Have you ever wondered why people never smiled in old photos? They simply kept a straight face as if life was too stressful to smile. But that wasn’t historically true. A group of scholars have discovered three main reasons why people never smiled in old photos: technical limitations, hygiene, and formal occasions.
Some have put forward the point that old people had too terrible teeth to show others. However, this notion was dismissed.
In this day and age, a smile presents happiness and warmth and humor. But in the past, they had a different meaning of a smile. Only the poor, the drunk, and the entertainment would smile broadly in both life and art.
And if a person wanted to list themselves as the upper class, they would never smile.
Abraham Lincoln was a man with humorous personality during his lifetime. But in his photos, he always kept serious expressions.
Mark Twain was also a funny guy but he never revealed that part of himself for others to see. Mark Twain once said that:
A photograph is a most important document, and there is nothing more damning to go down to posterity than a silly, foolish smile caught and fixed forever.