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Tintype of Co-joined Twins?

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Posted 6 years ago

(30 items)

The only way I could think of two explain this tintype is that it is of co-joined twins. I am thankful for any input about this image.

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  1. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    GREAT tintype-- I don't believe it is conjoined twins. I think that it is two friends one facing front and one facing backward. There may have been another image when first made that showed them reversed.

  2. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Doubtful that it is a double exposure-- that is rarely seen on these tintypes with folks "touching".

    In this era a double exposure is usually found with the same subject separated by a few feet. Additionally, you will usually see some form of a joint line in the image. Here is an example from an ebay auction that shows the typical joint line:


  3. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Thanks Robin-- very luminating! I forgot about those styles.

    I don't think it matches those either:
    -The ghost or spiritual images usually show a full and light exposure. It is much harder to complete two full exposures unless the photographer uses the divided plate technique-- shown in my example with the line.

    - The other example shows movement-- double shirts, buttons and arms. In this example there is no movement. Additionally, I think the arm/ hand on the "woman in the back" is telling. It is visible and then disappears behind the other subject.

    Based on your examples, I concede it is possible. I believe that it is much more likely that the photograph represents two subjects.

  4. USACollect, 6 years ago
    Thanks Scott and Rob!
  5. walksoftly walksoftly, 6 years ago
    This could be an image of conjoined twins but more specifically what is know as a parasitic twin. In the case of a parasitic twin they are smaller, as they rely on the other for the majority of their bodily processes.
    A very intriguing photo!
  6. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    Rob-- I think her arm is tucked under the arm of the woman with only the back visible. The difference in size also points to two people.

    Walks-- a parasitic twin (as I understand it) would be just body parts (arms/ legs) and not a functioning head.

    I don't think this is a parasitic or conjoined twin.

  7. walksoftly walksoftly, 6 years ago
    A parasitic twin most times will be just as you say, but sometimes they are complete but usually smaller,as they are reliant on the heart & other internal organs of the primary twin for some or all of their existence.

    Link to article & pictures of conjoined twin slaves


    These are the only twins from that era that I could find reference of, so more than likely there is another explanation for this picture.

    The larger woman does appear to be supporting the other one though, maybe she is hiding a deformity of the smaller woman.
  8. scottvez scottvez, 6 years ago
    I can't make an age determination on the person facing away from the camera.

    Based on the casual/ somewhat humerous pose (to me), I would think that the two women were friends of a similar age (18- 25).

    Based on what I have seen in years of collecting antique images, I would think that this was one of a pair of front/ back images.


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