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Question: Real, fake, explainable? What do you think?




...  "The Brown Lady" of Raynham Hall       This photo was taken in 1936 at Raynham Hall in Norfolk, England, by two photographers of Country Life magazine. Raynham Hall was long reputed to be haunted by the ghost of Lady Dorothy Townshend, who died in 1726. The ghost had been seen on many occasions throughout the years when it was spotted descending these stairs by the Country Life photographers, who quickly took a snapshot. This is considered by many to be the most highly regarded and reputable photograph by a ghost yet made.
« Last Modified by: Evie on: Jan 1st, 2008, 6:05pm »

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Evie
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A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Sep 20th, 2007, 5:41am
 
The Ghost of LADY DOROTHY TOWNSHEND

The Brown Lady is believed to be Dorothy Walpole, the sister of Britain's first ever Prime Minister, Sir Robert Walpole of Houghton Hall.

It is known that Dorothy's father was made guardian of Charles Townshend, when he was only 13 years old, so having grown up in each others company, when Dorothy was 15 and Charles 27 he fell deeply in love with her and wanted to marry her. Apparently Dorothy's father refused to give his blessing and put a stop to the whole affair, as he feared he would be accused of wanting to gain the Townshend fortune and property.

There are claims that at that young age Dorothy had thrown herself into a life of wild parties and scandalous behaviour , and ultimately became the mistress of the well known, infamously notorious Lord Wharton. Marriage was not an option.

During this time, Charles Townshend had married, but his wife sadly passed away in 1713, after which he and Dorothy were reunited and they married. However, it is rumored that Dorothy did not give up her lover.

It is understood that during her life, Dorothy was a well liked, charming lady. Although it is also believed that it was her obsession with flamboyant attire, that initially caused incredible arguments between herself and her husband, the second Marquess Townshend. Charles had a horrid temper, this was not a secret. In the end it was an untimely discovery of the continuing affair that led Charles to punish Dorothy and deprive her of the care of her  5 children, who were thereafter sent away and cared for by his mother. Miserable without them, it is said that Charles also confined Dorothy to her own quarters, where she desolately wandered the rooms, and within a while she died, at the age of 40.

Various versions of her life and death are quoted, including starvation, falling (or being pushed) down the grand staircase at Raynham Hall, the most popular location for the sighting of her ghost. Although this may be so, the announcement of her death, on 29th March 1726, gives the cause as smallpox.

There have been a huge number of sightings since her death in 1726. It was only a few weeks later that her ghost was first seen by servants working at the hall. By the way the servants gave notice and left! The apparition is was often described as wearing a 'richly brocaded brown dress with a coif on her head'

This picture was taken 210 years later in 1936 by two photographers from Country Life magazine when they were taking a series of photographs of Raynham Hall.

The story is that Captain Provand was photographing the staircase when his assistant, Indra Shira, said that he suddenly noticed a misty figure approaching down the stairs. He quickly urged Captain Provand to take an exposure, which he did although He protested that Indra Shira must have imagined it, and declared that even if there was something there, nothing would appear when the negative was developed. It is said that a bet was made.

Indra Shira insisted he had seen a figure so transparent that the steps were visible through it, and later when they were developing the negatives the Captain could see that there was definitely something on the staircase. Later a number of experts examined it and were satisfied that the picture had not been faked in any way.

Just imagine the excitement! The thrill of this photograph is still continuing today.

Raynham Hall is certainly haunted, and although this photgraph has recieved much credo for being authentic, there are skeptics... who would say it is not. Only you can decide if you think this photograph is a fake or not..............

I put the three versions of this famous photographs, with special consideration given to the middle photo. For some reason most of the other Brown Lady pictures I found were cropped. HALF of the left hand banister is missing ... and the right is broken and misaligned. What's up with that? Hmmmmm. Is this a double exposure? A mistake? Or a deliberate Hoax? Pulling this off would have been easy, even back then.

Pity that hoaxes happen, but they did 70 years ago and likely moreso now. I liked this photo, believed it was authentic, but then I did some research and ... now I don't know what to think. These men were professional photograhers. If this was a deliberate hoax, both men were in on it. Oh What a great scoop, fame even! Makes you wonder now doesn't it?
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aprildawn
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #1 - Sep 20th, 2007, 3:20pm
 
Evie I love this!  This should be a regular thing, having a vote on photos.  I really enjoy hearing the story behind the photo as well.  Good job Evie!  

