On weekends at the Justice & Police Museum in Sydney, Australia, visitors can see mugshots from a series of 2500 photographs taken by the New South Wales Police Department to keep track of their inmates from 1910-1930. Curated by Peter Doyle, this exhibition called City of Shadows tells the stories of prostitutes, thieves, murderers, and thugs back in the day. Doyle describes it as “an intimate, raw and hauntingly beautiful record of the mysterious people and dark places of a Sydney lost.” With hand-written names and dates above street-clothed criminals, the forensic photographs are a fascinating relic of another era.[see_also]
If you can’t make it down under for the exhibit, but still want to see the full collection and the tales of scandal behind each offender, check out Doyle’s book, City of Shadows: Sydney Police Photographs 1921-1948.