If You Think Your Family is Strange, Just Look at These Awkward Vintage Family Portraits

15 Pictures That Will Make You Appreciate Your Family

Turning the pages of an old family photo album can be quite embarrassing at times. It can spawn thoughts like, “Why did I ever think that crimping my hair was cool?” and “Whoa! Look at dad’s curly mustache!” Well, you’re not alone in thinking your family is weird, crazy or goofy — we all feel that way from time to time! And if you’re like us and ever thought your family looked especially odd in old family photos, we’ve found 15 awkward vintage family portraits that will make your own family seem (fairly) normal!

1.) King of Pool with Cue Ball Kid & 8 Ball Kid Portrait

Old Russian Family Photo in Costumes

Photo courtesy of Non Conspiracy Orchestra

This Russian family portrait was taken back in 1886. The father had an obvious obsession with the game of pool…and dressing his children like billiard balls.

2.) Twin Girls & Sibling Ghost Portrait

Old Scary Family Photo Spirit Photography

Photo courtesy of Etsy

In the Victorian era, spirit photography was quite common…and quite creepy.

3. A Family Beheading Portrait

Creepy Family Portrait Beheading

Photo courtesy of io9.com

Back then, it was also common to rip the heads off your family members. Just kidding! But Victorians went crazy over this trend that was achieved using multiple negatives.

4. Family of a Girl with Hair for a Face Portrait

Strange Family Photo Girl With Hair Over Face

Photo courtesy of Cabinet of Curiousities

Once upon a time there was a girl that went by the name of Alice Elizabeth Doherty — an American Werewolf. Apparently, Alice is the only American to have ever been born with a condition called hypertrichosis lanuginosa. The qualities of this rarity left her growing up with a fine mane and blonde, silky hair.

5.) “Boooooo! I’m a Ghoooost!” …Oh, Wait, That’s Just Mom Hiding Under a Sheet Portrait

Vintage Family Photo Mom Hiding in Sheet

Photo courtesy of DailyMail.com

When kids had their pictures taken in the 19th century, their mothers would be disguised as pieces of furniture or rugs while holding their wiggly babies still due to slow camera shutter speeds.

6.) Family Portrait with Creepy Tombstones

This post mortem photo shows us that this family’s twin babies had died, sadly, at a very young age. Photos of this type were snapped quite often back then.

7.) The Most Painful Family Portrait

Awkward Family Photo 1950s

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

We’re not quite sure what’s happening in this photo from the 1950s, but mom and dad sure seem to be having a great time watching their children suffer.

8.) Circus Sideshow Family Portrait

Tattooed Circus Family Portrait

Photo courtesy of tattoorama

This tattooed family was likely a sideshow act at the circus during the Great Depression. Sadly, some families had to resort to work of this type due to the lack of available jobs.

9.) Albino Family Portrait

This interesting photo of an albino family was taken in 1870. It’s truly one of a kind!

10.) The Family Portrait with a Faceless Man

Vintage Family Picture Victorian Man Turned Away from Camera

Photo courtesy of Buzzfeed

Okay, so, this guy isn’t really faceless. But he was likely made to turn the other way to signify that a brothel was nearby.

11.) The Family Portrait Where Everyone is Faceless

Victorian Era Family Mourning Photo

Photo courtesy of Luminous-Lint

Some say that this photo from 1880 was snapped this way because the ladies were in mourning. Or perhaps they just wanted to show off their lovely hairstyles.

12.) The Family Portrait Showing It’s Okay to (Really) Kiss Your Sister

Creepy Old Family Picture Kids Kissing

Photo courtesy of Black and WTF

This kid just LOVES his sister. A lot. (Awkward..)

13.) The Very Surprised Baby Family Portrait

Russian Family Photo Deceased Baby Painted Eyes

Photo courtesy of mement0_m0ri on Flickr

Actually, that isn’t a surprised baby. This little one is quite sadly, deceased; made to pose for a portrait with his eyes painted on. Yet another strange, yet common family portrait trend of the Victorian era.

14.) “There’s a Dude in the Tree!” Family Portrait

Weird Family Photo Victorian Era Man in Tree

Photo courtesy of StrangeFarmer.com

Hey, everyone has a crazy uncle in the family. And this one just happens to like posing in trees.

And last, but not least….

15.) The Family Who Faced Certain Death While Posing on the Edge of a Cliff Portrait

Awkward Old Family Photo on Cliff

Photo courtesy of My Ear-Trumpet

This family is quite possibly the craziest (and bravest!) of them all. We only hope they lived to see this incredible shot!

Though strange, it’s pretty amazing how these old family photos have been preserved over the years. Learn about the benefits of digitally preserving your own family pictures.

Have you stumbled across any weird, scary or funny family photos lately? Let us know!

One thought on “If You Think Your Family is Strange, Just Look at These Awkward Vintage Family Portraits

  1. Pingback: 10 Unbelievably Strange Deaths from the Victorian Era

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