Since the invention of photography, people have been entranced by images of famous people. It's engrossing to see a recognizable person memorialized – and what's more fascinating than seeing the last photos of historical figures? They bring the past to life in a way that text alone simply can't match.
Some of these photographs are absolutely chilling. Take the last photo of Hitler – it's dated just days before his suicide. A final image of Diana, Princess of Wales shows her hiding from the camera in the backseat of her car shortly before her fatal accident. And then there are the last photos of presidents. Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, John F. Kennedy, and Franklin D. Roosevelt all appeared on film shortly before passing away.
These last photographs of historical figures capture fleeting moments in time, from the famous to the seemingly insignificant.
Nikola Tesla, 1943
Nikola Tesla was a Serbian American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, physicist, and futurist best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current electricity supply system. Tesla gained experience in telephony and electrical engineering before ...more
Age: Died at 87 (1856-1943)
Anne Frank and Margot Frank, 1943
Annelies Marie "Anne" Frank was a diarist and writer. She is one of the most discussed Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Her wartime diary The Diary of a Young Girl has been the basis for several plays and films. Born in the city of Frankfurt in Weimar Germany, she lived most of her life in or near ...more
Age: Died at 16 (1929-1945)
#13 on The Best Jewish Authors
Albert Einstein, Princeton, NJ, March 1955
Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist. Einstein's work is also known for its influence on the philosophy of science. He developed the general theory of relativity, one of the two pillars of modern physics. Einstein is best known in popular culture for his mass–energy equivalence ...more
Age: Died at 76 (1879-1955)
Mark Twain, April 1910
Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the latter often called "the Great American Novel". Twain grew up in Hannibal, Missouri, which provided the ...more
Age: Died at 75 (1835-1910)
#10 on The Best Writers of All Time