“It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia”: Stunning Mid-Century Mugshots From The City Of Brotherly Love – Design You Trust

“It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia”: Stunning Mid-Century Mugshots From The City Of Brotherly Love

Sometimes mugshots look like portraits. In this gallery of faces from 1950 and 1960s Philadelphia, photo collector Mark Michaelson picks mugshots that make us stop, look and keep looking.

“In Boston they ask, how much does he know? In New York, how much is he worth? In Philadelphia, who were his parents?” – Mark Twain

Punks, sneaks, mooks and miscreants. Hookers, stooges, grifters and goons. Men and women, elderly and adolescent, rich and poor, but mostly poor. These are the Least Wanted. Their portraits make up a small part of Mark Michaelson’s collection of over 10,000 American mugshots from the 1870s to the 1960s.

Created as utilitarian instruments, and meant to be destroyed when obsolete, they survive as remnants of a bygone era of hard-copy originals, extraordinary visual windows on the past, and riveting physical artifacts, often accompanied by municipal ephemera. They are glued to cards and manuscripts, typed on and rubber stamped. Each suspect has been measured and fingerprinted, documented and classified.

Bored, sheepish, proud, coy, tough, defiant, bounced, bloodied, bruised, broken and innocent faces–innocent until proven guilty–stare back at the camera with unmistakable individuality. This is central casting for the Late Late Show of unvarnished reality, and the lineup is full of small-timers, those who have fallen through the cracks.

Each subject, each image, is a person, a portrait, a trace, a crime, a clue, a moment, an expression, a frame, a mustache, a mother, a father, a son or a daughter. Each image is evidence, documentation. A record of people and of stories dismissed by history and rescued here. A century of American souls, filed and forgotten, until now.

More info: Amazon (h/t: flashbak)

If you want more awesome content, subscribe to 'Oh, Design You Trust,' our brand new Facebook page! Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

More Inspiring Stories

12 Zombie Style Family Portraits Render Any Family Photos You Have So Alive And Well Boring
Elmer Duyvis
Photographer Tom Hegen Captures Breathtaking Futuristic Photos Of Dutch Greenhouses At Night
The Finalists Of The 14th Annual Smithsonian Photo Contest
The Ethereal Landscape Photography Of Daniel Kordan
Striking Black And White Portraits Of Celebrities At The Golden Globes 2017
Beautiful Female Portrait Photography By Andre Nguyen
Fascinating Vintage Photos Of Playboy Playmates Posing With Classic Cars
Winning Photos Of Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021
Eugene Atget – The Photographer Who Walked Fin de Siècle Paris
Photographer Nicholas Ku Explores Urban Asia From Above
Beautiful Winning Photos From The GDT Nature Photographer Of The Year 2020
American Eagle Underwear Had An Increase In Sales. These Unretouched Pics Are Maybe A Clue Why
Photographer Freezes Time, Suspends Foods In His Zero-Gravity Kitchen
Photographer Recreates Iconic Photos With John Malkovich As The Main Subject
Unique Portraits Of Russians In 1868
The Discreet Charm
"Beyond Heaven And Earth": The Superb Travel Photography By Sergey Bratishchev
"Dancers & Dogs": Photographer Duo Captures The Relationship Between Dancers And Their Pups
Methamphetamine Addiction. Before and After.
Hungary Fashion Photographer Under Fire Over 'Migrant Chic' Shoot
40 Weeks and a Mirror: Mother Documents Her 9-Month Journey with Child Through Selfies
45°C - Modern Slaves of Dubai
This Is What 7 Million Flowers In The Netherlands Look Like