie Boies, 53, said in front of the Locust Point home where she has lived for 50 years. “Learn to love each other; be patient with each other; find justice; and care.”
A skeptical Mr. Vasilakopoulos predicted tensions would worsen.
“It cannot be fixed,” he said. “It’s going to get worse. Why? Because people don’t obey the laws. They don’t want to obey them.”
But there were few fears that the violence that plagued West Baltimore last week would play out on these relaxed streets. The authorities, Ms. Fowler said, would make sure of that.
“They kept us safe here,” she said. “I didn’t feel uncomfortable when I was in my house three blocks away from here. I knew I was going to be O.K. because I knew they weren’t going to let anyone come and loot our properties or our businesses or burn our cars.”