Smileyaprildawn
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #2 - Sep 20th, 2007, 5:17pm
 
SmileyThis is brilliant, Evie - what an inspired addition to the site.

It was great to get the history behind the photos also.

You are really good at finding the interesting stuff - please do keep it up.

Blessed Be

Sarah Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #3 - Sep 20th, 2007, 7:57pm
 
What can i say Evie.....fantastic  Smiley  Smiley Smiley Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #4 - Sep 20th, 2007, 9:00pm
 
hello there im new on here that pic i seen be4 yes it real ghost  Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #5 - Sep 20th, 2007, 9:13pm
 
Hi sugar,

welcome to our family....we was just in chat..really glad you became a member.
You will find a lot of interesting people on the site hope you settle in ok. if you have any probs with the site ...i'm just a pm away.


take care
Steve  Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #6 - Sep 21st, 2007, 2:03pm
 
I did several Fact or Fake  photo polls last october on my blog. It was a big hit.. so I would say it would go over really well here on this site. What better thing for a paranormal group to try to debunk  spirit photos...
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #7 - Sep 21st, 2007, 5:15pm
 
Hi Mystie

The idea for this thread was not created not so much to DEBUNK spirit photos, but to learn how to look at the photographs.  I have looked  at so many sites with ghost photographs and am dismayed at the amount of photos that are considered Ghosts/spirits captured on film. What a joke! Seems almost like any photo that didn't turn out perfectly is suspected as being paranormal. I am not only talking about orbs... but vortexes... lights ... mist. There are ... normal explanations for odd anomalies on pictures... and these should be the FIRST things ruled out when deciding whether  the photo is authentically paranormal.  

I do feel that the above photo is indeed a deliberate fake... which is completely different from *false positives.  False positives merely suggest a misinformed analysis.

I am very curious which pictures you chose for your polls on your blog... If you would be willing to share these here ... it would make my project so much easier... and I would so appreciate any suggestions you have...  Thanks Mystie
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #8 - Dec 14th, 2007, 10:46am
 
ive seen this photo before and to be honest im not sure what to make of it

i noticed the banister thing and look of these stairs before i read your read up, its odd i have to say
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #9 - Dec 16th, 2007, 4:52pm
 
Try as I might, I just cannot get to see this photo, and I would dearly love to. Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry Cryxxxxx angelswings xxxxx
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #10 - Jan 1st, 2008, 6:07pm
 
Okay   Smiley  Angelswings I fixed the photo ..... I didn't notice that the link had been broken.  
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #11 - Aug 3rd, 2008, 12:04am
 
Interesting story  Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #12 - Aug 3rd, 2008, 5:10pm
 
I am not sure if this is a picture of a ghost or a clever fake,considering how long it has been around it must be thought of as genuine by many people.
I enjoyed reading about Lady Dorothy Townsend.
Evie thanks for this interesting thread.
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #13 - Aug 6th, 2008, 1:14am
 
I believe this she is a real ghost.  The story was great.  Thx
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #14 - Aug 6th, 2008, 7:57am
 
Thanks for the read evie it was awesome,
i enjoyed reading the story behind the photo,

Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #15 - Jul 12th, 2009, 10:19pm
 
I really must say that is an awsome picture evie. I really enjoyed the history behind it. And I do think that is a real ghost . And when she was walking down the stair case, she seems to come down it with grace.
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #16 - Feb 3rd, 2010, 12:13pm
 
I have often seen this picture... on TV or just looking for paranormal pics.... I have always enjoyed it.. but do believe it is just "to good" to be true.

And thank you for the background history on this.
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #17 - Feb 10th, 2010, 2:43pm
 
I'm gonna go with a skeptic point of view. mainly because of the fact there seems to be so much light shining towards the staircase separate from the camera. as if there trying to reflect from something to make sure it comes up. Might just be me, but it seems like its something that reflects the light rather than let it pass through. if it were transparent, why would the light reflect off of it.
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #18 - Feb 10th, 2010, 4:23pm
 
thank you evie,  for the interesting photos .  we should see more to come . blessed day  Smiley
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Re: A classic: The brown lady Ghost Photo
Reply #19 - Feb 10th, 2010, 6:46pm
 
this one IS a prominently featured in the MUSEUM OF HOAXES  Roll Eyes

http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/raynham.html
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