Fascinating Mugshots from 1920s Australia


In the US, the 1920s are associated as much with gangsters as they are with flapper dresses and Gatsby-esque parties. So it also went on the other side of the Pacific — in Australia, the 1920s were an era when fearsome gangsters like Squizzy Taylor were household names, and a decade that continues to hold ongoing interest for the Australian public. The folk at Retronaut recently posted a heap of mugshots from the mean streets of 1920s Sydney, and they’re as much beautiful examples of photography as they are a historical record. They were taken with a 4″ x 6″ large-format camera, and they seem to capture the essences of their subject just like all the best portraits do — some of the criminals are full of surly bravado, others clearly terrified, and others just look intrigued at the novel experience of being photographed.