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Medical lecture, Abington, Illinois
Courtesy of Larry Gottheim - Be-Hold (49 / 23)
The professor is a small figure behind a table at the bottom of the image, with a pointer, a skeleton, several skulls. Behind him are giant posters, larger than life, of skeletons and anatomical figures, as well as portraits. One has the inscription [reversed] "HANDS OFF."
The image is somewhat dark, so the Professor appears rather flat against the background, giving this a strange moody character that "comes alive" when one becomes able to construe the image correctly.
The ambrotype itself is on an unusually thick plate of early glass. The collodion has been neatly scraped off the bottom of the plate, where a paper label with an early pencil inscription has been placed. This is a very significant documentation of medical education (or pseudo-education) in this period, as well as a macabre graphically fascinating image. In half case. (Larry Gottheim)