Caution: Ghosts in the area. Watch your step.
I have discovered our first Firehouse ghost. You may disagree with me a little here. (You would be wrong, but that’s okay.)
Here’s how I came across the ghost: I stared at this picture for a really, really long time.
Actually, my goal was to get a better look at that Watches and Jewelry establishment off to the left there. I wanted to read the signs posted on the building. I didn’t have much luck, except to see that there was some sort of registration going on in the third ward. No, I don’t know what that means.
At any rate, I was in this process of zooming, when I saw him.
At first, I wasn’t sure if my eyes were playing tricks on me. I mean, I had already spent so much time with this picture, and I had been convinced there were no people in it.
Plus, all I could really make out was a hazy figure, wearing a hat, and what appears to be a dark suit. I go back and forth on whether or not there is a cane involved, but I like to think so.
Can you see him? He’s facing the firehouse, standing near the alcove doorway, across from that raggedy wagon. The more you zoom in, the more he seems to fade, which is an obvious clue to his ghost status.
Alright, yes. Cameras in the 19th century weren’t very good at capturing movement due to long exposure times. In fact, they had a knack for creating ghost-like figures if the subject moved before the camera’s exposure time had ended. Still, I’m going to insist on referring to this gentleman as “the Firehouse ghost.” I have to get my kicks somewhere, you know.
The handwritten caption on the back of this picture reads, “Engine house, 1881; Larned and St. Antoine built 1857.” The words “Farmer Bros., photographers, Detroit, Mich” are stamped there as well.