63 Of The Most Interesting Photos From “Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography”

History is full of strange and fascinating stories that are often overlooked in traditional education. From obscure historical figures to bizarre events, there is always something new to discover and learn. The addition of vintage photography to this mix of history facts, not only provides context but also a visual representation of the era, making it more relatable and vivid.

From abandoned places, haunted locations, and even travel, it’s a great way to explore the past and gain a new perspective on the world. The combination of interesting facts and visually striking images can make for a captivating and entertaining read, that not only educates but also inspires curiosity and the desire to learn more.


A Facebook page called “Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography” is a great resource for anyone who is interested in exploring the past in a unique and captivating way. The page shares an interesting mix of content, such as history facts and vintage photography, which provide a glimpse into the past and a visual representation of the era.

With that being said, make sure to keep an eye for an interesting interview with Dr. Eleanor Barnett who is a food historian!



One area of Victorian design that was often overlooked was the staircase, especially those installed for the use of servants.


They were made too narrow, too steep and with irregular steps, the servants staircase was deadly.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report


Given the chance, reached out to a cultural historian of food and early modern religion, Dr. Eleanor Barnett, who has a PhD from the University of Cambridge. As a food historian, Dr. Barnett is drawn to the field by her desire to connect with the everyday lives of ordinary people in the past.


“I wanted to find a way of connecting to the everyday lives of ordinary people in the past, rather than telling traditional ‘top-down’ histories about kings and queens. After all, everyone has to eat! Especially before the advent of artificial refrigeration and the stacked supermarket shelves of the modern age, food – growing it, cooking it, eating it, reusing leftovers – took up a huge amount of everyone’s time,” says Eleanor.

The food historian approaches her research and writing about the history of food and food culture by not just asking about what past people ate but why, how, and with whom they ate it. “No culture eats everything that’s edible. Think about our modern, western aversion to eating insects. Why is it that we don’t want to eat them? The answer tells us something profound about our values, identity, and our understanding of the natural world. Or think about who you eat with. Family, friends, colleagues? By sharing food, we enact certain rituals intended to forge or solidify allegiances. This was true of people in the past too, so studying food tells us much more about a culture than just changing diets over time,” she adds.

An Old Cat Flap

This old door is in Exeter Cathedral, UK.

The door had a hole cut in it between 1598-1621 to allow access for the cathedral cat who was paid per week in food for mouse/rat catching duties.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

What Eleanor finds most rewarding about her work as a food historian is “Nothing beats the hours spent exploring piles of handwritten records in the archives! As part of my research, I was lucky enough to study 16th and 17th-century court records from the Venetian Inquisition. It’s so rewarding to hear the voices of people who lived hundreds of years ago and to reconstruct what their lives – and their diets! – would have been like.”

Queen Elizabeth I's Only Known Surviving Dress

St Faiths Church in Bacton was containing a significant item important to British history with out even knowing for hundreds of years, Queen Elizabeth I’s only surviving dress.
The dress was used as an alter cloth before being discovered.
It’s believed that the dress was given to Blanche Parry, the queen’s Chief Gentlewoman of the Bedchamber. Elizabeth was known to have gifted clothing to her.
This church was Blanche’s families church, which most likely explains why it was found there. Since the church was dark inside, the colours on the dress have been preserved with minimal fading.
The silver chamblet silk fabric, embroidered with gold and silver thread and cut in a manner suggesting it once constituted two sections of a skirt, bodice and sleeves, closely resembles the gown donned by Elizabeth in the so-called “Rainbow Portrait.” Painted by artist Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger around 1600.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

The history of food and food culture has been shaped by social, cultural, and political factors. Dr. Barnett explains it by saying “The dietary decisions that people make have long been shaped by wider social, cultural, economic, political, and religious factors. In the Renaissance period, for example, people believed that peasants and the wealthy had different types of bodies that suited different foods. The poor were associated with onions, garlic, and other simple vegetables whereas the rich were advised by doctors to eat more seemingly lavish foods like chicken.”

Vintage Photography - The Zoo

1. Barbary lion Sultan in the Bronx Zoo’s Lion House, April 1903. Now extinct in the wild, Barbary lions once roamed North Africa.
2. First of four thylacines who lived at the Bronx Zoo between 1902 and 1919. The last known thylacine died at the Hobart Zoo in Tasmania in 1936.
3-4. London zoo 1930s

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

In her research, Eleanor uses primary sources, such as cookbooks and food-related documents. “Cookbooks – and the tantalizing (sometimes bizarre!) dishes they prescribe – are really exciting ways of studying the past. You might even try recreating a past recipe if you want to be transported to the flavors and smells of a past society!

Just like today, however, cookbooks are often aspirational texts. How many of us have a delicious selection of cookbooks on the kitchen shelf but end up making our go-to spaghetti bolognese recipe (again!) after a long day at work? So historians of food pair these culinary texts with other rich primary sources, like account books, medicinal tracts, images, and court records.”

The Offical Recorded Number Of Children Born To One Mother Is 69, From Shuya, Russia

Between 1725 – 1765, Mrs Vassilyev popped out 16 pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets, over 27 separate labours. The grand total: 69 children.

Due to the time period, there are no photos of the kids or family that have been confirmed as legitimate. So here’s a random photo!

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Another thing the food historian finds most fulfilling about the work she does is “Sharing this research with a wonderful community of food, history, and art lovers from across the world has been a really rewarding experience. I love connecting to my followers by learning about the role that food plays in different cultural traditions,” as she shares her research on Instagram under the handle ‘Historyeats‘.

