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October 11, 2020

The Story Behind the Cooper Family Falling Body Photo

Sometime in the mid 1950s the Cooper family of Texas bought an old house and moved into it. On their first night in the house the father took a photograph of the family to commemorate the event. Posed at the dinning room table were Mr. Cooper’s wife, their two young sons and his mother. Everyone was happy, it was their first home, their first slice of the American Dream.

Days (maybe weeks) passed and finally the father took the exposed roll of film to the local pharmacy to have the pictures “developed”. He was told he could pick them up a week later; this was common in the chemical years of photography. One week later Mr. Cooper retrieved the small packet of snapshots from the pharmacy and returned home with them. When he came to the picture he had taken of his family on that first night in their “new” home, he saw what looked like a body, hanging from the ceiling. It hadn’t been there when the father took the photo. So where had it come from? Was it an apparition of a deceased former tenant of the house? No one knew.

The first evidence of the image you see above being posted online from 2009, where it was named as “Family Gathering”. Some called it’s fake. The only other explanation would be double exposure. If the “body” in the picture is that of the photographer from an earlier accidental exposure, and is upside down because the camera flipped over as it fell from his grasp, then his body is positioned exceedingly oddly. If one were to invert his form in the picture, as if he were standing up, then he would have both hands raised above his head, which is a rather strange position for taking a picture. It could be anything really.

Maybe the uncle was a gymnast and that’s him.


  1. Yeah, much more likely that there was a dangling body that nobody saw, including the photographer. Seriously, if it was even real, it was the guys at the developing lab pulling a prank.

  2. I like to think that it was a ghost. While I have taken into consideration that it was either faked or just an error in photography for that time, I think that it could be a photographed ghost.

  3. It’s likely fake. Notice the framing of the picture, normally you place people at the center of the photo. This photo is only centered because of the hanging man. If he was not in the picture everything would be offset and not “balanced” and it is unlikely someone would take a picture like that.

    1. The photographer very much could have framed the photo as such to include the candles on the table. That isn't quite so unreasonable to believe.
      Regardless, you raise a good point that it's a bit odd to be a coincidence.

  4. Double exposure, upside down, ballet dancer or other female dancer.

  5. It was debunked long ago. It's the ballet dancer Margot Fonteyn superimposed, upside down over the photograph.

  6. why are you here at 3am oh my lord, anyways, if it was a ballet dancer, why is it ABOVE the table falling? the family didn’t seem affected by it at all. also the human flesh looks UNNATURALLY dark, like a ghost or something, it looks like a man and not a woman too.

    1. It's a fake, like all so-called ghost photos.




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