18 Vintage Photos of Halloween That Are Slightly Creepy
Today, one can simply turn to the internet to find scary movies to stream or creepy costumes to wear.
But our modern versions of spooky and kooky fail to elicit the same feelings of unease that the scares of decades or centuries ago do.
So, to get you in the true Halloween spirit, we conjured up some old-school photos of celebrations from Halloweens past.
There’s something so unsettling about black and white images of folks who are long gone, with their pillowcase masks and deadpan gazes.
It’s almost as if you’re locking eyes with bona fide ghosts!
So, without further ado, here are 18 vintage Halloween photos with just the right amount of spookiness to satisfy that itch for a scare.
This creepy pumpkin mannequin
It feels like this photo was snapped just moments before this jack-o’-lantern destroyed everything in the house.
These ghoulish gents
Is anyone else getting Clockwork Orange vibes from the gentleman in the front on the right?
This eerie yearbook photo
This photo, courtesy of the 1921 East Texas State Normal College yearbook, is eerily reminiscent of the final shot in The Shining.
This masked old lady
Wearing a “sad old lady” costume to a children’s Halloween party is a bold choice in 1939. We understand why those little ones in the background look so uneasy!
This man and his dummy
This smug, big-headed dummy makes Chucky look like child’s play!
These forest creatures
This 1918 photo is one part Wes Anderson film and one part fever dream.
This unflappable Frankenstein’s monster
This man’s poker face and refusal to break character make this 1950s snapshot deeply unsettling.
This nightmarish 1946 Halloween parade
Once upon a Halloween, this gigantic man-faced scarecrow rolled down the streets of Anaheim, California—and he definitely gave kids nightmares.
This wrestler you don’t want to mess with
This wrestler is giving The Undertaker some eerie competition.
This spooky styling
Wacky makeup and a crazy ‘do make for a frightening fashion don’t!
This toothy pumpkin
Why does this jack-o’-lantern need so many human-looking teeth?!
This frightening family portrait
Could these three be any creepier? We’re not even sure if the one in the middle is human!
This confusing cracked egg costume
How do you even go trick-or-treating in a costume without armholes?
This evil pumpkin party
Jack-o’-lanterns were evidently all the rage at the University of Southern California in 1890.
This bewitching woman
The shadows, the skull, the smoking cauldron—this costume and photo may be spooky, but at least she nailed it!
This Halloween onesie
This adult Halloween onesie sported by actress Mary Miles Minter in 1921 is, at the very least, a fashion faux pas.
This masked bandit
This woman’s toothy grin and mask-covered eyes make her 1928 costume feel more sinister than silly.
This spirit with unfinished business
This stereoscope is proof that even back in 1889, people enjoyed the thrill of a manufactured scare.