Order A Drink Through A 400 Year Old Wine Window

These little windows were introduced during the 1600s, they’re mostly in Tuscany, Italy.
They are carved into the concrete walls of  wineries and shops. Wine Window owners are using their wine windows to dispense glasses of wine, cups of coffee, drinks, sandwiches and ice cream to promote social distancing. 

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

150 Million Year Old Dinosaur Footprints

Outside of the French village of Plagne, you will find 500ft/150m long stretch of dinosaur footprints dating back 150 million years.
After examination, scientists concluded the tracks were left by a Sauropod. Today it is recognised as the longest Sauropod dinosaur track ever discovered.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Nina Leen Was A Fashion Photographer, A Constant Contributor To Life Magazine

Nina moved to the United States in 1939, she was fascinated by American culture. By 1945 she was one of the first female photographers to join the staff at LIFE magazine. During her time there she produced over forty covers and a myriad of spreads. Nina passed away in 1995 in New York.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Wild Child - Alice Lee Roosevelt Longworth

Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt was born on February 12th, 1884. She was the eldest child of President Theodore Roosevelt. 
Alice was known for her independent and free-spirited nature that breathed new life into the early 20th century for women. 
As a teen, she decided to climb onto the roof of the White House, where she could smoke without technically breaking her father’s rule “not under my roof”.
She had a pet snake, named Emily Spinach. Alice would carry the snake around with her in either her purse or dress pocket and take the snake to social events. 
The New York Herald printed a running score of her social life over the course of one 15-month period, which included: 407 dinners, 350 balls, 300 parties, 680 teas, and 1,706 social calls.
Alice started to receive so much fan mail at the White House, the Roosevelts had to hire an additional secretary solely for Alice’s mail.
Alice Roosevelt Longworth was one of the key faces of modern and celebrated American womanhood.
Alice passed away at 96, leaving behind a unique legacy that continues to inspire the kind of free willed spirit we might all benefit from having a little more of.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Lynnewood Hall: The Abandoned Mansion With A Tragic Titanic Connection

George Dunton Widener and Harry Elkins Widener both died when the RMS Titanic sank in 1912. 
Which only left Peter Widener their relative to take ownership of the hall, he died at the age of 80 in 1915. 
The hall changed hands a few times over the years, with large portions of the estate grounds sold off in the 1940s.
In 1952, the estate was purchased by the Faith Theological Seminary, it was purchased for $192,000 but it was left to suffer further decline when much of Lynnewood’s valuable assets were sold off, including more than 350 acres of land. 
The house now has 33 acres and is owned by the First Korean Church of New York.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Mary Maloney Was An Irish Suffragette Campaigner And Member Of The Women's Social And Political Union

She became the Organiser for the London Council of the Women’s Freedom League in 1908.

She was most famous for her acts of protest during the 1908 by-elections of Dundee, Scotland, this was during the time when Churchill was running to regain a seat in Parliament.

Mary would turn up at Churchill’s public engagements and proceed to drown him out by ringing a bell

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

The Most Photographed Man Of The 1800’s - Frederick Douglass

He was the most photographed man of the 19th century, sitting for more than 160 portraits and photos.

He almost never smiled during photographs, it was an expression he viewed as too friendly.

He was careful to be photographed in settings that emphasized dignity, accomplishment and power, all things denied to those like him who had been enslaved.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Fancy Some 121 Year Old Chocolate?

A 121-year-old chocolate bar that was given to British troops to boost morale during the Boer Wars in South Africa has been discovered in the attic of a National Trust property.
The chocolate, still in its original wrapper and tin, was part of a batch commissioned by Queen Victoria in 1900.
It was found in a Boer War helmet case at Oxburgh Hall in Norfolk.
The chocolate, which belonged to the 8th Baronet, Sir Henry Edward Paston-Bedingfeld, was discovered by National Trust conservators. The conservators found the chocolate whilst cataloguing the belongings of his daughter Frances Greathead, who died last year aged 100.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Queen Victoria's Engagement Ring

Shaped like a serpent, the ring includes small rubies, diamonds, and an emerald, which was Queen Victoria’s birthstone.
At the time snakes were a symbol of wisdom and commitment. It was also common during this era for engagement rings to feature birthstones rather than diamonds.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Window Tax Was Introduced In England And Wales, In 1696, And Scotland, In 1748

The more windows a building had, the more its owner had to pay. Initially, the window tax applied to buildings with more than 10 windows, the tax was later extended to include those with seven or more windows.
King William III introduced window tax and was designed to impose tax relative to the prosperity of the taxpayer, but without the controversy that then surrounded the idea of income tax.
It was used in the UK, France, Ireland and other parts of the world. It was abolished in 1851. 
It’s supposedly where the term “daylight robbery” comes from.

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

Susanna Salter Was The First Female Mayor In The US (1887)

A group of men hated the idea of women being involved in politics and decided to pull a prank. So they submitted a list of candidates names from the Women’s Christian Temperance Union.

They thought that NO MAN would vote for a female mayor. They wanted to humiliate the Women’s Christian Temperance Union.

Susanna didn’t know about the prank until the local Republican Party sent representatives to her house to see if she was actually running for office.

She went with it and became Mayor of Argonia, Kansas. She also won over 60% of the votes

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

This Note Was Written By Albert Einstein In 1922. It Sold For $1.6m At An Auction In 2017

The story behind the quote is that Albert Einstein gave the note to a courier in Tokyo instead of a tip.
Albert was on a lecture tour at the time in Japan, when the courier came to his room Albert didn’t have any money to tip him. 
So instead of a tip, he wrote the courier a note in German: “A calm and humble life will bring more happiness than the pursuit of success and the constant restlessness that comes with it.”

Weird History Facts & Vintage Photography Report

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