Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Kodak Tin

Whilst scouring the antique and bric-a-brac stores in the States I came across an old tin Kodak film canister with a developed film inside. Naturally I snatched it up, eager to scan it in on my return home. I had my suspicions when looking at the film in the light that there was something fishy on this film, my suspicions were confirmed when I got home. On the film which seems to be from the 1930's, are photographs documenting a police raid on a marijuana farm and other photos documenting this time in history.  The majority of the photos are of marijuana plants, a man standing in amongst them, I imagine gaging the size of the plants for the photographs.  The plants all seem to be in an urban setting.
Interestingly on the film is a double exposed image of two mug shots. One of Victor Licata and the other of Perez Augusto, both convicted of crimes, that they were said to have been committed under the influence of marijuana. Victor Licata killed his family in 1933 with an axe while they were sleeping. He was branded by the press as the 'axe-murdering marijuana addict;' these murders led to the 1930's anti drug campaign against marijuana, you can read more about him here. Perez Augusto was hanged for criminal assault on a minor, he blamed marijuana for his crime, read more about him here.
Perhaps these photos are from the corn field affair in Baltimore, Maryland, where police raided two large marijuana farms near the city, were the drug was being grown, and processed for sale.
There is one disturbing image which again I believe is double exposed and seems to be a post-mortem photo of a mans very damaged head. There is also a simple image of a sitting room, perhaps a crime scene, or just a snapshot to use up the film? The rest of the film is made up of badly exposed book pages, which I believe is either from the book, Systematic Theory or What is Darwinism? by Charles Hodge. Charles Hodge was a Presbyterian theologian. He was a leading exponent of the Princeton theology, an orthodox Calvinist theological tradition in America during the 19th century. He argued strongly for the authority of the Bible as the Word of God. Many of his ideas were adopted in the 20th century by Fundamentalists and Evangelicals. He was against Darwinism, claiming it was atheism.
I'm not sure why these pages are on the film, more evidence or just documentation for the photographers own self?
Some of the images of the plants are quit lovely. They didn't come up very well on the scan, not sure if that is down to me or the poor quality of the film. There is no iso on the film just the words,  Kodak, Eastman, panchromatic and nitrate film. The Kodak Eastman film, one of the original films, also used for motion pictures.
Would love to bring up some of the images better, especially the autopsy one, but am not sure how to do this, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Below are all the images I scanned from the negative.

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