Halloween Countdown 3 - Victorian Death Customs

Let's start off with a look at the Dalnavert Museum located 61 Carlton Street

Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3C 1N7

check out their website here to see the awesome upcoming exhibits and events, you can also check out a more in depth history and look at the original Macdonald Family.

Let's move on to the Victorian Death Customs. First here's a look at some of the mourning attire.

Here is an outfit that would be pretty typical of a woman in the time, keep in mind, two years in this type of clothing.

Below is an example of a bonnet with a veil, in the first year the veil would be expected to cover the face.

As one article I read pointed out, the mortality rates were so high back then, that it was possible some people would be in mourning for Years and Years.

Next let's look at some examples of Post Mortem Photography.

So this one is a really good example of the blur that I was talking about, the parents of this young woman are blurred as they sat as still as they could for this photo. The young lady however is crystal clear. Remember, these were sometimes the only family pictures they would have had at the time and would have held them very dear. (simply google postmortem victorian death photography and you can see many more examples.)

Along with photos with your deceased loved one, we talked about Momento Mori and these are some examples.

Lockets were really popular as well, they could hold a photo of the person (if they were so lucky to have one) and a locket of


This piece was a wall hanging in a

shadow box, containing artwork made of

the loved one's hair.

Below you will find an example of the Bell rig for a coffin, this would be common in this time for fear of being buried alive.

I also spoke about Timothy Clark Smith and his Window into his grave. Here are some images of that grave in Vermont.

and here is a closeup of the window.

I tried to find some good photos of the mourning dolls, but they're not easy to find. there are also not many around. If you come across any, let me know and I can share the images.

See you next week for GHOST TOWNS!


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