Murder the Result of Various Injuries, 1898
Suicide by Cutting the Throat, 1898
Encircling Gunshot-wound in Brain, 1898
Carbonic-oxide poisoning (Charcoal-fumes) [carbon monoxide], 1898
Suicide through Stabbing, 1898
Bloodstain, blisters, bullet holes, 1864
Head and hand of a drownee, 1864
Decomposed stomach, 1864
Rope marks and upper thigh, 1864
The color of the lungs of dead newborn children: stillborn, newborn who have taken a breath, newborn whose lungs have been artificially inflated, 1864
Carbonic-oxide [carbon monoxide] Poisoning with agonal injuries due to a fall, 1898
Carbonic-oxide [carbon monoxide] Poisoning with agonal injuries due to a fall, 1898
Plate 51. Carbonic-oxid Poisoning (Charcoal-fumes). On the morning of November 6th, the woman [pictured here], clothed only in a chemise and petticoat, was found dead before her bed, lying with her face downward. In her small room there was a basin containing half-consumed charcoal, by burning which she was accustomed to warm herself. At first view the peculiar color of the body is remarkable. As a consequence of the abdominal posture...this color has developed more especially on [the body's] anterior surface.... These lesions...rendered clear the diagnosis of carbonic-oxid poisoning; and this diagnosis was confirmed by an examination of the blood. Spectroscopic examination of the blood diluted with water revealed indeed two absorption-lines in the green part of the spectrum, and these were not essentially different from those of oxy-hemoglobin....
Eduard Ritter von Hofmann, M.D., Atlas of Legal Medicine, Philadelphia, chromolithograph; Artist A. Schmitson
National Library of Medicine
Image 4 of 10

The 19th-century revolution in forensic imaging

In the 19th century, forensic pathologists began using pictures and words to show how various conditions appear in the cadaver, and to teach students and colleagues new methods of analysis. Line drawings, half-tone photography, and chromolithography, which could render coloration, texture, and subtle shading, became increasingly common as improvements in print technology made detailed illustrations cheaper to produce.