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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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New Age: 1909

New Age: 1909

1909. "Mme. Diss-DeBarr," a.k.a. "the noted and notorious Ann O'Delia Dis Debar, of many aliases, a number of husbands and several prison terms," according to a 1909 article in the New York Times. The headline calls her an "ex-priestess of fake spiritualism." 8x10 glass negative, George Grantham Bain. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Swami Laura Horos

Does anyone smell a Hollywood Epic Movie starring Madonna?

The Spook Priestess Arrested NY Times October 22,1892

Grave Charges NY Times October 11, 1901

Rape & Rhabdomancy Trial Results

A total of $300,000 was extorted by one clever medium from Luther B. Marsh (the law partner of Daniel Webster) in 1888 by the use of a primitive radiophone. Her name was Ann O'Delia Dis Debar, and she made a spectacular career for herself until she was exposed in court by Alexander Herrmann and Carl Hertz. Article By Houdini

The Very Naughty Madame Dis De Bar Historic True Crime

Swami Laura Horos Wikipedia Bio


I don't know why but this is one of the most interesting portraits that you have posted.

Annie Eat Your Heart Out

The pose and lighting of this image look remarkably similar to that of an Annie Leibovitz portrait.

A Certain Glow

At least from my PC screen, there's a certain unearthly glow or aura around her (at least on her right side). Dave will give us some technical reason, but you and I know what this reveals.

[The technical reason is that she is The One. - Dave]

Past Life

Aunt Bee: The Early Years.

Apex of Practicality

Her garment appears to be both a tablecloth and a dress. You can't beat that kind of practicality. I'm guessing Stanton Square will dig up some interesting info on this one. That caption is begging for it!

Legend in her Own Mind

We may not know what became of her,but if my great-grandmother was still around I could tell her what became of her drapes. Was Fashion Faux Pas on her rap sheet? Her expression indicates that she was a "legend in her own mind."

W. C. Fields might say

..."Ahhh, yes, that very short fortune teller who escaped from prison was a small medium at large."

What a character!

Also known as Swami Laura Horos.

[Whatever became of her seems to be something of a mystery. Except for being mentioned as a sort of historical cult figure, she pretty much disappears from the newspapers after 1909. - Dave]

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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