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ca. 1900, forensic “Bertillonage” card, of Alphonse Bertillon. Bertillon employed anthropometry, an identification system based on physical measurements, to identify criminals. Before that time, criminals could only be identified based on unreliable eyewitness accounts. The method was eventually supplanted by fingerprinting.

Handsome criminal. What did he do?

1930s Mugshots from Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, via Flickr

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James Williams, a very handsome criminal indeed!

Australian criminals from the archives of the Sydney police,1920s

Anthropometry card of Alphonse Bertillon, who originated this criminal identification system of profile and full-face photos and key body measurements

Criminal Mug Shot Circa 1907

Vintage female criminal mug shots 1920s

Interactive: Mug shots of Nebraska criminals past - Omaha.com

Photos From History That Most People Have Never Seen Before

Criminal woman - Jane's mug shot. Circa 1903

ca. 1860-1900s, cabinet card collage of a women holding the held head of another woman

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Al Capone - America's most notorious criminal in the 1930's. Eventually the government got him...on tax evasion.

Gone But Not Forgotten - Cabinet Card of a Family in mourning with portrait of a departed Woman printed in as a vignette.

36 Amazing Photos From History That Most People Have Never Seen Before - The Meta Picture

Widow with two Children, Albumen Cabinet Card, circa 1885.

Jean Harris used a large number of aliases that included the names Emma Rolfe, May Mulholland and Eileen Woods. She sometimes successfully fooled police into believing she was a novice criminal. In fact she was a career criminal who specialized in theft from houses and shoplifting. Her many aliases created confusion amongst police and she made multiple appearances in the New South Wales Police Gazette under different names. She was a convincing actress and when interrogated by police would ...

Historic Newspapers~ New York Herald dated 04/16/1912 -- The Titantic sinks on its maiden voyage. On exhibit in the News Corporation News History Gallery at the Newseum. Newseum collection Photo credit: Newseum collection