There's already something inherently creepy about many early photographs, so when the subject is the notoriously lawless old American West, the fear factor ticks up a few notches. An unexplored territory with a vibrant cast of characters, the wild West carried unease in every breeze; capturing that aesthetic through the grainy view of late 19th-, early 20th-century photos lends a whole new layer of creepiness to it.
Perhaps the creepiest photos from the old West are the ones that are hard to explain – the scary old photos made scarier by their total lack of context. This kind of disturbing photography, combined with the gruesome photos popular at the time, makes for an unsettling collection that's pretty hard to shake.
Bison Skulls, 18921,038312Unsettling image?
Woman In A Mask And Bonnet, Date UnknownPhoto: Metaweb / GNU Free Documentation License910307Unsettling image?
Post-Mortem Photograph, Late 1800sPhoto: Metaweb / GNU Free Documentation License761304Unsettling image?
Deceased Outlaw William "Brazen Bill" Brazelton Wearing A Mask, 1878Photo: The Spell of the West637282Unsettling image?